a short film by



Tom McCort is a type 1 diabetic. Two years back, after his diagnosis he retreated from certain aspects of his life that were difficult to control with his condition. Now, feeling more confident in his body but still full of trepidation, he is determined to get those missed elements back...

Prick was created by Industrious Dark and funded by Northern Ireland Screen

Diabetes is not a plot point in Prick. It's not life and death, simply a daily existence.

Background and Origins

The Director Adrian was diagnosed as type 1 diabetic several years back which became the catalyst for making this film.
A lot of films use diabetes as a plotpoint or are focused on the numerous health issues associated with bad long-term control.
We wanted to see a film that wasn't about those unpleasant complications, but about the daily workload. The reality. Every diabetic must work at managing their condition every day to avoid these ill effects.
This is not a simple case of taking medication and moving on. It's a lifestyle change.
Prick is a film that focuses on the effect this has on the mindset- the loss of confidence you have in your body, the frustration at how it no longer functions as it should and the irritation and impact of dealing with it every day and for those around you.

There is more to diabetes than the falsehood of "not being able to eat sugar"

Education and a world of numbers

Diabetes is a complicated subject.
We only had 15 minutes and we didn’t want to have unrealistic expositional-heavy scenes.
Most viewers will probably not understand entirely what is going on, but the point of Prick (pun intended) was never to educate, simply to shine a light on the reality of diabetic life. If you know little of diabetes before watching we hope that you at least take away the fact that it’s a more complicated condition than you maybe first thought.

A diabetic spends over 5000 waking hours a year managing their condition.

A quick diabetic primer

The healthy range

A diabetic's aim is to keep their blood glucose level inside this normal healthy range.


To check blood glucose levels, regular finger prick tests are done (usually at least 4 a day).


Controlling your blood glucose level requires balancing the correct amount of medication for the correct amount of food & drink (carbohydrate) and exercise. This is not as easy as it sounds.


A constantly high blood glucose level causes serious short-term and long-term health issues.


(The "hypo") When the blood glucose level drops too low (too much medication or exercise etc) brain function and movement become impaired which, if not immediately treated, can lead to loss of consciousness and even coma.



Prick was filmed around Belfast and Holywood NI over four days.

It was an ambitious shoot managed by the help of our wonderful cast and crew - a local NI-based team.

The Look

Prick was shot with a naturalistic aesthetic to give it a pseudo-documentary feel. In accordance with the minimal dialogue, we wanted it to feel almost as if observing the characters and parts of their lives. We kept the rules simple, no fancy camera moves, no locked down camera, the camera should always have a little movement to it akin to Tom’s ever-changing levels and the more unpredictable nature of the real world. Handled and lit by the DOP Carl Best and Sam Orr.

The sounds

With the simplicity of the naturalistic visuals and real (possibly alienating) dialogue, sound and music became central to enhancing and illustrating the emotional states of the character and the scenes. Helping us with this was the talented Brandon Marchant, who was a musician first and composer second. Drawing on both backgrounds we found a range of music and audio textures that was far from the polished Hollywood score and more realistic for the central character Tom in his journey to try and attain constant perfect levels when life is anything but constant or perfect.

Prick uses music and audio textures to place you in Tom's space.


Main Cast

  • Team Member

    Declan Rodgers - Tom McCort

    Declan is from Dundrum in Co. Down but currently lives in London. He trained at the London Academy of Music & Dramatic Art (LAMDA) and his credits include:
    Six Degrees (BBC), Holby City (BBC), Ashes To Ashes (Kudos Television/BBC), In Cold Blood (BBC), Maru (TG4).
    Shooting For Socrates (New Black Films), You Looking At Me? (Besom/Channel 4), The Minnits of Annabeg (Krown Films).
    The Birthday Party (UK & Ireland Tour), I'm With The Band (Traverse Theatre & UK Tour), Can't Forget About You (Lyric Theatre), Shoot The Crow (Trafalgar Studios).

    Team Member

    DEARBHÁIL Carr - Beth

    Dearbháil is a Northern Irish actress from Newry with bases in Belfast, Dublin and London.
    Trained at The Gaiety School of Acting in Dublin in 2009 after receiving a First class honours degree in Drama from University of Ulster in Derry.
    She has since worked in film, television and theatre at home and in London. Represented by Universal Artists. Credits include: The Fall (TV) and The Devil’s Door (Feature).

    Team Member

    Robbie Beggs - Gerry

    Robbie has a wide range of television, film and other credits to his name.
    Television credits include:
    The Fall, 6 Degrees and Ealu.
    Film credits include: The Pigman, The Monday Club, Rabbit Trap, Remorse at Dawn and The Elevator.


Industrious Dark

Industrious Dark are the creative team of Adrian Rowe and Emma Louise Dodds
With a background in music promos and short films, Prick represents a combination of these elements continuing along their current theme of creating unique work.


Written & Directed by - Adrian Rowe
Written & Produced by - Emma Louise Dodds

Tom McCort - Declan Rodgers
Beth Cameron - Dearbháil Carr
Gerry Taylor - Robbie Beggs
Doctor Gardner - Laura Webster
Hannah - Henri McCullough

Director of Photography - Carl Best
Sound Recordist - Chris Woodcock
Composer - Brandon Marchant

Makeup & Hair Designer - Debbie Mckibbon
Camera Operator - Sam Orr
Additional Camera - Michael Reynolds
Stills Photographer - David McDonald
Additional Photography - Elza Binde

Runners - Kirsty McAuley & Karen Champion

Extras -
Benjamin Rowe, Niall G. Brown, Andrew Browne, Robbie Dougan, Conor Sloan, Jordan Singh, Matthew MacNabb.

Editor - Emma Louise Dodds
Post-Production Audio - Chris Muldoon
Colourist - Peter Oppersdorff

"Welcome Home" Written & Performed by - VerseChorusVerse (Tony Wright)

Short Film Executive - Christine Morrow
Funding Executive - Marian Clark de Monreal

Catering - CVL Bakes
Insurance - Performance : Film & Media Insurance

Images reproduced by kind permission:
Diabetes UK

Thanks to: Rob Darnell, Phil Rowe, Murdo Macrae Tony Wright, Zuzanna Marchant, Gillian Reynolds, Marty McCann, Andrew Simon McAllister, Chris McGeown, Accu-chek US, Joanna Turner, Josephine McCormick and Elizabeth at the Agape Centre, Lynn at Tesco, Knocknagoney Road, Blick Studios.
Special Thanks to our folks without whom this film wouldn’t have been possible.

Shot on location in Belfast and Holywood NI.

For more information

Stay up to date on Facebook