What actually brought you to film making and how joining Hamlett Films came about?
Having studied English Literature at uni, I was surrounded by a wealth of different voices, genres and characters, and this really opened my eyes to the infinite amount of stories just waiting to be told and heard. I joined Hamlett Films in September 2021 because the job was irresistible! The stories told are bold and powerful, reaching audiences all across the UK and helping people learn in a way that is original and unique.
What has been your biggest success and challenge so far as a production assistant?
I’d say my biggest success so far as a Production Assistant has been the film we made for Vivalda: ‘Behind the Façade’. It was my role to find and source hundreds of different pieces of free archive for the film that powerfully related to the story that was being told. It was amazing to watch the final version that our talented editors had put together, and know that I had contributed to such a fantastic project.
The pitching process is possibly the most challenging yet rewarding work that I do. Working closely with educational consultants and illustrators within a tight deadline to create a winning pitch is hugely enjoyable. I am always very proud of the work and ideas we put forward, especially when we win the pitch!
What does a production assistant actually do?
I work across all areas of production; from designing pitches for commissioners and preparing the team for a shoot, to being a runner on set, sourcing archive with editors, and even working on final transcripts in post production.
Being able to multitask and balance projects / tasks such as these, is essential to ensuring a smooth and efficient production. Clients and colleagues rely on the Production Assistant to have up to date and accurate knowledge of the projects at hand and by being organised and deeply involved in each project, the Production Assistant helps ensure each film is a success.
What are the key elements for great video content these days?
It needs to do something different, something original. Films which address an uncomfortable topic that many want to brush under the carpet interest me, such as ‘Racial Inequalities in Health’ which I was a researcher on. In a market as saturated as educational content, videos must have a new, relevant and exciting element to them; and that is what Hamlett Films always manages to provide.
What other figure in the industry do you tend to look up to?
Linda Woolverton, the American screenwriter, is a huge inspiration for me. Her consistent moral bravery to create strong characters in a male-dominated industry is remarkable. I am thankful to her courage for ensuring young girls’ dreams were as limitless as those in her fairy tales.
Her protagonists (Belle, Mulan, Maleficent, and most recently Alice – ‘Through The Looking Glass’) were simultaneously the princesses and their own fairy godmothers / prince charmings; they were always strong enough to save themselves.
Give us one word that would describe you the best
If I had to describe myself in one word, it would be ‘determined’. Growing up with an equally competitive and determined twin sister, we both pushed each other a lot and strove to be the best. Sometimes I do have to remind myself that mistakes are ok and encourage myself to take risks, even if there is a chance of failure. But in general, my determination to exceed my own and others’ expectations, is what drives me.
If you had known you would become a production assistant quite early on, what would you have told your 18 years-old self?
I would probably tell myself to stop worrying about the small things. I used to be very self-conscious and care a lot about what other people thought of me, and I wish I could have focused less on their opinions and more on what was right for me. I’d definitely tell myself to keep on dreaming and always do what I love.