James studied a BA (Hons) Degree in Film Production at Screen and Film School Brighton, and now runs his own production company, alongside freelancing as a brand content and commercials producer.
He’s worked with brands such as British Airways, Westland, and NHS England, as well as producing a TV spot for Southern Water, which was recently shortlisted for an award.
James’ production company Studio River primarily works with brand and music clients, but also produces scripted shorts. The team recently completed a film with Channel 4’s ‘Smack The Pony’ writer Lisa Fulthorpe. The film ‘Booklovers’ screened at Cinecity, as well as winning ‘Best Horror’ at Brighton Rocks Film Festival.
What were the most valuable skills you gained at Screen and Film School?
“The two greatest takeaways from Film School, for me, are connections and mistakes. I still work closely with friends from Film School, and am really grateful for the wider network of connections I have grown, most with roots grounded in Film School. Secondly, the freedom and safe space to make mistakes.
I think if nothing else Film School gives you a huge leg-up into industry; laying the foundations with skills like set etiquette, roles, responsibilities, and generally encouraging you to think more openly about film. All useful stuff that would take longer to grow organically, from scratch.”
What advice would you offer current students at Screen and Film School?
“Work hard, and take every opportunity (within reason…). So many of the things I have worked on start from just showing up, being passionate about what you do, and making a good impression. I would also say be kind to yourself, and trust your instincts. It’s a tough industry that’s become slightly tougher through COVID. Be smart – there are new roles on sets opening up as a result of the pandemic, and also a shift in how productions work; so be as versatile as possible.”
If you’re interested in a career in the UK Film and TV industry, take a look at Screen and Film School’s Course Finder page.