Screen and Film School Manchester College Principal appointed

27 May, 2020

Screen and Film School are thrilled to announce the appointment of our Manchester College Principal: David Thompson.

David Thompson is a filmmaker with extensive industry experience having worked both nationally and internationally for over a decade. He has previously run an art-house cinema, written and directed his own feature film, produced on numerous shorts and made films in many roles across different platforms with companies including Universal Pictures, ABC, BBC, ITV, C4, Film4, Channel 5, and Discovery amongst others. Passionate about storytelling, screen drama, and the student learning process, he is published in Film pedagogy and is currently studying for a PhD in Filmmaking.

Screen and Film School Manchester College Principal appointed: David Thompson

With eight years teaching and leadership experience both academically and commercially, David joins us from Manchester Metropolitan University where he worked in Filmmaking Curriculum Development and Programme Leadership, whilst building the staff team and establishing industry links.

We’re delighted to welcome David at such an important time for Screen and Film School, as we look ahead to the opening of our Manchester college in September 2021.

The most attractive thing about Screen and Film school for me is that it is an exciting new approach to contemporary Film School education. With the right blend of industry resources and technique, exceptional industry connections, location at the heart of the city centre, it places students in prime position to flourish, prosper and get the platform their talent deserves,” said David. “This role gives me the opportunity to create a dynamic and empowering journey for students, and one I would have loved to be available when I was an undergraduate. The central location, production house feel, real connection to industry, and the exciting and dynamic combination that brings, makes for an exhilarating mix for students.”

We caught up with David to ask him some questions about this exciting new appointment:

Why should Filmmaking applicants consider studying in Manchester?

Manchester right now is an incredibly exciting, surprising and as always revolutionary place to be. The rate of change is such that every few months another building or area of the city springs up. Right on our city-centre doorstep at Screen and Film School, over the last year you could have stepped out and bumped into the huge Marvel blockbuster ‘Morbius’ or more recently passed Lady Diana in the Netflix drama ‘The Crown’, as the trendy Northern Quarter frequently plays host to films doubling for New York. 20 minutes away from SFS Manchester you can get to the largest sound stage in Europe at Space Studios in the East or BBC Sport/CBBC in the West at Media City. In our heart of the city The Factory is soon to open and N.O.M.A. is under construction, the list goes on… The creative industries contribute an incredible £1.46bn to the Manchester economy, the largest outside of London, with the rate of growth consistently higher than the national average.

What advice would you give to our students and graduates taking their first steps into the industry?

I’ve been incredibly lucky to have been alongside a number of successful people in the early stages of their career (e.g. DOP’s, Directors, Wildlife filmmakers) in a lot of diverse film environments. The number one thing that sets aside those who move quickly through the ranks, is saying ‘yes’. Especially in the early stages of your career, it’s more about the volume of work and maximising your experience. Saying yes then leads you to know what you like and what you don’t like – quicker. If you think too much, are picky early on, then things are going to happen slowly. The successful ones I’ve been alongside are not picky, give 100% whatever they do and make the best of everything.

What can we expect from you as College Principal?

I enjoy creating team environments where everyone feels encouraged and supported to do their best. I am excited by new challenges and passionate about including the whole team, staff and students, empowering decision making and ownership of the process. As someone who encourages and nurtures talent and loves seeing students progress and grow, creating a synthesis with industry is paramount, so they can be inspired to go for it in their careers. I love being part of this dynamic environment where anything seems possible. This means being flexible, prepared to run with change and be abundant with ideas.


Welcome to Screen and Film School David!

© 2024 Screen and Film School
All Rights Reserved