I love watching stories told in moving pictures (and sound, and music) – and love making them even more. It’s been a passion of mine, an obsession even, since I was a boy.
I’ve directed three feature films:
Robot Overlords — a sci-fi adventure for older kids starring Ben Kingsley and Gillian Anderson. It was released in cinemas around the world and is currently being developed into a TV show (I co-wrote this film, too).
Grabbers — an Irish horror-comedy, winner of an IFTA (the Irish equivalent of a BAFTA) for its leading lady Ruth Bradley, and winner of five audience awards at international film festivals.
Recently I’ve directed the final “block” of episodes on three TV shows; Ordinary Lies for BBC 1, The Good Karma Hospital for ITV 1, and Our Girl for BBC 1.
My schtick as a director is twofold. Firstly, I am – so people tell me – very calm. I push everybody to work hard and move fast, but I like to run a good-humoured, relaxed, collaborative set. Secondly, I love to make my days. Notwithstanding bad weather my projects come in under budget and on schedule. I see it as a duty to the people who’ve hired me, to make it work within the time and money we’ve pre-agreed.
My favourite TV shows of recent years were Stranger Things and The Crown. I’d love to direct a really cool, interesting TV show (or indie movie) in one of my favourite genres — sci-fi, horror, or fantasy.
My favourite blockbusters of recent years were Doctor Strange, Guardians Of The Galaxy and Inception. Maybe one day I’ll helm a big movie sequel like Star Wars, or a Bond?
Once Upon A Time…
My epiphany, my magic moment, came watching Raiders Of The Lost Ark aged eleven. I was bewitched, transported to another world. Every year after that I made a short film with my friends.
I’m one of those people who’s compulsively creative, I can’t help myself. When I was a kid I wanted to be a painter, a writer, too, but films were the things I always finished — they were too practical to get bogged down in the pursuit of absolute perfection. Nowadays I enjoy working as part of a team, solving physical problems, sitting with an audience. Collaboration with talented folks is my favourite thing, in fact – my definition of happiness.
Later I dabbled in pop promos and adverts. And I kept making short films.
My last short, The Librarian’s Dream (which I also wrote), was shot on 16mm film and won the BBC Talent competition. It more or less lead to my first feature.
I’m a computer geek. I built my own Linux-powered PC, can Photoshop, compress a video, code a bit of HTML. I know my way around the inside of a pixel. ;)
I live by the beach in a small English seaside town, with my girlfriend (I really should use the dread word “partner”), and our young son. I like cycling through the woods, a pint at sunset, that kind of thing.