Graduates of the NFTS Directing and Producing Television Entertainment MA have gone on to direct top entertainment shows such as The Chase and Ninja Warrior UK and take on roles such as Senior Development Producer at the BBC. We caught up with recent graduate, Jamie Minty to find out what he’s been doing since graduating in February.
What have you been doing since you graduated?
Since graduating I have worked at The London Studios on any and all shows they have there. Personal highlights were The Graham Norton Show, Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway and the ITV Daytime shows. From there I went to work on Love Island and now I'm on Strictly Come Dancing until Christmas. I’ve really enjoyed doing long contracts in this freelance industry.
What were the highlights and challenges of working on top shows like Love Island and Strictly?
One of the obvious highlights on Love Island was three months in the sun but apart from that I was lucky that I got to work with pretty much every team on site. It was a great way to make loads of contacts and learn how a show of that size is put together and broadcast six days a week. Working in the gallery was really interesting; I got to see how the directors handle 72 cameras and how the producers choose which stories to follow. The nights of the dumpings or recouplings were always incredible as we'd wait for the public votes to come in then watch the drama unfold around us. It kept us on our toes, especially in the edit where an unexpected result could change the direction of the entire episode.
On Strictly I'm with the VT team so we go out each week shooting the couples training and the various activities they get up to. It's a great opportunity to get time on camera and show the directors what I've learned at NFTS. You get a lot of chances to come up with ideas and contribute to the direction and story. I'm really looking forward to shooting in the Strictly studio too!
What do you love the most about working in television entertainment?
Personally I think I'm quite impatient so I love the fast paced nature of TV Entertainment. It can get stressful at times but that gives me a bit of an adrenaline kick. Love Island and Strictly are very fast turnaround shows so you're always up against the clock but it makes every day new and exciting.
How has the NFTS Directing Television Entertainment MA helped you with your career?
(Jamie shooting his grad project, Against All Odds)
The course has really helped me with my first steps into the industry. It's given me so much confidence and I feel prepared and excited to take on any new challenges that get thrown my way. The course is an incredible opportunity to learn and practice exactly who and what you want to be in the TV industry. You have two years to experiment and take risks, inside and outside of the curriculum. Within two years you'll have worked in the studio, both live and pre-recorded, on location, crews and kit of every shape and size, and in every entertainment genre. Getting all of that experience in such a short amount of time in the industry really isn't easy.
By the time you finish you can make your graduation show a reflection of who you are, what you specialise in, what you're capable of and the shows you intend to make in the future. I was given the job on Love Island on the strength of my grad show, Against All Odds, which recently won 'Best Unscripted Pilot' at the New York TV Festival so I'm excited to see what other opportunities it brings my way.
For more information on the Directing and Producing Television Entertainment MA, sign up for the course open day on April 19th: www.nfts.co.uk/tvent