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About David

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    I am a highly motivated, adaptable and creative self-shooting P/D with wide experience of factual, specialist factual and historical documentaries for major terrestrial and international broadcasters. I have worked on location all over the the USA and in France, Germany, South Africa, Israel and Russia. My experience includes formatted strands and single documentaries. Many of my projects have involved filming on high-security military bases and in remote areas so I am accustomed to the risks of filming in hazardous areas and around weaponry and I am also used to working with safely with Special Effects pyrotechnics.

    I am a fluent German and French speaker and have interviewed in both. I also speak basic Spanish and Greek and am accustomed to working with a translator on location when necessary.

    I am an expert on history from Ancient World to the present day with a talent for uncovering quirky, unusual details that reveal a whole new aspect to familiar stories. I have covered subjects such as the royal family, terrorism, religion and witchcraft and I specialise in turning complex stories into accessible and pacy TV.  

    My background in the theatre has given me the confidence and technical knowledge to be a Drama Reconstruction specialist able to get the best out of actors whether amateur or professional.

    I deliver programmes with powerful narratives that have been praised by both commissioning editors and viewers and maintain the highest standards even when working to tight deadlines with a small team and limited resources. My experience of drama and drama-documentary productions also enables me to manage bigger budget projects and liaise with art and design departments to achieve the very best look possible.

    I make my programmes visually exciting but I am not limited by a particular style. For me the story informs the style and different subjects demand different ways of shooting and editing, so I aim to be adaptable and flexible and remain open to new ideas. This enables me to move effectively from prime-time factual documentary formats to short dramas and corporate promos - creating a unique look every time.

    My extensive knowledge base informs every aspect of my directing ability from script writing to CGI design and archive and stills selection. It also enables me to generate ideas across the range of factual programming. Besides full time development experience I have worked as a history development consultant for a number of major production companies as I am able to offer contacts, reference sources and detailed facts and figures at short notice.  

    With budgets already tight and likely to get tighter I am used to finding ways of making the money go further by being highly selective in the use of archive, stills and big impact CGI. My theatrical training gives me the ability to make rapid and effective decisions when it comes to set design, wardrobe and props and in the past I have even turned my hand to creating 'horror' make-up such as maggot -infested wounds.

     
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    Credits

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    • Pink
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    The Jesus Mysteries - Juniper Communications , United Kingdom
    2013 - Producer/Director
    92 minute special for Nat Geo looking at seven aspects of the life and teachings of Jesus and offering new interpretations.

    Drama sequences, interviews with theologians, clerics and archaeologists and actuality shot in Israel.

    For global broadcast at Easter 2014.

    The Taking of Prince Harry - Juniper TV , United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
    2010 - Producer
    Controversial 90 minute drama-documentary examining what would happen if Prince Harry returned to active duty in Afghanistan and was taken hostage by the Taliban.

    Allah and King Emperor - Gazelle Media , United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
    2010 - Producer/Director
    Thirty minute presenter led HD documentary looking at the incredible contribution made by Muslim soliders of the British Indian Army to the successful outcome of two World Wars. Shot on location in the UK and France. Contributors include top-rank military historians and personalities such as Sir Ranulph Fiennes

    Hitler's Favourite Royal - Monkey Factual , United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
    2007 - Associate Producer
    Commissioned by Ralph Lee for C4's 'High Society' series. This high-profile, archive and stills based, biographical documentary told the story of Queen Victoria's grandson Charles Edward of Saxe Coburg Gotha. After serving in the German Army in World War 1 he supported Hitler's rise to power and became a senior figure in the Nazi Party. Interviewed in German and uncovered several new key elements to the story.

    Lost Evidence Stalingrad - Flashback TV , Worldwide
    2006 - Director
    For History Channel's 'Lost Evidence' series. Examines the siege of the city and destruction of the German 6th Army through vivid first-hand testimony, re-enactment and contemporary aerial photos layered over 3D CGI maps. Shot on HD / HDV using extensive special effects to achieve first class results in the most difficult of all forms of drama reconstruction - hand-to-hand combat. I created a variety of combat environments ranging from snow-covered steppes
    to bombed and blasted houses. 'Great recon' - Dolores Gavin, THC. Regularly selected as 'Pick of the Day' and broadcast world wide, clips of this and the following programmes are even showing on You Tube 'Excellent general overview of the amazing battle of Stalingrad'


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    Employment History

    Specialist Factual / History P/D / AP for C4, FIVE, The History Channel, National Geographic Channel.


    WRITING / DEVELOPMENT 2008-2013
    I am developing a regional 1WW project and a series with Dan Snow . 


    PRODUCING / DIRECTING Credits
    Producer/Director
    2X60  Bloody Tales of Europe     Nat Geo                2012/3
    Two presenter led films in a six part series looking at the gruesome events in European History. In my Executions programme I reveal new information about archive film of the execution of a well known Nazi war criminal. Filmed on location all over Europe. True North Productions

    Producer/Director
    1x60  Extreme Homes             HGTV  US                  2012
    Series for US TV about leading modern architecture around the world. Filmed extensively in Spain and Portugal featuring unusual house design and interviewing architects and owners. PIoneer TV

    Producer
    1X90 The Taking of Prince Harry   Channel 4        2011
    Co-producer on a controversial C4 drama doc examining what would happen if Prince Harry was taken hostage in Afghanistan. Using my detailed knowledge of secret intelligence and special forces operations I drafted the proposal which won the commission from Hamish Mycura at Channel 4. I interviewed contributors ranging from former hostages to FBI and MI6 officers and senior military figures and worked closely with drama sequences director Alex Marengo to ensure accuracy. The programme charts the course of Prince Harry's capture and asks whether Britain is ready to face such an event.  Juniper TV  

    Producer/Director
    1x30 Allah, King and Country    Al Jazeera           2010
    Presenter-led documentary looking at the crucial role played by Moslem soldiers played in the World Wars. Shot on HD at locations around the UK and on the battlefields of northern France with rarely seen colour archive and contributors including top rank military historians and personalities such as Sir Ranulph Fiennes. Gazelle Media.

    Producer
    1x 60 Hitler's Favourite Royal     Channel 4 2008
    Commissioned by Ralph Lee for C4's 'High Society' series. Co-producer/AP on this 3.9 million audience, high-profile, archive-based, biographical documentary about the grandson of Queen Victoria who supported Hitler's rise to power. Interviewed in German and uncovered several new key elements to the story. Monkey Factual TV.

    Producer / Director
    1 x 60 Stalingrad                            History Channel 2006
    For History Channel's 'Lost Evidence' series. Examines the siege of the city and destruction of the German 6th Army through vivid first-hand testimony, re-enactment and contemporary aerial photos layered over 3D CGI maps. Shot on HD / HDV using extensive special effects to achieve first class results in the most difficult of all forms of drama reconstruction - hand-to-hand combat. I created a variety of combat environments ranging from snow-covered steppes
    to bombed and blasted houses. 'Great recon' - Dolores Gavin, THC. Regularly selected as 'Pick of the Day' and broadcast world wide, clips of this and the following programmes are even showing on You Tube.  'Excellent general overview of the amazing battle of Stalingrad' Flashback TV.

    Producer / Director
    1 x 60 Battle of Berlin                      History Channel 2006
    The story of Hitler's last days and the final battle of World War 2 in Europe. A hugely challenging film in which the appalling experiences of teenaged German boys and girls had to be brought to life with imaginative reconstruction and powerful archive. My own extensive knowledge of the period enabled me to use appropriate and accurate archive and to devise original and informative 3D CGI. Flashback TV.

    Producer / Director
    1 x 60 Battle for Luzon                   History Channel 2006
    General MacArthur's 1945 liberation of the Philippines and the largest land battle of the Pacific War. An incredibly varied story encompassing amphibious landings, street fighting, a parachute assault and a daring prison camp rescue by Special Forces. All these elements were brought to life with veterans' interviews, unique combat archive, aerial photographs and powerful re-enactment using HD / HDV. Flashback TV.

    Producer / Director
    1 x 60 Tragedy on Peleliu               History Channel 2006
    A tragic story about the unnecessary island invasion that was supposed to take only 3 days and became a pitiless 72-day battle of attrition. I was able to film extraordinary interviews with veterans speaking frankly about the psychological effects of combat and their attitudes to the enemy. I also selected vivid examples of war art to reinforce the impact of rarely seen colour archive and shocking dramatic reconstruction. Flashback TV.

    Producer / Director
    1 x 60 Battle for Saipan                    History Channel 2005
    The story of the crucial June 1944 invasion that shattered Japan's island defences and destroyed her aircraft carrier force. Using some of the most powerful archive of the Pacific War, the film also dealt with US veterans' reactions to the mass suicide of Japanese civilians and their guilt over friendly fire deaths. Flashback TV.

    Producer / Director
    1 x 60 The Battle of Leyte Gulf        History Channel 2005
    The complex story of history's greatest naval engagement. The programme explained the movements of the US and Japanese fleets and made extensive use of 3D CGI to illustrate the destruction of rival warships. Interviews with veterans captured the epic nature of the battle and revealed the scandal of US survivors being abandoned in shark-filled waters for 3 days. Filmed aboard warships in the US and UK including the only Great War battleship. 'I highly recommend this episode' - Viewer opinion. Flashback TV

    Producer / Director
    1 x 60 The D-Day Machine Channel 5 / History Channel 2005
    Examined the development of the ground-breaking technologies used on D-Day and showed how they were integrated to make an unstoppable invasion machine. Archive, graphics, interviews with veterans and location re-enactment in the US and UK. Part of the 'Heavy Metal' series showcasing famous weapons systems of the last 200 years. Flashback TV.

    CORPORATE Credits  
    Producer / Director                               

    1x4  Creating Opportunities                   Corporate 2011
    Promo for the Southwark community charity Blackfriars Settlement. Featuring interviews with both clients and staff the promo was shown on the Community Channel in May 2011.

    Producer / Director                              
    1x4 The Finishing Touch                       Corporate 2009
    Commissioned by the world's leading gold lace embroiderer Hand & Lock to showcase their fashion and regalia work. Filmed with models at their London HQ the promo highlighted designs made for Kate Moss and Kylie Minogue and for designers like Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen. 

    Producer / Director
    1 x 4 Centuries of Excellence               Corporate 2008
    Devised and marketed the idea of a promotional video for the UK's leading manufacturer of military and civilian ceremonial regalia, Toye Kenning & Spencer. Detailed filming of their fascinating production facility and full range of medals, uniforms, fashion accessories and high-profile items such as David Beckham's unique gold100th International cap.

    DEVELOPMENT Principal Credits
    Besides working as a Development Producer I have been called in on a consultancy basis to advise on historical projects by Flame, Atlantic Productions, Flashback TV, Juniper and Darlow Smithson.

    Development Producer                 Flame TV 2011
    Devised a new six-part factual series for the Discovery Channel to be presented by Al Murray aka 'the Pub Landlord'.
      
    Development Producer                October Films 2011
    Developed the concept and storyboard for a new look at World War two for History Channel US. Directed and edited 5 minute sizzle working closely with the CGI design team. 
     
    Development Producer              Juniper Communications 2010
    Used specialist knowledge of counter terrorist operations to draw up detailed proposal for a major C4 drama-documentary due to be commisioned by Hamish Mycura.  

    Development Producer              Juniper Communications 2003
    I drew up proposals for programmes on history, education, serial killers, sports and immigration across the range of terrestrial and non-terrestrial channels. I conceived and developed the drama-documentary on the Aberfan mining village disaster which was broadcast by the BBC as 'Aberfan: The Untold Story ' in Sept 2006.

    Development Researcher          Stormy Pictures 2002
    Story development for series two of BBC drama 'Red Cap' providing plot lines, liaising with principal writers, tracing contacts and checking the authenticity of details and dialogue.

    Development Researcher          October Films 2000
    Worked with Angus McQueen to develop a six-part BBC series on the Great War. My background research on the British Army became the basis for the BBC History/Reality series 'The Trench'. I also developed the Captain Bligh documentary commissioned as 'The Real Captain Bligh' by Channel 4.

    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER / RESEARCH Principal Credits
    Associate Producer               
    History Channel 2001 - 2004
    15 x 60 documentaries for the 'Heavy Metal' / 'Battle Stations' series. The programmes provided a detailed examination of weapons systems ranging from HMS Victory to the F/A 22 Raptor jet fighter. Each system was brought to life with veterans' interviews, 3D computer graphic models and dramatic reconstruction. The role also involved location filming on helicopters, tanks, fighters and warships across the US and UK. I set up and maintained excellent contacts with the US Army, Navy and Air Force and British Army. Flashback TV.

    Associate Producer               Discovery Military  2004
    2 x 60 documentaries for 'Top Tens' series rating the world's best fighter aircraft and tanks. These were fast-paced archive and graphics based shows which required the gathering of vast amounts of accurate technical information. Flashback TV.

    Associate Producer               Channel 4   2004
    1 x 60 'Mandela - Beneath the Halo' for Dorothy Byrne of C4 News and Current Affairs. Exposed Mandela's failings on AIDS, employment and the arms trade. Shot on location in South Africa with presenter Peter Hitchens. Juniper Communications.

    Associate Producer               Channel 4 / ARTE 2003
    1 x 60 drama documentary 'The Battle of Agincourt' directed by Rob Coldstream re-examining the battle from a French perspective. Advised on historical characters and dramatic reconstruction, worked closely with art designer. Juniper Communications.

    Associate Producer                Channel 4   2002
    Rob Coldstream's 1 x 60 award-winning 'Bare Knuckle Boxer' for the 'Georgian Underworld' series. Uncovering the story of Britain's forgotten black boxing champions in the early 19th century. Juniper Communications.

    Researcher                                Channel 4    2001
    1 x 60 documentary 'The Real Captain Bligh' exploding the myths of the Bounty Mutiny. October Films.

    ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
    Freelance broadcast journalist BBC Local Radio.
    Prior to 2000 I wrote and presented news packages for a variety of daytime programmes at BBC Radio Gloucestershire, the BBC Western cluster and for Radio 4.

    Theatre - Acting / teaching
    On leaving University I became an actor on the London Fringe and in Theatre in Education and then worked as a Youth Theatre director and teacher in London, South Wales and in Greece. The Youth Theatre group I set up in Volos, Greece, was one of the first in the country and my bi-lingual production of Shaffer's 'Black Comedy' was reviewed by the national press as 'the best amateur performance of the year'.
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    Education

    BA Joint Honours German and History
    University of Kent at Canterbury
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    Technical Equipment

    I self shoot on cameras such as the XF 305 and C300
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    Affiliations

    Documentary Filmmakers Group,Panico Film Workshop
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    Referees

    References available on request.
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    Skills

    US I Visa valid until 2015
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    Additional Information

    Industries

    • Corporate, 
    • Radio, 
    • Theatre, 
    • TV

    Programme Types

    • Arts, 
    • Biography, 
    • Corporate, 
    • Current Affairs, 
    • Development, 
    • Documentary, 
    • Drama Reconstruction, 
    • Drama: Television Serial, 
    • Dramatised Documentary, 
    • Historical Documentary, 
    • Mental Health

    Organizations

    • BECTU, 
    • Directors UK, RUSI

    Specialisms

    • Anthropology, 
    • Archaeology, 
    • Architecture, 
    • Art, 
    • Art History, 
    • Arts, 
    • Aviation, 
    • Cinema/Film, 
    • Corporate Films, 
    • Crime, 
    • Current Affairs, 
    • Digital Special Effects, 
    • Drama, 
    • Fashion, 
    • Heritage, 
    • High-Definition, 
    • History, 
    • Industry, 
    • International Affairs, 
    • Journalism, 
    • Languages, 
    • Literature, 
    • Location Filming, 
    • Mental Health, 
    • Mountaineering, 
    • Paranormal, 
    • People Finding, 
    • Period Drama, 
    • Popular Culture, 
    • Programme Development, 
    • Sex Industry, 
    • Sexuality, 
    • South Africa, 
    • Technology, 
    • Theatre, 
    • Writing

    Languages

    • English, 
    • French, 
    • German, 
    • Greek

    Permits

    • EU, 
    • USA

    Licenses

    • Basic Driving (PLG)
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