The year so far……..

Since I had the dubious pleasure of watching Wayne Sleep strip off in a Working Mens Club in Sheffield back in April, I’ve hardly stopped, I spent some time in Benidorm, sunning myself with the cast and crew of the hit sitcom, shooting behind the scenes for a tenth anniversary special, which will be shown in December I think.

In May I worked on the studio segments for the BBC’s How To Stay Young, a nice change to the doc work I’d been doing for the couple of months prior to that, a large studio rig with 10 radio mics, feeds to multiple cameras, lots of timecode boxes, I had a great assistant and the rest of the team were a pleasure to work with, so it was a very enjoyable shoot.

In June, July and August, I travelled 4500 miles around America, with the wonderful Miriam Margolyes, it took us two months to travel across 8 states, we started in Chicago, and before arriving in New Orleans 54 days later, we passed through Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Texas finally arriving in Louisiana with some amazing tales to tell, you’ll have to watch the shows to find out what happened, it’ll be on the BBC early in the new year. Will the scene where the ladies of J-Pod in Butler County jail, Hamilton, Ohio christened me Teddy Bear make the final cut? Probably not. 2 months is a long time to be in the road, but a greta crew helped, and the fact we were travelling through barbecue and chilli sauce country meant I could mix business with pleasure.

September took a slightly surreal turn  when I found myself in a classic Citroen DS with Joanna Lumley and Jennifer Saunders, making a program called ‘On Champagne’ From Searcys Champagne bar at St Pancras to the Eurostar home, not an hour passed without someone passing me a glass of something sparkling and amazing. The ladies were amazing company, and I caught up with some old friends, so it was a week to remember. I did blow a days wages on bottle to bring home, but who can blame me?

Along the way over the last few months I’ve worked on a couple of commercials, the new BBC idents and a host of docs for various clients. I’m currently looking for work for the rest of the year, and have lots of new kit to play with, so give me a call if there’s anything I can do for you.

The Real Full Monty

You’ve never lived until you’ve seen a bunch of blokes off the telly stripping off in Shiregreen club in Sheffield. I had that dubious pleasure earlier this year, when Ashley Banjo and Alexander Armstong recruited a bunch of men to recreate the famous scene from the Full Monty. We followed the journey from Alexanders first phone calls to try and recruit potential strippers, through to the inevitable climax in Sheffield. Look out for the show which will be on ITV1 later in the year.

Life in Polar Bear Town

Late 2016 saw me spend a month in Churchill, Northern Canada on a BBC project, we shot an hour long doc with Gordon Buchanan, called Life in Polar Bear Town, broadcast on New Years Eve, and we also produced 3 hour long live shows called Arctic Live, with Kate Humble, Simon Reeve and Gordon. This was possibly my biggest technical challenge ever, broadcasting live from the a buggy roaming the Tundra, an excellent camera team and the good people from Timeline TV covering the OB side of things made sure we stayed on air every night despite the wind, blizzards and polar bears.

2016 so far…..

I’ve spent the last 11 weeks on used car forecourts in Derby, shooting a series for Dave, provisionally entitled ‘Used Car Wars’, it’ll be on air in the new year and will definitely be worth a watch, you’ll see things you never expected to see used car dealers doing, and you might get a few tips on how to get a good deal next time you buy a car. Prior to that I did some second unit work on an ITV drama called Brief Encounters, it’s about Ann Summers party hosts in Sheffield in the early ’80’s, it’s on in July and August and it’s very good. I always enjoy working on dramas, it makes a change from the documentaries  that form most of my work. I also worked on a few corporate shoots, one about 5 miles from home, and one in Algiers, Algiers was amazing, if you’ve never been, go, the wine is stunning. To add to the oddball mix, I also shot a pilot for a game show in a haunted house (history repeating itself there!) and spent two days watching people make lampshades for BBC4’s ‘Britain on the make’ So all in all, half way through, it’s been another interesting and varied year, I’m having a week off now to tend to my polytunnel, check out http://www.chilliupnorth.com to see more about that.