"Immediately, I realised that you don’t have to live in London to be successful in film"
18 February 2022
Since graduating with a degree in Film in 2020, Hamish Thompson has established himself as an in-demand script reader working with some of the industry’s biggest names. He tells us how the plot unfolded.
I didn’t truly understand what I wanted to do when I arrived at Falmouth, but the Film course guided me through every on-set role: sound, cinematography, editing, production and screenwriting. By the end of my studies I had an understanding of every department, which is vital in the industry.
Immediately, I realised that you don’t have to live in London to be successful in film. The School of Film & Television is a hub for cultural research and a bustling studio environment all under one roof. The passion and dedication of the course team is well known in the independent film sector, and so is the University’s Sound/Image Cinema Lab and the opportunities it offers to filmmakers and practitioners who live and study in Cornwall. There’s no better place to stay connected and find inspiration.
The passion and dedication of the course team is well known in the independent film sector.
It was a difficult time for all of us in the class of 2020. We graduated at the start of Covid-19 and emerged into an industry that would instantly change. Much of what we’d learned about the traditional context of the film industry had to be adapted for a new world of rapid content consumption. I networked like mad, building myself a client list that included former executives, production companies and producers, and found a mentor in BAFTA- winning producer Damian Jones.
I worked on various films as a development assistant, including the Black-British Christmas rom-com Boxing Day, for Warner Bros and Rye Lane and See How They Run for Searchlight Pictures (Walt Disney Studios), before signing a contract to read for Idris Elba’s production company Green Door Pictures – which was surreal. It was thanks to Falmouth’s film course that I had the knowledge and confidence to study for a postgraduate qualification.
I will always think of Cornwall as my home. I’m now based in Devon, but Falmouth is where I failed, triumphed and changed the most as a person.
I’m usually brought into projects by producers, introduced as the story guy. With more experience, I’ll be in the position that my comments are taken directly to the writer. What’s most valued in a reader is honesty – no matter how big the client, how famous the writer or how much money is involved in the project, you can’t be afraid to share your opinion.
I will always think of Cornwall as my home. I’m now based in Devon, but Falmouth is where I failed, triumphed and changed the most as a person. The Film course team are supportive to this day. I don’t think of them as teachers but friends, and a vital part of my professional network.