Lights… Camera… Scholarship!

Jordan Fraser was awarded an Excellence Scholarship for Prospective Students for producing three short movies in 2013. He has just completed his first year studying on our BA (Hons) Film and Television Production degree.

I caught up with Jordan the other day to discover how receiving a scholarship has made a difference to his film making and to hear about what he’s been up to since being presented with his award. So, without too much further ado… Action!

“Looking back, I’m really proud of the three short movies that were recognised by being offered the Entrance Scholarship. Within my short movies, I particularly enjoy creating layered stories which, although not always apparent on the first watch, cleverly incorporate visual clues.

Obviously, without a Spielberg budget I couldn’t buy Pinewood but the scholarship cash was a very welcome gift that allowed me to purchase some very important pieces of kit including SLR lenses, a shoulder mount, computer upgrades and editing software to help me on my way for the first year.

And what a year it’s been. I’ve had to successfully make the transition from being my own boss, so to speak, to applying my knowledge and collaborating with my peers, making the most of the great facilities the campus has to offer, and quickly learning how other factors such as people with their individual ideas and personalities affected me directly. This was quite a culture shock and I had to adapt quickly.

The first brief I received on the course was to create a short film based loosely on a series of ‘shorts’ called Coffee and Cigarettes whereby we needed to prop the scene with one of the two items. So coffee it was, accompanied by Valentine’s cards. The synopsis here was a minimal café scene, where two friends meet after a long time apart. In the short time they have together, it becomes apparent that they have differing views on everything (including coffee and Valentine’s Day!).

Take 2 and our second movie is more of a dark espionage affair. This film taught me a lot, both in the art of filmmaking but also about working with actors. I couldn’t have asked for more from my leading man, learning his lines and pulling off a brilliant performance in just three days. As his director, I instilled how angry, emotional and petrified he should feel and it worked.

Now, it’s summer. I’m thinking of ideas for some ‘off campus’ movies and the second year is looming. I can’t wait for the next episode to begin!”