Why study film and television at Bristol?

Undergraduate student, George Nichols, discusses the experience of studying in the Department of Film and Television.

George Nichols had always harboured an interested in film.  Choosing Bristol meant he now has both the theoretical knowledge and the practical experience to turn his interest into a fulfilling career.

“Bristol’s a fantastic city to study film in. There are lots of independent production companies, animators and TV companies based in the city,” says George. “There are lots of cinemas, various multiplexes but also art house venues like the Watershed and the Cube, where you can see new, interesting films for not much money. There are also numerous film festivals in Bristol you can get involved with.”

I find I learn best by doing, by trying things out. It’s great to have the combination though. If you were doing a purely practical course, you just wouldn’t have the knowledge of theory and history to back it up.

George Nichols

Undergraduate courses offered by the Department of Film and Television give students a scholarly and practical insight into a range of topics and approaches, covering both historical and contemporary movements in everything from television documentaries to Hollywood blockbusters.

“One of my favourite units was on comedy,” says George. “We studied the elements that make up humour and theories of why we laugh, and looked at different forms like silent comedy and sketch shows. Then we made our own show; as a group, we had to devise our own sketches, write them, perform in them, shoot them and then edit them into a final product.

“Then we got to show that to a TV commissioner who gave us really useful feedback on our work.  We’ve also had talks from people from the film and TV industries – once we heard from someone in the special effects industry, and another time we had someone talking to us about their role as a producer. It all helps give you an idea of what you can go on to do, raising your aspirations.

“Coming to the course has made me realise that what I wanted to get into was film or TV production, writing and directing. For my industrial placement I’m planning to work with a production company. I know a lot of graduates who have found jobs that way, often within a year of leaving university.”

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