A Day in the Life of a Flatpacker

Jackson Clifford is studying Media at Stratford Upon Avon College and joined us at Flatpack HQ for a week-long work experience placement to learn about all things film. Read on for a snapshot of his experience…

Turns out there’s more to work experience than tea-making (although, that being said, a lot of tea is consumed at Flatpack HQ)…

Day one was spent in the Flatpack office at the Custard Factory in Digbeth where I met the team behind Flatpack Film Festival and helped out with the organisation of different festival events (the festival is due to take place 13-22 April 2018).

The week has been a crash course in Flatpackery. I was given an intro to programming by Amy Smart, Partnerships and Interventions Manager at Film Hub Midlands, and got to try my hand at a bit of programming too by researching short film content for a festival set to take place in Stafford in March (Pocket Film Festival). I’ve spent some time researching distribution methods for a few different films including Moonlight and The Room, and I can also leave this week equipped with skills to market and promote film and film events through a range of social media platforms.

A highlight of the week was a trip to the Electric Cinema for a presentation about the newly launched Film Hub Midlands. It was really interesting to hear from the other people attending (a range of exhibitors and filmmakers) about their ideas and productions – the attendees were clearly highly interested in film and some were filmmakers themselves.

Whilst at the Electric I was given the opportunity to screen a film I wrote and starred in called Killa Bedding, a fun film made within 12 hours.

Here I am watching Killa Bedding on the big screen! It was great to see the audience being entertained by what they watched. Not to mention that the director of Coventry Film Festival was there and asked me if he could show Killa Bedding at the festival which I thought was a really good opportunity!

I really enjoyed working with Flatpack. I gained a variety of knowledge on films and marketing, and had the chance to learn about other people’s films and events. I was also given really exciting opportunities – I’m currently involved with a filmmakers network (Gen. 2) and this week has helped me to understand how different film events are organised, as well as to make connections with people associated with filmmaking, expanding my options for the future and overall understanding.

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"An incredible mix of film and music for all ages." - The Times
"A treasure trove of a festival" – Sight and Sound
"Magnificently eclectic" – Time Out
"This festival is really like no other, with an incredible line-up of amazing screenings and events for grown-ups and kids alike." - Anorak
"Joyously inventive" - Guardian
"Britain’s most exciting and innovative film festival" – Lonely Planet
"Like the perfect mixtape…you’re not quite sure how or why the selection works, but that is what makes it so magical" – Electric Sheep
"It's like being shown really cool stuff by a good friend who thinks you might like to see it." - Audience member
"Flatpack has gained a well deserved reputation as an innovative film festival with an imaginative output" – Film Four
"I came away totally inspired, both by Birmingham and by Flatpack. One of the best festivals I’ve ever been to." - Ken Freedman, WFMU
"The festival feels like an essential component in Birmingham’s cultural life, bringing new talent and the city itself to light." - The Quietus
"The best programming on the planet." - Canadian curator Kier-la Janisse
"Independent, quirky, intelligent, innovative, amusing and relaxed - nothing else like it." - Audience member