Jameson First Shot is the best filmmaking competition with the best prize I can think of. It’s not money, it’s not gear; it’s an experience and opportunity to learn. I learned a great many things about filmmaking on my trip to Los Angeles, as well as making a lot of contacts. I will be returning to LA in the coming months and I now have people I can call when before I knew no one. I have met people in circles I would have never dreamed of meeting before First Shot. When you start your own creative projects it’s not nearly as hard to persuade a crew to get on board. It will give you the confidence to go and ask that actor you may have thought was too big for your project if they will join the project. Right now I'm working on creative projects with budgets – that was never the case before Jameson First Shot. It has been a real privilege for me to work with Kevin Spacey, the crew and the great people at Jameson. If this year’s winner has only half the experience I did it will still be the best experience ever. So Good Luck!
There is no better start for the career of a young filmmaker than opportunity to participate in Jameson First Shot. In the year since I shot my movie, both my confidence and my career have developed immeasurably. Today I am working with the best producers in the film industry. Kevin Spacey said to me while we were on set last year: ‘I want to see your feature-length film at a festival one day’. These words and the competition continue to inspire me every single day.
Since the Jameson First Shot competition I've remained pretty busy. I've developed a few feature film ideas that I've had brewing for some time, finished writing a TV pilot, and directed a few commercial spots. I've been able to work with an agency and a couple of producers, who have helped immensely in honing my ideas and navigating the production world. These doors were opened as a direct result of the competition – a short film starring Kevin Spacey tends to get people's attention (I still can't believe the amount of views on YouTube, and the overwhelmingly positive response people have had). My plan is to keep my foot on the pedal, continue writing and directing as much as I can, and ideally get a feature off the ground in near future. Also, I can't wait to see the films that this year's competition generates. I know Willem Dafoe will do a phenomenal job.