Spotlight Feature - Mentee Becomes the Mentor: Reece Vancheri
Reece’s story is one of perseverance and determination and how having these two qualities really pay off when trying to find work in the industry. Reece studied an Undergraduate Film course at university, then studied Business for his master’s degree. His course was initially based in Newport, but during his studies, was relocated to Cardiff. Whilst living in there, Reece noticed how the film and TV industry in the Welsh capital was thriving so decided to stay there in order to start his career in within the media industry.
Through a Facebook runners’ group, Reece found a job on a CBBC show called ‘Our School’, which gave him 6 months’ work as a production runner. Whilst working on this show, he discovered a fascination for locations roles, and set about trying to find some work in this area. Reece spent the best part of 4 years applying for roles, emailing companies, and attending interviews looking for his first opportunity for a role in the locations department. As he was applying for so many positions, he was starting to get his name out more and more. From this, he was put forward for a Screen Alliance Wales traineeship in the locations department, working as a locations trainee on the first series of the Bad Wolf show, Industry. This then took him off to London to work on Pennyworth for another 3 months’ worth of experience in locations.
Reece got his first huge break when he contacted by the locations department on The Pact who had found his details on the Screen Alliance Wales directory and offered him an Assistant Locations Manager role for 7 months - a huge step up. Having returned to Wales, Reece has worked on several more productions, each one getting him more contacts and experience. His latest project, the Tom Hardy Netflix film Havoc, saw him not only on locations but also got him scouting for the production too as part of pre-production. This involved him working with the art department to ascertain what type of location is required, then with the director to get an understanding of what they want for filming.
Reece loves his job and wants to stay in this department, potentially working his way up to become a locations manager or supervising locations manager, overseeing everything involved with locations. It’s a great job, giving you the chance to meet all manner of people, business owners and members of different crews. The hours can be long, with ‘recces’ sometimes meaning having to travel far and wide, but it’s all worth it when you see the finished article.
As well as his current role, Reece has also become a mentor. Throughout the filming of Havoc, he has been mentoring Shuaib Said, showing him the ropes and teaching him the ins and outs of locations work. For Reece, this has required him to have another set of skills, to both keep up with the tasks you are assigned but also taking in to account the person you are teaching. Both Reece and Shuaib work brilliantly They are a fantastic team
To get into this area of work Reece says you must persevere and keep applying. You need to show your willingness and dedication to the jobs you are applying for and not take the rejections to heart. Reece applied for industry roles for 4 years and attended over 25 interviews until he got his first break. “Persevere and be consistent. Know the route you want to be on and stick with a job, even if it’s not in the department you want to work in. You have to create your own initiative, making sure to get your name out there and always showing that you are the right person for the task”.
Thank you to Reece for taking the time out to chat with us and we wish you all the luck with your future endeavours!