Trainee Tuesday - Alex
For this week’s Trainee Tuesday, meet Alex!
Before he started in the industry, Alex trained as a stage manager at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff. He had always been interested in theatre, television, and film, but had found theatre was an easier route to get into whilst studying in school. He’d been involved backstage with school productions and had managed to do bits and pieces with his local theatre, but still had a strong desire to work in the Film and Television world.
Alex had been trying to break into the industry himself, but through Welsh College alumni he was able to get his foot in the door with a six-week placement on a Netflix film called ‘Apostle’. The placement was great fun, with Alex being quite happy to be knee deep in mud till the early hours and often soaked through! He already had some idea of what is involved with filming, but it was amazing to be in and amongst it all rather than simply a spectator.
Alex then applied to be a trainee on the first series of His Dark Materials and got the role as a Locations Assistant. He then worked in the same role on series two, before becoming Assistant Unit Manager on Series Three. He had also been busy with other series in between such as the second series of ‘War of the Worlds’ for Fox, ‘Craith/Hidden’ amongst others, but he has returned to Bad Wolf once more as an Assistant Unit Manager. This role entails working with the locations team with the logistics of filming on location, i.e. power and water, bins and car parks.
“SAW was my way in. When I started as a trainee, it was through their trainee scheme. When that came to an end, they put me in touch with location managers to find that next job. They have always kept in touch and if they hear of anyone looking for a team they’ve passed my details on. Although I’m no longer one of their trainees, I still feel like part of SAW. The team are always in touch socially as well, even if I’m not at Wolf and are a really friendly face to the industry”
Alex’s advice for those wanting to work in this industry would be to not be afraid to approach people and to ask questions. That’s the joy of this industry, everyone starts at the bottom and works their way up so they’re always happy to talk to and support anyone who is keen and interested because that was them once. There are so many different jobs, whatever your skills there will be a role which suits. Once you’re ‘in’ even if it is just work experience, observe, and ask if you don’t understand something. Whatever department you work in, it is all about people and communication, so the better your understanding of what everyone else does, it’ll help.
Thank you so much Alex for telling us about your route into the industry, and we are thrilled that you are doing so well with your career.