Tim Bevan OC

Tim Bevan OC

Tim Bevan OC Cheltenham CollegeCheltenham College was delighted to welcome back to College one of their former students, Tim Bevan, co-founder of Working Title Films, one of the world’s leading film production companies.

Working Title Films have made over 100 films including the following: 

Les Misérables, Anna Karenina, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, Love Actually, Atonement, Notting Hill, Elizabeth (both films), Bridget Jones’ Diary (both films), Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Billy Elliott, Nanny McPhee (both films), Mr Bean (both films), Hot Fuzz, Shaun of the Dead, About a Boy, The Borrowers and Johnny English (both films) to name a few.

They have won 10 Academy Awards: Les Misérables, Anna Karenina, Dead Man Walking, Fargo, Elizabeth and Elizabeth The Golden Age and Atonement, and have picked up 36 BAFTAs and numerous prestigious prizes at the Cannes and Berlin film festivals.

During his day back at College Tim Bevan led a number of workshops. Pupils worked in small groups with each group pitching their film ideas. Ideas ranged from suspense thrillers to romantic comedies. Pupils discussed plot twists, who they would cast and estimated production costs. Tim gave fantastic feedback and everyone soon learned that producing a film was a very expensive business that often takes years to complete, from the initial idea to your film making it into the cinema.  

Tim Bevan OC Cheltenham CollegeThe afternoon was followed by Q&A sessions with a group of 6th Form students keen to work in film and media. Tim shared his experiences, from leaving College to making his first film and stressed how three things were really key in getting him started. Firstly, the breaking up of Unions during the 1980s which meant the film industry stopped being such a closed shop, secondly the arrival of music videos (which is how he started) and thirdly, the arrival of Channel 4 with an emphasis on supporting fresh and independent film-making. Students received plenty of practical advice including specific degree courses to look into and how to get experience in the film industry, as well as sharing some great anecdotes from many of the film stars Tim has worked with in a long and successful career. 

The day concluded with a dinner for parents and OCs. Guests were treated to a fascinating talk about Tim’s career so far and had the opportunity to ask questions. 


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