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Callum Costello

What are you doing now?

Writing films and comics, and getting paid which is good.

How did studying at Northumbria help you achieve your career goals / give your career an edge?

Studying at Northumbria with the great Media Production department helped me gain structure in my work day and also focused what I was passionate about doing in the film industry. Each lecturer gave me a different insight and approach; Peter Dillon taught me how to write good scripts, Ian Cottage gave me a good perspective on approaching creative work, Rob Jefferson taught me how to have fun with my work, Neil Percival taught me how to network and navigate the landscape as a freelancer, James MacDonald showed me the value of having multiple filmmaking skills and Noel McLaughlin taught me to appreciate the history of the industry and the value of having a great knowledge of what you're doing.

What was the best thing about your course?

Being given the guidance and structure to write my first feature film and make my first short film. A personal favourite was making the press packs for short films.

Who inspired you the most, and why?

A dressing down at the end of first year by Ian Cottage and James MacDonald essentially kickstarted the rest of my life. Also a coursemate called Simon Herdman who did more than anyone else, better than anyone else, has done more than all of us since graduating all whilst being deaf. Proof that there are no excuses.

Which skills/knowledge did you learn on your course that you use most now/throughout your career?

Being at University taught me best that while you don't have lectures some days those aren't days off. It taught me how to manage my own time and be more productive.

What did you enjoy most about your time at Northumbria University?

Watching silent, extreme Asian horror or surrealist cinema films. At 9am. On a Monday morning. One of those 'only at University' things.

What advice would you give somebody who is thinking of studying at Northumbria?

Always remember that you're paying to be there. So get the camera out as much as possible, do as much as you can, ask for more work, more feedback, more opportunities and treat filmmaking like being an Olympic Athlete. Want to be a film director? Practice every day, learn everything there is to know about it and compete with other filmmakers to be the best.

How would you describe your time at Northumbria in 3 words?

Made me good.

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