Filmmaker Q+A: Josh Hawkins

In the second of our interviews with Random Acts filmmakers we spoke to Josh Hawkins ahead of his short film The Blackest Day airing on Channel 4 on Thursday, 24 November 2016 at midnight.

A dreamscape dance film exploring fragmented memories of broken soldiers, The Blackest Day takes inspiration from the Kendal Pals who fought in the Battle of the Somme.

Josh Hawkins is a director and choreographer based in the North West. A graduate of the Northern School of Contemporary Dance, he is currently creating new work across a number of creative projects with his own dance company, Hawk Dance Theatre.


Twitter: @HawkDance


Why did you apply to Random Acts?

I had an idea that I wanted to fully realise into a film, and I wanted to ensure that the film was articulated to a high quality to fully justify the idea.

How did you come up with the idea for your film?

I was interested in making a piece that was rooted in my hometown and I began to find the story of the Kendal Pals interesting. Through research and mentoring from the Random Acts North team, my film idea developed and grew into something really exciting.

Tell us a bit more about how you brought your idea to life.

The process of creating the Random Acts film was really exciting from start to finish. During a development residential weekend in Newcastle, I was mentored by filmmakers and directors to produce a storyboard of all of my ideas.

I connected with my dancers in the studio to create and develop the material, working closely with a Director of Photography on the shoot day. I then spent time with production company True North during multiple editing days to make different cuts of the film.

Tell us a bit more about the whole Random Acts experience.

I enjoyed the whole experience and learnt a lot from every aspect of the project: from choreographing the piece, managing the dancers, liaising with the Random Acts North team, to editing the footage and everything else that is involved. The process has made me really excited about creating dance for camera!

In a few words, what’s the best thing about Random Acts?

The fact that the Random Acts North team really invested in me and my idea to make my film the best it could possibly be.

What would you say to someone thinking about applying this time around?

Random Acts is a fantastic opportunity to professionally develop an idea from scratch to a fully realised piece!

Josh’s Random Acts film The Blackest Day screens on Channel 4 on Thursday 24 November 2016 at midnight. Watch online at


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