Since graduating from Sydney Film School in 2005, Kate Glover has established a successful career abroad with several high-profile film productions to her credit. Based in the United Kingdom, Glover’s expertise is not limited to one area of film making, as she has been a producer, production manager, writer and director in the past. She has been part of the production team for such films as “Cockneys vs. Zombies”, “The Anomaly” and most recently, “Mr Holmes” starring Sir Ian McKellen and the upcoming films “47 Meters Down” and “London Fields” starring Cara Delevingne and Johnny Depp.
We are extremely grateful to Kate Glover for taking time out of her busy schedule to talk to us about her work on her latest film, “Mr Holmes” and to give any advice she can to people looking to follow in her footsteps.
Interview and article by Nicole Newton-Plater
Q: Congratulations on the success of “Mr Holmes”! You must be thrilled looking at the final product and seeing the way people have reacted to it!
A: Yes, it has been fantastic. We knew when we were making it that it was going to be a great film, but you are always nervous about how it is going to turn out and how audiences are going to react to it. It was a much slower, more thoughtful ‘Holmes’ then what has recently been portrayed and am happy people enjoyed it.
Q: Just to give people a bit of an idea, what were your responsibilities as unit production manager on “Mr Holmes”?
A: Basically the Unit Production Manager is the US title for a Line Producer, so you therefore run all the logistics for the film and make sure everything is at the director’s and crew’s disposal to make the film possible. I also run the budget and help keep the schedule on track and make sure everyone is getting along and is happy.
Q: What was the most challenging part of being unit production manager on “Mr Holmes”?
A: Challenges were working with more experienced crew, which meant higher expectations for how things should be run. It’s a lot of people management and making sure communication and information is clear and accessible. Most challenging on-screen was probably finding all the locations to match the Victorian times, but luckily London is very adaptable to that.
Q: What was your experience like working with such an established actor like Sir Ian McKellen?
A: He was a dream to work with. Very funny and engaging with all the members of the crew. He even threw us the wrap party at this house at the end of the job.
Q: How did it differ from working with the actors you have previously worked with?
A: I think the main difference is he is confident in his performance and he knows as well as the director when he feels he has got something right or not. The director and Ian had a very unique and fascinating relationship. It was one of great trust, which meant they worked very well together. Other sets I have worked on when this relationship breaks down have been more difficult.
Q: Your credits now include several roles in film production including editor, writer, director, producer and production manager. Which of these roles do you think was the most, all encompassing of film making?
A: I think all roles have their place otherwise there would be no film! Definitely the producer and the Production Manager roles give you a wider perspective of all the departments
Q: You’ve worked on films from many different genres, including drama, horror and action. Do you have a favourite genre from a film making perspective?
A: No, not so much. I am usually drawn to the script rather than the genre. However, when I was starting out I found it a lot easier to shoot and sell horror films as they always have an established audience. Horror films are generally more fun offset as well as people are a bit more light-hearted. Drama films can be a little emotionally draining at times!
Q: When did you make the move to London to further your career?
A: I moved to London in 2006 after working in the Australian industry for around two years.
Q: What are the differences between the film industries abroad and in Australia?
A: When I left there were not a lot of independent films being shot in Australia. I think when I shot my feature in Sydney we were one of 12 films being shot in the whole country, which is insane. The main difference would be the ease of the tax credit in the UK and also just the amount of films being shot, which gives you more chance to gain more experience.
Q: What advice would you give to others who are contemplating moving overseas for their film careers?
A: I would say go where the heart is, there are films being made everywhere you just have to seek them out.
Q: What projects do you have coming up next?
A: I have just finished shooting an underwater film called ’47 Meters Down’ starring Mandy Moore, Claire Holt and Matthew Modine. We filmed in the UK and in the Dominican Republic and after that I am doing a short film for Amnesty International and then a horror feature film starting up in New York in November.
Q: What advice would you give to people looking to follow in your footsteps?
A: Be prepared to learn. Take whatever opportunity comes to you and even if you don’t like the role, learn what the role is. Also, stop talking about making films and just shoot them. I learned all my mistakes on short films and had a great time working with lots of different people so never felt the experience was wasted.