Daniel Pacquette: 5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me When I First Became A Filmmaker

Posted on

Try not to be your own worst critic: Being over critical of your work can sometimes knock your own confidence.

As a part of our series called “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me When I First Became A Filmmaker”, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Daniel Pacquette — From video assistant on James Bond movies to DOP and Director on the award-winning film, Ghosted.

Ghosted has garnered 17 awards, including the Hollywood Gold Award for Best Indie Feature, the New York Movie Award for Indie Feature Silver Award, the Cinematic European Film Festival award for Best Actress and the Anatolian Film Awards for Best Actress and Best Comedy. Ghosted is the first in a series of gritty, British romantic comedy films from London Independent Pictures.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Our readers would love to get to know you a bit better. Can you tell us a bit of the ‘backstory’ of how you grew up?

I grew up being average in terms of academics. The only two O’Levels I got at school were photography and art — luckily there are two skills I use for my work now.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

I was on a government film apprenticeship scheme as a projectionist, for part of my day. I also had to deliver film editing hardware to cutting rooms at various locations, like pinewood studio. Those two experiences I had on a daily basis generated the passion I have for filmmaking.

Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your filmmaking career?

When established, influential and accomplished names in the industry would proclaim very encouraging progress in my career path, even before we spoke.

Who are some of the most interesting people you have interacted with? What was that like? Do you have any stories?

The majority of the people I work with — cast and crew — are all interesting people. There are always great opportunities in life to learn something from one another.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I worked with a lady called Virginia Murray was important in the early part of my career, she was very supportive in her role as a production assistant on a Bill Murray film (The Man Who Knew Too Little).

Afterwards, Virginia worked on Bond 18 ( Tomorrow Never Dies) -a few weeks into production she called me, and I joined for an initial two week period, which led to working on the rest of the film and then to working on the entire shoots of The World Is Not Enough (Bond 19), Entrapment & The Mummy Returns.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

It’s our responsibility as filmmakers is to be entertaining, creative and informative.

-This was actually part of an acceptance speech at an awards ceremony — and it really stood out for me, it’s something I totally agree with.

I am very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

In movies and tv shows it’s important to have representation which reflects society, so there is an authentic portrayal of communities and individuals across cultures and race. Content and those who create it must be inclusively and authentically represented.

Films and tv series are not only entertainment; they also go a long way towards shaping peoples thoughts and understanding of communities and individuals. This is why we need a culture that’s inclusive of people from different races, cultures and backgrounds.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

I directed new romantic comedy, Ghosted, which was won 17 awards. Jade Asha wrote, produced and starred in the film. We worked together again on Due Dating — a romantic comedy about a woman dating while pregnant — we have just wrapped on that.

I am also currently working on revising some of my scripts which I had written years ago.

Which aspect of your work makes you most proud? Can you explain or give a story?

I am excited about the scripts I have yet to turn into films, the next challenge is always the most exciting!

Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

Own your own kit: I have owned my own kit for most of my career, which has given me freedom

Know what you want: I wish I had known the importance of making the films I wanted to specialise in earlier in my career

Try not to be your own worst critic: Being over critical of your work can sometimes knock your own confidence.

When you create a film, which stakeholders have the greatest impact on the artistic and cinematic choices you make? Is it the viewers, the critics, the financiers, or your own personal artistic vision? Can you share a story with us or give an example about what you mean?

I personally believe in taking into consideration the most important artistic and cinematic choices for the director, stakeholders and audiences as all equally important. One isn’t more important than the other. For me it’s about representing those stakeholders as much as possible throughout the film.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

To treat everyone the way you’d like to be treated.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might see this. :-

I would really like to have a breakfast or lunch with anyone willing to make films with me, films which will have a profound worldwide impact on people’s lives.

Instagram: @ghostedromcom



This was very meaningful, thank you so much! We wish you continued success!

Daniel Pacquette: 5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me When I First Became A Filmmaker was originally published in Authority Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.