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Neil Sharma: The Next Step series

Runner, assistant director and now director Neil Sharma shares his experience climbing the ranks within the film and television industry.

Needing advice on taking the next step in your screen career? ‘The Next Step’ series will showcase a selection of creatives who have made or are making the transition from short form (short films, web series) to long form content (TV series, feature films). Subscribe to Screen Australia’s newsletter for additions to the series.

In this first episode, Neil Sharma tells us about his time starting out as a Production Runner on Dance Academy before stepping up into Assistant Director roles.

“I was very grateful and lucky that Jo Werner and Ally Henville who were running that ship as the Producer and Line Producer gave me a leg up and trained me up to be an AD.”

After ten years working as a 3rd and 2nd AD on a slate of TV shows and feature films, Sharma wanted to make the leap and began working towards directing in his own right through music videos and web series before landing his first network TV directing job on The Unlisted.

Sharma offers great insight into how he made the transition, how beneficial his years as an AD were to his directing, the importance of maintaining work relationships and how attachments and placements can lead to more opportunities.

You can watch The Unlisted now on ABC iview here