Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

School of Media and Communication


Tales from the TV trenches

Clothworkers’ Central, Speakman Lecture Theatre

How do you pursue a career in TV in 2018? In a world where everyone is a content creator, how do you stand out to employers? Isn’t traditional TV dead anyway?

Join freelance producer and Leeds graduate, Matt Arnold, fellow alumni, Rick Murray, the Creative Director of independent production company Shine North and Frank Smalley, a freelance producer whose credentials include the Amazon Prime show ‘The Grand Tour’.

They’ll give out industry tips, share what they wish they’d known when they were graduating, and will tell you the truth about a career in broadcasting, warts and all.

Please note that this talk will not be recorded and we ask students not to share anything that’s discussed on social media. 

While at the University of Leeds, Matt Arnold ran LSR for a year and graduated with a degree in political studies in 2002. He was accepted onto the now defunct ITV daytime training scheme and from there he became a VT director at ITVs This Morning before going freelance in 2005. Working as a Producer/ Director and, most recently Edit Producer, he’s worked on a variety of shows from Bear Grylls: The Island to TOWIE to Big Fat Gypsy Weddings. He’s currently producing a new factual series for Netflix due for release in April 2018.

As Creative Director of Shine North, Rick Murray oversees development and productions on likes of Geeks, Idris Elba: No Limits, Supercar Megabuild, Car Crash TV and other ESN formats.  Rick started his career at LWT Factual, before joining RDF as a producer and director on the multi-award winning Wife Swap. At the BBC, worked on formats such as Dragon’s Den: What Happened Next?, Peter Jones Meets and the RTS winner Racing Legends.

After graduating from Broadcasting Studies at the University of Leeds, Frank Smalley moved into studio entertainment television.  His career began on shiny floor entertainment programmes, such as the Royal Variety Show, BAFTA Television Awards and Harry Hill’s TV Burp.  After working on entertainment shows for all of the major broadcasters, Frank moved away from the comfort of the studio into factual-entertainment, specialising in shows on motoring and science/ engineering for broadcasters such as Discovery International and the BBC.  Most recently, Frank has worked on The Grand Tour for Amazon Prime and is now a freelance Producer at BriteSpark Films, part of Argonon group of independent television companies.





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