Spotlight on Jamie Sims

Jamie Sims is a Woking-born filmmaker who has created quality, award winning films, made some great acting appearances and recently graduated from the University for the Creative Arts in Farnham. He has also been making a few videos on the side for Comedy Central UK. 

Jamie’s first big break was when he and a mate decided to enter a competition to have their short film shown on the UK DVD extras of Paranormal Activity. This was his move from acting to filmmaking as he saw the thrill of being able to create your own film and tell your own story. All he needed was to see how good he was at bringing his creative ideas into reality. After winning the competition and making a hilarious parody, “Normal Activity” it was enough incentive to pursue filmmaking further.

Just to give you a quick, early taster of how efficient he can be with putting every ingredient he needs into a simple and lovable film here’s one of his shortest projects, “Monster Problems”:


After graduating from Farnham with his psychological thriller, “Howl” he went on to win a number of prestigious awards including Film of the year at Widescreen Film Festival. Shortly after came the opportunity to work with Comedy Central and Mother London.

Then came a knock on his front door from best friend Sam Underwood (The Following, Dexter & Homeland) and girlfriend Valorie Curry, (The Following & House of Lies). They were in town for a short stay and decided to work on a film with Jamie. After two days of writing, shooting and producing they’d finally made Bus Stop. A film about two individuals who meet at a bus stop in Woking with plenty of baggage and no idea where to go next. It’s only after a short spark of conversation ignites that they leave the bus stop together and spend the day touring the town and getting to know each other.

The natural, charming dialogue and chemistry between the two actors gets you quickly invested in the characters. In such a short space of time you see a real and understandable relationship develop and you route for the characters to be together pretty early on. It then ends on a bit of a teaser leaving you with the need for more. Have a watch below:


We got a chance to speak with Jamie for a quick Q & A about his influences, his creative process and what’s on the horizon.

Was there any significant moment in your life that inspired you to take up filmmaking?

I saw Jurassic Park in 1993 when I was 6 and thought it was real, when my dad explained that it was filmmaking I knew I wanted to be a part of it.

At the time that manifested into wanting to be an actor which I did, until I was 22. Then, becoming annoyed with having my career placed in other people’s hands and after watching a DVD extra of Kevin Smith’s “Clerks”, where he said “if I can make a movie, you can”.

I picked up a camera with my friend and we made a silly parody of “paranormal activity”. It wasn’t anything big, just us with a camera and some editing software – I fell in love there and then with cutting and splicing video and sound to tell a story. The parody went on to being featured on the UK release of Paranormal Activity – which is mental.

If all resources were available to you what film would you create?

I really wanted a sequel to “who framed Roger Rabbit” but without Hoskins it wouldn’t be right. Can I make a netflix series instead? I’d wanna flesh out my film Howl into a 10 part series. The writer wrote an insanely detailed back story and character breakdown so I’d love to bring that to light.

What is your creative process from initial idea to the final cut? Do a lot of ideas get trimmed down or packed on along the way?

Ideas always get cut. It’s important to listen to your DP and editor. They look at your film in a different more technical way to you. Your relationship to them is most important. Ultimately it’s your call but you’d be foolish to not hear them out.

I usually start with an image – with Bus Stop it was a bloke holding a box at a bus stop and being joined by a girl with a suitcase. I liked the idea that two characters were literally carrying their emotional baggage around with them.

Bus Stop had to be made quickly (72 hours) so I started adding things I had access to – in this case I had my home town and 3 actors so I wrote to their strengths.

What projects do you have on the horizon and what’s most exciting about them to you?

I’m writing a feature for Sam & Val which I’m very excited about. We’re gonna shoot a short version of it later this year with the plan to use the short and script to look for funding.

It’s gonna be a drama with a splash of space travel, it’s gonna be very relevant to a certain space program currently being organised. I’ll be announcing more details soon.

To see more of Jamie’s work find his Clowdy profile here. Alternatively you can find him on his website here.

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Dylan

Dylan has now been involved with Clowdy for over a year as an integral part of the creative and marketing team. In his spare time he gives the rest of the office an intense inferiority complex by being a jazz pianist, mathematically proven to be the coolest possible hobby.

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Dylan

Dylan has now been involved with Clowdy for over a year as an integral part of the creative and marketing team. In his spare time he gives the rest of the office an intense inferiority complex by being a jazz pianist, mathematically proven to be the coolest possible hobby.