My 10 Most Popular Videos

Right now there are 120 videos on my YouTube channel, most of them behind-the-scenes featurettes. They range from video blogs and on-set reports – like this one on lighting a tavern scene in The First Musketeer –  to in-depth “how to” guides – like The Dark Side Guide to Building a Set. Here are the top ten most viewed:

1. 10: Cumbersome (Benedict Cumberbatch as Max)

Part of a series of fifteen podcasts covering the making of The Dark Side of the Earth‘s demo scenes, this episode focuses on the challenges faced by Benedict Cumberbatch in portraying the germophobic Maximillian Clarke. With nearly 70,000 views at the time of writing, this is far and away my most popular video. I wonder why this could be? 😉 Lots of women seem to be appreciating Benedict’s little dance at 1:37. If you want to know what Sherlock himself is like to work with, the fact that he put up with being in this suit without complaining tells you all you need to know.

2. Soul Searcher trailer

I still bump into people who know of me from following the Soul Searcher blog all those years ago, so maybe that has something to do with this trailer’s popularity.

3. The Dark Side Guide to Miniature Effects

This is one of four “Dark Side Guides” I posted during 2010 and 2011, giving detailed advice about stuff I learnt the hard way while making The Dark Side of the Earth‘s demo scenes. They’re my most polished behind-the-scenes videos, and at ten minutes long each, some of my most in-depth as well. This one focuses on the challenges of shooting miniatures, including choice of scale and lenses, and how to combine them with full-scale footage. A budget breakdown at the end reveals all the costs that went into creating Dark Side’s miniature shots.

4. A Message from Georgina Sherrington

Demonstrating the power of a star name, this video was posted during the second crowd-funding campaign for my short fantasy drama Stop/Eject, to promote a new reward we were offering to sponsors. Read my crowd-funding evaluation to find out how this helped our campaign.

5. Stop/Eject trailer starring Georgina Sherrington

We promoted this combined trailer and pitch video very heavily during the seven months the postproduction crowd-funding campaign was running. Note how this video, along with others in this top ten, has the actor named in the title to maximise the chances of it coming up in a search by one of her fans.

6. Stop/Eject tape #7: Make a Sandbag

Stop/Eject’s costume designer Katie Lake demonstrates how to make a sandbag for weighing down lighting stands. This video’s popularity was given a huge boost after it was featured on Indy Mogul’s Moguler Made.

7. Soul Searcher

Soul Searcher is a fantasy action film about an ordinary guy who is trained to be the new Grim Reaper. It was picked up for distribution by a small UK company, who sold it to several territories for DVD release. When my contract with them expired, I posted the whole film on YouTube. It’s quite possible that, with 3,699 views to date, the film has reached more people this way than it did through the formal distribution deal.

 8. The Dark Side Guide to Digital Intermediate

When making The Dark Side of the Earth’s demo scene, which was shot on 35mm, I struggled to find a single, reliable source of information about the DI process. This inspired me to start the Dark Side Guides and to make this guide in particular. It takes you through the whole process, covering all the decisions you’ll have to make and the issues you might encounter, and concludes with a budget breaking down all the costs.

9. Editing Stop/Eject

Another one that was boosted by appearing on Moguler Made, this is a brief but effective demonstration of the big impact that relatively small changes to an edit can have. It shows how I addressed issues that were raised in test screenings to make the narrative clearer.

10. 3: Suit You

This is another in the original series of Dark Side podcasts, going inside the workshop of FBFX to see how they constructed the germ suit which would be worn by Benedict Cumberbatch. Kevin Giles, seen modelling the suit and remarking on how comfortable it is, has been stuck with the nickname “duvet” ever since.

If you’re hungry for more, I’ve compiled the following list of all my videos, organising them by topic in roughly the order those topics crop up during the making of a film.




Fund-raising & Budgeting


DIY Builds & Rigs


Costume & Wardrobe



Camera & Lighting

Stunts & Action

Sound & Music

Special & Visual Effects

Editing & Post-production

Distribution & Festivals

Miscellaneous (i.e. not behind-the-scenes videos)

My 10 Most Popular Videos