Focus Interview with freelance journalist Nick Goundry
Nick Goundry is a freelance journalist, specialising in film and cinema. He’s written for Film and Festival, and has his own archive blog Cine-City.
In this interview, Nick tells us about interviewing Werner Herzog and Diablo Cody, and going to the cinema several times a week!
About your journalism:
What do you write about?
I specialise in reviews and features on film, cinema and wider media issues, although I’ve also written articles on current affairs and politics.
Where are we likely to see your work?
A simple Google search of my name will bring up the extensive online presence that I’ve built up over the past few years writing for eight different websites. I’ve also spent the past year writing for monthly print journal the Film & Festivals magazine.
What’s the most memorable work you’ve done?
I reported on The Times BFI 51st London Film Festival last year for a film website called The Smell of Napalm, and wrote A Writer’s A-Z of the London Film Festival, in which I set out to capture all the nuances of the event that weren’t accessible to the general public. I’m proud of my work for Film & Festivals, where I’ve tackled subjects such as film piracy, British independent cinema and debates on the value of film and drama schools. Also, my current affairs essay on the recent US-backed invasion of Somalia is ranked as the top entry of over 100 articles through the American creative writing website Helium.com. The piece got me short-listed for a Pulitzer Center Citizen Journalist Award.
What interview or feature would you love the chance to do?
I’ve actually already satisfied several ambitions by being given the chance to interview, amongst many others, German filmmaking legend Werner Herzog and Juno screenwriter Diablo Cody only months before she won an Oscar. I would seize any opportunity to interview additional big names in the film industry, but also renowned individuals such as stunt coordinator Dan Bradley, who has revolutionised cinema through his work on the Jason Bourne films.
About you and PRs:
Where do you source ideas for articles?
I’m a huge film buff so I’m at the cinema several times a week and I keep daily tabs on global news events, both in media and beyond. As a result I’m endlessly inspired. I particularly enjoy cultural analysis of film and cinema, and I normally look at new film or DVD releases and use them as a hook into a feature looking at wider issues. If possible I’ll try to steer away from obvious angles which the mainstream media outlets will favour, and I’ll aim to focus on something a little more creative in order to turn more heads.
How can PRs be useful to you?
PR assistance would be great in helping to promote myself and my work. I’m looking to firmly establish myself as a talented writer and a knowledgeable and passionate film journalist.
Do you find press conferences, trips, parties and other events useful or an interruption?
I enjoy the variety and the unpredictability of anything out of the ordinary. I’ve been to a lot of press conferences held by talented and interesting people that remain memorable to this day, often as much for the circumstances on the day as for the content of the questions and answers. As a journalist going out and networking is a vital exercise, especially when you’re just starting out. It’s never a good idea to turn down the chance to meet new people, as you never know when someone might offer you an unexpected opportunity.
How would you pay the bills if you weren’t a journalist?
Anything creative or unusual that offered some variety.
If we gave you £1000, how would you spend it?
I would use part of it to fund research for a feature article that I felt particularly passionate about, and part of it to fund a short film.
What books are on your bedside table, magazines in your bag, or blogs on your screen?
I recently finished Phillip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy, and now I’m having a go at Crime and Punishment. After that I’m planning to read Catch-22. I’m a Total Film subscriber, although I also read Empire, and occasionally Sight & Sound for a more academic slant. The most regular blog I look at is my own, Cine-City, which I use to archive my online publications.
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