SAE graduate takes film world by storm

31 Oct 2016

As you may already know we’ve had some amazing talent roam the halls of SAE, including Film alumnus Dougie Mackie.

After moving from New Zealand 12 years ago to study in London, Dougie has gone on to shoot with the likes of Rihanna, Usher, Pink, Kylie Minogue and Red Bull athletes.

SAE caught up with Dougie this week who spoke about some of his more recent projects, including directing, shooting and editing Sir Cameron Mackintosh’s feature length documentary, Miss Saigon: The Heat is Back On.

Speaking to SAE, Dougie explained:

“The original Miss Saigon “The Heat is On” documentary was released in 1989 (the same year mega-musical debuted in West End). To celebrate its 25th anniversary Sir Cameron Mackintosh decided to restage and recast the entire production and felt he should explain this by reworking the original documentary. After receiving their archived material, it was clear to me that I should focus on doing an entirely new documentary. So I spent a lot of time filming interviews and behind the scenes coverage right up until opening night."

While it was no easy feat, Dougie describes it as career highlight:

“I remember Sir Mackintosh sitting up in his chair midway through his first viewing and lavishing us with a bunch of exciting ideas, I think he was genuinely surprised with what I managed to come up with. Next thing I knew my first feature length documentary was being released by Universal Studios. I was stoked!”

After delivering a documentary on one of the world’s most popular musicals, Dougie’s career hit the ultimate high note with the worldwide cinematic release of his latest film, Michael Bublé - Tour Stop 148. The alumnus added:

“Yeah so Michael Bublé was contracted to do another album last year, but because of his hectic touring schedule they decided on a live DVD instead. Bublé wasn’t completely sold on the idea so he made a condition that it needed to focus more on what brings this show together. So I spent two weeks on the road with him and shot 26 five to six minute short films on different topics, from what it takes to put a stadium show together to how a two-year tour affects personal relationships. This was then incorporated beautifully into his live show shot in Birmingham.”

He continued:

“He’s actually a really down to earth guy. I was privileged enough to fly on his private jet from Ireland to London, and he called me over and was like “dude, put the camera down and come sit next to me, grab some pizza!”. I ended up eating a whole lot of pizza with him, his wife and entourage. It was quite funny, because in my job I’m normally a “fly on the wall” and never really converse unless it’s an interview. So although I had been round him for like ten days by this stage, this was the first time I actually had a conversation with him.”

Dougie is now freelancing for various production companies in Soho, and is a regular lighting camera operator for Marjan Television Network at the famous Wimbledon Studios.

Currently he’s writing another documentary which he hopes to film in New Zealand and Amsterdam next year. While he couldn’t give too much away, the acclaimed director did reveal the project stems from a film he produced while studying at SAE.

Keep up with Dougie’s journey on instagram.