Nurturing Northern Voices
Established in 2018 by Riverhorse to support documentary filmmakers and audiences in the North of England, Northern Docs is a new creative organisation that aims to address the systemic lack of representation within the UK film and television industry through its diverse activities, co-production scheme and distribution support.
There is recognition across the sector that there is a lack of diversity in terms of what factual content is made – and, crucially, who is making it.
Northern Docs is an attempt at affirmative action to address the social, political, cultural and market failures that have led us to this position. The situation we have is not working in the North of England – action is needed to change it.
Based at the Institute of Management, University of Bolton, Northern Docs has been born from a recognition of the specific power and potential of documentary as a social art form that, by its nature, should encourage diverse interpretations and reflections of the world around us. It is a living art form but one that creates history as it goes: history that can reach a mass audience and shape the future.
This new initiative, in collaboration with BBC Three, is committed to creative factual production in all its incarnations: from short form content designed for online and mobile to television projects and feature films. It will focus on work that entertains but also challenges, innovates and informs.
Mike Todd – Director/Producer
Mike is the founder of Northern Docs, for the last ten years has run Riverhorse, a production company specialising in creative documentaries.
Mike has directed and produced numerous films that have been broadcast and screened internationally, working with broadcasters including the BBC, ITV, Channel 4, PBS, Starz and ESPN. His feature doc on Joe Frazier was US streaming giant Hulu’s first ever documentary of the month and his recent feature doc on Liverpool FC manager Bill Shankly was released theatrically here in the UK prior to its national broadcast by the BBC. He has also led on the delivery of a range of consultancy projects for the likes of the UK’s Department for International Development, the Norwegian Refugee Council and the European Commission.
Geseth Garcia – Head of Production
In addition to being an accomplished filmmaker, Geseth has extensive experience in web design and development and leads on Riverhorse’s digital media management and delivery.
She has an MA in Online Journalism and has written articles for the Brussels-based “European Voice” as well as the EU’s Environment Directorate. She has also produced short films for the BBC and Lets Go Global. Other experience includes working as a web content producer for the Co-operative Group and other clients.
Persephone Rizvi – Assistant Producer / Project Coordinator
Skilled in a variety of fields including Media and Business, Persephone has a BA in Television and Radio Production, NCTJ Level 3 Diploma and a MA in Journalism from the University of Salford. She has worked across a variety of international documentary projects and enjoys developing stories.
Previously working for a regional newspaper outlet, P has written feature articles for magazines and online publications. Additionally, she has been a lead returning lifestyle Presenter and Reporter on a Sky TV channel.