Interviews with Frank Lampard and attending exclusive Nike events for Film grad
BA (Hons) Film graduate Lewis Rhodes spends his days filming with top celebrity athletes as part of his role at Pro:Direct, the largest online retailer for key sports brands such as Puma, Nike and Adidas.
From famous footballers and cricketers to high-profile runners; the company works with over 250 sports brands, creating content with sporting celebrities for Pro:Direct's social media platforms and the athletes own content outputs.
We caught up with Lewis to find out more about his role, how it takes him around the world and the biggest challenges that face him as a filmmaker...
Where did your love of film come from?
I have always paid close attention to how films were made even when watching films like Terminator as a kid. My interest grew through my teenage years until it was the only thing I could see myself doing as a career.
I chose to study at Plymouth College of Art because of their reputation in the creative industry. Having access to some of the best camera equipment, studio facilities and continuous support from lecturers really appealed to me.
How did you find out about the opportunity to work at Pro:Direct?
My passion for sport has meant that I have always kept up to date with the latest sports technology and merchandise (I'm a kit monster!) which led me to Pro:Direct's content channels. The opportunity to work with the biggest brands, athletes and cover some of the world's largest sporting events was advertised on their website and I jumped at the chance!
What was the process of applying and interviewing like?
The process of applying was very straightforward and before long I had my interview with Pro:Direct's creative team. The interview itself was well-structured; I had spent time researching the background of the company and explored all of their content outputs which they loved.
The more I researched into the company and binge-watched their entire YouTube channel, the more I knew this was the environment I wanted to work in.
So you went in really prepared! What's your average day like there?
There is no average day! I could be filming an Interview with Frank Lampard one day, flying out to Mexico to meet the worlds greatest football fans the next day, then quickly turning around an Instagram story for an event Nike put on the night before. If that sounds busy, it is!
First and foremost, my role is to capture specific footage of events, athletes and products needed to fulfil the content outputs. From Instagram stories lasting 24 hours to documentary style edits for our YouTube channel, the outputs are varied. And thats what I love about the job.
That sounds like a real variety! So what has been your highlight so far?
The travel. I've been blown away by the opportunities I have had to come face to face with some of my sporting heroes in some of the most incredible places. Filming Neymar Jr will definitely be a long-lasting memory. The scrap to get the shot was insane!
And what challenges have you faced?
Lack of sleep has to be up there but the benefits outweigh the baggy eyes.
How do you think this role has influenced your personal filmmaking style?
My style has definitely changed; in fact it's constantly changing. The great thing about my job is having the creative freedom to follow my instincts and try out new ideas.
Finally, what advice would you give to anyone thinking of studying film?
Do it! Flick through your phone right now and you can see that video is already dominating communication.
You can follow Lewis' filmmaking journey on his Instagram and website.