Hollywood studio executive heads to Sunderland

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HOLLYWOOD comes to Wearside tomorrow when a movie veteran who has played a part in bringing some of the world’s most famous films to the screen visits the University of Sunderland.

Rick Senat, a long-time Hollywood studio executive associated with blockbusting films such as the Harry Potter series and Batman Begins, is coming to offer words of advice to students at a university masterclass.

He will be giving tips on how the film industry works, the impact of the internet, improvements in digital technology and the significances of franchises such as the Harry Potter series.

Rick has developed films and advised on productions including Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban, Troy, Alfie, Sahara, Batman Begins, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Corpse Bride, Nanny McPhee, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Doom, Derailed and Kinky Boots.

It is not just his role behind the camera for which he is well known – he has also served as vice-chairman of the British Film Institute and a Director of Cineworld Group in the UK.

The producer and executive producer will host a workshop with students, and there will be a question-and-answer session to discuss ideas and offer advice.

“I’m looking forward to coming to Sunderland University because of the reputation it holds for its brilliant media facilities and the esteem in which it’s held in the industry,” he said.

“While I cannot offer any correct answers in the risky world of film and entertainment, I will be doing my best to offer insights into the history of the industry and relevant advice.

“I’m looking forward to speaking to the students and hope they find my observations to be of value”

Tomorrow’s masterclass will take place at 2pm on the Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter’s.

It is the latest in a series of masterclasses at the university which has seen comedian and sitcom writer Jason Cook return to the place where he studied, with Sunderland-born architect George Clarke set to address students next month.

Writing duo Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, who penned classics such as The Likely Lads, Porridge and Auf Wiedersehen Pet, will present a free talk on Friday, November 22, but all tickets have already been snapped up.