Iconic Bristol: Icon Films

Bristol is a hugely varied city with people and businesses from all walks of life – it’s one of the things that makes her so lush – and we wanted to celebrate this by shining a spotlight on some of the people who make the City Centre so fantastic. First up, we’ve got Icon Films…

Channel 4 recently announced that they are moving their cultural hub to the city, which is obviously great news, but we wanted to point out that Bristol has been a cultural hub long before the broadcasting company set its sights on the city, particularly in the field of wildlife film-making. Icon Films is an award winning, independent production company that specialises in wildlife films and started in Bristol around a kitchen table in 1990 – so proper Brizzle born and bred!

Laura Marshall, Icon Film’s CEO, started the company with her husband, Harry Marshall, to make programmes the way they wanted to, but, most importantly, to make programmes that people wanted to watch.

“Icon Films is a company where people come to do their best work. We came to Bristol 29 years ago, firstly because it’s a beautiful city but most importantly it had an existing television industry – post-production facilities, composers, designers, everyone we needed.

We travel all the time, but Bristol is our heart and soul, we spend our money in Bristol, employ people from Bristol and try to bring people here who will grow the creative community. We connect with charities and social enterprises – including raising over £12k for St Peter’s Hospice this year – young people and educational organisations. We need them, their youth and skills and ideas, they are the lifeblood that grows our company. It’s easy to see film-making as a white, middle-class activity, but it can’t be this way and so we do our best to engage with the wider Bristol to grow our team.

Icon Films is fiercely indie – all of our office coffee, tea, milk and fruit is locally sourced from other independent suppliers, we have made fundraising films for St George’s and Bristol Old Vic, put a drone inside the Cathedral and have extensive work experience relationships with schools and organisations across Bristol. We love to collaborate and look outwards, not inwards. We are ambitious and we really think this is what Bristol is all about!”

Their offices are a creative, quirky space and a fun place to work and while their work, with its deadlines, can be stressful, they are one of the Top 20 Places to work in TV, and were voted the happiest workplace in Bristol!

We think they’re proper great, thanks Icon Film!

(Photos by Colin Moody)