07961 370 713
I make films with strong narratives. My work is known for its authentic storytelling, emotional power, original camerawork and visual punch. Some of the projects are micro, while others involve huge production teams. All are driven by a desire to tell complex true stories in a compelling and nuanced way.
My film about the American Civil War, introduced by Barack Obama, was nominated four times for an Emmy. Recent fims include a WW1 drama documentary starring John Hurt and a series of films about the Rwandan genocide. I’ve made drama, history, current affairs and arts films for BBC, C4 and Sky as well all the major US broadcasters. In between films I make TV commercials and content for global brands – recent campaigns include P&G’s Always, Google and Virgin Atlantic.
I speak fluent French, German and Spanish and have dual US citizenship.
BRANSON HOSTAGE RESCUE – IN DEVELOPMENT WITH GREENACRE FILMS
A two-part series about the 1990 unfolding hostage crisis after Iraq invaded Kuwait. 300 Brits were stranded there and used as human shields by Sadaam. The government seemed unable to secure their release. Then an unlikely figure came to their rescue – Richard Branson. In 4 months he transformed himself and his tiny two-plane airline into a big global brand – making both household names overnight. Secured access to Branson and currently attaching a writer.
DOOMED YOUTH, ITV STUDIOS FOR ITV (TX August 2016)
Starring John Hurt, I directed and wrote this drama documentary about the forbidden love of the WW1 poets – Sassoon, Owen and Graves - based on their diaries and letters. John Hurt plays Sassoon in the 1960s, in the twilight years of his life. He provides the backbone to the film as we flash back to his younger self – also featuring Morgan Watkins (The Hour), Matthew Beard (The Imitation Game, An Education) and Joe Claflin (Game of Thrones).
KIGALI GENOCIDE MUSEUM - SUNDOG PICTURES
A series of short10’ films comissioned by the Genocide Museum in Kigali, Rwanda, for their permanent exhibition. The films present the historical context of the genocide and give a voice to its survivors. Seen by over three million visitors so far.
DANGEROUS PERSUASIONS, RAW TV FOR DISCOVERY – SERIES PRODUCER
I series produced this six-part drama documentary series following the true tales of everyday people who become brainwashed. I oversaw six films from script to the edit, including complex legal issues arising from the episode about Scientology. Louise Norman, Executive Producer – “Jenny’s a great and sensitive filmmaker. We were so lucky to have her. The team thought she was amazing as she was so nurturing and generous with her time and energy. She transformed a couple of the films that were in trouble. She is very interested in what makes people tick and is remarkably non-judgmental. She always has an interesting take on a subject. I can't praise her as a colleague and collaborative partner more highly and have been offering her jobs ever since!”
REMEMBERING WORLD WAR 1, 4 CREATIVE FOR C4
I directed a series of interstitial films for C4’s Remembrance season. Each featured a well-known actor reading war poetry - Sean Bean, Gemma Arterton, Stephen Graham and Sophie Okonedo. John Hay - commissioning editor for Channel 4 – “Jenny more than delivered. The shorts are subtle, modern, beautiful and powerful. They've got us all excited again about what short content can do."
DRAMA AND COMEDY
PERSONAL AFFAIRS, 2AM TV FOR BBC3
I directed two episodes of this comedy drama series about a group of PAs who work in an investment bank in the City. Starring Archie Panjabi (The Constant Gardener, The Good Wife) Darren Boyd (Four Lions) and Robert Gant (Queer as Folk, Friends).
MISSING, LEOPARD DRAMA FOR BBC1
I directed two episodes of this drama series set in a Missing Persons Unit in Dover. Starring Pauline Quirke (Birds of a Feather).
WATERLOO ROAD, SHED DRAMA FOR BBC1
I directed two episodes of BBC1’s popular drama series set in a tough inner-city comprehensive. Anne Mensah, (Head of Drama, BBC Scotland) wrote of the first episode “This is an excellent episode, with inventive and interesting shots and really well crafted performances.”
ME AND ALL THE OTHER MOTHERS, BBC COMEDY (GLASGOW) FOR BBC2
I directed this 30’ comedy pilot about a widower with young children who takes on the mothers’ mafia at his kids’ school. Starring Justin Edwards (The Thick of It, In the Loop).
AMERICA - THE STORY OF US, NUTOPIA FOR HISTORY CHANNEL – EMMY NOMINATED
Landmark drama documentary series introduced by Barack Obama, tracing the history of America from Jamestown to 1945. The film which I wrote and directed about slavery and the run up to the civil war was nominated for four International Emmys and a NAACP drama award. Filmed in South Africa.
Visually thrilling - New York Times . A smart, provocative look at American History - Hollywood Reporter.
A masterful example of storytelling. The show's eyewitness account of a New Orleans slave auction, where buyers and sellers prod their merchandise like animals, is like a punch in the stomach. Its strong narrative drive is cross-hatched with nimble intellectual linkages that turn history into something warm and palpable. - Miami Herald
THE BRITISH, NUTOPIA FOR SKY ATLANTIC
Dramatised history series. I wrote and directed two 60’ minute films about the 18th century and how Britain reinvented itself from a destitute nation crippled by years of civil war and plague into the greatest superpower on earth – through trade, sex and slavery. Featuring Sam West as Samuel Pepys.
DAYS OF DARKNESS, UNIQUE FOR ITV
I directed this 30’ drama documentary based on the true story of an American doctor who is forced to operate on her own breast cancer whilst trapped in a research station in the South Pole. Starring Lesley Sharp (The Full Monty, Inkheart, Vera Drake). Executive producer Paul Abbott.
DEAD MAN BOARDING, UNIQUE FOR ITV
I directed this 30’ drama documentary about a snowboarder’s eight days of torment when he becomes lost in a blizzard on a Californian mountain. This film is utterly riveting – Sunday Times
EMPIRE WARRIORS - THE HUNT FOR KIMATHI, BBC CURRENT AFFAIRS FOR BBC2
I wrote and directed the story of the Mau Mau’s charismatic guerrilla leader, Dedan Kimathi, who fought against British rule in 1950s Kenya and was executed days before the country gained independence. Filmed in the Aberdare Mountains, Kenya. Compelling…informative, intelligently presented and entertaining – Standard
I SHOULDN’T BE ALIVE - TERROR ON THE ZAMBEZI, DARLOW SMITHSON FOR C4 and DISCOVERY US
I wrote and directed the story of an African family’s fight for survival when they are thrown into one of the most crocodile infested rivers in the world.
THE NIGHT STALKER, C5 FOR C5 and DISCOVERY US
The dramatised story of a Hispanic detective’s quest to track down a serial killer from his own neighbourhood who terrorised LA in the mid 80s.
DON’T MENTION THE WAR, BBC CURRENT AFFAIRS FOR BBC2
A film with political author Michael Cockerell looking at Britain’s relationship with Germany since 1945.
Fascinating viewing…a current affairs soap opera in which personal relationships play a crucial part in international policy – The Times
DOLLY PARTON: PLATINUM BLONDE, BBC MUSIC AND ARTS FOR BBC1
I wrote and directed this 60’ profile of Dolly Parton, it has been repeated almost every year since it was made.
After Jenny Ash’s excellent documentary I have become one of Dolly Parton’s greatest fans. And not a moment too soon – Observer A well-crafted portrait of a clever, assured, talented woman – Daily Mail
TRICKY TRICKSTERS, BBC NHU FOR BBC2
A film about trickster mythology, I dramatised the West African Anansi myth, filmed in a Ghanaian village.
THE X CREATURES – YETI MYTHS AND MEN, BBC NHU FOR BBC1 and DISCOVERY
I directed a film about the Yeti in the Himalayas, where local people believe it still lives.
Lushly filmed it challenges without being sneering – Daily Mail
IT TAKES TWO, BBC MUSIC FOR BBC1
I wrote and directed this film about legendary pop duos A superb one-off documentary – Observer
DIET JUNKIES - GURUS, BBC CURRENT AFFAIRS FOR BBC2
Intelligent and absorbing documentary – Sunday Times
UNITED NATIONS TELEVISION
I helped set up the UN's TV arm as part of a peace project in former Yugoslavia during the war. We produced a weekly programme that was broadcast in the three warring countries, making films throughout the region.