Naeem is one of the freshest directors emerging in the UK. Born and raised in West London, he began filmmaking in 1999.
Naeem won the Prince’s Trust Millennium Award in his late teens with his brother Ash which enabled them to set up Trailblazer, a production company that allows young people from marginalised backgrounds to empower themselves by utilising film as a medium. There, he found a mentor in Gary Kurtz – legendary producer of STAR WARS, EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and AMERICAN GRAFFITI.
Naeem’s break came when his short film HOME SWEET HOME made the finals of ITV’s Whose London? competition. He went on to work for ITV on programmes including the GRAHAM NORTON SHOW, POP IDOL, GMTV and the SOUTH BANK SHOW. Having cut his teeth in television, Naeem and his brother Ash won an award at the BRNO International Film Festival for their film SWIMMER which was described by Time Out magazine’s Dave Calhoun as
”A film that shows real promise and exudes confidence.”
Naeem and Ash went on to direct FLASHMOB – an uncompromising portrait of the horrors of cyber bullying. The film won the 2008 Apollo Award for Best Youth Arts Project in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The Mayor of London awarded Naeem for his outstanding contribution to London through his film work.
Naeem’s ability to constantly come to the table with fresh ideas has seen him direct stand out promos for acts including Vivienne Westwood, Mos Def, Akala, Lemar, D Double E and Margherita Taylor.
Naeem has recently completed his directorial feature debut BRASH YOUNG TURKS.
Click here to read Naeem Mahmood’s latest interview with So The Theory Goes.
Born and raised in London, Ash who holds a degree in Physics and has lived and worked in Japan as well as travelling the world, began filmmaking with his brother Naeem in 1999. Following the short listing of their debut feature film THE WINDS OF SANTA ANA at the Cinemagic Unlocking Talent Awards, in the best director category, 2001 saw them set up a youth and community based production company Transient Film Exchange, now known as Trailblazer, after winning a Prince’s Trust Award.
Ash also worked as a production manager at the BBC backed children’s charity YCTV (Youth Culture Television), helping create programme content starring such luminaries as Jon Voight and Alan Rickman.
Ash directed the short film HOME SWEET HOME exploring issues affecting young refugees was a finalist in ITV’s Whose London? Competition. In 2003 The Mayor of London awarded Ash for his outstanding contribution to London through his film and community work. In the same year his short film A LONG WAY TO PICCADILLY was profiled on the BBC as part of Refugee Week.
2005 saw Ash & Naeem Mahmood win the Bronze Medal prize at the BRNO International Film Festival for their film SWIMMER. Ash and Naeem were then selected for the 4th Berlinale Talent Campus at the Berlin International Film Festival. Their talents were recognised by STAR WARS producer Gary Kurtz who became their mentor in 2006.
In 2008 Ash and Naeem produced and directed FLASHMOB that won an Apollo Award for the Best Youth Arts Project in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Since then Ash has made films for London Underground, St Christopher’s Hospice, Red Bull and the V & A Museum, and worked with the likes of Dame Vivienne Westwood, Cath Kidston, David Bailey, Nicole Scherzinger as well as Samuel L Jackson filming at Abbey Road Studios for his cancer charity One for the Boys. He has also directed films in Nepal, Sweden and Holland. In 2013 Ash was selected for the prestigious Kyoto Filmmakers Lab in Japan.