About Spectacle

Spectacle is an award-winning independent production company specialising in documentary, community-led, investigative journalism and participatory media.  

What We Do

For nearly four decades, Spectacle has been at the forefront of Participatory Video practice and community engagement. In addition to production, documentation, and community engagement commissions, Spectacle provides facilities to independent filmmakers, and offers community based media workshops and short, sharp, affordable training courses 

 All our courses are built on 30+ years of experience in broadcast, community media, and participatory video. We began sharing our experience as training workshops in 2007. They provide technical knowledge grounded in the participatory techniques that we have used extensively and to great success in a wide range of projects.


Current Projects

In 2020, we have run online training courses and workshops for a wide range of clients, including the UK’s Social Research Association, University of Zurich, Lichtenhagen Rostock Archive and dozens of social researchers, journalists, scholars, and video marketers who have found our methods engaging and inspiring.

Spectacle has delivered successful training workshops for Cambridge University Press, Cambridge Anthropology Department, Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research, Science and Technology Facilities Council, Edinburgh University, Birkbeck College, UCL, as well as numerous other research or educational organisations, NGOs, and private companies. 

Our Team

Mark Saunders is an award-winning independent filmmaker, media activist, and lecturer. He has been engaged in participatory media practices since the very first UK community video projects in the early 1980s. He founded the groundbreaking community access media co-operative Despite TV in 1982 and Spectacle Productions in 1990. He is a founding member of INURA (International Network of Urban Research and Action).

Mark’s films have been broadcast internationally and exhibited at galleries including the Tate Britain, the National Film Theatre, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Musee des Beaux-Arts, the National Media Museum, and the Photographers Gallery. 

Dr. Michele de Laurentiis is an anthropologist, independent filmmaker, and Participatory Video practitioner. He has carried out long term ethnographic research in Italy (prisons, migration, health care) and Bolivia (rituals, indigenous politics, mining conflicts). Michele has led independent PV projects in Italy and the UK. He has been part of Spectacle’s team for over 6 years where he coordinates Participatory Video programmes and video training for social research. He is also a lecturer at Unicamillus University (Rome) and a postgraduate research student at Roehampton University (London) developing practice based research on the potentials of Participatory Video as a film strategy and research tool.

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