After starting his career as a session musician, Mike Le Han soon discovered a love for filmmaking and made his directorial debut with a 15-minute short entitled Walkabout. Since then he has directed projects for both film and TV, and has been nominated for two Royal Television Society Awards. His short film Mrs Peppercorn’s Magical Reading Room is garnering huge industry interest, and Mike is currently working on a Mrs Peppercorn feature trilogy.
What training have you received?
I started my career in the 1990’s as a musician and lecturer. From there I made the leap into post-production by opening a very ambitious post facility in Leeds, UK. I wanted to provide London facilities in the north of England, which I achieved. During the late ’90s I was given the opportunity to direct on clients projects and this is where my experience was gained.
What kind of projects attract you?
I love period projects. I prefer to write my own material with my writing partner (and wife) Helen Rigby, but am always looking for new adventurous projects. I look for anything set in the 1800’s or something epic and very grand in nature.
What’s the best advice you’ve been given as a director?
I’ve actually never been given advice! If I was to advise, I’d say never give in, always push boundaries and shoot as much as you can. Nothing will come to you; you have to make things happen.
Tell us the most significant moment in your career so far
Has to be my fantasy short film Mrs Peppercorn’s Magical Reading Room; this was my largest and most challenging production to date, especially with its extremely limited budget and huge production value. The support and interest for this project is enormous and my directing has been compared to the likes of Guillermo Del Toro, which I am flattered by. With Paramount Pictures, Pathe UK and Warner all wanting to see Mrs Peppercorn we’re currently working on the feature trilogy which is loosely based on the short film, and there’s plenty more to come.
You’ll die happy when…
I’ll never die happy, always working hard to find something new and engaging. There is always something new around the next corner and the adventure has only just begun.