IMAGE CREDIT: Kenneth Wade Photography.
Following an accident at home aged eight years old that left him paralysed for two years, young Francis (Frank) McGowan became fascinated by the behind the scenes of film and television right from the moment his Mum wheeled in the big TV from the front room in 1993. Unable to play or go outside, and armed with books his friends had borrowed from the library at school - he watched hours of horror, comedy and late night film, inspired to one day get back on his feet and be a director making his very own movies.
Now, a BAFTA celebrated, multi-award winning film-maker, producer/director, entrepreneur and business leader - and CEO of his own Bad Pony Media Films with school-friend Michelle Martin, Frank has produced more than 300+ hours multi-genre television, short film, music video and multi-platform content.
Passionate about all aspects of media and entertainment across all genres, Frank is an avid film and TV historian, and Entrepreneur in Residence at many creative organisations across Scotland, including; Founders4Schools, Business Gateway, Collabor8te and Sunny G - where he offers mentoring to those aged between 18-25, and access to careers opportunities within the creative industry in Scotland. He also offers FREE consultancy to businesses looking to get their products and services on TV, as well as his own services as a consulting producer to global brands and businesses, the likes of Microsoft, Google and the Scottish Government.
Biography and Growing Up in Glasgow:
Francis Mark Courtney McGowan was born on March 23, 1981 at Stobhill Hospital in Glasgow. He grew up in Provanmill, attending St Philomena's Primary School then later St Rochs and Turnbull High School.
Armed with his Dad's friend's camcorder, he
began making his own “home movies” during his early school days, which would typically be about the people
and things he saw around him – and usually with friends, family,
neighbours and even pets in starring roles. These early projects included homage to some of his own film and TV favourites, including; MIGHTY MORPHIN' POWER RANGERS, THE MUNSTERS, GHOSTBUSTERS II and GEORGE A. ROMERO’S horror classic NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD. More ambitious projects were to follow - including music videos and comedy shorts shot using action figures, with miniature sets made out of cereal boxes. He also used matte paintings on glass to achieve impressive "special effects".
Being bullied at school for being assumed "gay" added to upset and uncertainty at home following the death of his Mum at Christmas in 1994, and looking for an outlet he found a passion for writing - beginning what would eventually become the first chapter of his soon-to-be debut novel 'OCTOBER STORM' - a book about "life, love, friendship and growing up gay in Glasgow".
Throwing himself into yet more creative projects during high-school he joined the school rock band – which, now know as ERIC AND THE BUNNY BOILERS following several line-up changes are one of Scotland's most acclaimed female fronted rock bands, with performances at the likes of T IN THE PARK, NOISE FESTIVAL and IN THE CITY seeing the band with demonstrable success 2004 - 2018.
Mental Health, PTSD and Me:
Founding “Bad Pony Productions” in 2008,
Frank and his team of film-making friends became one of the first Scottish
student teams ever nominated for a BAFTA 60 Seconds of Fame Awards – going on
to win a number of awards 2008-2012 and further industry kudos.
Frank’s current projects include TV drama NINETY EIGHT PERCENT, factual entertainment series RANTCAM, feel-good magazine show ALL DOLLED UP and feature length documentary OUR MUNSTER MEMORIES which shall see him make an historic film and TV pilgrimage to meet the cast, crew, producers and celebrity fans of his favourite macabre TV family, “The Munsters”.
An atheist, dog lover and diagnosed coeliac, he lives outside Glasgow – and is an ambassador for emerging homegrown talent in Scotland. In his spare time he collects action figures, makes things out of cardboard (including among other things the Munster Mansion!) and travels around the world to represent Scotland’s thriving Creative Industry. He also works to raise the voice of those living with mental health issues and disabilities in his local North Glasgow.
As well as his work behind the camera, Frank has appeared as a guest on a number of daytime TV talk shows, including OPEN HOUSE WITH GLORIA HUNNIFORD, GMTV and THIS MORNING. He also appeared on late night ITV debate show TRIAL BY NIGHT.
IMAGES CREDITS: (left to right) The Scottish Sun Variety Awards 2012/Bad Pony Media, Geo Wright/Eric and the Bunny Boilers and Karen Gordon Photography.