Souleyman Messalti – MA Documentary Film

Souleyman Messalti is a Paris-born Documentary Filmmaker and Photojournalist who graduated from LCC in 2015. Souleyman has recently finished directing a short documentary for Channel 4.

Where are you from in the world?

I was born in Paris but grew up in the south of France. I moved to the UK when I was 18 and studied a BA in Multimedia Journalism before starting my MA at LCC.

Why did you choose to study this course and why LCC?

It seemed to be the best Masters in Documentary Filmmaking in London. I wanted to make the move from photojournalism to filmmaking and LCC kept being mentioned to me - it was an obvious choice to me. 

What are your fondest memories of LCC?

I have a lot of great memories of LCC. I remember last year, as we got closer to our final project’s deadline, I was spending every single day in the editing suites and so were most of my classmates. We seriously should have filmed each other; we were all going from intense feelings of stress and panic to euphoria and laughter!

The graduation show in which we presented our films was also a great memoryThere was a sense of camaraderie, pride and achievement between all the classmates and the tutors.

What three words would you use to best describe LCC?

Inspiring, diverse and challenging.

Where are you working at the moment and what are some recent interesting projects you've worked on?

I’ve just finished directing and editing a short documentary for Channel 4 about The East London Strippers Collective. I’ve been taking a bit of time off and spent some time working on a personal project I started last year: Portraits of Hackney Wick. In it, I portray different artists living in the area and look at what they do, how they go into it and what the gentrification of the neighbourhood means to them and to their work.

I’m also trying to get back into photojournalism and have just decided to fly to India for three months and work on a few stories there!

Could you describe your style or what you try to achieve with your work?

I work on a lot of different topics but I focus mostly on issues aiming to challenge stereotypes, pre-conceived ideas and misconceptions about people in society.

Where in London do you go when you need a little inspiration?

I live in Hackney Wick and this is where I spend most of my time when I’m not working in other parts of London. I love the sense of community we get in the neighbourhood and with the canal surrounding the area, it feels like being in a lovely little village.

What with Hackney being the borough with the largest concentration of artists in Europe, you meet creative people all the time - I find this extremely inspiring and motivating.

What are your future plans and ambitions?

Nothing’s set in stone as of yet. I’m going to India for three months to work on a few projects there and see what to do when back in London!


Visit Souleyman Messalti's website

Twitter @smessalti