Skip to main content

Home Culture

Producer Kegan Sant Is All About Telling Stories Around The World With Heart

By Tyler Shepherd

Kegan Sant
Kegan Sant (Image: Provided)

We all love entertainment, and behind the scenes of our favourite films or shows are hard working individuals who find a passion in telling the stories we see at the finished product.

One such person that is extremely important is a producer, who is a person that oversees a project from start to finish to ensure that all the various parts work together as a whole for the overall success of the piece. The specific tasks a producer handles can vary based on the medium of the project, as well as the size and budget of the piece. But mainly, the producer is the person you need to bring to life the words written in that amazing screenplay, script, theater piece and/or creative treatment.

And whether it is working in Canada, the US or over here in the UK, there is one very passionate producer who has been in-demand more than others and has spent the past 20 years on over three-hundred-plus projects, bringing ideas to life. This internationally awarded producer’s name is Kegan Sant, and as he says himself: “I love a challenge. If it’s difficult, great. Impossible? Even better.”

With this mindset, Kegan has taken the world of television and film by storm, creating masterpiece after masterpiece, telling stories with his heart, including working on a project with HBO during the final season of Game of Thrones that was shot here in the UK in Puzzlewood, and went on to win countless awards and recognitions.

And beyond here in the UK, Kegan has his hands full always in Canada and the US, working currently on developing a feature film entitled, Miracle Swing (WT) with director Joshua Kissi.

From high profile nominations, Webby Awards, Gold Pencil awards and a number of CLIOs, Kegan has talked about his love of producing and advice for other aspiring producers out there around the globe.

Kegan Sant
Kegan Sant (Image: Provided)

1. How did you get your start in production and becoming a producer?

A producer came to my high school for a career day and I pitched her a feature I had been writing. She offered me a spot as a runner for a Kellogg’s All Bran Bars commercial. I’ve loved it ever since. I’ve worked all crew positions on a set with the exception of grooming and vanities. My philosophy was to learn all the roles I could before I tried to manage them. Once I’d worked in their shoes, there wasn’t as much pushback because they knew I was coming from a place of relatability. I produced an indie feature with Vivica A. Fox, titled Searching for Angels (2012) and started producing music videos because of the local buzz. I segued into commercials when the second commercial I ever made, a Christmas spot for WestJet won 2x Cannes Lions, a couple CLIOs and racked up over 50M views in just over a month in 2013/2014. Now, more than 10 years later I’m in development for my next feature film, Miracle Swing (WT), with director Joshua Kissi attached.

2. You have been internationally awarded over a dozen times. Does it become repetitive at all with awards and how do you keep yourself motivated?

Awards are a great way to keep motivation high. Industry recognition from those who understand the trials and difficulties of filmmaking is pretty validating. On the other hand, you can’t let it get to your head or become obsessed with the idea that every project you make has to be award-winning. That couldn’t be further from the truth. I recognise that this is both a job and a passion. I manage my expectations by striving to do 1 or 2 very strong creatives a year; something to keep me in the running and top of mind. The rest of the time is balanced with enjoyment of life, travel and projects that pay the bills.

3. Tell me about your time working on the project for the final season of Game of Thrones in 2019, called For The Throne, which was shot in Puzzlewood, Gloucestershire?

For The Throne is one of my favourite projects to date. Puzzlewood was absolute magic and our director, Jordan Eady insisted on this location. We shot in 6x countries across 35 days but our time in Puzzlewood stands out in memory. I dug up a couple photos of the unique trees in The Forest of Dean and when the crew was scouting for locations.

We created an immersive experience where we hid the Iron Throne, deep in the woods of Puzzlewood, set up hidden motion activated cameras and a 360/4K live streaming setup that Connor Illsley and Jon Riera of COMBO BRAVO built specifically for this project. I worked tirelessly with the very talented Alyssa Cashman, formerly of Droga5 who worked to manage the HBO team and streamlined communication for everyone, in many time zones, across multiple countries.

We had a great time with thousands of locals enjoying the experience, captured beautiful footage and ate great food!

4. How did working on this project help your career overall? What other projects for HBO have you done?

This was a pivotal project for me – I had just moved to the US from Canada. I’d given LA a brief try for 3 months, decided it wasn’t for me, packed into my Mustang and driven to New York in pursuit of more. The call came to bid for the job while I was on the road and I’ve always seen it as a sign that I was making the right decision. The recognition and accolades that followed were huge honours and have helped my career immensely. I haven’t had the pleasure of working with HBO since this project but now that I’ve stepped back into the narrative ring, hoping to change that.

Kegan Sant
(Image: Provided)

5. What is your advice to others wanting to go into producing, whether it be films, TV or other forms of media?

It’s been a hard couple years for a lot of people in our industry. With strikes and AI fears, many experienced below-the-line and above-the-line crew haven’t been working. It’s been an unprecedented slowdown. I say this not to dissuade anyone from getting into production; it is important to know honestly what state of industry is to make the decision that is right for you. My advice is to find a way. Always find a way – if you love this, you will make sacrifices. It will be hard. It will likely cause you to lose your shirt at one point or another. You have to be okay with that. Please learn to manage your stress well. It is not for the faint of heart, though it has gotten significantly better. It pays well and you get to make movies for a living. It’s a dream that comes with sacrifice but you don’t have to lose yourself to make it. Be brave, be humble and know when it’s time to speak up and when it’s time to listen.

6. And finally Kegan, what do you love about having the chance to work here in the UK and travel for special projects at times?

I love my UK film family! Sophie Brooks and Mikey Levelle are my two favourite producers from London. They are always welcoming, have the best restaurant recommendations and are loads of fun. I also really want a castle and trips would give me the chance to scout.

Stream Publishing was not involved in the creation of this content