Marc James Francis

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Marc James Francis
Born (1975-12-04) 4 December 1975 (age 42)
Nationality British
Other names Marc J. Francis, Marc Francis
Occupation Film director, film producer, documentary film cinematographer
Years active 2000–present

Marc James Francis (also known as Marc J. Francis and Marc Francis) is an award-winning[which?] British film director, producer and documentary cinematographer.

In 2007 he and his brother Nick Francis were chosen by Harper’s Bazaar magazine as one of their top Forty Under 40; Household Names of the Future.,[1] and also in 2007 The Observer newspaper named the brothers as some of Britain’s Rising Stars.[2] He and his brother were regular contributors to the Observer's sister paper The Guardian between 2006 and 2012 notably in its film blog.[3]

He is Creative Director of the production company Speakit Films, founded by the Francis brothers.[4]

Early life[edit]

Prior to his film career, Marc was an undergraduate at the University of Leeds where he learned Mandarin,[5] studied Chinese cinema and lived in China during the economic boom of the mid-1990s.[2]


In 2004, Francis and his brother founded British production company Speakit Films. His work has been supported by The Sundance Institute, The BRITDOC Foundation, the BFI, Bertha Foundation[6] CNC and EU MEDIA Programme Fund.[4][7][8]

Feature Films[edit]

Black Gold (2006)

Directed and produced with his brother Nick Francis. The film follows the efforts of an Ethiopian Coffee Union manager as he travels the world to obtain a better price for his workers' coffee beans.[9]

When China Met Africa (2010)

Directed and produced with his brother Nick Francis. Set on the front line of Chinaʼs foray into Africa, the film follows the lives of a Chinese farmer, a road builder, and the Zambian trade minister.[10]

Walk With Me (2017)

Directed and produced with Max Pugh the Benedict Cumberbatch narrated film about Zen Buddhist Master Thich Nhat Hanh.[11][12]

Short Films[edit]

A Letter from Calais (2016)

Directed and produced by Marc and Nick Francis released in October 2016 for Benedict Cumberbatch's company, Sunny March.[13][14] Featuring Jude Law,[15] the film aims to draw attention to the hundreds of unaccompanied children living in the Calais refugee camp.

Madam President (2012)

Directed and produced by Marc and Nick Francis released on The Guardian website in December 2012 and supported by The Guardian and the Worldview Broadcast Media Scheme.[16] The film is an exclusive portrait of Malawi’s first female President Joyce Banda, as she tries to steer her country out of an economic crisis.

TV Documentaries[edit]

Nuke UK (2001)

Channel 4 / Ideal World Productions TV documentary directed by Marc and Nick Francis.[13]

St Dunstans (2003)

TV documentary of 6 x 30 minutes episodes directed by Marc J. Francis and released on ITV.[13]


  1. ^ "Forty Under 40; Household Names of the Future" (PDF). Harper’s Bazaar. September 2007. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Rising stars". The Observer. July 10, 2007. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  3. ^ "Marc Francis Profile". The Guardian Newspaper. Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  4. ^ a b "About Speakit". Speakit Films. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  5. ^ "50th Anniversary of East Asian Studies". Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  6. ^ "Bertha Directory of completed films A - Z". Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  7. ^ "Impact of Art" (PDF). Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  8. ^ "Key Crew". Speakit Films. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  9. ^ "Close-Up Film Filmmaking". 2008-05-22. Archived from the original on 2008-05-22. Retrieved 2017-07-18.
  10. ^ Pulver, Andrew (2011-10-06). "When China Met Africa – review". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2017-07-18.
  11. ^ "Benedict Cumberbatch boards Buddhism doc". Screen International. Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  12. ^ "The Making of "Walk With Me"". Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  13. ^ a b c "Nick Francis and Marc J Francis". United Agents. Retrieved July 13, 2017.
  14. ^ "Benedict Cumberbatch joins wife Sophie Hunter for Letters Live". Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  15. ^ "A Letter from Calais - Short Film". Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  16. ^ "Madam President: meeting Malawi's Joyce Banda – video". Retrieved July 14, 2017.