photograph of Mick

Mick Csáky

Documentary film writer, producer and director

 

Family:

  • Michael Sándor Csáky was born on 31 August 1945 to his Hungarian father Alexander Csáky and English mother Mary (born Mary Baker).
  • Brothers: John and Adrian.
  • Married: Jeanne Du Pasquier, with children Leo, Corinna and Tim.

Education: 1951 - 1971

  • 1951-63 Bedales School.
  • 1963-65 Farnham School of Art - Foundation Course
  • 1965-68 Saint Martin's School of Art (BA Graphic Design)
  • 1968-71 Royal College of Art (MA Film & Television)

Career:

Entered the film and television industry in 1971 by joining the production team making ITV's arts and entertainment magazine programme Aquarius as a researcher. One year later he went freelance as an independent writer, producer and director working for the BBC and ITV before setting up his first independent production company Pictures That Move.

To date he has produced and directed more than 100 documentary films for the cinema, television and DVD, in addition to executive producing a further 600 films, many of them international co-productions.

The majority of his output has been in the form of documentary singles and landmark series, made through his independent film and television production company Antelope; mostly in the areas of human interest stories, biography, history, science, politics, economics, religion, music and arts; with assorted performance and magazine programmes and a limited number of drama productions for the cinema.

To see a list of Mick's productions from 1971 to 2015 click here

Awards:

His film productions have won numerous national and international awards (including both US National and International Emmy awards), and have appeared on all of the main UK terrestrial and digital television channels and in most countries of the world. In 1998 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Television Society "In recognition of an outstanding contribution to the furtherance of television".

Contacts:

Films written, produced & directed by Mick Csáky include:

  • THE GODMOTHER OF ROCK & ROLL: Sister Rosetta Tharpe

    One-hour documentary about the highly influential African-American gospel singer Sister Rosetta Tharpe. The film was originally commissioned by BBC4 for transmission in the UK during 2011, 2012 and 2015. A 52-minute version was edited for the PBS strand American Masters for transmission in the USA during 2013, 2014 and 2015. A Director's Cut version was created in 2014 - see below.

  • AFRICA LIVE: The Roll Back Malaria Concert

    120-minute concert documentary to raise awareness of malaria in Africa. The film triggered a $20 billion commitment from the World Bank, World Health Organisation, United Nations Foundation, UNICEF and the Gates Foundation to combat malaria in Africa.
    2005 / BBC4 / Arte France

    " AFRICA LIVE: Roll Back Malaria Concert held in 2005 connected a global audience to create an international rallying cry for the fight against malaria. The concert and the film came at a pivotal time: the resulting groundswell of awareness helped support significant funding increases and contributed to a still-strong global movement that continues to make progress in saving lives from malaria."
    Kathy Calvin - President and CEO of the United Nations Foundation.
  • SHIRIN EBADI: Divided By The Prize

    30-minute profile of 2003 Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi.
    2004 / BBC4

  • GEIKO GIRL

    52-minute documentary about a geisha girl working within the Gion district of Kyoto.
    2000 / BBC2 / Kyoto Broadcasting

  • MOZART IN TURKEY

    90-minute opera movie featuring Mozart's Die Entführung aus dem Serail, staged and filmed within the Topkapi Palace, Istanbul.
    1999 / BBC2

  • PLÁ DOMINGO: A Musical Life

    90-minute profile
    1995 / ITV / PBS American Masters

  • THE MIDAS TOUCH

    6x1-hour global economics series written & presented by Anthony Sampson.
    1990 / BBC2 / TV Asahi

  • KILLING THE DRAGON

    52-minute documentary about a remarkable cure for heroin addiction in Thailand.
    1988 / ITV

  • CARAVANS OF GOLD

    52-minute episode from the 8 x 1-hour series AFRICA: A Voyage of Discovery
    1983 / MBTV / Channel 4

  • HOW DOES IT FEEL?

    42-minute exploration of the senses featuring David Hockey, Michael Tippett, Joseph Beuys, RD Laing, etc. A Pictures That Move Production. Incomplete copy.
    1977 / Arts Council of England

Films produced or executive produced by Mick Csáky include:

  • HIMALAYA: L'Enfance d'un Chef

    104-minute feature film, shot in the Tibetan language, directed by Eric Valli. Academy Award nominated for Best Foreign Film, winner of 2 César awards.
    Co-produced by Antelope with Galatée Films. 2000.

  • A CRY FROM THE GRAVE

    104-minute account of the massacre of Srebrenica directed by Leslie Woodhead for Antelope.
    1999 / BBC2/13.WNET/NPS/NPR

  • 444 DAYS

    104-minute account of the US hostage crisis in Iran of 1979-81, directed by Leslie Woodhead for Antelope.
    1997 / BBC2

  • HIROSHIMA: The Decision to Drop the Bomb

    75-minute film directed by Jeremy Bennett for Antelope.
    1995 / BBC / TV Asahi / The History Channel / TV Novosti / Télé Images

  • CHAIRMAN MAO: The Last Emperor

    60-minute biography of Mao Zedong, directed by Jeremy Bennett for Antelope.
    1993 / BBC2 / A&E / France 3

  • CHASING A RAINBOW

    78-minute biography of Josephine Baker, directed by Christopher Ralling for Csáky Limited. International Emmy award winner.
    1985 / Channel 4

  • AFRICA: A Voyage of Discovery

    8 x 1-hour series written & presented by Basil Davidson.
    1983 / MBTV / Channel 4

    "Broad-sweep history, rich in texture.A stunning piece of work"
    John Corry of New York Times, 26 March 1986

Additional projects by Mick Csáky include:

  • ONE WORLD MEDIA FESTIVAL: creating global conversations

    As Festival Director, he conceived and staged this two-day event at University College London during 8th & 9th November 2013. The festival combined panel discussions, lectures, films, a radio show and a comedy act - all highlighting the media's power to increase cultural understanding and contribute to global justice.

  • SOAS Radio show featuring Sorious Samura, Jane Bussmann and Mick Csáky:

    See more here

Multi-media work:

Alongside his film and television work, Mick Csáky has undertaken extensive multi-media and multi-screen audiovisual work for museums (Natural History and Science museums, etc), exhibitions (British Genius and UK Expo pavilions, etc) and art galleries (Hayward Gallery, Musée des Arts Décoratif in Paris, etc).

Still photography:

His photographs have appeared in numerous exhibitions, magazines and newspapers; along with books that have accompanied several of his television series.

Books:

  • HIMALAYA: L'enfance d'un Chef
    By Eric Valle & Debra Kellner
    Published by Éditions de la Martinière- 1999
  • HOW TO GET INTO TV: The inside guide to a career in television
    By Mick Csáky
    Published by Boxtree / Macmillan - 1997
  • ROYAL COLLECTION
    By Christopher Lloyd
    Published by Sinclair Stevenson / Channel 4 / NHK - 1992
  • THE ROYAL GARDENS
    By Roy Strong
    Published by Conran Octopus / BBC Books - 1992
  • THE MIDAS TOUCH
    By Anthony Sampson
    Published by Hodder & Stoughton / BBC Books / Dutton / Asahi - 1990
  • OIL
    Edited by Adrian Hamilton
    Published by Michael Joseph / Rainbird / Channel 4 - 1986
  • The Story of AFRICA
    By Basil Davidson
    Published by Mitchell Beazley / Channel 4 - 1984
  • WHAT A PICTURE!
    By John Hedgecoe
    Published by Mitchell Beazley / Channel 4 - 1984
  • HOW DOES IT FEEL? Exploring the world of your senses
    Edited by Mick Csáky to accompany his 60-minute film with the same title.
    Published by Thames & Hudson (UK), Random House / Harmony (USA), and Forum (Sweden) - 1977
  • LIVING POETS
    Edited by Michael Morpurgo. Photographs by Mick Csáky
    Published by John Murray - 1974

Pro bono work:

  • AMREF (African Medical & Research Foundation)
    In 2014 he made a 3-minute charity appeal for a social/health project in Tanzania:
    https://vimeo.com/107685396
  • One World Media
    During 2007 -2013 he was a trustee of One World Media:
    www.oneworldmedia.org.uk
    In 2009 he made a 3-minute video for the One World Media Awards:
    https://vimeo.com/53931136
  • Mary Rose Museum
    During 2005-2010 he was a trustee of the Mary Rose Museum:
    www.maryrose.org
  • Film & television industry groups
    Over the years he has served on the Councils of the Association of Independent Producers (AIP), Independent Programme Producers Association (IPPA), Producers Alliance for Cinema and Television (PACT) and the Royal Television Society (RTS). During the 1990s he was Chairman of the Film Production Committee of the Arts Council of England.

Teaching:

Mick Csáky lectures extensively in the UK and abroad about documentary film and television production. He has conducted numerous Master Classes at film and television festivals.

UK institutions have included:
National Film & Television School, Sheffield International Documentary Film Festival, British Film Institute, Frontline Club, School of Oriental and African Studies, University College London, University of Portsmouth, University of Lincoln, and University of Westminster.

Ex-UK institutions have included: BANFF World Media Festival (Canada), University of Alberta (Canada), The Global Communications Project at Philadelphia University (USA), Zelig Documentary Film School (Italy), Documentary Campus (Germany), Royal Tropical Institute (Holland) and ESoDoc (European Social Documentary School) in Sweden, Italy, Belgium, Slovenia, Kenya, etc.

Independent film production company directorships:

  • Pictures That Move
    1972-81 as Chief Executive.
  • Viscom
    1975-81 as an Executive Director.
  • Mitchell Beazley Television
    1981-83 as Chief Executive.
  • Csáky Limited
    1983-90 as Chief Executive.
  • Antelope
    1988-90 as Executive Director. From 1990 as Chief Executive & Creative Director.