Dan is an experienced stunt coordinator, fight arranger, sword master and action designer. He has worked in these roles across film, television, theatre, mocap and live events on over 300 productions, as well as performing in many more. Dan specialises in fight choreography and coordination and has experience in wire work, burns and vehicles stunts, as well as the regular bumps, trips and falls of stunt work. Dan’s work as the stunt/fight coordinator on 'Avengement', starring Scott Adkins, was highly praised and was nominated for a Taurus World Stunt Award for best fight. [read more]
The origins of Dan’s creative career come from a variety of sources in Dan’s early life. Dan has been playing at action for as long as he can remember. With early influences such as the ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’, ‘Thunder Cats’ and ‘The A-Team’ Dan would recreate fight scenes and shootouts in the school playground. Little did he know he’d still be doing it in adulthood.
He also had an interest in history, military history and combat and as a teenager he trained in fencing, reenactment fighting and was a member of the air cadets where he would learn to shoot guns, do military drill and maneuvers, and fly planes.
His formal understanding of choreography began when he was introduced to stage combat in high school. He choreographed his first fight scene at the age of 15 for a GSCE drama project. He then went on to study Media at college where he was able to write, direct, edit and perform in many productions from commercials to music videos to short films – most of which would involve action if he could get away with it. He would also hire cameras for the weekend and shoot fight scenes and short films, with fellow students, in his own time.
Initially choosing to pursue a career in acting, Dan started performing in theatre at 16. His interest in combat arts led him to learn more stage combat, boxing and historical European martial arts (HEMA) and firearms handling. Due to his early training, he excelled in these and was fortunate to be able to use them in a lot of his work as an actor in film, theatre and live events, many of which he would also choreograph.
While working as an actor Dan continued to write and produce his own short films. He also spent many years as a director’s assistant and often got the opportunity to work with actors and direct scenes.
Alongside his work Dan trained under various fight directors and stage combat instructors in a two-year apprenticeship with the British Academy of Dramatic Combat (BADC). As well as the practical elements of choreographing fights with a variety of weapons systems, teaching and training actors, Dan also studied history, stagecraft and storytelling giving him precious knowledge to create physical stories with authenticity and meaning.
By the time Dan was a qualified instructor with the BADC he was coordinating fights and stunts across all media. He continued training to learn more about stunts including high falls, fire, vehicles, and wire work. He was also regularly performing as a fight/action performer in large production such as ‘Thor: The Dark World’, ‘Kingsman’, ‘Captain America’, ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’., ‘Avengers: Age of Ultron’, ‘Guardians of The Galaxy 2’, ‘Maleficent’, and ‘King Arthur: Legend of the Sword’. And later being cast as a stunt performer on ‘Vikings’, ‘Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom’, ‘The Witcher: Blood Origin’, ‘Mary Queen of Scots’ and ‘Vikings Valhalla’.
More recently Dan has stepped into the role of Action Director and 2nd Unit Director. He would like to continue this work with a view to direct sometime and continues to further his learning in visual storytelling through cinematography and editing.
Dan’s background and study in acting, directing, writing and stagecraft has given him an invaluable education in character and storytelling. He is able to approach a script with a sense of its arcs and beats. He can discuss action with a director in terms of its purpose; how it drives and develops the story as well as the methods in which it does so and what they mean.
His experience as an actor has provided a unique insight into an actors’ process and language to be able to effectively communicate blocking and choreography in terms of intention and motivation and help the actor achieve those deep and heightened emotions of violence and action.
As a stage and screen combat instructor Dan has had innumerable hours of experience training actors, teaching both the safety and effectiveness of techniques, instilling them with the ability, confidence, and autonomy to perform at their best and act through the choreography. Additionally, this work has involved creating countless choreographies in a variety of styles, with and without weapons, and adapting them to the actors’ needs, while still keeping true to the purpose of the scene. This includes directing the actors in a scene with blocking, dialogue, and physical performance. Dan has also worked as a fight trainer for actors on ‘The Woman King’ and ‘Renfield’.
Dan’s knowledge of history and weapons, including battle strategy and tactics, cultural fighting styles, and weapon employment and handling, allows him to provide options for a director or writer to create a greater depth of authenticity in the action design when portraying historic battles and duels. From Ancient Greeks and Romans, to the Vikings, Medieval knights to Napoleonic and modern soldiers.
As a stunt and fight coordinator and trainer Dan has had the opportunities to work for Universal, Tristar, Netflix, Sony, WWE Studios, ITV, BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5, Yesterday Channel, FitBit, Ninja Warrior, Surf, Listerine, One Plus, UniLad, KSI, The Sidemen, Lilly Allen, Eliza Doolittle, LadyHawke, A$AP Rocky, The National Theatre, The RSC, The Globe Theatre, The Royal Festival Hall, English National Open/The London Coliseum, The Soho Theatre and more.
As an actor, stunt or fight performer Dan has worked for Disney, Marvel Studios, DC, Netflix, Amazon, BBC, Channel 4, History, PlayStation, National Geographic, McDonalds, Kit Kat, The National Lottery, Splash Damage, Ask Jeeves, The Medieval Banquet and The Welsh Government.
Dan is also co-director of ID Fight, a training provider of action performance for actors and stunt performers. ID Fight offers courses in stage and screen combat, firearms, wire work, driving, horse riding, and falls and reactions.
Dan can provide detailed script breakdown, budget and risk assessments for any production. As well as stunt pre-vis and action design from script level where required.
Having worked with new technology and challenging locations or circumstances, Dan is accustomed to problem solving, creative troubleshooting and working with the rest of the creative team to come up with cost/time effective ideas to achieve the desired effects.
£10 million public liability insurance
ITV approved contractor
Trained in Health and Safety and Risk Assessing
First Aid trained