Brixton film maker bringing South London comic hero to the world

Malcolm Hardee
Photo: Vincent Lewis

For Brixton resident Jody VandenBurg, a film graduate and comedy fan, the life of the late alternative comedian and South London celebrity Malcolm Hardee (pictured above) was the perfect subject matter for his first major film writes Emma Lange.

Hardee was notorious, not only for his comedy, but also for his outrageous antics, famously stealing Freddie Mercury’s 40th birthday cake and urinating on a sleeping audience member at a comedy gig.

For VandenBurg, Hardee was an irresistible character. “I was fascinated by his behaviour … I’ve never seen anything like that before.”

Looking for guidance with the business side of the film, VandenBurg enrolled in the “incubator” programme  of the charity Hatch Enterprise and sees his time there as a significant period of personal growth and development.

 “Hatch has transformed me beyond what I expected it was able to offer me,” he says. “It has helped the progression of my business in a pretty profound way.”

Jody VandenBurg pitches his business to Hatch dragons. Photo David Altabev
Filmmaker Jody VandenBurg pitches his business to Hatch dragons

VandenBurg says he found  the first half of the course challenging, but his mentors helped him clarify his subject matter and make progress on the business and marketing of the film.

Since graduating from the programme, Jody has focussed on bringing Malcolm’s story to an international audience.

His 2010 short film The Tunnel – about the infamous Tunnel Palladium in Greenwich in the 80s – played at the Edinburgh Fringe and at the International Documentary Film festival in Amsterdam.

VandenBurg is convinced that the practical business knowledge he has acquired with Hatch will help him bring his Malcolm’s story to an international audience in his new film.

To see The Tunnel short film, contact Jody at:

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