My first film 'Quality Time' won the 1996 Broadcasting Press Guild Television award for best single documentary. It captured a zeitgeist: the dilemmas facing professional working mothers trying to have it all. The idea for the film came to me as I sat on a park bench with my then very small son Josh, listening to the mothers complaining about their nannies… and the nannies complaining about the mothers.
Since then I’ve been privileged to enter many worlds, from Holloway women’s prison where self-harm was tragically part of everyday life, to a religious community living in isolation in the middle of the Canadian Prairies, to the usually private world of the Amish in a film about family life which won two Baftas.
High profile documentaries have included a film about personal trainer Carole Caplin whose relationship with an international conman threatened her friends, the former prime minister Tony Blair and wife Cherie. And more recently, a film about the demise of an iconic figure, psychotherapist Camila Batmanghelidjh as her charity Kids Company collapsed.
Yet there have been inspirational stories too - and in the most unlikely places: on an intensive care neonatal unit I found Amy, mother of baby Charlie McPhillips, who demonstrated wisdom far beyond her 18 years, and taught us all much about love, life and death.
For all those who have the courage to share their lives with such candour and invite the cameras in, I have only thanks and admiration.