Debbie Howard

Debbie Howard is a writer/director and the founder of Big Buddha Films.


Debbie was an actor for twenty five years appearing in many popular television programs including Life on Mars, Coronation Street and Holby City. Over the past thirteen years she has made many award winning short films including Peekaboo starring Lesley Sharp and Shaun Dooley.  She made the critically acclaimed feature documentary, Still Loved, which had a successful cinema release, was BIFA long listed, won a best documentary award and received a four star review in The Guardian. Debbie also works as a freelance television director. She has directed many episodes of Doctors for the BBC and trained in multi camera directing at Coronation Street for ITV directing several broadcast scenes. Drawing on her own extensive experience, she works well with actors, ensuring an excellent on screen performance. In documentary, she nurtures a deep sense of trust with her participants, making sure to never exploit a situation and show respect at all times. Her work has been screened at film festivals all over the world winning both critical acclaim and a number of prestigious screen awards.

Debbie’s  most recent documentary, Absent From Our Own Wedding was commissioned by Little Dot Studios for the Real Stories Originals Platform. She is currently in production on a new documentary, Still Mountain. She is also in development on her first feature film, Waiting, which has received early development money from the BFI. She also has another feature, a comedy series and a returning format series in development.

Debbie was a mentee on the prestigious Women in Film and Television Mentoring  Scheme in 2014. She completed Filmonomics 2017. She is keen to champion other women in the film industry and is an influencer for Reclaim the Frame. She is a member of BAFTA Crew/BFI Network, Cinesisters and Women in Film and TV.

“You can only be struck by the resilience the interviewees display, and the trust they place in Howard – repaid several times over by a work of commemoration that will also surely provide considerable consolation.”
Mike McCahill, The Guardian

“I worked with Debbie for 12 weeks on a feature documentary called Still Loved about stillbirth. It was a very emotional and difficult subject. At all times Debbie was extremely professional and collaborative. She was always open to ideas but had a clear vision of what she wanted the film to be and who it was for. The material that she had gathered was of the highest quality and I was spoilt for choice. I would happily work with her again.”
Joby Gee, Editor,Still Loved, Dark Horse, Versus, The Fallen, Dogging Tales

“Howard’s film reflects her talent as a storyteller but also as a film maker. It is an extremely poignant piece which encapsulates the difficult emotional and physical journey couples face who’ve experienced stillbirth.”
James Wallis, Vulturehound Magazine

“Tenacity, Integrity, creative vision and true grit, working with Debbie for the past 4 years has been both a pleasure and a privilege. Her uncompromising attitude to quality and efficiency, alongside her creative problem solving, humility and organisational strengths make her an auteur par excellance, who would lend any film crew confidence, clarity and creative strength.”
Polly Perkins, Producer, Still Loved