The Producer’s Forum, an important part of the Iris Prize Festival since 2007, takes place this year on the 14th October. The full day gathering in Cardiff welcomes and brings together participants at all stages of their film and media career. In addition to networking opportunities and meeting well-known industry figures in private mentoring sessions, the Producers Forum will also offer the opportunity to learn first-hand from film industry speakers.
Among these speakers includes Katie McCullogh from Festival Formula, who will be chairing our session, ‘How to Get Your Film Into a Festival’. She created the organisation after discovering a gap in filmmakers’ knowledge when it comes to festival submissions and strategy, and realised that she could help manage their time, expectation, and admin levels. In her past writing career she received funding from Arvon Foundation and support from the ICA Lab, as well as mentoring from the Blaine Brothers, Leo Butler, Polly Clark, Fraser Grace and Simon Stephens.
We are very excited that Andrew Smith will also be in attendance at this year’s Producers Forum. Appointed to the Board at Pinewood Studios in May 2012, he is part of one of the world’s leading names in film, television, commercials and video games. Prior to his time at Pinewood, Andrew was Managing Partner of The Policy Partnership. In addition to this, he is also a member of the Film Skills Council, Creative Skillset Cymru, the British Film Commission Advisory Board, the International eGames Committee and Associate member of BAFTA, and is a non-Executive Director of Bucks Business First Ltd and Chairman of the Buckinghamshire Thames Valley Local Enterprise Partnership. It is our privilege to have Smith chair our session, ‘Crowd Funding and Low Budget: Does it Work?’.
From the BFI Film Fund will be key speaker Mary Burke, participating in our session, ‘Funding Film’. Appointed as Senior Production and Development Executive in September 2015, she has 13 years of experience in production and development behind her. Burke joined from Warp Films, where she was Executive Producer and board member. She is known to identify and support a diverse range of British feature film projects, working closely with writers, directors and producers across development and production. Burke’s producer credits include Bunny and the Bull, the 2009 feature debut from Paul King, who went on to direct Paddington in 2014; Submarine the feature BAFTA and BIFA-winning debut of Richard Ayoade; Paul Wright’s For Those In Peril, which premiered in Critics’ Week at Cannes in 2013 and won two BAFTAs; Berberian Sound Studio, the critically acclaimed and multiple award-winning second feature from Peter Strickland; and Chris Waitt’s feature documentary A Complete History Of My Sexual Failures, which premiered at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival.
We would also like to highlight key speaker Paul Sweeney who works for Vue Cinema as the Screen Content Manager developing company strategy with regards to film and event product. He previously worked as a Senior Film Buyer for Cineworld Cinemas. With over 15 years’ experience in the film industry, recent career highlights include selecting two time Scottish BAFTA 2011 winner Donkeys and Fast Romance that picked up the audience award for exclusive screenings. He will be taking part in our fascinating session, ‘Are Multiplexes Only Interested in Hollywood Blockbusters?’.
Other organisations present at the Producers Forum will include the Ffilm Cymru Wales, Encounters Festival and many more. To find out more about the day, do take a look at our full programme for this year here.