industry news

The Latest Industry News for the Exciting World of Production.

Creative Handbook puts together a bi-monthly newsletter featuring up-to-date information on events, news and industry changes.

American Film Market to Host Global Industry Experts at Conferences, Roundtables and Workshops

By: American Film Market | October 30, 2017

American Film Market to Host Global Industry Experts

Speakers include Focus Features' Kiska Higgs, Lionsgate's Thomas Hughes, OddLot Entertainment's Adrian Alperovich, Producer/Agent Cassian Elwes, Skydance Media's Jesse Sisgold and STX Films' Sam Brown

The American Film Market (AFM®) today announced its full list of speakers for their conferences, roundtables and workshops. A large number of leading independent producers, distributors, financiers and marketing executives are confirmed to participate. This year's market is taking place November 1 - 8, in Santa Monica.

Conferences on finance, pitching, production and distribution connect attendees to thought leaders from across the industry, providing exclusive access to insider knowledge. Roundtables explore specialized topics and timely issues in an intimate setting.

Confirmed speakers and moderators, in alphabetical order, include:

Adrian Alperovich, COO, OddLot Entertainment
Adrian Ward, SVP & Manager, Entertainment Industries Division, Pacific Mercantile Bank
Adrian Alperovich, COO, OddLot Entertainment
Adrian Ward, SVP & Manager, Entertainment Industries Division, Pacific Mercantile Bank
Alexis Garcia, Partner, Global Finance & Distribution, WME
Alison Thompson, Co-President, Cornerstone Films
Andy Bohn, Co-Founder & Partner, The Film Arcade
Anjay Nagpal, SVP Production & Distribution, Bron Studios
Anna Godas, CEO, Dogwoof
Barbara Mudge, President & Founder, Worldwide Film Entertainment
Ben Stillman, SVP, Black Bear Pictures
Brian O'Shea, CEO, The Exchange
Bruce Eisen, President, Digital Advisors
Cassian Elwes, Independent Producer/Agent
Christine D'Souza Gelb, Agent, WME
Clay Epstein, President, Film Mode Entertainment
Cynthia Tollett, Assistant Executive Director, Directors Guild of America
Dana Lustig, Principal, Dana Lustig Productions
Darrien Michele Gipson, National Director, SAGindie
David Austin, EVP, Bridgestone Multimedia
DeVon Franklin, Producer & CEO, Franklin Entertainment
Felix Tsang, Sales and Acquisitions Manager, Golden Scene Company Limited
Geena Davis, Actress, Producer, Activist
Gerren Crochet, Packaging Agent, Film Finance and Distribution, The Gersh Agency
Hanny Patel, VP, Video Marketing, AT&T Entertainment Group
Ian Bricke, Director, Content Acquisition, Netflix
Jen McGowan, Director
Jesse Sisgold, President/COO, Skydance Media
Jim Whitaker, Producer, A Wrinkle in Time
Joe Chianese, EVP, EP Financial Solutions
John Penotti, President, Sidney Kimmel Entertainment
Kay S. Wolf, Senior Representative/Member Organizing Department, Writers Guild of America West
Kevin Downes, Producer & President, Kevin Downes Production & South West Film Group
Kevin Iwashina, Founder & CEO, Preferred Content
Kiska Higgs, Head of Acquisitions and Co-Productions, Focus Features
Laurens Grant, Director & Producer
Lisa Remington, Producer
Lisa Wilson, Partner, The Solution Entertainment Group
Lucy Mukerjee-Brown, Director of Programming, Outfest & Newfest
Mark Damon, CEO & Chairman, Foresight Unlimited
Martin Katz, Founder and President, Prospero Pictures
Neema Barnette, Director
Patrick Frater, Asia Bureau Chief, Variety
Paul Bales, Partner, The Asylum
Paul Hanson, CEO, Covert Media
Paul Hertzberg, President & CEO, CineTel Films, Inc.
Pilar Alessandra, Instructor/Consultant, On The Page
Rebecca Cammarata, Director of Development, Stay Gold Features
Richard Botto, Founder & CEO, Stage 32
Rick Bonn, Head of Development & Acquisitions, Pure Flix Entertainment
Russell Levine, CEO, Route One Films
Sam Brown, Head of Production, STXfilms
Shirley Davis, Executive Vice President, Physical Production, Alcon Entertainment, LLC
Stefan Lütje, Partner/Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, LLP
Steve Chan Chi-Fat, Director, Weeds on Fire
Tania Jones, VP of Marketing & Customer Service, Shift72
Thomas Hughes, EVP, Worldwide Digital Distribution, Lionsgate
Tobin Armbrust, President, Worldwide Production & Acquisitions, Virgin Produced
Tom Ara, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, LLP
Vicky Wong, Director, Trivisa
Wendy Calhoun, Writer/Producer, EMPIRE, NASHVILLE, JUSTIFIED

Conference Schedule
Friday, November 3
Finance Conference I: The Big Picture
- The Future of Global Film Finance
- Spotlight Sessions

Saturday, November 4
Pitch Conference
- Pitching Essentials
- The 2-Minute Pitches

Sunday, November 5
Finance Conference II: Funding Films Today
- Producing Studio Films with Independent Budgets
- The Film Finance Matrix: From Script to Screen

Monday, November 6
Production Conference
- Producing for the Pre-Sales Marketplace
- What They Want: Inside the Studios

Tuesday, November 7
Distribution Conference
- Working with Sales Agents
- The Future of Video On Demand

Roundtable Schedule
Thursday, November 2
- The Changing Hong Kong Movie Scene: What is New, How and Why?

Saturday, November 4
- Building A Future For LGBTQ Film

Sunday, November 5
- The Passion of the Film: Reaching the Faith Community
- The Future is Female

Monday, November 6
- Distributing & Monetizing Feature Documentaries

Tuesday, November 7
- Working with the U.S. Guilds

Writers Workshop Sessions
Sunday, November 5
- You Had Me At Page One
- The Art of Cinematic Storytelling: Transforming Your Premise Into An Engaging Screenplay

Monday, November 6
- ReVision: Seeing Your Script With New Eyes
- Writing Compelling Characters

Special Events will include Engage: Navigating Hollywood's Shifting Landscape, presented by Pepperdine Alumni Affairs and Pepperdine's Institute for Entertainment, Media, and Culture.

Visit to view the full program.

The American Film Market is produced by the Independent Film & Television Alliance, More information on the AFM can be found at:

About the American Film Market
The American Film Market is the world's largest motion picture business event. Over 7,000 industry leaders converge in Santa Monica for eight days of deal-making, screenings, conferences, networking and parties. Participants come from more than 80 countries and include acquisition and development executives, agents, attorneys, directors, distributors, festival directors, financiers, film commissioners, producers, writers, the world's press and all those who provide services to the motion picture industry.

Unlike a film festival, the AFM is a marketplace - with over 200,000 square feet of exhibition space - where production and distribution deals are closed. In just eight days, more than US$1 billion in deals will be sealed - on both completed films and those in every stage of development and production.

Participants may view more than 500 screenings of 300+ films - 29 new films every two hours - the majority world or U.S. premieres. Titles range from big budget blockbusters that will be released by the major studios to lower budget art and genre films recognized at international film festivals.

With 7,000 attendees, 500 screenings, 300 exhibiting distributors, and the industry's largest Conference series, AFM is the pivotal destination for independent filmmakers and business people from all over the world.

No Comments