PILAR ALESSANDRA started her career as Senior Story Analyst at DreamWorks SKG. In 2001, she opened the Los Angeles-based On the Page Writers’ Studio, dedicated to teaching and consulting with screenwriters and TV writers at all levels. She’s the author of the top-selling scriptwriting book, “The Coffee Break Screenwriter,” and host of the popular “On the Page Podcast.” An in-demand speaker, she’s taught at Disney Animation, ABC, CBS and MTV, and traveled the world coaching writers and producers in the UK, China, Poland, Vietnam, Colombia, Portugal and South Africa. Pilar’s greatest accomplishment is the success of her students, many of whom have won top competitions like the Nicholl Fellowship, are working on TV shows such as “The 100,” “Silicon Valley” and “Grey’s Anatomy,” and have sold scripts and pitches to studios including DreamWorks, Warner Bros. and Disney.
For more information about Pilar, her classes, consultations, book and podcast, go to www.onthepage.tv.
Scilla Andreen (pronounced Sheila) is the CEO and Co-Founder of IndieFlix and an award-winning film and TV industry veteran working at Sony and Warner Bros before co-founding IndieFlix, a global edutainment focused streaming & screening service of 5000+ titles. She’s Included in Screening International’s Women To Watch, Variety’s Women’s Impact Report and a popular speaker at Sundance, Cannes, CES, SXSW, Women in Film and the Hong Kong Mental Health Summit. Scilla is the Founder of IndieFlix Foundation, Executive Producer of social impact films, Nevertheless, Angst, Screenagers, and Empowerment Project. and the director of LIKE a documentary about the the impact of social media on our lives and The Upstanders a new film about cyberbullying and resilience. Scilla screens these films in thousands of schools, corporations and organizations globally and is on a mission to change the world with film. https://www.indieflix.com/
Manuel has worked for 18 years in film, TV and digital media sectors, and has started to explore, understand and experiment blockchain applications in our industry 4 years ago. In this spirit, in 2016-17, Manuel initiated, with his client Groupe Média TFO, Blockchain TFO, the first experimentation in the Canadian broadcasting sector. Early 2018, mandated by Telefilm Canada, he designed and organized the first conference on blockchain in a major film festival (Berlinale-European Film Market). In May 2019, his research on blockchain and media industries was published. A first in Canada. He is now an internationally recognized speaker and gives conferences in major industry events on a regular basis. Prior to founding Badel Media, Manuel worked as a senior advisor and manager at Telefilm Canada for digital projects financing as well as industry initiatives and policies. He was then Deputy Director for the administration of CMF programs, continuing with the positions of Director of the AQPM Web Sector (Quebec producers association), and Director of Film, Television and Production Tax Credits at SODEC (Quebec public body).
As Co-Founder and Managing Partner of WINSTON | BAKER, Amy Baker oversees the company’s global strategic planning, business development and vendor relationships. Amy created and founded the FILM FINANCE FORUM® SERIES with Co-Founder Katherine Winston in 2008, a series of conferences across the globe dedicated to bringing film and finance executives together.
Prior to establishing Winston Baker, she successfully directed B2B and B2C business development efforts for over 10 years by leveraging innovative sponsorship methods to engage business professionals. At ALM, as Vice President of Business Development, she provided finance executives and marketers with targeted channels for reaching decision-makers within the legal, entertainment, healthcare and tech sectors. In her previous position, Director of Business Development at RPMC, she worked with entertainment, music, and sports companies, creating event marketing programs, travel incentive services, sweepstakes, and media promotions.
Amy received a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with honors from New York University. In 2018 Amy was honored to join the National Board of Advisors for the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida.
Amy recently became a Certified COVID-19 Compliance Officer.
Floris Bauer is Co-Founder and President of Gunpowder & Sky, a fast growing independent global entertainment company, creating premium content unrestricted by format, as well as genre-specific destinations for the streaming generation. Since its inception in 2016, Gunpowder & Sky has released more than 30 feature films and series, as well as hundreds of short films theatrically, on TVOD as well as in partnership with leading platforms such as HBO, Netflix, MTV, Hulu, Sky, Showtime, DirecTV, Amazon, Facebook, YouTube, and soon Quibi and HBO Max. With in-house development, production, marketing and distribution capabilities, the company operates as a full 360-studio and oversees a library of over 1500 titles.
Prior to founding Gunpowder & Sky, Bauer spent more than nine years at Endemol Shine Group, a global leader in entertainment (Peaky Blinders, Black Mirror, Mr. Bean, Big Brother, Master Chef, Deal or No Deal, Fear Factor, Wipeout, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,). Part of Endemol Group’s management team and international board, he was ultimately responsible for global strategy, corporate development and M&A across divisions, including TV/film production, distribution, FTA/Pay TV channels, digital video and gaming. During his time at Endemol, he grew its global presence, instigating and overseeing numerous new territory and business launches, as well as completing over 40 acquisitions, investments and exits in 15+ countries. Prior to that, Bauer served as a lawyer and worked in private equity.
Bauer is Board member of Cut and White Rabbit Films. Bauer received his Masters degree in Law from Erasmus University Rotterdam, and lived in the Netherlands, Spain and the United Kingdom before moving to the United States.
Shaked Berenson produced and executive produced over 40 features and two television series including the animation franchise SPACE DOGS, which generated over 100mil in worldwide revenue and Walmart’s A TIGER’S TAIL.
In the past 15 years, Shaked financed, marketed, and distributed over 120 films across all genres. He served as a Board Director for IFTA™ (Independent Film & Television Alliance) since 2011, a PGA (Producers Guild of America) member since 2013 and currently on the advisory board of The Film Collaborative, a non-profit committed to distribution education and facilitation of independent film.
His production and distribution outfit, Entertainment Squad, mission is to create and promote content with strong role models and positive value. Its first release is a documentary about Quentin Tarantino
Shaked has an MBA from UCLA/Anderson. He has been a guest speaker at various forums including USC, SXSW, and AFM.
Amanda Blumenthal is the premier intimacy coordinator in Los Angeles, whose credits include Euphoria (HBO, Season 1),The Affair (Showtime, Season 5), and The L Word: Generation Q (Showtime, Season 1), among others. She is passionate about creating safe spaces on set in which actors can do their best work while also achieving the director’s creative vision, and advocating for authentic portrayals of gender and sexuality on screen. Amanda is the founder of Intimacy Professionals Association (IPA), through which she trains other intimacy coordinators and helps to connect productions with other types of intimacy professionals for film and TV, such as trans consultants, gender consultants, erotic dance choreographers, and expert consultants on topics related to gender and sexuality (e.g. kink, BDSM, polyamory, etc.). She is a sought-after speaker on the topic of intimacy coordination and has presented at Netflix, FX, Freeform, Women In Film, Film Independent, and the USC Peter Stark Producing Program.
Prior to her career as an intimacy coordinator, Amanda worked as a sex and relationship coach with private clients. Amanda has been actively involved with advocacy work related to sexuality since college, serving in leadership positions in groups such as Advocates for Survivors of Sexual Assault and Sex Positive Los Angeles. As a member of these groups she has led workshops on LGBTQ+ issues, consent, kink, and many other topics. She graduated from the University of Southern California School of Gerontology with a degree in Human Development and Aging. To learn more about Amanda Blumenthal’s work and IPA, please visit www.intimacycoordinator.com and www.intimacyprofessionalsassociation.com.
Richard “RB” Botto is the Founder and CEO of Stage 32 (stage32.com). Stage 32 is the world’s largest online platform connecting and educating film, TV & digital creatives and executives worldwide. Launched in 2011, the Stage 32 community has grown to over 500,000 creatives and features an educational library of over 1,000 hours of webinars and classes taught by over 500 industry executives. Stage 32 is recognized throughout the industry as an incubator of talent and is the official film education & networking platform of AFM.
RB is a working actor, producer and screenwriter. As a producer, his films have played at dozens of festivals including the Sundance award-winning feature, Another Happy Day, starring Ellen Barkin, Demi Moore and Kate Bosworth and written & directed by Euphoria creator Sam Levinson, What Lies Ahead, starring Rumer Willis & Emma Dumont, the documentary Crutch and the upcoming Rain-Beau’s End. As a writer, he has two features and a TV pilot in active development. As an actor, his latest film On the Corner of Ego and Desire premiered at the 2018 Raindance Film Festival.
Additionally, RB’s book Crowdsourcing For Filmmakers: Indie Film and the Power of the Crowd, was published by Focal Press/Routledge under the American Film Market Presents banner and quickly became one of their best-selling titles. It has hit #1 in 6 different film and business related categories on Amazon and Audible. The book can be found at the Focal Press/Routledge booth by AFM badge registration and on Amazon and Audible, where it has garnered over 90 5-star reviews.
A sought after speaker, teacher and mentor, RB has been a keynote speaker and panelist at such festivals and conferences as Cannes, AFM, Tribeca, Sundance, Raindance, Austin, SXSW, Cinequest, ITVFest, Portugal FEST, Trinidad and Tobago and Winston Baker. He has also taught at institutions such as Harvard, USC and Columbia University on the subjects of filmmaking, producing, film finance, screenwriting, social media, crowdfunding, crowdsourcing, entrepreneurship and business. You can follow RB at https://www.instagram.com/rbwalksintoabar/.
Ryan Broussard is Vice President of Production Incentives and Sales at Media Services Payroll. With over 15 years’ experience in the production payroll industry, Ryan’s area of focus has been helping clients discover the best filming locations, state incentives and local resources to maximize returns on their specific projects. He brings his expertise to payroll clients looking to combine the top digital tools with quality payroll service and incentives consultation. Through relationships with film offices across the U.S. and a deep knowledge of current and upcoming incentives legislation, Ryan has helped productions large and small to navigate the application and audit processes required by the unprecedented variety of incentives programs available to filmmakers today.
Effie T. Brown is an award winning film, television, and digital Producer, known for her highly acclaimed, multiplatform repertoire as well as championing inclusion and diversity in Hollywood, both behind and in front of the camera.
Brown’s long and illustrious career began as a Film Independent fellow in the prestigious “Project Involve” program. During her fellowship, she gained invaluable insight into the film industry. Her incredible work ethic and creative freedom allowed her to advance quickly through ranks becoming Director of Development for Tim Burton Productions in 1995. Decades later, Brown now serves as a Film Independent Board member and mentors the new generation of fellows.
Throughout her career, Brown has produced several critically acclaimed HBO Films and award-winning projects including, Stranger Inside (directed by Cheryl Dunne, 2001, World Premiere at Sundance Film Festival), Real Women Have Curves (directed by Patricia Cardosa, 2002, winner of Sundance Film Festival’s Audience Award and Special Jury Prize for Ensemble Performance), Everyday People (2004, directed by Jim McKay), In The Cut (directed by Jane Campion, 2003) and Rocket Science (directed by Jeffrey Blitz, 2007, winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Directing at Sundance and recipient of three Independent Spirit Awards nominations, including Best First Feature, Best Screenplay and Best Actress). In 2010, her film The Inheritance, starring Golden Brooks, won the Best Actress award at the American Black Film Festival.
In 2011, Brown made a daring venture beyond television and film. With a love of multiple platforms, she reteamed with the award winning producing/directing duo Jon Avnet and Rodrigo Garcia to focus on digital episodic content. Together they produced over 130 episodes of WIGS, an award winning, original content channel funded by Google/YouTube and FOX Broadcasting. The channel features multiple original series showcasing “A list” actors, writers, and filmmakers to present stories centered around the ever complex lives of women, and blazes the trail for scripted content released directly online. Currently, WIGS is the number one scripted channel for drama on YouTube and has recently been picked up for wider distribution via Hulu.
Effie T. Brown then went on to produce the highly acclaimed independent feature, Dear White People. The film won multiple awards, including the Special Jury Prize for Breakthrough Talent at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and Best First Screenplay at the 2015 Independent Spirit Awards.
Given her longstanding relationship producing successful content with the network, HBO recognized Brown’s ability to mold a low budget film into a critically acclaimed success and invited her to join the controversial reboot of Project Greenlight (Executive Produced by Matt Damon & Ben Affleck). The show’s premise is to take an original screenplay and give a first time filmmaker the opportunity to work with industry professionals to create a feature film. In 2015, she served as producer and mentor to the show’s fresh new director.
Bryony Cole is an Actress, Writer and Producer from the UK, based in Amsterdam, and the Brand Ambassador for Apojo Publications. Bryony’s credits include: Red Heart, Blank Face, You Listen, Always and The Unveiling. She is Co-Director of the international theatre company Actors Anonymous. She co-wrote the comedy ‘WET,’ (Screw Productions) which enjoyed success in both London and Amsterdam and she is currently writing a full-length play, which will premiere in Amsterdam in 2021. Bryony is passionate about comedy and making relatable work with an important message. www.spotlight.com/4066-9084-9452
After working in feature film production in Hollywood on movies starring Rob Schneider, David Carradine, Jennifer Morrison, Winona Ryder, Wes Bentley, Steve Buscemi, to name but only a few, Caroline chose to come back to Europe and relocate to London in 2008 as Director of Development & Marketing at Seven Arts Pictures.
In 2011, she joined AV Pictures where she gained invaluable knowledge in deal structuring from the company’s founder, Vic Bateman.
In May 2014, she launched Metrodome International, the international sales arm of the Metrodome Group handling a wide range of feature films from third party producers to in-house productions.
She then left Metrodome to launch her own company, Truffle Pictures, a London based international sales agency and production house, in 2016, and subsequently Film Seekers Ltd since February 2018.
Caroline is a French native based in London who speaks fluent French, English and Spanish. She holds two post-graduate master degrees one in Chemistry from the University of Versailles and the second one in Business Management from the University of Bordeaux.
She is a member of BAFTA and sits on the board of two major lobbying associations: Film Export UK and the Independent Film and Television Alliance.