ScreenSkills Pro-Create Networking Handbook

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ScreenSkills Pro-Create Mentoring Programme

FEBRUARY 2021 - FEBRUARY 2022 Networking Handbook THIS PROGRAMME IS SUPPORTED BY SCREENSKILLS USING NATIONAL LOTTERY FUNDS AWARDED BY THE BFI AS PART OF THE FUTURE FILM SKILLS PROGRAMME. ADDITIONAL SUPPORT IS FROM THE FILM + TV CHARITY.


ABOUT PRO-CREATE

MASTERCLASSES

ScreenSkills Pro-Create is a year-long mentoring programme for Black Film Producers within the framework of the educational strand for S.O.U.L. Fest 2021. The programme will select a cohort of 50 Black mentees that will be matched with 10 Black mentors from within the Film and High-End TV (HETV) industry, working together in safe spaces to allow their project to live and breathe without cultural constraints. The aim of ScreenSkills Pro-Create is to ensure mentees leave the programme fully equipped and fit-for-purpose to successfully transition into their next big project - be it from short film to their first feature or full-length television drama. They will be given opportunities through the festival to platform and showcase their talent. Participants of the programme will take part in 4 modules in the following areas, where they will be given key insights into the production lifecycle of releasing a film. Development Finance Sales Distribution


Programme Outline KNOWLEDGE Industry professionals speaking at our events will give an overview of their speciality across multiple formats. Masterclasses will take place on the last Friday of every month, followed by a group mentoring session in the afternoon. Masterclasses Webinars + Presentations Panels + Curated Conversations Case Studies

MENTORING Monthly mentoring sessions will occur in groups of five, facilitated by the mentor. Outside of the group mentoring, mentees will also get 3 one-to-one mentoring sessions throughout the year. The mentors will have a background in the following disciplines. Narrative Feature Documentary Feature High End TV (Drama) Factual Entertainment

NETWORKING Connections made during the course of this programme, across our networking events, will accelerate the progress of the mentees and benefit their careers. Launch & Keynote Address Pitching Forum Production Finance Market S.O.U.L. Fest Awards Ceremony Closing Party

Events in general will take place at BFI Southbank and/or on BFI Player


Module Overview and Dates DEVELOPMENT This Development Module will give key insights and strategies on how to build and develop your project so that it has a strong foundation. 26 March 2021

Development I - WRITE ON

30 April 2021

Development II - LEARN TO ADAPT

28 May 2021

Development IIII - UNDOCUMENTED

FINANCE The Finance Module aims to demonstrate how to tackle typical financial hurdles that producers might come across in their projects. It will look at areas like funding, investment, taxes, support from unions, working with actors and more. 25 June 2021

Finance I - SHOW ME THE MONEY

30 July 2021

Finance II - GIVE ME CREDIT

27 August 2021

Finance III - ACTING UP

SALES The Sales Module breaks down how to take a project from being a creative idea to being green-lit. Mentees will learn how to position themselves strategically, prepare, pitch and leave the room with the deal of a lifetime. 24 September 2021

Sales I - CALL MY AGENT

29 October 2021

Sales II - GREEN LIGHT SPECIAL

26 November 2021

Sales III - CLOSING TIME

DISTRIBUTION The Distribution Module will explore the various platforms out there, examine the different stages of release and help with picking the right plan for your project. 17 December 2021

Distribution I - SELL BY DATE

28 January 2022

Distribution II - NEXT TOP MODEL

25 February 2022

Distribution III - WHAT'S YOUR DEAL?

Masterclasses will be online until further notice


Meet The Mentors Trailblazers


Mentors Page 1

(in first name alphabetical order)

Alby James Alby James is a former theatre director, directing 40 productions and leading Temba Theatre Company as artistic director for 9 years, before moving into film and broadcasting with the encouragement of the BBC in the early 1990s. His work since then has been as a producer and trainer, working often in South Africa to help the industry grow and provide opportunities for Black people following apartheid, and in the UK and other international situations in film schools, script labs and production companies. He has helped create several drama series and feature films and many of his acolytes are well-established in the industry. Fifty – the series, his most recent work, is currently on Netflix. He works primarily as a creative producer now, developing feature films and series for international and UK audiences. He recently founded production company, Dramatic Encounters, to develop and produce compelling features and series in which the lives of Black and multi-cultural communities are mainstreamed to challenge the marginalisation and stereotyping that has dominated on-screen dramas until now. This work will also include helping create a pool of Black development executives, story editors and script readers to enable the industry to achieve more representation of their experience to be brought to bear in the development of projects for a diverse audience.

Andy Mundy-Castle Andy Mundy Castle is a producer/director with 15 years experience in production and delivering high end creative content. Andy is a BAFTA nominated and RTS winning producer. Andy has been behind some of TV's most seminal projects tackling diverse subjects including The Black Full Monty (C4) Everybody's Game (Amazon) Lenny Henry's The Commonwealth Kid (BBC1) and record breaking The Black Lesbian Handbook, All4’s first original series. His first documentary feature The Fade featuring Pharrell Williams played at over 15 international festivals and scooped a clutch of awards. Having been in BBC’s News and Current Affairs team, Andy worked on The One Show and Rip off Britain. Andy lives in London and has also produced content across the world, France, Belgium, Spain, Germany, Netherlands, Italy, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, Benin, Gambia, Kenya, Ethiopia, South Africa, Morocco, Portugal, Trinidad, Barbados, India and Jamaica.

David Upshal David is a British-Nigerian producer and director. He has made over 200 hours of television across all the UK terrestrial channels plus broadcasters in the USA, Canada, Germany and France – spanning drama-docs and history to current affairs, formats and music. He originated the Victorian Farm franchise for the BBC, which went on to spawn nine spin-off series totalling 85 episodes – the longest-running “living history” format on UK television and oversaw the landmark drama-documentary series Days That Shook The World (BBC/ History Channel). He has produced and directed award-winning shows such as Windrush (Royal Television Society Best Documentary Series), The Hip Hop Years (BAFTA and International Emmy nominee), Iraq: The True Face of War (winner of a CINE: Special Jury Prize, New York Film Festival: World Medal and BANFF Documentary Prize), Vietnam: The Camera At War and Aretha Franklin: Respect. Most recently he has written, produced and directed international feature documentaries such as The Seven Ages of Elvis (Sky Arts/Arte) and Tap America: How A Nation Found Its Feet (BBC2/ BBC America).

In 2020 he was the Executive Producer of A Greek Odyssey with Bettany Hughes (a 6-part series for Channel 5) and also produced the feature documentary African Apocalypse which premiered at the London Film Festival. He is currently co-producing a feature documentary about Grime music.

Dominic Buchanan Dominic Buchanan is both co-CEO and co-founder of HOME TEAM. He is a BAFTA award winning Film & TV producer, who has had feature films premiere at Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca and Cannes. Additionally, his TV work has earned him a BAFTA Award, a Royal Television Society Award and a Peabody Award. His first feature Gimme The Loot (2012) won the Grand Jury Prize at SXSW, then had its International debut at Cannes in Un Certain Regard and was later that year nominated for an Independent Spirit Award. In May 2012, he then became Head of Film & Original Content at Stink, and his second feature Lilting, opened the World Dramatic Competition at Sundance 2014 and won the prize for Best Cinematography. It was also nominated for three British Independent Film Awards, and a BAFTA for Outstanding Debut for Hong Khaou, its writer/director. He also went on to produce King Jack, which won the Tribeca Film Festival’s Audience Award in 2015. Dominic was appointed Vice President of Production & Development at Bold Films in February 2015 and ran the UK operation until November 2017. Whilst there, he helped coproduce (for Bold) Colette, starring Keira Knightley, which had its World Premiere at Sundance in January 2018. He is an executive producer for the Channel 4 & Netflix co-production The End of The F**king World in partnership with Clerkenwell Films. The first season was launched, to rave reviews, globally on Netflix in January 2018. TEOTFW won a Royal Television Society award for Best Drama Series 2018, and then was nominated for Best Drama at the BAFTA TV Awards 2018. It was also nominated for an Emmy the same year, as well as a Gotham Award for Breakthrough Series – Longform. In 2019 it won a Peabody Award (Entertainment for 2018) and was commissioned for a second season, which aired in November 2019 globally. In 2020, TEOTFW S2 won two TV BAFTAs for Best Drama and Best Supporting Actress.

Jasmin Morrison Jasmin Morrison is an experienced film professional having worked in production, post-production and film finance. She previously served as the Investment Manager at a London based production and finance company and has been involved in the financing of over 100 feature films. In 2019, Jasmin founded Soul Cognition a film and TV consultancy company which is committed to education on the topics of film finance, sales and distribution. Soul Cognition works with individual clients as well as hosting courses. To date, Soul Cognition has hosted courses with Film London and Northern Ireland Screen. Jasmin has been featured on both The Best Girl Grip and Screenster podcasts discussing the topics of finance, sales and distribution. In addition to Soul Cognition, Jasmin also co-owns production outfit UnMannered Limited. The company is currently in production on two feature documentaries. Jasmin serves as a consultant for Breaking Through the Lens and is a British Screen Forum Future Leader.


Mentors Page 2

(in first name alphabetical order)

Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor Joy Gharoro-Akpojotor started making shorts and music videos as a way to learn. Film School wasn't an option as the costs were too high. She formed her own way of learning, making content outside of the industry including two no-budget feature films M.L.E and White Colour Black. In 2016, she managed to get onto the BFI Flare Mentorship scheme where Ben Roberts, CEO of BFI, was her mentor; the same year White Colour Black (a feature made on £35,000) also premiered and was nominated as one of the four films up for the IWC Filmmakers Award at the BFI London Film Festival. In 2018, Joy joined with Damian Jones to produce Rapman's Blue Story, with backing from BFI and Paramount. Blue Story went on to become the highest grossing film of its genre in 2019, landing Joy with a 2019 BIFA Breakthrough Producer nomination, 2020 BFI Vision Award and also seeing her now selected for 2020 BAFTA Breakthrough. Joy was recently a cover feature in the FT Weekend Magazine for her drive for new talent and voices in a very underrepresented industry. Screen Daily named Joy as part of the next generation of voices to look out for. She's currently working on Aml Ameen's debut, Boxing Day, featuring Aja Naomi King, Marianne Jean-Baptiste and Leigh Anne Pinnock (Little Mix), with distribution by Warner Bros and Rocket Science selling in the US. Joy's vision is to create commercial content featuring Black, Queer and Female voices that have not been seen or heard out of the UK. She's an advocate for innovation and taking risks where other people might not due to not understanding the audiences that require the content that she provides. However Blue Story has proved that UK audiences are hungry and open to more content from underrepresented voices.

Leon Mayne Leon Mayne is an award-winning screenwriter and producer. Known for his thematic stories, natural dialogue and threedimensional character building, he has brought relatability to a variety of screens across Digital, TV and Film. His work, especially in providing richly detailed Black programming, has earned him a feature in Powerful Media’s 2015 edition of Britain’s most influential people of African and African Caribbean Heritage and BBC’s 2017 New Talent Hotlist. He is co-founder of production group BWNG Ltd, a collective dedicated to showcasing the culturally diverse range of talent and narratives in modern day Britain. No fewer than 5 of his series and film productions are currently broadcast on TV &/or SVOD platforms in over 80 countries worldwide - as well as multimillion views on Youtube. His impressive client list in branded, digital, TV and film includes the likes of Netflix, TRACE, Channel 4, BBC, BFI, Untold Studios, Aniboxx and Warner Music – where he has written and/or developed content for projects such as The End Of The F**king World, Brothers With No Game, Binge Watching and Cadet’s Support Me short film release. As well as running an organisation called Insight – designed to create opportunities to above-the-line creatives in scripted development, Leon is currently working on an exciting development slate which includes a TV comedy-drama, an adult animation and a Facebook commissioned special of his groundbreaking roundtable project, The Circle.

Nathan Adabadze In January 2017, Nathan Adabadze left a successful sales and business development career at Microsoft to follow his passion and forge a career in the film and TV industry. An all-encompassing internship at Bankside Films soon followed where he supported the sales and acquisitions team. Nathan joined Media Finance Capital in January 2018 and has since risen through the ranks to his current role as Senior Investment Manager.

He has been involved in the financing of several notable productions including; Untouchable, the feature documentary showcasing the rise and fall of Harvey Weinstein, Arkansas a crime drama featuring Liam Hemsworth, Vince Vaughn, John Malkovich and Michael Kenneth Williams, and Tina the feature documentary on Tina Turner’s road to global superstardom. A film financier by day and filmmaker by night, Nathan’s latest short film production (which he exec produced/produced) Alpha & Omega, premiered at the TriForce Film Festival at London’s British Film Institute (BFI) and the Pan African Film Festival in LA. A passionate advocate of diversity in the arts, Nathan has in the past run monthly development workshops for BAME filmmakers and volunteered at S.O.U.L. Film Festival, securing sponsorship and publicity opportunities for their quarterly short film screenings at the BFI.

Shantelle Rochester Shantelle Rochester is a producer. She opened her first two companies at the age of twenty-two. One of these companies made high-end commercials and films and the other was a training academy to impart the necessary skills for under-represented young people to enter the film industry. Shantelle has worked on European films as a producer or line producer, including The Rise of The Krays (2015), London Heist (2017) and Two Graves (2018). Two Graves, written and directed by Gary Young, Harry Brown (2009, screenplay), won the Best Feature Film award at the British Urban Film Festival 2018.

Since then, Shantelle has founded production company Ida Rose and has been developing a slate of projects including films, series and online digital shorts. The first feature film on this slate, Stolen by Gary Young, is in pre-production. This is an official South African/UK Co-production, supported by the BFI, DTI, IDC and the KwaZulu-Natal Film Commission in South Africa. Shantelle is currently working with the BFI, Alby James and South Africa to create more opportunities for co-productions. Shantelle’s mission has always been to create diverse content and support filmmakers internationally and Ida Rose is currently building its new slate; which so far includes a music drama, a few co-productions, a documentary and short content.

Zena Tuitt Zena is the founder of GAFA Limited, a boutique consultancy company and co-founder of Niche on Demand, a studio set up to executive produce content that tells authentic stories about Black lives. She has worked with creatives over the last 20 years. In addition she spent 14 years at Ernst & Young (EY) in business development and management consulting roles working in the UK, US and across the Caribbean region.

Prior to EY, she graduated in Media Studies at the University of Sussex and started her career at The Voice Newspaper, followed by roles at Channel 5, Channel 4 and the Edinburgh International TV Festival, later working in marketing and theatrical sales roles at Universal Video, Warner Bros. and Buena Vista. She is passionate about media, developing talent and telling stories and has executive produced independent plays and films. Zena is a trustee of Theatre503 and on the board of technology start-ups.


Meet The Mentees Class of 2021


Mentees Page 1

Abiola Rufai-Awojide Abiola Rufai-Awojide is a producer whose recent projects include short films, Motherhood for Channel 4's Random Acts and award winning Tribeca Film Festival nominated No More Wings, commissioned and funded by Soho House and IWC Schaffhausen. In 2019, Abiola joined the BFI Network as a coordinator, where she currently works, to find and nurture emerging filmmaking talent.

Akua Ofei Akua is a freelance creative industries professional with experience in casting, digital marketing, podcasting, editorial writing, video production and content creation. She has a proven record of increasing engagement across social media platforms by creating original content, producing photo and video shoots, long form editorial articles and casting for fashion & film.

(in first name alphabetical order)

Adekemi Roluga-Adekemi Adekemi Roluga is a mixed British-Nigerian filmmaker from Manchester. She is alumni of the Manchester and NFTS BFI Film academies where she produced and edited two short films. While studying Media Production at Bournemouth University, she took on numerous roles in various short films, mainly as writer, director, or producer, before creating her graduate film, Fragments.

Amanda Bright In 2019, Amanda produced her first short Dear Afro - exploring her journey to loving her natural hair. She also successfully pitched two semi-autobiographical shorts to BBC Ideas - A Black Woman’s Guide to...the Workplace/Mental Health. Most recently, during lockdown in 2020, Amanda produced and starred in the short The Lennox Report, filmed at her home over zoom.

Amani Simpson

Andrina George

Amani Simpson is an award-winning social entrepreneur, coach, activist and filmmaker. He has a social enterprise called Aviard Inspires CIC, aimed at empowering young people through personal development, digital media and enrichment opportunities. Amani produced the short film Amani starring Hollywood actor Joivan Wade, which has been widely viewed and acclaimed by both young people and adults.

Psychology graduate Andrina George has worked in the media industry in a variety of roles from runner to producer. Her short films have been well received in a variety of well-known film festivals such as Chicago International Film Festival, the Pan African Film Festival and the Urban Film Festival. Said projects have also been screened by ITV Local and HBO.

Angela Effanga Angela is a freelance production coordinator working in scripted television. Angela started her career at the BBC and progressed to working for indies. She has worked across different genres such as comedy, drama and children’s television. A life accomplishment of hers would be to adapt the post-apocalyptic trilogy (Dawn, Adulthood Rites, and Imago) by Octavia E. Butler to television.

Avril Evan Avril is an international award-winning filmmaker whose innovative, compelling dramas capture complex stories. Her drama debut, Lipservice won 'Best Short' at the Images of Black Women Film Festival. The Arts Council/Barbican and Eastenders: E20 commissioned her to write and direct a series of short films. Also, Film London supported short Playground and ZDF/Arte funded Famous Last Words both premiered at prestigious film festivals including the London Film Festival and Berlinale.

Ashley Panton Ashley is a producer, director and writer based in London. He has always had a passion for visual story-telling and believes film has the power to change hearts and minds. His work to date has stretched from promo work, to dance film, to documentary. He most recently produced a scripted promo called Date PrEP for the sexual health charity, Prepster. The promo - aimed at the Black community and funded by the Elton John AIDS Foundation - raised awareness around HIV prevention.

Cass Pennant Cass Pennant is a Black London producer who is the subject of acclaimed feature film Cass (2008) directed by Jon S. Baird (Stan & Ollie) starring Nonso Anozie. After he reunited with award-winning TV documentary producer Ian Stuttard, they set up Urban Edge Films, in 2010. In 2014, he co-produced The Guvnors starring Harley Sylvester, winning ‘Best Action Movie’ at the National Film Awards in 2015.


Mentees Page 2

Chloe Bingham Chloe is a researcher/assistant producer who has worked for a number of companies including children’s media company, Wildbrain, where she was directly responsible for managing and producing short-form toy play and animated content for brands including Abby Hatcher, The Teletubbies, and Bright Fairy Friends. She also formerly worked as a researcher for Beijing based production company, Mandarin Film and more recently Verizon Media.

Collin Charles Collin was a senior communications professional with a wealth of experience in global brand, social marketing and internal communications working as creative director, executive creative director and managing director on board levels of agencies across Africa. He's made more than a hundred TV ads which have won over forty awards. At present, he splits his time between brand planning and producing films.

Daniel Adeyemi Daniel is a film professional currently living in South London. He has been working in the Film and TV industry for a few years with experience working for in-house production companies as well as on live action feature films (and an animation), having worked on productions for Marvel, Warner Bros. and Paramount.

Daniel Rands Daniel Rands is a South London based producer, director and writer. In 2020, Daniel co-founded independent production company, Mongrel Pictures. Over the last year, under this banner, Daniel has produced and directed multiple micro-budget shorts that have now played or been selected for BIFA, BAFTA, Academy Award and Canadian Screen Award qualifying festivals.

David Allain David Allain is an award-winning producer, scriptwriter and director. His producing credits include advertising, shorts and documentaries for clients such as CNN, O2 and SKY Arts. He is currently working toward making his first feature film and TV drama.

(in first name alphabetical order)

Christien Bart-Gittens Christien Bart-Gittens is an award winning producer. His first short The Consequence of Reliving screened at numerous international festivals before securing distribution with Shorts TV in North America. He has since gone on to co-create and produce the web series Suffering, which has secured distribution with Black & Sexy TV in the US and was nominated for four Screen Nation Awards.

Craig Abbott In 2014, Craig decided to follow his dream of becoming an actor however, faced with the struggles of getting work in this area, he decided to instead create his own content. This led to Craig discovering his passion for all things behind the camera. He has produced short films and a play and has worked with the likes of Femi Oyeniran and Richie Campbell. Craig is passionate about storytelling and has written a feature film as well as two short films. Craig’s ambition is to own a global production company and tell real life stories through the medium of Film and TV.

Daniel Bailey Daniel M. Bailey is a London-based producer and director who has been working within the creative industry for the past ten years. As a cofounder of production company Black Apron Entertainment, Daniel has produced and directed a number of short films, music videos, events and theatre productions.

Damilola Lemomu Damilola is a documentary filmmaker and co-founder of film production company, Silver Patch Pictures. She co-directed Shades of Blue (2020), a short which screened as part of BFI Film Academy SCENE 2020 and Women XFestival 2020. She produced The Sublet Next To Heaven (longlisted for the Women's Prize for Playwriting 2020) by Madeleine Accalia which had its professional debut at VAULT Festival 2020. She’s worked as a producer on Being Mr Ross, a gig-theatre piece by poet Gboyega Odunbanjo, which is due to tour to Roundhouse and Theatre Peckham.

Dayo Moshood Oladayo currently freelances, helping production departments produce a variety of content. Music is one of his serious passions, growing up he attended music school where he learned to play the trombone and drum kit. He loves all genres of music and any content around music. He is always intrigued to find out the context behind what inspires artists to create, and the story of their journey into discovering and developing their talent.


Mentees Page 3

Edozie Collins After his time playing professional basketball in the British Basketball League, Chiedozie’s love for comedy grew and, inspired by comedians like Dave Chappelle and Larry David, Edozie began writing short stories and comedy sketches. He later formed Fat Lady Sings Productions and began producing his own content. Within 3 years his work had collated over half a million views on social media.

Emma Grazette Working on a Channel 4 series in 2012 led Emma to pursue producing. She now has three years experience working as a short form producer both for indies and independently. She is studying to deepen her knowledge in order to move on to producing HETV and features, as fiction is where her heart is.

Jake Reid Jake studied filmmaking at the University of the West of England before producing and directing his award winning debut feature film The Antwerp Dolls which screened at the Garden State Film Festival and the Golden Door International Film Festival respectively.

Jide JohnsonBabatunde During his time at leading Soho production house, The Mill, Jide trained as a mid-level 3D animator on shows Primeval for ITV and Merlin for BBC1. Afterwards, he set up his own successful award winning production company, Aniboxx, training to become a senior producer. He is currently writing a TV pilot and working with Cartoon Network on digital content for Adult Swim, Boomerang TV, Toonix and Cartoonito channels.

Kathryn Roth Kathryn is an up and coming producer who has an interest in creating stories and different worlds. As a young adult she continuously looked for ways to participate in film and theatre productions, first with acting, then writing. Most recently, Kathryn produced and directed her first short film independently. She is inspired by foreign films and influenced by spoken word, art, kickboxing, the Bible and reading great fiction and autobiographies. Her family, faith and community is what she hopes to see represented on screen through her work.

(in first name alphabetical order)

Emil Collins Emil is the founding director of Socialize Media, a video production company that creates content for TV, film and online. In 2014, he embarked on his most ambitious project - to create the world’s first ever feature-length documentary about trainers and the subculture here in Britain. Armed with cameras and trainer knowledge, he delved into the world of the SoleSeeker and the award winning film, Soleseekers, was born.

Fi Lewis Fi Lewis is an emerging producer, whose long-term commitment to the arts has resulted in an eclectic mix of creative/administrative roles. She has a BA Hons in Media Performance with Performance Management from the University of Bedfordshire and a MA in Classical Theatre from Kingston University.

Janet Awe Janet is a freelance development producer and script editor. She is hired by broadcasters, production companies and writers, to develop and produce their TV shows, features and shorts. She currently has a wonderfully diverse range of projects on her slate.

Jonas Mondua Jonas is a production assistant on a Netflix HETV drama series. He has previously worked on HETV dramas for BBC One and Amazon Video in the same role. It is a commitment of his to reach the role of producer and work towards being a valuable asset by bringing diverse stories to life. The skills he’s learnt from being part of the Royal Television Society Bursary, Screenskills Trainee and Sara Putt Foundation schemes have been paramount to his journey thus far in materialising his future goal of being a producer in this industry.

Khadifa Wong Before working in film and theatre as a creative, Khadifa trained at the iconic London Studio Centre in all aspects of dance. After 10 years as a dancer she moved to New York to study acting. On her return to London, frustrated by the lack of opportunities and abundance of stereotypes for performers of colour, Khadifa formed her production company to help increase inclusion and erase stereotypes.


Mentees Page 4

(in first name alphabetical order)

Laurelle Jones Laurelle debuted as a writer in 2013 with her short film No.27. She has since gone on to produce numerous projects including Lia (2014); her debut in the role won numerous awards and was screened in around 11 festivals globally. In 2017, Laurelle became the festival coordinator for the first ever (and only) UK festival for Black women and women of colour, Women of the Lens Film Digital Broadcast Festival.

Lesley-Anne Macfarlane Lesley-Anne Macfarlane is a producer with experience in micro-budget productions ranging from commercials to independent film. She has a BA in Visual Art and an MA in Culture, Policy, and Management. She has been involved in several NGOs and arts organisations. She is a co-founder of the filmmaker organisation, FILMCO, dedicated to creating a sustainable ecosystem for screen producers and directors in the Caribbean.

Liz Daramola

Maria Ogunyale

Liz is a writer and producer. She won the 2018 Stage One Producer bursary to develop new work and has worked in a producing capacity at the Arcola Theatre, Almeida Theatre and most recently at the Young Vic Theatre. There she supported shows including The Convert by Danai Gurira, starring Letitia Wright and Death of a Salesman starring Wendell Pierce.

Maria currently works as a production coordinator on drama productions. Beginning her career as a production runner on various dramas including Top Boy S1, she eventually moved in-house and worked for Eleventh Hour Films (EHF) in 2012, as an executive producer's assistant. After leaving EHF in 2014, Maria continued to work on various productions including Mr Selfridge S4 (2015) and Sky One drama Guerilla (2016).

Nardia Bryan Nardia Bryan has been a producer for just over a year. She entered film via styling, focussed on interior design for years and then realised she wanted to specialise in sharing perspective on a larger scale. She surrounds herself in as much colour as humanly possible and would love to bring this to screens.

Nicola Gregory Nicola is an award-winning British-Canadian producer who has worked on and delivered content in four continents. She has produced features, shorts and documentaries that have secured worldwide distribution. Her films have screened at BAFTA and Academy Qualifying festivals and aired on terrestrial networks and various platforms including Amazon and Netflix.

Radica Anikpe Radica has written for national newspapers and magazines, acted on stage and screen and produced entertainment television for Channel 4 and ITV. Her goal is to produce scripted and unscripted television for an international audience.

Natalie Edward-Yesufu Natalie is a British multi-award-nominated producer and entrepreneur. She is the founder of production company Transition Stage Company, which holds numerous script writing competitions and events such as Enter Stage Write and Amplified Voices through Comedy, which focuses on Black, Asian, and ethnic minority writers.

Ola Laniyan Ola is an award winning writer and director with a passion for telling bold, compelling stories. She has four published titles and has written and directed three short films, two of which have been screened internationally and won a series of awards: Unspoken (2012), Oath Bound (2018) and Fruitless (2019). She is a skilled screenwriter whose work was previously short listed in the BBC’s Writersroom, and most recently, she wrote, directed and produced a short animation for children - Tooth Collectors (2020).

Reece Grant Reece is an upcoming twenty-six year old director, screenwriter, producer and video editor. He has been directing, screenwriting and video editing since the age of fifteen. He likes to write and produce stories based on true events that fit into the crime, social realism, docudrama, teen drama, dramedy, neo-noir and comedy genres. His short films and TV series are mainly for Generation Z. Reece also studied at Met Film School.


Mentees Page 5

(in first name alphabetical order)

Rich Walker Rich is a producer who has loved storytelling from a very young age. His background is primarily in advertising and branded content but he is keen to make the transition over to scripted narrative drama. In 2019, he was able to produce and direct his first short called Cornerboy. His second film from 2020 is called The South Stand.

Samuell Benta Samuell knew there was a problem with little to no Black stories. After being told his show was ‘too Black’ for British Television, he utilised YouTube and created one of the first web series in Britain in 2012. In 2016, he wrote, produced, directed and starred in his own family comedy for ITV. He intends to be the next Disney, producing an abundance of shows and films that celebrate Black British actors, launching Black creatives and creating a new world of film and TV.

Sherry Davis Sherry Davis is a singer/songwriter who has branched out into the world of documentary film. Having toured internationally as a vocalist for Netsky to crowds of up to 40,000 and penning/featuring on songs that have amassed several million plays across music streaming services, Sherry is excited about contributing to conversations about reclaiming Black history with her first feature documentary, The Skies Beneath Our Feet.

Urbain Ngendahayo Urbain, performing under the name Urban Wolf, is a Black gay activist, performer and storyteller. He has a vision to make bold and surreal stories that challenge taboos, unite communities and challenges society. His first play Custody revealed racism and police corruption similar to the Stephen Lawrence case. The play was a sell out success in 2017 and was used as a tool to raise awareness about the historical deaths of Black men in police custody.

Yasmin Ali Yasmin is a writer, producer and artist. She is a graduate of the Channel 4 Production Training Scheme and was a BFI Short Film Script Lab 2020 and BAFTA Connects 2020 participant. She has produced programmes for major broadcasters as well as writing and producing her own content. Her work aims to explore and shine a light on underrepresented voices and perspectives. She has a particular interest in HETV drama and comedy.

Sade Tah Sade is a producer with over 10 years of experience in the production department. Her short film Every Man for Himself was recently selected for Mediorite: Get Seen Screening 2020. Besides producing films, she has VFX production credits in major award winning movies and commercials. She continues to get involved in productions with a creative edge and has great zeal for management and strategic aspects of producing.

Sarudzayi Marufu Sarudzayi is a writer and producer. She is the founder & executive producer of film and theatre production company Euras Films LTD, which at its core strives to ensure representation in all aspects of film production, mainly within crews. Sarudzayi is an arts activist - passionate about inclusion, enamoured with beautiful writing and convinced that great stories do not only enrich lives, but also have the power to change destinies.

Sunny King Sunny King is an award-winning Nigerian British filmmaker whose short film Unspoken made the top 10 finalists at the Afrinolly competition in 2012. The short won Best LGBT Film at the 2013 London Independent Film Festival and Best Short Movie at the 2013 Nollywood Movie Awards. He also directed the first Nigerian suspense thriller of its kind in Prey that went on to screen at several festivals and won Best Director and Best Actress at Stormy Weather Film Festival 2017.

Veronica Mckenzie Veronica’s career in TV and film began with writing comedy sketches, working with Ricky Gervais and the 11 o’clock show. She has been shortlisted for the 2009 Disney ABC Writing Fellowship Program and was a quarter-finalist for Nicholls Fellowship (2010). Her wide experience takes in TV as a storyliner for Coronation Street and theatre A Woman on Fire - her tribute to Nina Simone. Veronica set up Reel Brit Productions and has co-produced shorts The Last Supper (2011) and ITSY (2017).

Yasmine Holness-Dove Yasmin is an actor and producer with some TV and film roles under her belt. Since building a portfolio of work with some incredibly talented writers, directors and performers, she has long felt inspired to create her own stories. Her corporate work life involved banking and media but most significantly, she spent a few years working at Warner Bros. UK within the film acquisition department where she started to see how the film industry works.


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