Emilie Georges founded Memento Films Distribution and Production with Alexandre Mallet-Guy, in 2003. Since Memento Films International was launched at the 2005 Cannes Festival, Emilie Georges, President, defends arthouse films and acclaimed directors. She also produces through her own production company, La Cinéfacture, which develops European ambitious projects. For the film Call Me by Your Name, she was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture at the 90th Academy Awards.
Dede Nickerson has been living in China for over 25 years and has been a leading pioneer in China’s media sector. In 2015, Dede founded Infinity Pictures with China Media Capital. Infinity developed a slate of both Chinese films and English language films for the global audience. Dede is currently serving has been an advisor to Netflix and now advising Huanxi Media and executive producing a slate of films and series, including Hao Jingfang’s, Future Dust, Once Upon A Time In Beijing and the feature Yolk Man.
Prior to establishing Infinity Pictures, Dede was the Head of Production and Strategic Development at Sony Pictures China, where she produced Jiang Wen’s Gone with the Bullets, Chen Kaige’s Monk Comes down the Mountain,and the Chinese remake of My Best Friend’s Wedding. Dede was overseeing strategy across divisions for SPE: she established sales relationships with the digital platforms opening a lucrative new revenue stream for the studio’s content in China; leveraged relationships with the Ministry of Propaganda, SARTPP and Film Bureau to increase the number of Sony Pictures released in China; sourced financing for Sony’s studio slate from China Film and Wanda. Before joining Sony Pictures, Dede produced the Chinese remake of What Women Want starring Andy Lau and Gong Li; served as an advisor to Dune Entertainment; and consulted for Paramount Pictures and Paramount Digital Entertainment where she introduced the company to CJ launching their partnership in Korea and developed the company’s digital strategy in China.
From 2000-2005, Dede ran co-productions and acquisitions for Miramax Films in Asia: licensing libraries, remakes and new films from across Asia for global distribution. Key projects she oversaw include: Hero, Shaolin Soccer, The Touch, Infernal Affairs and the licensing of the Shaw Library. She also oversaw the production of Kill Bill and was credited as associate producer. Dede was responsible for the distribution and sales of Miramax Films into China and other Asian territories and managed GR for the company as well.
From 1995-2000 Dede led Warner Bros. initial efforts in China, key achievements include: an 18-picture output deal with Beijing Film Studio; acquisition of the Golden Harvest Library; and overseeing theatrical business and strategy across divisions. Prior to WB, Dede was in corporate finance with S.G. Warburg in Hong Kong working on the early H-share offerings.
In addition to her career in film and investment, Dede has devoted significant time to addressing education, development and healthcare issues in China. Dede is a board member of Serve for China and is on the advisory board of Duke Kunshan University. Before that she also served on the board of Teach for China and was a founder of Dandelion School for migrant worker children. Dede helped with the initial establishment and program development for the Special Olympics with the China Disabled Persons’Federation.
Dede graduated with a double major in Political Science and Chinese Studies from Trinity College in Hartford, CT and was a Princeton in Asia fellow at the People’s University in Beijing. Dede is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.
Scott Franklin was born and raised in New York where he has established himself as a critically acclaimed veteran of the NYC independent filmmaking community. Scott’s productions have garnered 11 Oscar Nominations (1 Win), 9 Golden Globe Nominations (3 Wins), 17 BAFTA Nominations (3 Wins), and 19 Independent Spirit Award Nominations (10 Wins), including two wins for Best Picture (Black Swan and The Wrestler).
Jonathan Kier is the President of International Sales & Distribution at Sierra/Affinity, a leading independent film finance, production, and foreign sales company which was created in January 2011 from the combination of Sierra Pictures and Affinity International. In addition to representing sales of third party films, the company acts as the exclusive sales agent for films developed and produced by Sidney Kimmel Entertainment, OddLot Entertainment, Bold Films, Lakeshore Entertainment, Blumhouse, eOne, Good Films and Sierra Pictures. While at Sierra/Affinity, he has managed the worldwide sales and distribution of such films as MANCHESTER BY THE SEA, NIGHTCRAWLER, WHIPLASH, DRIVE, THE PLACE BEYOND THE PINES, ATOMIC BLONDE, MOLLY’S GAME, and I, TONYA.
Prior to that, Kier was the Senior Vice President of International Sales and Distribution at the The Weinstein Company, where he was responsible for overseeing all aspects of TWC and Dimension releases in over 50 countries, from the initial local theatrical release, thru the home video, television and digital platforms. Additionally, he handled foreign sales on TWC and Dimension titles at all the major annual film markets. While at TWC, he handled films such as THE KING'S SPEECH, THE READER, HOODWINKED and PIRANHA 3D.
Prior to joining The Weinstein Company in 2005, Kier worked in Affiliate Sales Strategy at MTV Networks, analyzing all of the domestic cable and satellite carriage deals for over 30 channels ranging from Comedy Central to Nickelodeon to MTV and VH1. Prior to that, he worked in Production and Development at Universal-based Marc Platt Productions, on such films as LEGALLY BLONDE.
Kier earned a BFA in Film & TV from the Tisch School of the Arts and an MBA in Finance from the Stern School of Business, both at NYU. He is based in Los Angeles and is a dual national of Italy and the United States.
Colin Brady is an Executive at leading entertainment and sports agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA). Brady is based in the Los Angeles office and works closely with CAA’s Media Finance group to develop strategic business initiatives on behalf of the agency and its clients, focusing primarily on international markets.
Brady began his career in television, working as a Producer for the Discovery Channel and Viacom/MTV Networks. As a member of McKinsey & Co., Brady served a wide variety of media companies and major film studios. As Chief Operating Officer for the Product (RED) initiative that launched in 2006 as a collaboration between Bono and the Gates Foundation, generating more than $300 million to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa. Since joining CAA in 2011, Brady has overseen major strategic initiatives like the creation of the CAA China joint venture with China Media Capital.
A graduate of Harvard Business School, Brady received his B.A. in Visual Art and Media from Brown University.
Angus Sutherland is the Vice President of New Republic Pictures, a production, and finance company, whose latest titles include Dexter Fletcher’s “Rocketman” and Sam Mendez upcoming “1917”.
Angus Sutherland came to New Republic Pictures from MadRiver & IMR International, where he served as Vice President of Production and Acquisitions. Before joining IMR, Sutherland was an executive at Lotus Entertainment, where he co-managed a variety of projects, which include Halle Berry’s “Kidnap”, Tom Hanks’ “A Hologram for the King” and Stephen Knight’s “November Criminals”. Sutherland got his start in entertainment as a production coordinator at Spitfire Pictures, where he worked on the Academy Award-winning documentary “Undefeated”, The Grammy Award winner “Foo Fighters: Back and Forth” and the Emmy Award-winning Martin Scorsese feature “George Harrison: Living in The Material World.” Soon after, Sutherland was promoted to Director of International and Domestic Distribution at Exclusive Media, Spitfire’s parent company. There, he worked in sales, marketing, and acquisition on several critically acclaimed projects which include “The Ides of March”, “Rush” and “The Woman in Black”. Sutherland graduated Magna Cum Laude from Middlebury College receiving two bachelors of arts, one for film theory and media culture, the second philosophy.
Vania Schlogel brings a deeply honed financial acumen from serving as an executive at top tier Wall Street institutions, as well as an operational background from serving as Chief Investment Officer of Roc Nation (founded by Shawn “Jay Z” Carter), and as Interim Chief Financial Officer of MultiScale. Vania currently serves as Chairwoman of the Board of Epidemic Sound (an EQT + Atwater portfolio company), Chairwoman of the Board of “Project Show” (a KKR + Atwater portfolio company, aggregating TMG, Wiedemann & Berg, Universum, and I&U), and previously as a board member of BMG (the world’s largest independent music publisher) and Pets at Home (a UK Fortune 500 company).
While at Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts, Vania was a member of the Private Equity team investing primarily in the Media and Entertainment sectors. Her first role was as an original founding member of the KKR Capital Markets business in Europe, and prior to leaving KKR, Vania was tasked with starting the Growth Equity division of the firm, focused on Tech and Media growth companies. Prior to KKR, Vania was a member of the Leveraged Finance and Capital Markets divisions in Los Angeles and London at Goldman Sachs. Vania is a graduate of UCLA, Summa Cum Laude, with a degree in Business Economics and Minor in Accounting.
Benjamin Kramer is Co-Head of the Media Finance group at leading entertainment and sports agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA). He has been deeply involved in the packaging, financing, and sale of over a hundred films, including WIND RIVER, I TONYA, AMERICAN HONEY, THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING MISSOURI, JOHN WICK, THE REVENANT, HACKSAW RIDGE, BIRDMAN, SICARIO, BROOKLYN, MUD, END OF WATCH, THE SESSIONS, BEGIN AGAIN, DUMB & DUMBER TO, BAD WORDS, and SING STREET among many others.
Ben began his career at the William Morris Agency. He joined CAA in 2005. In 2012, Kramer was named one of “Hollywood’s New Leaders” by Variety. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University, with degrees in Political Science and Film Studies.
Rena Ronson is Partner and Co- Head of the Independent Film Group at leading global talent and entertainment company United Talent Agency. One of the industry’s pre-eminent packaging and finance executives, Ronson specializes in global film finance, distribution and marketing strategies for independent and co-financed features, helping the world’s most acclaimed independent filmmakers see their work reach global audiences.
Ronson oversees a group of agents known for packaging and representing many high-profile and critically praised independently financed films from a diverse range of American and international filmmakers, including Greta Gerwig, Asghar Farhadi, Wes Anderson, Michael Showalter, Marielle Heller, Haifaa Al-Mansour, Noah Baumbach and Ted Melfi to name a few.
Throughout her career, Ronson has been involved in numerous productions and co-productions, packaging, structuring financing and selling his profile films, including Oscars-winning films, I, Tonya, Room and Icarus, and Oscar nominated films, Hidden Figures, The Big Sick, LadyBird, and Call Me By Your Name. She is also known for working with acclaimed filmmakers on their feature directorial debuts, including Greta Gerwig’s Ladybird, Scott Burns’ The Report, Haifaa Al Mansour's Wadjda, Don Cheadle’s Miles Ahead, Marielle Heller’s Diary of a Teenage Girl, Jill Soloway’s, Afternoon Delight, Jonas Cuaron’s Desierto, Crystal Moselle's Skate Kitchen, and Emerald Fennel’s upcoming Promising Young Woman.
Additionally, Ronson is a supporter of the growing documentary business and has expanded UTA’s reach exponentially. Ronson has been involved in several impactful documentaries including Bryan Fogel's ICARUS, Jon Chester’s critically-acclaimedThe Biggest Little Farm, Bonnie Cohen and Jon Shank’s Audrey & Daisy, and the upcoming Athlete A, and Amy Ziering and Kirby Dick’s docu-series, Toxic Laborwith Harpo and Apple.
Ronson is a perennial fixture on annual lists of the top women in filmmaking, including The Hollywood Reporter’s Women in Entertainment Power 100 and Variety’s Women’s Impact. She proudly serves on the board of directors of Women in Film and as an ambassador for its Reframe initiative. Ronson also is deeply involved in the Time’s Up movement that aims to elevate and empower women in the entertainment industry. In 2006, Ronson received “The Independent Hero Award” from the Creative Coalition and in 2008 was honored by WIF with its “Business Leadership Award.”
Thorsten Schumacher is the founder and CEO of Rocket Science, a filmed entertainment company engineered for production, finance, sales and distribution. Setting out to create a diverse range of quality content for global film and television audiences, Rocket Science is building a commercial slate boasting
unique global appeal across all of its platforms and disciplines.
Upcoming projects include Kristin Scott Thomas’s The Sea Change; Taika Waititi’s stop-motion filmBubbles; David Lowery’s Old Man and the Gun starring Robert Redford and CaseyAffleck; Dominic Cooke’s film adaption On Chesil Beach starring Saoirse Ronan; and
Juliet, Naked for Judd Apatow.
Previously Managing Director at Hanway Films, Schumacher represented titles including Shame, Quartet, A Dangerous Method, High Rise, Only Lovers Left
Alive, and most recently Brooklyn, Carol and Anomalisa, which earned 15
BAFTA, 10 Academy Award and 5 Golden Globe nominations between them.
Prior to Hanway Films, Schumacher worked in development at the Los Angeles offices of Intermedia Films. He began his career in film production, starting withRoger Corman’s Concorde-New Horizon Pictures in Los Angeles, and then worked on various independent features in New York City and at Wim Wender’s
company Road Movies in Berlin.
Schumacher holds two Master of Fine Arts degrees in producing from the Film School in Berlin Babelsberg and the American Film Institute Conservatory in Los
Rose Garnett is Director of BBC Films, the feature filmmaking arm of the BBC.
Rose is Executive Producer for BBC Films on titles including JUDY, directed by Rupert Goold and starring RenéeZellweger as the iconic Judy Garland; THE NEST, Sean Durkin’s highly anticipated second film starring Jude Law and Carrie Coon; THE POWER OF THE DOG, Jane Campion’s first feature film in ten years starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Elisabeth Moss; NEVER RARELY SOMETIMES ALWAYS, the third film from Eliza Hittman; AMMONITE from Francis Lee starring Kate Winslet and Saoirse Ronan; MONSOON from Hong Khaou starring Henry Golding; THE SOUVENIR directed by Joanna Hogg, which won the International Grand Jury Prize at Sundance Film Festival; and Jessica Hausner’s English-language debut, LITTLE JOE which premiered in Competition at Cannes in 2019.
After graduating from Cambridge University, Rose’s first job in 1993 was as the producer of Talking Tongues Theatre Company with David Farr, Rachel Weisz and Sasha Hails. She and Farr then took over the Gate Theatre in Notting Hill where they commissioned and worked with many writers and directors including Lee Hall, Tracy Letts, Dominic Cook and Sarah Kane. Rose has worked as a script editor and producer, with her credits including Darren Aronofsky's BLACK SWAN (Associate Producer) and Katrina Boorman's ME AND ME DAD (Executive Producer).
Rose Garnett joined the BBC in 2017 from Film4 where she was Head of Creative. Whilst there, Rose developed and executive produced an array of recent successful UK films. Her credits as Executive Producer while at Film4 include Yorgos Lanthimos’s THE FAVOURITE, Martin McDonagh’s THREE BILLBOARDS OUTSIDE EBBING MISSOURI, Steve McQueen’s WIDOWS, Lenny Abrahamson's ROOM and Andrea Arnold's AMERICAN HONEY.
Robert Lazar began his career in 1999 at International Creative Management (ICM) where he spent fourteen years as a television and motion picture literary agent. Five years ago he left agenting to become a literary manager and two years ago he co-founded his own company, Marathon Management, where he continues representing writers and directors in film and television. Robert holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of California, San Diego and a Juris Doctorate from Loyola Law School, Los Angeles. He is a member of the California Bar. He lives in Los Angeles.
Whitney Sudler-Smith is the Creator, Executive Producer, and star of the hit Southern Charm show on Bravo Network. In addition to the original “Southern Charm”, Whitney also created and produces “Southern Charm: New Orleans”, and is an Executive Producer on “Southern Charm: Savannah”. The show has spawned many spin-offs and is a growing franchise for Bravo. In 2010, Sudler-Smith directed the documentary “Ultrasuede: In Search of Halston” about Halston, the famous designer who first put American fashion on the map. It premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and was subsequently bought by Showtime. Sudler-Smith is also a screenwriter and a classically trained guitarist. He lives between Los Angeles and Charleston, South Carolina.
Born in Basel, Sigrid Narjes attended the European School in Brussels and received her A- Levels in Kiel. In 1984, after finishing her studies of psycho-linguistics, phonetic and American cultural history with a Master of Arts degree at Ludwig-Maximilians-University of Munich, she became a production assistant first at Starfilm later at M+P Film Production in Munich. In 1986 Munich’s Filmfest hired her for the newly founded „Film Exchange Program“ with the main focus on organizing high class events with members of the international film business.
In 1988 Sigrid Narjes founded INTERNATIONAL MEDIA CONSULTING, a company whose original goal was to develop international financing for film and television ventures. The main direction of the business soon shifted to agency activities. From the beginning the company represented not only actors, but also directors and writers. From 1990 to 1994 Sigrid Narjes’company was in partnership with the Los Angeles based talent agency International Creative Management (ICM).
As a result of its growing German and international client list, the company changed its legal status to GmbH and its name to ABOVE THE LINE with Sigrid Narjes as managing director and it became one of the top agencies in Germany that represents actors, directors, writers and directors of photography. In 2001 the agency expanded and opened another office in Berlin and represents today around 240 clients in their dealings with German and international studios or production companies.
Brazilian born producer Rodrigo Teixeira is the founder of RT Features, an international production company focusing on Film and TV. Over the last ten years, RT Features has produced films such as, Noah Baumbach's Frances Ha (2013) and Mistress America (2015), Ira Sach's Love is Strange (2014), Gaspar Noe's Love (2015), Robert Egger's The Witch (2016), Geremy Jasper's Patti Cake$ (2017) and Luca Guadagnino's Call Me By Your Name (2017), which was nominated for four Oscars, winning Best Adapted Screenplay.
This past year, RT Features, premiered three features at Cannes Film Festival: Danielle Lessovitz's debut movie Port Authority, Karim Ainouz' The Invisible Life of Eurídice Gusmão (winner of the Un Certain Regard prize) and Robert Eggers' The Lighthouse, winner of the Critics Prize (FIPRESCI) in directors fortnight.
John Lesher is the founder and President of Le Grisbi Productions, an independent film and television production company. Currently, Lesher is producing MONA LISA AND THE BLOOD MOON, written and directed by Ana Lily Amirpour, starring Kate Hudson, Craig Robinson, Ed Skrein and Jeon Jong Seo. This year, Lesher produced THE BEACH BUM, directed by Harmony Korine, starring Matthew McConaughey, Isla Fisher, Snoop Dogg, Jonah Hill, Zac Efron, and Martin Lawrence. In 2015, he won an Academy Award for Best Motion Picture of the Year for producing BIRDMAN. He produced WHITE BOY RICK, directed by Yann Demange and starring Matthew McConaughey; HOSTILES, directed by Scott Cooper, starring Christian Bale and Rosamund Pike; BLACK MASS directed by Scott Cooper, starring Johnny Depp; FURY written and directed by David Ayer, starring Brad Pitt and Shia LaBeouf; END OF WATCH, written and directed by David Ayer, starring Jake Gyllenhaal.
Lesher is a graduate of Harvard University and has over 30 years of industry experience. He was a partner at United Talent Agency, followed by the Endeavor Agency. After leaving representation, he formed Paramount Vantage responsible for films such as BABEL, AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH, THERE WILL BE BLOOD, and NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN.
Greg Shapiro is the Academy Award®-winning producer of The Hurt Locker, directed by Kathryn Bigelow, which received a total of six Oscars® including Best Picture. Shapiro was also executive producer on Bigelow’s Zero Dark Thirty, which received five Academy Award® nominations, and Detroit, directed by Bigelow, written by Mark Boal, and released by Annapurna in August 2017.
Recent films include Serenity, written and directed by Steven Knight, starring Matthew McConaughey, Anne Hathaway, Jason Clarke, Diane Lane, and Djimon Honsou, and The Rhythm Section, directed by Reed Morano and starring Blake Lively and Jude Law, and The Professor directed by Wayne Roberts, starring Johnny Depp, Zoey Deutsch and Danny Huston.
Upcoming films include Voyagers, written and directed by Neil Burger, and starring Colin Farrell, Tye Sheridan and Lily Rose Depp. Also Breaking New in Yuba County, directed by Tate Taylor and starring Allison Janney, and The Secrets We Keep, directed by Yuval Adler and starring Noomi Rapace and Joel Kinnaman.
Shapiro also produced James Gray’s The Immigrant, starring Marion Cotillard, Joaquin Phoenix and Jeremy Renner, which premiered at the 66th Annual Cannes Film Festival as part of the official competition and was released by The Weinstein Company in 2014. His other producing credits include Child 44 directed by Daniel Espinosa; The Conspirator, directed by Robert Redford; The Rules of Attraction directed by Roger Avary; and the popular Harold & Kumar franchise.
For television, Shapiro was the Executive Producer of “Graves,” a 10-episode, half-hour political satire produced by Lionsgate TV and Epic. “Graves”, which ran for two seasons, premiered in the fall of 2016 and promptly earned star Nick Nolte a Golden Globe® nomination for his role as ex-President Richard Graves.
Maren Olson is an Agent in the Media Finance department at leading entertainment and sports agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA). Olson works in the Los Angeles office and specializes in feature film packaging and arranging financing for content across all media formats.
Olson joined CAA in 2015 from Traction Media, an independent film production company, where she served as President and oversaw the creative development, packaging, production, financing, and sales of films on the Traction Media slate, including SHORT TERM 12, which won both the Grand Jury Prize and Audience Award at SXSW, and THE WANNABE, starring Academy Award-winner Patricia Arquette.
Olson graduated from University of Southern California with a degree in Film and Television Production.Read More
After attending law school, Malte Grunert began working in the industry by producing documentaries. For several years he produced television at various companies including Bavaria Film and CLT UFA. From 2006 until 2009 he was the head of the feature division at Studio Hamburg before founding Amusement Park Film in 2009.
Originally focused on international theatrical arthouse the company has to date produced several award-winning feature films, collaborating with some of the most acclaimed talent in the industry such as Anton Corbijn, David Mackenzie, Mike Leigh, Martin Zandvliet and Julie Delpy.
2011 Malte Grunert coproduced PERFECT SENSE, starring Ewan McGregor and Eva Green, directed by David Mackenzie, in 2014 he produced A MOST WANTED MAN, based on the John le Carré novel and directed by Anton Corbijn. It stars Philip Seymour Hoffman, Willem Dafoe and Rachel McAdams in the lead roles. He also co-produced MR TURNER by Mike Leigh. The film premiered in competition for the Palme d'Or at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival. In 2015, he produced the British/German production REMAINDER and the Danish/German coproduction LAND OF MINE, which premiered in Toronto in 2015 and was nominated for a foreign language Academy Award in 2017. THE AFTERMATH a German/UK co-production with Fox Searchlight and Scott Free Productions, starring Keira Knightley, Alexander Skarsgård, and Jason Clarke was release in April 2019. MY ZOE, a film written and directed by Julie Delpy who also stars alongside Richard Armitage, Daniel Brühl and Gemma Arterton, premiered at Toronto International Film Festival in 2019 scheduled for release later in 2019.
In 2015 Daniel Brühl (THE ALIENIST, CAPTAIN AMERICA – CIVIL WAR, RUSH) joined AMUSEMENT PARK as a partner with the aim to further grow the company’s slate of projects. In 2018 Amelie von Kienlin, who had been previously responsible for the scripted department at Red Arrow Studios International in London, joined the company to focus on building up Amusement Park’s TV Slate.
The company’s key activity is the development, financing and production of high-end national and international arthouse films and television series with the aim to provide a home for outstanding national and international talent.
The current development slate includes the directorial debut feature of Daniel Brühl, based on an original script by bestselling author Daniel Kehlmann, a remake of French film classic LES AVENTURIERS with director Edward Berger and writer Gregory Burke, a serial adaptation of cult graphic novel BERLINOIR, a serial adaptation of THE TIN DRUM by Günter Grass and a political thriller series with Israeli writer Michal Aviram.