2024 Getting Real

Worth Our Weight in Gold: Identifying Value in your Production

Expired May 15, 2024 10:30 PM
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Although it can be challenging for creators to earn revenue from our projects and sustain our careers, there are a growing number of ways that filmmakers are doing so. These strategies involve thinking about packaging our films to setting up co-productions, from remake rights to diversified revenue sources related to our projects. This session will include a quick scan of impact campaign planning, story rights, options, remakes, setting up production companies and co-production agreements, and how these experienced producers and industry players plan for the distribution path of documentary content from the earliest stages. And most importantly, we will discuss what it means to put all of this in place in a way that aligns with our values—because the act of telling the stories of real people is invaluable.

Moderator: Zeynep Güzel (Berlinale Talents Doc Station)

Panelists: Tabs Breese (Naked Gardens, Mija), Chris Perez (Donaldson Califf Perez), Lexy Altman (Condé Nast), and Asmae El Moudir (The Mother of All Lies)

Biographies (submitted by the speakers):

Zeynep Güzel is a Berlin-based filmmaker, consultant, and the head of Doc Station at the Berlinale Talents in Berlin International Film Festival. Zeynep written, directed, filmed and produced the feature length documentary Come Rain or Shine (2019) and is currently working on her feature fiction film When The Sun Comes Out (Berlin Artist in Residency at Nipkow Program, 2021 funded by the German-Turkish co-production development fund. As former head of the Yeni Film Fund in Turkey and senior consultant to the Documentary Association of Europe, Zeynep has many years of experience working with emerging and established creatives, helping them explore their artistic vision and supporting them with her knowledge of international documentary film industry and a global network of like-minded professionals. Zeynep is a board member of Documentary Film Council, UK and programming consultant at International Documentary Association, USA. 

Tabs Breese is an LA-based producer from London. She began her career working in-house in documentary development for production companies Pulse Films and Concordia Studio. Recent films include Isabel Castro’s ‘Mija’ (Sundance 2022) and Ivete Lucas and Patrick Bresnan’s ‘Naked Gardens’ (IDFA, Tribeca 2022). Films in post include Rajee Samarasinghe’s ‘Your Touch Makes Others Invisible’ supported by Sundance Institute and Field of Vision. Through her company Miriam, her shorts include Zara Meerza’s ‘The Twins’ (streaming on WeTransfer) Tajana Tokyo’s ‘Salone Love’ (Sundance 2024) and Miles Blackett’s ‘Pamilya’ (SXSW 2024). Tabs is a twice Sundance Institute Grantee, a Sheffield Doc Fest Future Producer (2017), an IDFAcademy Producer School Alumna (2017) and a Refinery29 x Google News Initiative Fellow (2019). She was selected for the Doc NYC ‘40 Under 40’ list in 2022, the Berlinale Talents program in 2022 and the IFFR Rotterdam Producer Lab in 2023. She is a member of the DPA.

Chris Perez specializes in all aspects of the firm’s practice, including representing independent filmmakers through development, financing, production, rights clearance and distribution. He has helped hundreds of productions secure the E&O insurance necessary to distribute their films and has established himself as an advocate for artists’ rights. In addition to representing filmmakers, Chris serves as counsel to writers, podcast producers, radio personalities, museums and foundations, as well as Film Independent, which produces the Spirit Awards and supports independent filmmakers around the world. He earned his Juris Doctorate at the USC Gould School of Law. Prior to working with Donaldson Callif Perez, Chris worked for California Lawyers for the Arts, Technicolor, and the Cyberlaw Clinic at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School. Chris also sits on the Board of Directors for the International Documentary Association.

Asmae El Moudir is a Moroccan film director, screenwriter. She went on to study at LA FEMIS in Paris.. Asmae has directed several award winning short films. The mother of all lies is her first independent documentary feature. It premiered at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival where it won the Directing Prize in the Un Certain Regard section as well as the Golden Eye for Best Documentary. The Mother of All Lies was also shortlisted in the International features section of the Oscars and screened at TIFF, Sundance, Asmae was nominated for the PGA Award and the Film Independent Spirit Award for Best Doc. Most recently, she won the IDA Award for Best Director.

Lexy Altman currently serves as the Senior Director of Development (Non-Fiction TV and Documentaries) at Condé Nast Entertainment (CNE) in Los Angeles. At CNE, Lexy is responsible for developing and producing non-fiction programming based on intellectual property from renowned brands such as The New Yorker, Vogue, GQ, WIRED, and Vanity Fair. Her most recent projects include serving as an Executive Producer on upcoming limited series Breath of Fire (Max), Pathological: Chasing True Crime Conman (Nat Geo), as well as Last Chance U: Basketball (Netflix), and Most Expensivest (Vice). Prior to CNE, Lexy honed her craft in both non-fiction casting and scripted development. Under the mentorship of esteemed producer Lucy Fisher and director Garry Marshall, she garnered invaluable experience that laid the foundation for her career at CNE.