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Marc Allenby
Director of Distribution, Picturehouse Entertainment
Marc AllebyMarc is Director of Distribution at Picturehouse Entertainment, a major focus of which is the acquisition and distribution of ‘Alternative Content’. Marc has helped broker deals that introduced the Met Opera, Bolshoi Ballet, Glyndebourne and National Theatre to UK cinema audiences, along with one off events such as Dr Who: Day of the Doctor, Stephen Fry, David Bowie is happening now and Leonardo Live from the National Gallery. Most recently securing global distribution for the Royal Shakespeare Company and Monty Python Live (mostly).

Jay Arnold
Jay worked at Sheffield’s independent cinema The Showroom from its opening in 1995 until 2003. He then joined the newly formed Regional Screen Agency Screen Yorkshire working with the region’s cinemas, film educationalists, film archives and film festivals. As national structures were re-organised in 2011 he became Head of Film Culture with Creative England then, until October 2014, Senior Manager UK Wide at BFI Partnerships.


Simon Bateson
Artistic Director, Take One Action
Take One Action Film Festival.Simon Bateson is Artistic Director at Take One Action Film Festivals, the UK’s leading international social change film festival and hub. He has worked across media, film, international development and community empowerment, with the British Museum, VSO and the World Development Movement from Scotland to Sierra Leone. Simon founded Take One Action in 2008 to celebrate “the people and movies that are changing the world”.

Joeli Brearley
Project Manager, Future Everything
joeli brearleyJoeli is Project Manager at FutureEverything and Director of CultureCode. She is a creative producer, project manager and innovation specialist based in Manchester. She is interested in art, culture and technology; and in particular that wonderful place where all three meet. Recent projects include: researching and producing a publication on hacking models for the UK cultural sector, managing ArtsAPI – A Digital R&D big data project, developing prototype start ups for cultural organisations in Zimbabwe and producing a touring programme of digital art around shopping centres in the UK.

Joeli spent 7 years working in the arts before making the transition to the digital sector. She now dedicates her time to projects which combine the two. Her knowledge of both communities led her to establish the CultureCode Initiative, an organisation which develops long lasting sustainable relationships between cultural professionals, artists, computer programmers and creative technologists through rapid prototyping, disruptive innovation and open data.

FutureEverything is an award-winning innovation lab for digital culture and annual festival. For almost 20 years FutureEverything has been exploring the meeting point of technology, society and culture which lies at the heart of the digital debate. Through a community network and regular events it makes connections between thinkers, developers, coders, artists, designers, urbanists and policy makers – inspiring them to experiment and to collaborate in new ways.


Jacqueline Chell
Operations and Development Manager, Cinema For All

JAQ CHELL Jaq has worked for Cinema For All (formerly known as the British Federation of Film Societies) for over 6 years – supporting, encouraging and championing the activity of film societies and community cinemas across the UK. She is a key figure in the film society movement, helping to shape a sustainable sector and grow the profile of volunteer-led cinema. Previously, she has worked for Showroom Cinema and Sensoria Film and Music Festival. In her spare time she writes film content for Sheffield website Our Favourite Places, is an avid gamer and dreams about living in Copenhagen.


Cinema Nation
Philip Foxwood, Michael Pierce
@cinemanation / @_foxwood
Michael PiercePhilip Wood picCinema Nation is a London-based research and development agency that encourages and champions all forms of film exhibition. Founded by Michael Pierce and Philip Foxwood in 2013, the community interest company delivers projects that will support film exhibitors and their audiences, and develop cross network opportunities for collaboration. Alongside a monthly radio show on Resonance 104.4fm, Cinema Nation’s projects have included research for the BFI and Film Hub South East, network support for the Gothic blockbuster season and four editions of the Scalarama initiative across the UK, uniting over 300 exhibitors in annual celebration of cinema each September. Phil previously worked in independent film production and a year in marketing at LABAN dance conservatoire in Deptford, before co-founding the unique cinema / bar Roxy Bar & Screen in London Bridge. Named as one of the top five cinemas in London by Time Out, Phil programmed and ran the venue for seven years until its sale in 2013 and was runner-up in the British Council Young Screen Entrepreneur Award in 2011. Michael worked for the BFI London Film Festival and Phoenix Cinema as skills development coordinator and projectionist respectively, before joining Curzon Artificial Eye’s cinema team. Over 3 years, Michael worked in Events, Marketing and Publicity before project managing the Curzon Home Cinema initiative. After completing an MA in Film Curating in 2011, Michael then worked with Phil on the first Scala season, before co-founding Cinema Nation together.


Sam Cuthbert
Cinema Manager, Hackney Picturehouse
@offthecuth / @hackneyPH

Sam CuthbertSam Cuthbert is a projectionist and cinema manager at the Hackney Picturehouse in London. He also freelance programmes music and film events across the city, plus co-directs the worlds only film festival dedicated to Parker Posey.



Lara Devitt
Relationship Manager, Arts Council England
Lara Devitt
Lara has been a Relationship Manager at Arts Council England since 2010, firstly as a Digital and Creative Economy specialist and more recently as part of the Creative Media Team, working across the greater north. During this time she has worked on national initiatives including The Space (in partnership with the BBC) and the R&D Fund for Innovation (with Nesta and the AHRC). She also works with a diverse portfolio of organisations across visual and combined arts.


Cherie Federico
Director, Aesthetica Short Film Festival
Cherie FedericoCherie Federico is the Director of the Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF) and Aesthetica Magazine. The BAFTA Qualifying ASFF: Aesthetica Short Film Festival is a celebration of independent film from across the world, and an outlet for supporting and championing short filmmaking. One of the UK’s most exciting site-specific events, ASFF invites audiences to create their own unique viewing experience moving between medieval halls, galleries, museums and cinemas. The festival’s fifth edition will take place in 15 iconic venues across the historic city of York from 5 – 8 November 2015. http://www.asff.co.uk


Dr David Forrest
University of Sheffield
DrDavidForrestI came to Sheffield in 2002 to study as an undergraduate, and stayed on to do an MA in International Cinema and a PhD in British social realism. After finishing my PhD in 2009, I took a variety of teaching, research and public engagement roles in the School of English before being appointed Lecturer in Film Studies in September 2012. My main research area is British social realist cinema, with a particular interest in the functions of space, place and landscape in realist texts. I have also published work on British television drama, the British New Wave and contemporary British cinema.

In addition, I am particularly interested in developing forms of socially engaged approaches to research and teaching in film studies. Along with my colleague, Dr Jonathan Rayner, I developed the ‘Sheffield Film Studies and Sheffield Studies Film’ project, which involved local school children in analysing visual representations of Sheffield, before creating their own films of their lives in the city: http://www.storyingsheffield.com/project/sheffield-film-studies-sheffield-studies-film/

My work is currently focussed on the film and television writer and novelist Barry Hines, perhaps best known of the novel A Kestrel for a Knave (1968) and the TV play Threads (1984). Together with Professor Sue Vice, I am developing and delivering a number of research and public engagement projects around Hines and working-class film, television and literature more broadly.

I am also undertaking a number of projects on the representation of the North of England in film and television drama, exploring in particular questions of genre, stardom and authorship.


Emma Keith
Producer, National Theatre Live
Emma Keith
Emma Keith is Producer of National Theatre Live where she oversees the ground-breaking initiative to broadcast plays live from the National Theatre to cinemas worldwide, leading on the strategic and operational requirements of the broadcasts. The programme was launched in June 2009 and has reached a global audience of more than 2.5 million people in over 35 countries. Most recently Emma has led on the world’s first live broadcast of a theatre production in 4K (Ultra HD) to cinemas, pushing the technological boundaries of live broadcast.

National Theatre Live forms part of the NT’s Broadcast & Digital department which are also responsible for producing digital content covering all aspects of producing theatre and the craft of theatre-making, website development and digital engagement.

Having trained in Dance Emma worked at Arts Council England and in Government Relations at the UK Film Council before returning to education and completing a Masters Degree in Digital Culture and Technology at Kings College London.

Bill Lawrence
Executive Director, Reel Solutions

Bill Lawrence
Bill set up Reel Solutions in 2006 to pursue his passion for supporting all forms of cinema. He was Creative Director at Showroom Cinema, Sheffield, one of the UK’s leading independent cinemas, and Head of Film at the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television (later the National Media Museum), Bradford. He set up three of the city’s film festivals – Bradford International Film Festival, Bite the Mango Film Festival and Bradford Animation Festival. In 2006 Bill was one of the key people to set up the partnership board of Bradford: City of Film and was involved closely in achieving the UNESCO designation in 2009. Bill is chair of All Animated Limited and is a director on the Board of Creative England and previously Screen Yorkshire.


Sam Meech

@videosmithery / @ScreeningFilm
Sam Meech BW
Sam Meech is and artist and videosmith working with communities to explore differnet approaches to grass roots film exhibition through the Small Cinema project. He is also the founder of Screening Film.com, a website that helps to map and promote independent film events across the UK. Thanks to his older brothers, as a child he was exposed to repeated viewings of An American Werewolf in London and A Nightmare on Elm St, yet his first proper cinema experience was seeing the terrifying The Little Mermaid at the Canon Cinema in Huddersfield, scarring him for life.


Andrew Partridge
Anime Limited
@liceas / @AllTheAnime / @lovesanimation
ANDREWAndrew has worked in Japanese animation for 10 years, film festival director for 5 years of that and has launched or consulted on the launch of more than his share of VOD platforms for anime. He finally founded Anime Limited in 2013 with the goal of doing interesting things with anime film and television across homevideo, theatrical and crowdfunding. To make him resemble a human being, just add coffee.


Ben Roberts
Director, BFI Film Fund
Ben robertsBen Roberts is the Director of the BFI Film Fund, the UK’s largest public film fund. He is responsible for overseeing the BFI’s wide-ranging support for talent development, feature film development and production, and international activity.

He has 15 years film industry experience across international sales, studio acquisitions, UK distribution and film finance gained from his time as CEO of Protagonist Pictures since 2007, and before that at Universal Pictures International and the independent UK distributor Metrodome.


Selina Robertson
Programming Officer, Independent Cinema Office
selina robertson
Selina has worked for over 15 years in the film industry. She earned her stripes at the BFI in the mid 1990’s working in production, sales and eventually ending up where her heart lies in film programming. From 2003-2005 she co-programmed the BFI London Lesbian & Gay Film Festival. In 2005 she became a freelance film programmer and writer, curating queer film programmes in the UK and at international film festivals. The same year she enjoyed her first sojourn at the ICO, and was inspired to co-found Club des Femmes, a queer-feminist film club and network. She moved to Berlin in 2007, she became head programmer at Britspotting, British and Irish Film Festival until 2010 and then joined the Soho House Group in 2010, setting up and programming the members’ cinema. After completing her MA in Film & Visual Media at Birkbeck University in 2011, she started back at the ICO in May 2013.


John Wyver
Director, Screen Productions, Royal Shakespeare Company

John WyverJohn Wyver is a writer and producer with Illuminations. He is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Westminster and Director, Screen Productions for the Royal Shakespeare Company. He has produced and directed numerous performance films and documentaries about the arts, and his work has been honoured with a BAFTA, an International Emmy and a Peabody Award.

John is the producer of the RSC’s Live from Stratford-upon-Avon cinema broadcasts, including Richard II in November 2013, Henry IV Part 1 and Part 2 in May and June, and The Two Gentlemen of Verona in September 2014. He is also advising the RSC on their broadcasting strategy, and produced three performance films for television with the company: Macbeth (2000), Hamlet (2009), and Julius Caesar (2012). He also produced Gloriana, a Film (1999), directed by Macbeth (2010) with Patrick Stewart, directed by Rupert Goold.

At the University of Westminster he is Principal Investigator on the AHRC-funded research project Screen Plays: Theatre Plays on British Television (2011-15), which is documenting all television broadcasts of plays originally written for the theatre. He is the author of the book Vision On: Film, Television and the Arts in Britain (2007), and he has written extensively on the history of documentary film, early television and digital culture. He also blogs regularly at the Illuminations website (www.illuminationsmedia.co.uk) and he tweets as @Illuminations.