Industry Networking Sessions 2021

It all starts with a conversation.

ASFF’s Networking Sessions and Industry Workshops provided an opportunity to interact with representatives from some of the leading arts & film organisations, productions companies, sales & distribution specialists and exhibitors. In 2021, we welcomed a fantastic array of guests from across the sector to provide opportunities to connect with filmmakers. This was the perfect chance to make new connections, discuss ideas and get inspired for your next project.


2021 Networking Sessions

Industry Networking Delegates 2021

Kevin Gash
Senior Lecturer in Film & TV
York St John University

Talent Development

An eternal student of film, Kevin Gash is a senior lecturer in Film and TV Production at York St John University where he has been nurturing the development of young filmmakers for over a decade. The course empowers students to learn techniques and create films and TV programmes that cut through the noise, kickstarting careers in film and TV.

Dave Garratt
Programme Manager
Square Chapel Arts Centre

Film Exhibition

Dave Garratt has worked in cinema and event programming and management for the last decade and is currently the Film and Special Events Programme Manager at the not-for-profit multi-arts centre Square Chapel (Halifax) and The Old Courts (Wigan). These are places where people, ideas, creativity, conversation and stories come together.

Yu-Lun Sung
London South Bank University


Yu-Lun Sung is a cinematographer who also teaches at London South Bank University. In addition to his ongoing work on film projects, he dedicates his time to research on diversity issues, such as decolonisation and neurodivergence. He is passionate about facilitating cross-sector conversations. Discuss these ideas with Yu-Lun at ASFF 2021.

Anna MacDonald
Joint Principal & Founder
London Film Academy

Talent Development

Anna MacDonald co-founded the London Film Academy in 2001 and has led the LFA as joint principal for the past two decades. She is dedicated to inspiring and nurturing new generations of filmmakers, by providing a pioneering environment and innovative teaching methods. Anna is also the mastermind behind many special events.

Charles Cecil
Revolution Software

Interactive Entertainment

Charles Cecil MBE has been a key figure in the interactive entertainment industry for 40 years. Founder of Revolution Software, Charles created the multi-million selling Broken Sword series which is one of the world’s most successful adventure franchises. Charles was awarded the status of ‘industry legend’ by Develop, Europe’s leading development magazine.

Christine Morrow
Emerging Talent Executive
Northern Ireland Screen

Talent Development

Christine Morrow is the New and Emerging Talent Executive at Northern Ireland Screen. She has worked in the film and television industry since 2003. She began her career working as a Development Assistant in BBC Northern Ireland Drama department. She also works across industry sectors including short animation, factual, fiction and interactive.

Anson Hartford
Banyak Films

Direction and Production

Anson Hartford is a filmmaker whose credits include the feature films Maya and Ping Pong. He’s had films released in cinemas and at festivals worldwide. He co-founded Banyak Films in 2007 and has produced and directed documentaries for the BBC, Channel 4, Sky Arts, Al Jazeera, and commercials for The North Face, Facebook and HSBC.

Carlos Saiani
Managing Director
Rampage Studio

Film and TV Production

Carlos Saiani is the Managing Director of Rampage Studio. Since forming the company 14 years ago, he has been involved in the production of over 60 hours of factual television, documentaries and hundreds short form videos for online use. Connect with Carlos at ASFF 2021 to discover top tips on all things film and television production.

Dr David Chapman
Course Leader
University of East London

Film Production and Media

Dr David Chapman is Course Leader for MA Filmmaking at the University of East London. He teaches film production and film history at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. David is also a media practitioner and researcher with a particular interest in sound and image interaction. He creates documentary films and multichannel work.

Craig McNeil
Director of Creative Projects
Beggars Group


Craig McNeil is Director of Creative Projects at the Beggars Group of Labels, which comprises XL Recordings, Rough Trade, Young, 4AD and Matador Records. In his role, McNeil wears many hats – TV promotions, content creation and project management for The Beggars Arkive, which is the company’s catalogue department.

Sven Pötting
Programme Coordinator

Film Festivals

Sven Pötting studied theatre, film and television studies in Cologne and Málaga and then worked for various universities and film festivals as a distributor and curator. Since 2017 he has been working as a programme coordinator at FILMFEST DRESDEN. Since 2018, he has also been co-director of Latin American Film Festival Munich (LAFITA).

Christine Hogan
Inward Investment Executive
Make it York

Cultural Development

Christine Hogan promotes York as a business location and provides practical support to make a smooth transition to the city, for example initial fact finding, identification of commercial premises and connections to talent and networks. With a background in publishing, Christine has a keen interest in communication of all kinds and formats.

Ludovica Tisi
Festival Coordinator

Film Festivals

Ludovica is the Festival Coordinator of the 17th edition of ECU – The European Independent Film Festival, which will be held in April 2022 in Paris, France. She also works in Europe as a Production Assistant for film and television with companies like Discovery and CBS. Speak to Ludovica to learn what it’s like to coordinate such an event.

Richard Melman
Managing Director
Spring Films


Richard Melman is a former cameraman turned Emmy, Peabody, RTS and Grierson award winning Producer. He has produced, directed or commissioned many hundreds of programmes, including the multi-award winning ‘Prison’ series for C4 and three films with Werner Herzog. He is now the Executive Producer and Managing Director for Spring Films.

Jo Nolan
Managing Director
Screen South

Talent Development

Jo Nolan is Managing Director at Screen South, a cultural development organisation with digital creativity at its heart. Bringing hidden stories and ideas to the public, it works with a range of new talent from around the world, championing new voices. Screen South works with partners across a range of digital and creative projects in arts, heritage and screen.

Jo Schofield
The Film and Television Charity
Screen Yorkshire

Talent Development

Jo Schofield has worked as a storyliner, senior digital producer and script editor across some of the UK’s best loved TV. In recent years, Jo has worked on Emmerdale and Coronation Street. Currently, Jo holds positions as Community Development Lead at The Film and Television Charity, and as Talent Development Manager at Screen Yorkshire.

John Grieve
Manchester Film Weekender

Film Festivals

Manchester Film Weekender is a not-for-profit organisation which curates an annual film season and weekend film festival of foreign language films. Previous festivals have spotlighted the cinema of Italy, Latin America, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Scandinavia and Japan. The upcoming season is Discovering German Cinema, and the 2022 festival is Russian cinema.

Mikey Murray
Indie-Lincs International
Film Festival

Production and Programming

Mikey is an award-winning filmmaker and was the recipient of the Scottish BAFTA award for Best First Time Writer in 2007. Mikey also a PhD in Film Practice and is a programme leader for BA Film Production at the University of Lincoln. He has previously programmed for Slamdance and is the director of the Indie-Lincs International Film Festival.

Nick Sadler
First Flights Media

Feature Film Production

Nick Sadler is the founder of First Flights Media, the first-time feature film director program for Goldfinch Studios. Originally from the music industry, Nick co-founded the The Film Label, where he worked on bringing independent feature films to UK theatres. He is Executive Producer across all films produced through the First Flights Short Film Fund.

Noé Mendelle
Scottish Doc Institute

Documentary Production

Noé is an experienced director and producer on the international scene, working on numerous documentaries. In 2003 she set up the Scottish Documentary Institute and, over the years, has devised several award-winning talent schemes. She has worked on numerous award-winning documentaries for festival and broadcast (Channel 4, BBC and more).

Rebecca Mark-Lawson
Tyke Films


Rebecca Mark-Lawson runs award-winning Tyke Films, producing work with original voices, exploring the intersection between documentary and fiction. Their documentary Irene’s Ghost was listed as one of The Guardian’s Best Films of 2019. She has executive produced award winning documentary and fiction for Film4, Channel 4, BFI and BBC Films.

Sydney Neter
SND Films

Production and Sales

Sydney Neter started out as a production assistant for features and commercials in Amsterdam. In 1994, he founded the international boutique sales agency SND Films, selling award winning international short films, TV movies and documentaries – including Oscar-shortlisted animation. They are now celebrating 27 years of connecting films and people.

Jessica Bugg
London College of Fashion

Fashion Film

Dr Jessica Bugg is Dean of the School of Media and Communication, London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London and was awarded a PhD from the same institution in 2006. Jessica’s work has been screened in venues including the ICA. She is a leader in her field and holds positions on editorial boards and committees whilst being published extensively.

Deborah Parker
Cinema For All


Starting her film career at short film festivals before moving on to head up investment in film culture in Northwest England, Deborah Parker has been the CEO of Cinema For All, the national support and development organisation for community-led cinema, since 2012. Deborah’s key areas are development, partnerships and fundraising.

Dionne Farrell
Development Executive
BBC Film


Dionne Farrell is a Development Executive at BBC Film, the feature filmmaking arm of the BBC, where she has worked across films including Rapman’s Blue Story, Francis Lee’s Ammonite, and Akinola Davies’ debut narrative short, Lizard. She began her career as an office runner before moving into script development as BFI’s Script Editor Trainee.

Hesham Sabry
BFI Young Audiences
Content Fund


Hesham Sabry handles all legal and business affairs matters relating to the Young Audiences Content Fund. Before joining BFI, he worked at the BBC as an in-house lawyer in the BBC Children’s commercial, rights and business affairs team. He headed thandling and acquisition, providing legal support to in-house titles including Blue Peter.

Ben Mallaby


Ben Mallaby is a comedy director. He was nominated for the BAFTA for Best British Short Film with Island Queen. He is represented for TV and Film with Casarotto and for commercials with Merman. Most recently, he has completed the pilot Please Help for BBC Three. He has also directed shows for ITV2 and Comedy Central, and has over a million Vimeo views.

Charlie Phillips
Head of Video
The Guardian


Charlie Phillips is the Head of Video at The Guardian, overseeing all moving image for the Guardian’s platforms, including news, sport, and culture as well as documentaries. Films in the documentary strand have been multi award-winning. In 2021, a Guardian film took away an Oscar. Charlie was previously Deputy Director at Sheffield Doc/Fest for seven years.

Anna Hintzen
Development Executive, Studiocanal


Anna Hintzen is a Development Executive at Studiocanal UK. As the premier European Studio, Studiocanal works with new and established talent, focusing on local British feature films as well as exciting projects with European DNA for a global audience. Recent productions include The Secret Garden, Paddington 2, Yardie and Radioactive.

Rebekah Louisa Smith
The Film Festival Doctor

Film Festival Strategy

Dr. Rebekah Louisa Smith is the CEO and Founder of the Film Festival Doctor, which has nurtured filmmakers for the past decade, providing submissions advice and strategy, securing screenings at renowned festivals and helping filmmakers to win over 1,000 awards at Locarno, Tribeca, Aesthetica, Sundance and London Film Festival.

Roxy McKenna
Talent Executive

Film Funding and Development

Roxy McKenna is one of two BFI NETWORK Talent Executives working across the North of England to fund and develop early career writers, directors and producers. Based in Newcastle, Roxy joined Film Hub North after working across talent and audience development at Northern Film and Media over the last 12 years. She has commissioned over 30 shorts.

Isabelle Croissant
Talent Development Manager

Talent Development

Isabelle works at HOME, Manchester’s multi arts venue. She programmes and produces events and schemes that aim to showcase and develop creative talents and forge connection between practitioners in all creative sectors. She manages Filmed Up, HOME’s regular regional short film night and was the co-director of Exposures UK student Film Festival.

Richard Knight
Production Liaison
Screen Yorkshire

Location, Logistics and Opportunities

Richard is a Location Manager who has worked on This is England, This is England 86, 88 and 90, The Virtues and Four Lions. He has a wealth of experience in helping to deliver productions outside of the studio environment. He is also the Production Liaison for Screen Yorkshire, championing the film, TV, games and digital industries.

Directors Notes

Online Curation and Exhibition

MarBelle is the Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of independent film curation and interview site Directors Notes. Directors Notes is an online exhibition platform, featuring outstanding short film and unique filmmaker interviews. Since 2006, Directors Notes has scoured the globe for the very best that independent cinema has to offer.