Dinard’s annual Producers Lunch provided a good opportunity to talk business..and a little pleasure.
The annual Producers Lunch at the Dinard British Film Festival was a more glamorous affair than usual, thanks to new festival partner Mandarin Oriental, who have come onboard for the first time this year to sponsor the event.
The luxury hotel company has recently opened its first hotel in Paris and to celebrate, every lunch guest was given an exotic fan in a Mandarin Oriental Paris labelled box. Even the boys seemed impressed.
Isabel Davis, senior executive from the BFI’s Film Fund spoke on behalf of Amanda Nevill (who was delayed in London) before the lunch, referring to the UK’s international relationships as being “key both to our current activities and future plans. From the film fund support for development and production through to our public exhibition programme and archive, France is an important partner.”
“There is much we can learn from each other. We look forward to strengthening our relationship which will enrich our mutual creative development,” she added.
The festival has had a special focus on Scottish films for its 22nd edition, and director David Mackenzie, who has had two films screening at the festival (Perfect Sense and You Instead), also spoke (on behalf of Sigma producer Gillian Berrie) about the state of the Scottish film industry. “We are getting closer to the idea of having a studio in Glasgow. It’s been a long time coming and it would be a delight, it would protect our productions from the weather,” said Mackenzie with a laugh. He also referred to the recent influx of Hollywood productions such as World War Z and Cloud Atlas into the city. The next one to hit the city is Christopher Nolan’s Batman.
Hindi revealed that next year’s focus would be on Wales, with suggestions already flying in for the festval godfather to be Tom Jones (this year it is Petula Clark).
On my table was Warp producer Mark Herbert, This Is England 86 director Shane Meadows, Bankside Films’ Hilary Davis and Stephen Kelliher, actors Luke Treadaway and Thomas Turgoose and producers Rachel Robey and Al Clark.
Unfortunately, the top-level conversations that happened over lunch (topics included Creative England, the state of the British film industry, forging international partnerships etc) descended into “which celebrity do we look like” over a few glasses at The Grand.