Fabien Westerhoff

Source: Screen file

Fabien Westerhoff

Cineart, Lucky Red, Together Films and Film Constellation execs are gathering at the UK pavilion on Monday (May 20) to dig into the issues and opportunities facing UK films looking to travel globally.

“British film talent is the UK’s crown jewel, with a history of delivering award-winning films,”  said Fabien Westerhoff, CEO at London and Paris-based Film Constellation, who is taking part in the panel. ”It is one of the largest pools of new acting talent globally, and has consistently delivered strong new directorial voices over the last decade, from Georgia Oakley, to Charlotte Wells, Rose Glass, William Oldroyd, Francis Lee, to name a few.

“International distributors are always on the lookout for the next ‘new’ British talent that will pop at a festival.”

However, as flagged by Westerhoff’s fellow panellist, CEO of UK sales agent Together Films Sarah Mosses, there can be challenges in getting UK stories to connect with global audiences.

“UK indie films need to consider the impact potential of their stories on a global platform to appeal to international distributors,” Mosses observed. “How can they take the local issues affecting UK society, and translate them into broader questions that can resonate worldwide?

“One of the barriers in this area can be funders who recommended stories from UK producers to be about UK themes and interests, but sometimes they don’t travel as well. We need UK funders supporting producers aiming for big, bold, global stories that can appeal to additional co-producers and international distributors.”

Stephan De Potter, CEO at Benelux distributor Cineart, and Stefano Massenzi, head of acquisitions at Italian distributor Lucky Red, will also be taking part in the discussion, which takes place at 11.30am.  

The panel is followed by two case studies at 2pm of immersive works that are showing in Cannes, that will bring this year’s UK pavilion line-up to a close. Artists Poulomi Basu and CJ Clarke will discuss their work on Maya: The Birth Of A Superhero, alongside Evolver producers Emma Hamilton and Sam Pressman.