Birds Eye View Film Launch Their Biggest Ever Female-Focused Training Programme For 2017


Applications are now open for a suite of three flagship programmes aimed at greater inclusion and representation of women in the film industry, from distribution to production. They are majority funded by Creative Skillset’s Film Skills Fund, with BFI’s Film Forever National Lottery Funds, alongside Birds Eye View Film’s own funding and the endorsement of a range of partners.

The three programmes:

FUTURE LEADERS IN DISTRIBUTION, a bespoke leadership programme backed by Film Distributor’s Association (FDA), Birds Eye View Film. Available for 8-10 female UK distribution executives with 7+ years’ experience that seeks to open more doors to female leaders in UK distribution (per the Creative Skillset 2012 film workforce census, only 20% of CEOs and directors in UK film distribution are female, compared to 47% of the workforce)

Birds Eye View’s highly rated filmmaker programme FILMONOMICS will return in November 2016 for its 4th consecutive year, with a balanced portfolio of inward and outward focus, with sessions on developing confidence in your professional style, coaching work with psychologists specialising in female entrepreneurship, alongside cutting edge data and knowledge sharing from across the value chain, current box office and sales analysis plus future trend-forecasting. Men may apply if they have a woman on the team, and our targets are 80% female/20% male, 35% from the nations and regions, 40% BAME and 10% disabled candidates.

The new FILMONOMICS PLUS aims to take 8-10 UK film producers who have 1-4 feature producing credits (docs or fiction) who seek a booster programme that builds on other relevant and/or recent training and on-the-ground experience to increase the scope of their business in this challenging marketplace, through a blend of bespoke coaching, mentoring, tailored financial and business planning and leadership guidance across a short window of 4 months October 2016-February 2017. The target is 70% female candidates 30% male, the latter of whom must have projects written or directed by women to qualify.

FUTURE LEADERS IN DISTRIBUTION, FILMONOMICS PLUS and FILMONOMICS IV will run concurrently, in order to encourage the future distribution leaders to meet the future filmmakers and emerging producers and enjoy the interpersonal skills sessions together and networking events

FUTURE LEADERS IN DISTRIBUTION 2016 had an excellent line-up of talent: Pritica Aneja, Associate Finance Director, EMEA, Twentieth Century Fox; Lia Devlin Head of Marketing, Altitude UK; Sophie Doherty, Theatrical Sales Manager, Disney UK; Sophie Glover Head of Publicity at Pathé UK; Lucy Hill, Theatrical Sales Manager, Warner Bros UK; Lorna Mann, SVP of Publicity, Lionsgate UK; Christina De Rienzo Head of Theatrical Marketing, Curzon Artificial Eye; Kristin Ryan Head of UK Home Entertainment and Digitial, Studio Canal; Louisa Mitchell, Marketing Director – Home Entertainment and Faith Taylor, Senior Marketing Manager, both of eOne.

We are thrilled to have the support of high level industry mentors such as Kezia Williams of eOne, Sue Bruce Smith of FilmFour, Eve Gabereau of Soda Pictures, Robert Walak Head of Focus Features International and Anna Godas of Dogwoof to name but a few.

Previous participants on FILMONOMICS (which has run since 2014) include Katharine Round (this year’s hit doc THE DIVIDE), Beryl Richards, director and chair of Directors UK; Kat Wood this year’s winner of the Jameson First Shot Shorts, executive produced by Kevin Spacey/Trigger Street; Frances Leawriter/director of the Film London Microwave film STRAWBERRY FIELDS, Lindy Heymann (BIFA winner for Best Debut for SHOWBOY). Speakers include Charles Gant, Joanna Hogg, Peter Ettedgui, Josh Appignanesi, Kim Longinotto and Caroline Cooper Charles.

FUTURE LEADERS IN DISTRIBUTION will endeavor to enable and inspire the 8-10 participants in 2016/17 to move higher up the value chain in order that the next film workforce census figures on female management in film distribution climb beyond 30%.

FILMONOMICS IV and FILMONOMICS PLUS aims to elevate the profile of up and coming female filmmakers and emerging producers who are either female and/or producing films by women, to boost their awareness, help them realize their goals, elevate their contact and strategic engagement with the marketplace.

Per the recent CALLING THE SHOTS* report 2016, women comprised 13% of UK directors;
74% of films with a woman director also had a woman producer.

Women accounted for 20% of all screenwriters. 13% of all 203 films had women screenwriters only. 69% of women screenwriters worked on a film with at least one female producer. Less than 2% of all screenwriters were BAME women.
27% of producers were women. 43% of the 203 films had no women producers. Only 8% of the 203 films had no men producers. Less than 2% of all producers were BAME women

Additionally, in the Creative Skillset 2012 film workforce census, only 20% of CEOs and directors in UK film distribution are female, compared to 47% of the workforce. Only 4% of CEOs and directors in film exhibition in the UK are female.

.*Report produced by AHRC-funded research project ‘Calling the Shots: women and contemporary film culture in the UK, 2000-2015’ based at the University of Southampton. The source data for this report is the BFI’s Research and Statistical Unit, which generated a list of 203 films in production during 2015 that qualified as British.


Mia Bays

Mia Bays is an Oscar winning, twice BAFTA nominated producer, on documentary and fiction, who has worked on over 50 features in various capacities, with producer credits on 12 features and 4 shorts, on films such as SCOTT WALKER – 30 CENTURY MAN exec produced by David Bowie, and SIX SHOOTER by Martin McDonagh which won Best Live Action Short Academy Award 2006. Mia acted as Creative Producer on Film London and the BBC’s acclaimed Microwave scheme, overseeing from production to release films such as SHIFTY by Eran Creevy and LILTING by Hong Khaou starring Ben Whishaw (both of which were nominated for Best Debut BAFTA, which she was also nominated for in 2008). Mia is passionate about raising the volume of the female voice across the film value chain and has taken over the Birds Eye View platform since 2015 to further the work and create a legacy project from the acclaimed film festival run under their aegis 2002-14. She began her career in the film industry in the early 1990s in distribution and exhibition, working for Romaine Hart, owner of Mainline Pictures and Screen Cinemas (now Everyman) and her first role model.


Julia Short has years of film marketing and distribution experience on huge campaigns such as FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL, LOCK STOCK AND 2 SMOKING BARRELS, before setting up her own company Verve, releasing films such as DOGTOOTH, THE ARBOUR, RED ROAD and SCOTT WALKER – 30 CENTURY MAN (which Mia produced) before selling to her partner a few years ago. She is now running a number of high profile courses in film including Inside Pictures.

Other key collaborators/supporters :

Averil Leimon, Professional Coach and Business Psychologist, WhiteWater Group
John Letham, Professional Coach and founder of
Mike Kelly, business affairs and financial film expert, Northern Alliance
Target Media – Rob Wilkerson and Lucy Barclay


“We are developing a programme of activity that builds on the tremendous work which Birds Eye View as a festival did, under the aegis of Rachel Millward then Kate Gerova. They showcased hundreds of films by women from across the globe and raised the profile of some brilliant filmmakers from 2002-14 and worked tirelessly to promote films by women.

The core focus of our new strategy 2015-17 has been to build up a training portfolio with courses targeted either entirely or primarily at female filmmakers and executives. The aims are to build a network of committed and mutually supportive filmmakers and film executives. All movements start with a core advocacy group. “Out of small pools rivers flow”. Our focus is on the importance of the female contribution to the film economy going forward. We want more significance placed on that contribution culturally too, in both past and present contexts, and on the audiences interested in such films.

The filmmakers we’ve worked with on Filmonomics across 2014-16 and the 11 top-flight women distribution executives on this year’s inaugural round of Future Leaders in Distribution have shown us this work has immense value and potential impact.

We are delighted that Creative Skillset have backed the three programmes. We look forward to another fruitful collaboration with the Film Distributors Association on FUTURE LEADERS IN DISTRIBUTION, we are happy to be working with some excellent collaborators and partners, and we look forward to devoting much time and energy to these across 2017”

Applications for the 2016 programmes are now open. The deadlines for applications for the 3 courses are 12th-19th September 6pm GMT. Full terms & conditions, and details on how to apply, can be found on the Birds Eye View website: www.birds-eye-view/training

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