The AFC Marketing Unit initiative, INSIDE TRACK was held for the first time during the recent SPAAmart feature finance market on the Gold Coast from 7-9 August 2004. For the second year, the AFC is the major sponsor of SPAAmart providing funding for the international travel of visiting executive.
In order to maximise the benefit of the international and local executives participating in SPAAmart, the Marketing Unit held a sidebar event - INSIDE TRACK - for a group of promising feature producers to also meet with the international executives and to gather market intelligence. It is especially difficult for emerging Australian producers to gather information on who the key players are and to understand what they are looking for. INSIDE TRACK provided selected participants with the opportunity to begin to build an international network.
The AFC worked with state agencies Film Victoria, NSW FTO, PFTC, SAFC, ScreenWest and screenACTion to select producers from each state. Successful applicants were:
NSW - Megan Harding, Sophie Jackson, Martin Williams
VIC - Mish Armstrong, Leanne Tonkes
SA - Vicki Sugars, Kristian Moliere
WA - Francesca Strano, Jocelyn Quoic
QLD - Della Churchill, Judd Tilyard
ACT - Michael Tear
The INSIDE TRACK program ran over three half-days, beginning on Saturday 7 August with a session on pitching from world-renowned pitching specialist Pat Ferns, followed by some sound financial advice from Brett Thornquest of Moneypenny Services and David Whealy from Holding Redlich and an outline of the rationale for SPAAmart given by Duncan Thompson, SPAAmart Director.
The following days consisted of half-hour presentations by visiting international executives including:
Ashley Luke, Fortissimo Films
Matt Littin, Cinetic Media
Iain Canning, Renaissance Media
Chris Mercier, Indie Circle
Dominique Green, Greenlight Productions
Marit van de Elshout, CineMart @ Int Film Festival Rotterdam
Paul Brett, Prescience Films Int'l.
Piers Nightingale, High Point Films
Damon Lane, Capital Films
Mary Jane Skalski, Antidote Films
A session was also organised for participants to talk to FFC Investment Manager Ross Matthews and incoming Evaluation Manager Tait Brady.
The INSIDE TRACK participants spent the remainder of their time at the Gold Coast attending the SPAA Conference sessions and functions.
While feedback is still being received, it is already apparent that the program has found much appreciation by the participants as well as the executives who took part and the AFC is looking to run INSIDE TRACK again next year.