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SPADA: Navigating the New Financial Landscape

Navigating the New Financial Landscape for New Zealand at this year’s SPADA Conference

November 20-21, SKYCITY Auckland Convention Centre

“This year's SPADA Film and TV Conference is being held at a time when New Zealand producers are navigating an entirely new financial landscape with the introduction of the Screen Production Incentive Fund (SPIF), which enables producers to bring serious financial equity to the table,” says SPADA’s CEO Penelope Borland. “In the current world financial situation this incentive isn’t without its challenges, as it needs to be cash flowed by financial institutions, but we expect it to result in more New Zealand films.”

Capitalising on New Zealand’s newfound ability to attract international finance into domestic films and international co-productions, the SPADA Conference ’08, on Thursday 20 and Friday 21 November at the SKYCITY Auckland Convention Centre, is bringing out UK Media Finance Partner David Quli who has acted for financiers or producers on four recent high budget New Zealand films - River Queen, The Ferryman, Dean Spanley and Under the Mountain. He has also acted for Bank of Ireland on a number of productions including Children of the Silk Road (aka Children of Huang Shi) a German, Chinese and Australian co-production directed by Roger Spottiswoode, which opens in New Zealand cinemas on November 6.

This year’s Conference opens with the John O’Shea Memorial Address, delivered by John Maynard, who will look at new models for filmmaking. Maynard is well known in both Australia and New Zealand for developing great creative talent - producing Vigil and The Navigator, directed by Vincent Ward; Sweetie and An Angel at My Table (co-produced with Bridget Ikin) directed by Jane Campion; Romulus, My Father, co-produced with Robert Connolly and directed by Richard Roxburgh, which won the 2007 AFI Best Film Award. Maynard is currently producing Balibo with Connolly, which stars Anthony LaPaglia. Maynard’s other session at conference will discuss Balibo – which recreates events surrounding the shooting of five Australian journalists during Indonesia’s invasion of East Timor in 1975.

Keynote speaker is the affable and entertaining Jon Plowman, who is responsible for producing some of the UK’s most popular award winning comedies, such as Little Britain, French & Saunders and The Office, who is now working as an independent after 27 years at the BBC.

Hollywood entertainment executive Chris Adams, CEO of Accelerant and who previously partnered with eBay’s Jeff Skoll to create Participant Media, a film financing company with a vision to “leverage the power of the media to inspire social change” by financing movies such as Syriana, North Country (directed by New Zealand’s Niki Caro), Good Night and Good Luck, Charlie Wilson’s War and the Academy Award winning Al Gore documentary An Inconvenient Truth. He is currently mentoring some New Zealand companies as a result of his participation in the NZ Trade & Enterprise-funded Cross Media Lab earlier this year.

European co-production experts producer Cedomir Kolar from France and producer/director/writer Marion Hansel from Belgium, who regularly work together on multiple-funded films, including best foreign language Oscar and Cannes Golden Palm winner No Man’s Land, will also attend. Other international speakers include C Scot Cru, Executive in Charge, International at Mark Burnett Productions (Survivor, The Apprentice) and Carey Kyler, Vice President of Network Programming for the Travel Channel.

Des Monaghan, Executive Director of Screentime, executive producer of Australia’s hottest drama series Underbelly – and former NZ broadcasting executive - will speak about the challenges and benefits of making this series, and Trans-Tasman collaboration possibilities.

New Zealand’s most recent box office hit, Second Hand Wedding, will also feature when distributor Gordon Adam and producer Kerry Robins talk about domestic distribution with a twist. Award winning producer/director Pietra Brettkelly - The Art Star and the Sudanese Twins – will talk about wearing two hats and succeeding in the international marketplace.

Also featuring in the conference programme are sessions with Maori Television’s Aunties on “Working with Maori in Film and Television”; the BSA looks into the use of hidden cameras; APRA/AMCOS talks music licensing; Park Road Post Production is holding a Masterclass on DI Visual Effects; and Film New Zealand looks at New Zealand’s 100% clean, green and pure image - and how to protect its reputation as a sustainable film location.

SPADA is also running the Business of Development Summit two days before conference (18-19 November) with world-renowned story consultant and script development expert Stephen Cleary.

SPADA will continue its tradition of presenting awards: New Filmmaker of the Year (principal sponsor: Park Road Post Production, sponsors: Panavision, FACB, Kodak, Stage and Screen and Air New Zealand); Crombie Lockwood/MTJ Independent Producer of the Year; South Pacific Pictures’ The Big Pitch; and Onfilm Industry Champion.

SPADA Conference Principal Sponsor NZ Film Commission, Premium Sponsor TVNZ, Strategic Partners New Zealand Trade and Enterprise /Investment New Zealand Key Sponsors NZ On Air, Screenrights, TV3 Sponsors and Supporters FACB, Film Finances, FIUA, Fuji, Images & Sound, Onfilm, Park Road Post Production, South Pacific Pictures, The Film Archive, WIFT. SPADA’s Premier Partner Telecom.

Formed in 1982, the Screen Production and Development Association of New Zealand (SPADA) represents the collective interests of independent producers and production companies on all issues affecting the business and creative aspects of screen production in New Zealand.


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