45th edition 27 January - 7 February 2016

Film Office consultants

<strong>Consultancy meeting with Hayet Benkara</strong>

As part of the Film Office’s activities, filmmakers are invited to take 30-minute one-to-one meetings with a consultant. These Industry insiders can provide important advice, guidance, counselling and inspiration to the filmmakers.


They will assist them in making the most of their stay in Rotterdam, developing strategies to advance their film in selection, give advice on their next projects and connect them to key Industry players. The consultants are also available to speak to producers and sales agents with a film in the festival.
Hayet Benkara
A Toronto-based Film Industry Advisor. She worked 6 years as the Manager of the Sales Office, the unofficial market, at the Toronto International Film Festival.
She is now the Manager of STUDIO a new industry year round programme at TIFF Bell Lightbox (tiff.net/Studio). Benkara has also worked for many prestigious film festivals such as Cannes (Producers Network), Berlin (the Co-production market), IFFR (CineMart), the Dubai International Film Festival, the Guanajuato Film Festival (Mexico), Era New Horizon (Poland), the Abu Dhabi Film Festival and most recently the Doha Film Institute.
Over the years, Hayet Benkara has developed a very strong international network and a good knowledge of the international market place. Year round she advises young and more established filmmakers and producers on Development, Production, Co-production, Distribution and Marketing, and Festival strategies.

Consulting specialty: Production, Sales, Acquisition and Marketing, Film Festivals
Territories: North America and Europe


Pierre Menahem

A Paris-based film executive with more than 15-year experience in the Industry, Pierre worked at Celluloid Dreams as director of sales and acquisitions for 8 years, supervising the marketing of a catalogue of more than 200 titles and attending all principal festival and markets (Sundance, Berlin, Cannes, Tokyo, Filmart HK, Locarno, Venice, Toronto, AFM).
In 2004 he founded Scalpel Films, co-producing and selling 4 to 5 films a year from all over the world. During this period he served as jury member in several festivals and participated to many workshops on international sales and co-productions. In 2011 he created a sales division in the production company MPM Film.
Pierre is also the programmer for competition features, docs and shorts, as well as the work in progress section for Industry professionals of the Belfort International Film Festival.

Consulting specialty: International strategies, Development, Co-Production, Marketing, Distribution, Film Festivals
Territories: World



Mary Davies

Has been UK project co-director of the Cross Channel Film Lab, a European-funded script development workshop programme linking screenwriters in the UK and France with experts and researchers in the fields of visual effects and stereo 3D, since 2012, while also working for film festivals and as a script and development consultant.
A former world sales agent with Jane Balfour Films and BFI Production in the UK, working with directors such as Tom Tykwer, D.A. Pennebaker, Derek Jarman and Terence Davies, Mary was film acquisitions consultant for Japanese pay TV channel Cinefil-Imagica for 15 years, acquiring around 250 world cinema features, including many debut films.
Mary has worked for international film festivals, including the BFI London Film Festival as Buyers and Sellers facilitator, running an Industry Screenings programme and Meet the Buyer event; as Industry consultant and Rawi mentor at the Dubai International Film Festival; as Industry consultant to the Edinburgh International Film Festival, overseeing EIFF’s industry services, until 2009 and for the International Film Festival Rotterdam since 2000. She was also account executive for Europe, Middle East and Africa for film festival submissions platform Withoutabox.com (film festival submissions platform) for five years.
Mary’s extensive experience of independent film includes festivals, development, production, sales, acquisition and distribution.

Consulting specialty: Sales and Acquisition, Development, Production and Distribution, Film Festivals
Territories: World




Marina Kožul
Worked for Croatian Radiotelevision as a screenwriter, and from 2002 to 2004 she was engaged on a monthly-based TV show Videodrome, which broadcast international experimental film and video.

She is one of the co- founders of the Croatian non-profit organization, 25 FPS Association for Audio- Visual Research (2004) in Zagreb, whose activities include media education and publishing, and its main project is 25 FPS – International Experimental Film and Video Festival where she works as one of the programmers and producers.

She has curated programs for several festivals, art cinemas in Zagreb and other Croatian cities, as well as promoting Croatian experimental film, video and animation within European and international film and media events.

Consulting specialty: Shorts, Experimental Films, Animation Films, Festivals strategies.
Territories: Europe