Tim Bevan was born in Queenstown, New Zealand in 1958 and was raised in the south of England. He is one of the most well-known international film producers. In the early 1980’s, alongside Sarah Radclyffe, he created the production company Working Title Films. They achieved many successes early on, leading to the company now being an essential part of Universal Pictures. Bevan himself speaks about his films having a certain “Britishness”. It is exactly this Britishness that seems to be his recipe for success: Bevan produced films such as FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL, LES MISÉRABLES, ABOUT A BOY, ATONEMENT and ELIZABETH. For the latter two he was nominated for an Oscar. The remarkable producer remains humble despite all this success: “Ultimately, films are a director’s medium – I merely create the right environment for them to do the best job they can”. At the ZFF MASTERS, Tim Bevan will speak about his work as a producer. What exactly is this “Britishness” that makes his films so successful? What important qualities must a producer possess and why must a producer have knowledge in finance?
At only 29 years old Indian native Guneet Monga has already achieved widespread success. Her first big international film was the Academy Award nominated short KAVI in 2009. In 2013 The Hollywood Reporter voted ‘New Wave’ producer Monga one of the top twelve women achievers in the Global Entertainment Industry. She has paved the way for Indian cinema globally with her films premiering at prestigious festivals like Cannes, Sundance and Toronto. Two of her films, THE LUNCHBOX and MONSOON SHOUTOUT, were selected for screenings at the Cannes Film Festival in May of this year. During her ZFF MASTER CLASS Guneet Monga will talk about her occupation as a producer, as well as insight into the Indian film industry: How involved is she as a producer in the creative part of filmmaking? What are the cultural challenges in making Indian films? What are the difficulties of financing a film in India that is outside the Bollywood genre? How important are personal relationships in the industry in India and what are the differences to Hollywood? Guneet Monga will also analyze some clips from her film THE LUNCHBOX.
Born in 1945, Michael Shamberg began his career as a Time-Life correspondent. In 1970, Shamberg co-founded the pioneering video collective, Raindance Corporation, which published a newspaper-magazine called Radical Software. Raindance Corporation later became Top Value Television (TVTV). Michael Shamberg is a partner in Double Feature Films with Stacey Sher. Shamberg produced the Academy Award nominated films THE BIG CHILL (1983), PULP FICTION (1994) and ERIN BROCKOVICH (2000). Shamberg’s credits as producer include: CONTAGION (2011), WORLD TRADE CENTER (2006), GARDEN STATE (2004), OUT OF SIGHT (1998), GATTACA (1997), GET SHORTY (1995), REALITY BITES (1994) and A FISH CALLED WANDA (1988). He is also the executive producer of Quentin Tarantino’s DJANGO UNCHAINED (2012), which will be released this Christmas. Michael Shamberg will give us some insight into the day-to-day work of a producer. What makes a good producer? How close does he work with his directors? How does he find and develop a successful project?
Daniel Espinosa was born in Sweden in 1977. From 1999 to 2003, he studied at the Danish film school Den Danske Filmskole, graduating with his debut, BOKSEREN – The Boxer (2003), followed by BABYLONSJUKAN – Babylon Disease (2004) and EASY MONEY (2010), based on the novel by Jens Lapidus and starring Joel Kinnaman. It became one of the most successful Swedish films ever made. His American debut came with the action thriller SAFE HOUSE (2012) starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds. This year he also acted as executive producer on the crime thriller, SNABBA CASH II, starring Joel Kinnaman. Daniel Espinosa will talk about working as a Swedish director in the United States. He will share with us his working methods, ideas on how a director develops their own style and how to choose the right story to tell an audience.
Born in Dublin and educated at Trinity College, David Flynn began his film career working as a production assistant on BRAVEHEART (1995). He was a founding partner in the LA-based management/production company, Chaos Management, producing SERAPHIM FALLS (2006), starring Pierce Brosnan and Liam Neeson. Flynn’s other credit’s as producer include Rodrigo Cortés’ BURIED (2010) starring Ryan Reynolds and the critically acclaimed documentary RESTREPO (2010), which won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. Flynn currently works as an agent representing filmmakers, writers and producers, and he currently represents the Swedish director Daniel Espinosa, director of SAFE HOUSE (2012), who will also be appearing at the festival. In the ZURICH MASTER CLASS we want to get an insight into Flynn‘s work as an agent. To what extent does he foster the careers of directors and other filmmakers? How can agents assist and support directors’ careers?
Born and raised in Queens, New York, Benh Zeitlin began his career as a filmmaker at the tender age of 6 when he and a friend made their own Batman film. He continued making films growing up before attending Wesleyan University, where he majored in film. After graduating, he helped start the Court 13 independent filmmaking collective and moved to New Orleans where he made short film, such as GLORY AT SEA (2008), following Hurricane Katrina’s devastation of the city. His debut film, BEASTS OF A SOUTHERN WILD (2012), co-written with Lucy Alibar, was critically praised and awarded with the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, the Camera d’Or and the International Critics’ prize at Cannes. We will focus our discussion on Zeitlin’s debut. What inspires the 29 year old filmmaker? What drove him to create this particular film, narrated by a little girl? We will ask him about his artistic vision; the symbolism, the archaic imagery and the music he chose to convey the spirit of freedom in the film.