Savvy Producer: Real Financing

Wednesday, October 26

An Honest & Candid Conversation about Financing

In the wake of several sobering analyses on the state of documentary, having a candid conversation around the realities of filmmaking has never felt so timely. Despite the current challenges, Canadian documentary makers are still in fact creating groundbreaking content, gaining momentum and achieving international renown. But how are they really funding their projects and how are they paying rent in the process?

We’ve invited three trailblazing filmmakers, Nimisha Mukerji, Matt Johnson and Hugh Gibson for an honest conversation about the reality behind their films and careers: Are they going outside the traditional system? How often are they cutting corners? Have they ever done anything illegal to get their films made? How are they making a living?

The event will include an interactive dialogue, where we’ll not only explore today’s challenges, but also creative approaches to funding and innovative models of business and sustainability. So bring your own experiences and ideas along with your toughest questions for this unscripted and honest conversation about financing.

Date: Wednesday, October 26
Time: 6:30pm-8:30pm
Location: Centre for Social Innovation – Annex, 720 Bathurst Street, Toronto
Price: $35 for DOC and LIFT members, $40 for non-members, $30 for students with valid ID.

Space is limited to 25 participants


Adam Nayman is a critic and lecturer based in Toronto. He writes for The Vice Guide to Film and has published two books on film: It Doesn’t Suck – Showgirls (from ECW Press) and Confusion and Carnage: The Films of Ben Wheatley (Critical Press). He is a contributing editor to Cinema Scope and writes regularly on cinema for Reverse Shot, Cineaste, POV and Sight and Sound. He teaches at Ryerson University and The University of Toronto.

Guest Speakers

Matt Johnson is a filmmaker, known for his independent feature films, including The Dirties (2013) which won Best Narrative Feature at the Slamdance Film Festival and Operation Avalanche (2016), which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. He also created, wrote and starred in the low-budget web series Nirvana The Band The Show from 2007 to 2009  which was relaunched at the Toronto International Film Festival this year and will air on Viceland this fall.

An award-winning director of film and television Nimisha Mukerji’s work has been featured on National Geographic, VICE, Amazon, Netflix, and OWN. Her debut feature 65_RedRoses was one of the first official selections by Oprah Winfrey for her Documentary Club. 65_RedRoses (commissioned by CBC) and Blood Relative (commissioned by Knowledge Network) both received Canadian Screen Award Nominations for Best Director in a Documentary Program. Blood Relative was also nominated for the Donald Brittain Award in 2013 for Best Social/Political Documentary. Tempest Storm was released theatrically by Mongrel Media in Canada in June 2016 after premiering at Hot Docs International Film Festival. www.shotglassproductions.com

A graduate of York University (BFA: Film), Gibson participated in the Berlinale Talent Campus (’05), TIFF’ s Talent Lab (’06) and TIFF STUDIO (’12). Selected credits include writing/directing the acclaimed short drama, Hogtown Blues (’04: TIFF, Bilbao: Audience Award), and producing short doc A Tomb with a View (’ 14: TIFF, VIFF). He produced A Place Called Los Pereyra (’09, IDFA, RIDM, BAFICI), which screened extensively in Latin America and Canada. Most recently, he premiered his critically acclaimed feature The Stairs at TIFF in 2016. 

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