Over the last 15 years Rowan Woods has worked across almost every sector of the UK film industry, from development to journalism, via distribution, festivals, exhibition and a long stint at the BBC. She currently splits her time between the British Council, where she acts as the specialist liaison between the UK production sector and the international festival circuit, and the London Film Festival, where she programs episodic work and industry panels. She also works as a freelance development and acquisitions consultant, and is frequently found moderating industry panels and talent Q&As, including for BFI, BAFTA, IFFR and SXSW. Full Bio »
The UK has a booming screen sector with world-class production facilities that have recently been home to film and TV behemoths like STAR WARS, AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR and GAME OF THRONES, as well as a thriving independent sector that has supported filmmakers like Steve McQueen, Andrea Arnold, Ken Loach, Joanna Hogg, Clio Barnard, Mike Leigh and Lynne Ramsay. Chances are high that many of the films and TV shows you’ve loved in the past year came out of the UK. It goes to show that whether you’re based in the UK or elsewhere, understanding the UK market’s unique ecosystem and knowing how to navigate it and take advantage of the opportunities available – from production and financing right through to the distribution and exhibition – is essential and can open endless doors for you in this increasingly global, yet competitive industry.
The UK and US industries are closely aligned due to a common language, frequent co-productions and an increasing cross-pollination of talent. But what sets the UK market apart from its US counterpart is a strong public funding system, which supports the independent sector and nurtures new talent. So how do you access this support and what kind of projects are eligible? And what about commercial financing options? How does TV fit into this? And what about Brexit and its impact on co-productions? Whether you’re a UK native or an international filmmaker, producer, it’s high time to gain a comprehensive understanding of the UK’s role in the global film and television industry. In many ways, with so many creatives focused on the American market, this is open yet unexplored territory that can be explored and mined for your gain.
Over the last 15 years Rowan Woods has worked across almost every sector of the UK film industry, from development to journalism, via distribution, festivals, exhibition and a long stint at the BBC. She currently splits her time between the British Council, where she acts as the specialist liaison between the UK production sector and the international festival circuit, and the London Film Festival, where she programs episodic work and industry panels. Over the years she has worked with BAFTA, BFI, EIFF, LSFF, BFI NETWORK, Curzon and Radio4. She also works as a freelance development and acquisitions consultant and is frequently found moderating industry panels and talent Q&As, including for BFI, BAFTA, IFFR and SXSW. Rowan’s work has given her a deep and comprehensive understanding of the UK film and television industry and is excited to share what she knows exclusively with the Stage 32 community.
Rowan will give you an in-depth overview of the UK sector, outlining the key players, the opportunities and challenges, and providing you with the knowledge and confidence to navigate it successfully. She’ll begin with a general introduction of the UK market including what makes it unique, key facts and figures you should know, and how to understand the overall structure. She’ll then teach you about their main sources of funding, both public and private, and how funding works with international co-productions. She’ll also discuss the funding opportunities available for new talent. Rowan will then outline the key film institutions of the area and what they do. She’ll then discuss the support structures in place for producers and will delve into the key players in the sales agent space and how to determine which sales agent is right for your project. Rowan will go over the key distributors in the region and what the exhibition landscape looks like in general. She will also talk about the role of online platforms today and how the UK box office operates. She will then discuss the role of critics in this ecosystem and the key critical voices. Rowan will teach you about the major film festivals in the UK and how to determine which is right for your project, whether your project is a feature, short, narrative, or documentary. She’ll also talk about good marketplaces and forums in the area. She’ll go over the most important people in the UK industry right now and will then delve into the landscape of UK television, including both public service broadcasting and streaming services and key TV production companies. Rowan will outline for you the key opportunities in the UK marketplace, as well as the key challenges that go along with them. Finally, Rowan will give a rundown of how the industry has been altered by Brexit, as well as by COVID-19.
Praise for Rowan's Stage 32 Webinar
"It was great information and an amazing overview of how the UK industry works. Thank you so much."
I was vague about how things get into production in the UK, but have a much better idea now. Between the seminar and the resources to fill in the gaps, I feel a lot more equipped.
I was very impressed by the comprehensive overview of the UK industry and how well Rowan presented it. I'd love to hear more from her in the future.
Comprehensive survey. Rowan knows her stuff, and has walked the walk. She is a confident and fluent presenter: she can talk the talk
Q: What is the format of a webinar?
A: Stage 32 Next Level Webinars are typically 90-minute broadcasts that take place online using a designated software program from Stage 32.
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A: If you attend a live online webinar, you will be able to communicate directly with your instructor during the webinar. If you cannot attend a live webinar and purchase an On-Demand webinar, you will have access to the entire recorded broadcast, including the Q&A.
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A: Yes! After the purchase of a live or On-Demand webinar, you will have on-demand access to the audio recording, which you can view as many times as you'd like for a whole year!
Learn directly from Daniel R’bibo (Area SVP at Gallagher Entertainment), who's worked on Oscar-nominated films such as Foxcatcher, American Hustle and The Master. Production insurance. It sounds boring and overwhelming, and is one aspect of filmmaking that most producers try to avoid and typically push off until the last minute. There are a lot of options out there in terms of policies and coverages for an independent film, and it is sometimes hard to know what the right coverage for your project is. Just because you buy the insurance that is required in a contract doesn’t mean you are actually properly insured. Just because your film has wrapped doesn’t mean you are free to go. So how do you know if you’re covered? Luckily, Stage 32 is here to help you master getting the right production insurance for your independent film! In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, host Daniel R’bibo will go over all the various insurance policies that a producer or financier should consider when making a film. He will explore ways to get better insurance for lower premiums, discuss current industry issues such as insurance for reality participants, coverage for stunts/ hazardous activity, online distribution and help you generally better understand what you are really buying when it comes to coverage. Finally, Daniel will explore the wonderful world of liability and what exposure a producer and more importantly the financier really have. Daniel R’bibo, ARM, is the Area Senior Vice President at Gallagher Entertainment, one of the largest entertainment insurance brokers in the world. In addition to managing his book of entertainment clients including Pilgrim Studios, UCLA, Academy of Art University and Emmett/ Furla Films, Daniel now oversees the Entertainment Business Management group which works with almost 50 of the top business management firms in the world. Daniel has been in the entertainment insurance industry for over 14 years and has worked on many Oscar-nominated films and smaller independent budgeted films. Who better to help guide you to getting the right coverage for your film?
All actors are always looking for a competitive edge. Opportunities are everywhere, and Casting Workshops offer a fantastic chance for you to showcase your talents and make meaningful connections along with a lasting impression...if you know how to navigate them! Talk to any casting director and they'll tell you they would love to hire the first person that comes through the door. They'll also tell you that any actor that makes their job easier by being prepared, professional, memorable, and hireable become their go-to's again and again when casting for TV, films or digital content. You can be that actor. And learning how to navigate Casting Director Workshops can start you on that path. Casting Director Workshops are a great way to not only learn your craft, but to make a lasting impression. And there's nobody better to teach you how to make that happen than actress, producer, screenwriter, acclaimed international entertainment industry speaker, author, and career coach, Jessica Sitomer. This webinar is not about performing, sending a thank you note, and hoping against hope that you'll hear from the casting director down the road. This webinar is designed to make you stand out in a crowded room and make an impression no one can ignore. Jessica will teach you how to approach each workshop so your performance is on point. She'll help take away the jitters and anxiety that come with preparing and performing for an audition and/or workshop. She will show you how to brand yourself and adjust that brand for the specific CD in the room. She show you how to communicate and not annoy a casting director, as so many do, but to make him or her feel as if you're a part of their team. She will teach you a unique follow-up strategy and her "Casting Director Attractor, relationship building strategy. You will leave this webinar inspired, fired up, and ready to attack and conquer. Jessica Sitomer has coached thousands of actors and creatives worldwide and is proud to see her client’s names on almost every TV show and film she sees. She’s here at Stage 32 to pass on her knowledge and experience to you, to make your acting journey a comfortable and successful ride.
It’s a dream of many to turn their idea for a television show into reality and actually sell their series to a network or company. And with so many shows constantly being created by more and more companies, this dream is coming true for more people all the time. As networks continue looking for new ideas, new voices, and diverse perspectives to fill up their slate, opportunities have never been greater to get your television show sold. And yet, it’s going to take more than a great idea and a great voice to get your TV series picked up. After the research, the writing, and development, there’s a lot you need to do if you want your series to get noticed and see the light of day. The truth is having a completed pilot is only half the battle. You also need to understand the current TV market and how to get that pilot seen. This can feel like a large or insurmountable task. Where do you even start? Do you call production companies? Hit up a studio? Perhaps reach out to a network? Do you need to attach a showrunner or an actor? How do you approach the next steps of trying to sell your show? These next steps aren’t easy, but there is a lot you can learn to better prepare you for the battle ahead. Conrad Sun is a Film & TV Literary Manager and Development Executive at Meridian Artists where he represents TV writers in all genres for shows such as BLINDSPOT, TWO BROKE GIRLS and BOJACK HORSEMAN. Conrad has also worked with foremost production companies like Epix, Hasbro Studios, Gran Via Productions (BREAKING BAD), New Wave Entertainment and Motion Theory Films. He knows what it takes to get a television show off the ground. Conrad will teach you exactly how you can sell your TV series. He will begin by describing the general TV landscape, including broadcast networks, basic cable, and premium cable. Then he’ll outline the players in the landscape and how they operate, including showrunners, production companies, studios and networks. He will walk through the three main seasons of broadcast network television—staffing, development, and pilot season. Conrad will share 4 approaches to setting up a TV show, which include format, pitches, original pilot, and intellectual property. Next he will delve into the concept of a TV package and how best to incorporate producers, showrunners, talent, and directors. Then he will outline how individuals get paid once a TV show is set up. He’ll explain the agent packaging fee, the producer fee, royalties, and residuals. Finally Conrad will pull the curtain back on the current marketplace and explain how many shows get bought vs. produced vs. aired vs. ordered to series. The TV landscape is murky, but Conrad will walk you through how it actually works and how you can navigate it to better your chances of getting your own television series sold. Praise for Conrad's Stage 32 Webinar “Terrific seminar worth 3 times the cost. You answered all my questions and some of them were stopping us from going to market within the next couple of weeks. We will do exactly what you recommended.” – Robert "Amazing amount of practical information conveyed in a clear and concise way. Thanks for sharing this with us." – Dan R. "Conrad you were so very informative, had absolutely great advice, information a person would need to understand, when going to a meeting for negotiations with studio executives. You covered most everything I wanted to ask. Thank you stage 32, this was the best webinar, I have taken. Thank You again, Conrad Sun." - Diane K.
This was by far the best webinar on pitch documents that I have experienced. I've seen others where they give certain advice that she warned not to do! - Tiffany C. This is the age of peak TV and you have an incredible, original idea for a show! You have it all planned out: the setting, the characters, what the show will be about... maybe you've even written the pilot script. Now it's time to pitch! Perhaps you have a meeting with a manager or a producer, or someone is already interested in your idea and has asked you to send some "pages." Or you've signed up for a Stage 32 pitch session with the perfect exec who's looking for a show just like yours. You will learn how to write a professional pitch document that can serve as the outline for your in-person pitch to a manager, producer or studio executive, or be sent after your meeting - using the template and requirements the big agencies and studios use. You will also learn how to translate that into a shorter version for Stage 32 pitch sessions, contests, or just to be able to briefly pitch your idea as you're networking. PLUS! Anna will include these handouts for you to download: Stranger Things Pitch Document New Girl Pitch Document New Girl Short Pitch Document Example Lookbook Example This was my first Stage32 webinar, and it exceeded my expectations, both in terms of quality (and quantity) of information and overall value. Anna was personable, knowledgeable, and organized. The slide deck was helpful, and her overall presentation hit all the key topics. Anna and Stage3 2 delivered the goods. - John R. What a thoughtful, thorough and inspiring webinar. It's clear that Anna Henry put an enormous amount of work into this presentation. Not only was the content there, but the structure was also superb. I feel educated and inspired to go back to my own work and do better than what I thought was my best. What could possibly be better than that! Thank you Anna for your genius and your generosity. - Crispin L. See more testimonials below!
The most significant aspect of any actor’s career is securing work, but with overwhelming competition, roles are scare and difficult to come by, which can make this task incredibly tough. Yet in the end, acting careers are built on the work and honing your skills as a performer. Every actor knows that work begets work. This is because as we expand our experiences and circle of connections, more doors open with opportunities for more work. It’s great to have an agent, to make those connections, to develop strategies to become more marketable, but more important than all of that is becoming the best actor you can possibly be. Ultimately, producers want to hire the right performer for the role, and putting yourself in a position to get that role is less complicated than others might have you believe. Whether you are preparing for an audition or a performance for a role you are already cast in, your main tool and blueprint before you even get on set or in that audition room is likely going to be the script, and any practiced actor will tell you there’s a lot more to a script than just your character’s dialogue. If you’re simply going through the script to highlight your lines, you’re missing out on a treasure trove of information that will lend itself to you finding the character and giving your best possible performance. An experienced actor is able to fully break down any written scene to internalize not just the dialogue, but the beats, the context, the elements that are unwritten but still very present. Knowing how to analyze a script and glean from it all of its information and clues will allow you to more fully inhabit your role and make you a better and more cast-able actor. Taylor Nichols is an award winning filmmaker, theater director and actor with over one hundred credits to his name. He is currently on the Emmy-nominated Hulu show PEN15 and the HBO smash-hit PERRY MASON. Taylor has also appeared on shows such as Emmy and Golden Globe nominated THE WALKING DEAD and PRISON BREAK, the cultural hit DIRTY JOHN, Emmy-winning MODERN FAMILY, 24, Golden Globe nominated THE MENTALIST and many more. In addition to acting, Taylor is an award winning short filmmaker and an experienced producer with feature credits including THE NEXT STEP and CASE 219. Taylor brings to Stage 32 more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment industry and is ready to share with the community the skills and lessons he’s developed throughout his career. Taylor will lay out how to break down a script as an actor and develop the techniques needed for characterization and emotional depth to “live truthfully under imaginary circumstances”. Taylor will begin by teaching you what an actor should do as soon as they get the script, including what to focus on during your first read through and how you should be marking it up. He will give you the tools to zero in on a specific scene’s theme and will then delve into determining your character’s objective, both in the scene and in the story as a whole. He’ll talk about how and where you should place dramatic beats by finding the scene’s shape and creating and feeding into the flow. He’ll go into what makes beats and pauses feel natural and honest and when they feel put on and will also outline how you can use your beats as a tool for line memorization. Taylor will then go over how to define your character’s obstacles while reading the script and how you should create your own honest actions in the scene. He will also explain how these actions can successfully interact with both beats and objectives. Next he will explain what “givens” are in a script and how you can find the givens of your character. He will also teach you the difference between naturalism and honesty when giving a performance and explain why honesty is always what an actor should be working towards. Taylor will also lead a live, interactive acting workshop to illustrate the strategies he has taught and show how to use the written scene to define the characters. Taylor will break down down a scene of a script in real time and will bring up students to perform these role based on this breakdown. Through his lesson and workshop, Taylor will give you invaluable tools to help hone your craft and better prepare you for any future auditions or performances. Praise for Taylor's Stage 32 Webinar "Wonderful job on all counts. Taylor was very informative and ever so likable." -Jody F. "I really loved the webinar - Taylor gave a really useful and inspiring presentation, which felt genuinely rooted in the love of acting and the respect for the craft of it. I found both the teaching and the workshopping aspect of it very informative and really gave us as actors clear examples of how to up-level our work." -Rowen B. "Taylor was great and very helpful." -Martin B. "Taylor was great! I thoroughly enjoyed Taylor's class & will be re-visiting it through the on-demand option." -Laurka L.
Learn directly from Jessica Sitomer, International Entertainment Industry Speaker, Career Coach, and Author who has had her writing produced by an Emmy Award winner, produced TV herself and has coached thousands of professionals who work in the entertainment industry! In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, you will learn the cultural differences between the way Angelinos and New Yorkers go after work in comparison to the UK, Canada, Atlanta, New Orleans, etc. If you are uncomfortable asking for work, or have seen what you consider “aggressive” strategies, your host Jessica Sitomer is going to modify her typical networking strategies and techniques to appeal to you! Yes, you can be polite, and still get work! You will leave the webinar knowing: How to meet people who can hire you in a natural, authentic way. How to connect with people on social media without being annoying. How to get your “horn tooted” without you having to “toot your own horn”. Networking tips for genuine connections. How to stay in touch with a new connection without being a pest. How to feel more comfortable and confident in the work generating process. Your host Jessica Sitomer is a world traveled speaker and panel moderator who modifies her topics to fit the needs and the culture of the participants in each location. She has coached thousands of people worldwide, and is proud to see her clients’ names on almost every TV and film she sees. Simultaneously, Jessica works as a professional in the entertainment industry, on shows for ABC, Nickelodeon, Showtime, MTV, and had her writing produced by an Emmy Award winning producer. Brought back by popular demand, she is here exclusively for Stage 32 to pass on her knowledge and experience of working with thousands of people, just like you, to make your journey to find work a comfortable ride.