Heather Hatch on What She Learned at #Banff2017

We caught up with Heather Hatch, the 2017 Banff World Media Festival Mentorship recipient. This mentorship awarded Heather a pass to attend the Banff World Media Festival, June 11- 14, 2017 at the Fairmont Banff Springs. Prior to the festival, she had a chance to consult with her mentor, Cynde Harmon, Producer and CEO for “Really Real Films Inc.” (Stranger In The House, If I Had Wings), as well as meet with members of the WIFTV team both before and at the festival. Here is what Heather had to say.

Heather_Pic (1)

2017 Benff Mentorship Recipient, Heather Hatch

How was the Festival? What was the biggest highlight for you?

The first meeting I attended with my team, I did not say a word, I just smiled and nodded, but the BBC can be overwhelming for a first meeting. So, at first the festival was very intimidating but attending the parties and meeting people in the industry at these event made it easier. The biggest highlight was meeting people who have sat on committees for some of the grants I have gotten and getting good news in a pitch meeting.

 

What did you learn throughout your Banff World Media Festival Experience?

Banff 2

From left to right: Tami Gabay, Cynde Harmon, Karen Wong, Heather Hatch, Pamela Jones

You have to put yourself out there, and working as a team makes it easier. Even if your pitches are not what somebody is looking for, asking them what they are interested in can help you choose projects you want to invest in creatively. Write down on the business cards, something about the person and your conversation so that you can remember them, and make possible connections after the festival. If you have meetings, look them up so you know what they look like, and can talk about some of their projects to break the ice. When booking a meeting, pick a location or it can get hairy trying to find them. Attending the workshops is full of information and can help you meet people.

 

Did the mentorship benefit you? What did you learn from your mentor and how did she help you?

The mentorship with Cynde Harmon, was unbelievable, she was a bubbling well of information, from how to organize my computer files, pitching advice, getting business cards, how to navigate the Banff media website, and how to keep track of and schedule meetings. Mentorship is so important in this industry, you can learn so much form a veteran of the trade, its knowledge that you can not gain through education alone. My Banff experience would not have been as successful without her guidance.

banff-1.jpg

Heather Hatch (centre) with her mentor Cynde Harmon (left) and WIFTV Treasurer Karen Wong (right)

Do you have any new projects on the Horizon? Or further development of current projects because of this experience?I was lucky enough to get the Telefilm micro grant this year to make a feature length documentary, the story of an Elder who wants to fight for her land that will be flooded by the Site C Dam in British Columbia which you can follow at #DellaFilm. The show that Women in Film and Television sent me to Banff for was a successful pitch meeting that turned into development, which was unbelievable. This show involves indigenous language and storytelling for children, and was created with alliance between myself and my team which you can check out at catapult pictures and open sky pictures.

Advertisements

Meet Story Editor and #FromOurDarkSide Consultant Sara Snow

Sara SnowSara Snow is a Gemini and Leo award-winning writer who has worked on drama, comedy, youth, and sci-fi series, including stints as writer/producer on Arctic Air, head writer on season 1 of Mr. D., and a season as show runner of Degrassi: The Next Generation. She has story-edited features and short films, including work by Karen Lam and Sharon Lewis and is currently developing a dystopian sci-fi series with award-winning graphic novelist David Robertson and a comedy series with filmmaker/actor Michael Seater. Sara is particularly interested in adaptation, as well as thrillers, dystopian and supernatural stories, and dark comedy projects.

Sara worked with 2015 From Our Dark Side winner Shereen Jerrett, in 2016 she worked with Ana de Lara, and she joined the mentor pool again for Season 3 to consult with Elle Wild on her project Strange Things Done.  Continue reading

Meet Story Editor and #FromOurDarkSide Consultant Carrie Gadsby

Carrie GadsbyCarrie Gadsby is a Vancouver-based story editor and analyst for feature film, who has lived in Los Angeles, where she worked in development for Oliver Stone. A freelancer, Carrie has also worked extensively with Telefilm Canada and Super Channel.

Working collaboratively and intimately with writers has always been her true passion, says Gadsby in a recent e-interview. Most recently, she was involved in the book adaptation of The Dwelling with Robert Cuffley, and as story editor for WIFTV member Suzanne Crocker’s multiple award winning documentary All The Time In The World. Continue reading

Fanarchy: A Feature Documentary by Donna Davies About Fanaticism, Fantasy and Film

Cosplayers Maria Brine and Zack Young at Hal-Con, Halifax, Nova Scotia during the filming of Fanarchy.

Cosplayers Maria Brine and Zack Young at Hal-Con, Halifax, Nova Scotia during the filming of Fanarchy.

Even before she agreed to meet with me, I imagined that interviewing Halifax-based filmmaker Donna Davies was going to be a magical experience. The writer/producer/director is known for her factual tales of all things genre, with documentaries such as Nightmare Factory and Pretty Bloody: the Women of Horror. She has recently ventured into a different aspect of genre with her 2015 documentary Fanarchy, which explores the phenomenon of the fan film, particularly in the sci-fi/comic book world. With the WIFTV genre contest #FromOurDarkSide on the horizon, I was thrilled to find an excuse to sit down and speak with her. Continue reading

Meet Suzanne MacLennan, VFX producer and #FromOurDarkSide Mentor

Suzanne MacLennan at work with a real bow from the TV series Arrow!

Suzanne MacLennan at work with a real bow from the TV series Arrow!

Suzanne MacLennan is a senior visual effects producer whose recent productions include the television series Arrow, The 100 and Once Upon A Time. Suzanne says she enjoys the entire production process from initial concept script through screening final shots, “except waiting for CG renders, which is never awesome.”

WIFTV is delighted to have Suzanne on the team of #FromOurDarkSide visual effects mentors!

We spoke with Suzanne about her take on genre and what being a mentor means to her: Continue reading

Meet Digital Media Strategist, #FromOurDarkSide mentor, Annelise Larson

Annelise LarsonIf you’re enjoying #FromOurDarkSide’s daily Facebook links to women working in genre worldwide, you’ve got Annelise Larson to thank for! Annelise joined the From Our Dark Side mentor pool last year and has been one of our most prolific mentors – guiding all of the 2015 mentorship recipients towards a successful digital strategy for their films.

Annelise comes from a background as an indie producer and writer but has worked in the field of digital marketing for over 20 years. Her focus is helping content creators and storytellers define, find, attract and engage their audiences and work toward strategic and sustainable digital business models. Her groundbreaking online course, Becoming a Storypreneur: Digital Marketing for Screen Media is running its fourth cohort across Canada, with a cohort from Sweden scheduled to start in the new year. Continue reading

Meet VFX Producer, #FromOurDarkSide mentor Charlene Eberle

Charlene Eberle. Photo courtesy of Image Engine

Charlene Eberle. Photo courtesy of Image Engine

WIFTV is delighted that Charlene Eberle is joining #FromOurDarkSide as a VFX mentor. Charlene is the Visual Effects Executive Producer at Image Engine, a Vancouver visual effects and feature animation studio.

Charlene joined Image Engine’s senior team in mid 2014, with almost two decades’ experience in visual effects production on feature films, television and commercials projects across North America under her belt. She’s passionate about the visual effects industry, having held wide-ranging roles from supervision to production. Continue reading

Meet Astron-6 member, filmmaker and #FromOurDarkSide mentor Adam Brooks

Adam BrooksAdam Brooks began his career as a figurative oil painter, exhibiting at The Winnipeg Art Gallery before founding the filmmaking collective Astron-6 in 2007 with four other filmmakers, Jeremy Gillespie, Matthew Kennedy, Conor Sweeney and Steven Kostanski. Astron-6 produced a collection of short films before breaking into feature films with the sci-fi/horror-comedy Manborg in 2011, followed by the grindhouse/revenge satire Father’s Day. His most recent film The Editor, an absurdist take on the giallo genre, premiered at The Toronto International Film Festival before touring the world and winning a handful of awards along the way.

But what is Astron-6? Continue reading