Listen in as our successful applicants discuss their project with a panel of producers looking for the next book to option.
Diana Phillips, Michael Wilson, Lola Bubbosh and Gavin Smith all provide insightful and extremely helpful feedback to each writer as they look to navigate the process of page to screen.
Please note this event has been pre-recorded.
Speakers: Diana Phillips, Michael Wilson, Gavin Smith, Lola Bubbosh
Chair: Jessica Fox
XpoNorth Film Specialist, formerly storyteller at NASA
Jessica Fox is a director and author. Her directing credits span film, theatre and TV. She was a storyteller for NASA and tour documentarian for the Dresden Dolls. Her first novel is in development with Annapurna Pictures. She is XpoNorth’s Film sector specialist.
Diana is an American producer living in London. She spent 12 years in New York producing films such as BAD LIEUTENANT. Relocating to London, she continued her relationship with Miramax and made BIRTHDAY GIRL with Nicole Kidman, after which she produced ALFIE with Jude Law for Paramount. She was also the executive in charge of production at Jim Henson’s Creature Shop for two years. Diana’s projects in development include a series based upon James Fox’s LANGHORNE SISTERS OF VIRGINIA with Debra Hayward and Shawn Slovo; the feature film SIBERIA with director Abel Ferrara starring Willem Dafoe and Isabelle Huppert, an Anapurna series based on Jessica Fox’s memoir and Shaun Bythell’s DIARY of a bookshop, and a film in development with Focus Features, THE CODEBREAKERS. Diana graduated from Yale University with a degree in History.
Michael started his career at BBC films in 1998 working as an assistant to the head of Films David M Thompson. Following that he moved into production and has spent much of the following 22 years learning the craft in a variety of roles. He worked as a Production Assistant, 3rd Assistant Director and Coordinator on films like Beautiful Creatures, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Dear Frankie and Elizabeth: Golden Age. In 2013 alongside Producer David Brown (Star Wars, Cloud Atlas), Michael set up Scotland’s first film studio and the opening series of the High-End TV Drama Outlander for Sony Pictures. Michael currently works as Producer on his 6th Season of the show, which has gone on to win numerous awards and garnered nominations at the Emmys and Golden Globes, including a best Drama Series nomination in 2016. Michael produced the Short Film Mouth of Hell, which won the coveted Grand Prix at the 39th Festival of Short Films in Drama, Greece and was nominated for a Best Short Film BAFTA at the 2017 EE Film Awards. Michael is now developing a slate of projects with his producing partner Mark Murdoch through their company Northstar Films including a 2-part television drama The Grey Area with writer / director Garry Fraser and writer Garry Torrance and an adaption of the National Theatre of Scotland stage play, Enough of Him by May Sumbwanyambe .
Commissioning Executive, BBC
Gavin has worked in scripted television for most of his career having spent 14 years at The Comedy Unit before moving to the BBC to take up the role of Commissioning Executive. Since joining in 2018 Gavin has been the Commissioning Executive for BBC Scotland’s scripted and entertainment series such as Scot Squad, Bad Influencer, Des Doesn’t Do, The Farm, Socially Distant with Susan Calman and River City. He is also co commissioner on recent BBC Network series including comedies Still Game, Two Doors Down, Limmy’s Homemade Show and new drama Guilt. Gavin began his career as a freelance comedy writer and researcher. After spells at STV and Yorkshire Television in the children’s genre, Gavin joined The Comedy Unit in 2004 and worked as researcher, writer, producer, head of development and finally Creative Director at the Glasgow based indie where he oversaw the development and production of multiple series on the slate. He has Executive Produced across various genres, on both linear and digital platforms, for a range of broadcasters including Sky, Channel 4, Channel 5, BBC Northern Ireland, BBC Scotland, BBC One, aniTwo & Three, Discovery and Comedy Central.
A former Miramax Films/Disney development Exec, Lola is now the acquisitions person for IP for BBC Studios.