An Expert’s Guide to Buying Films
Salon Pommard Sutton Place Hotel
Saturday, March 10
Doors 12:30PM | Show 1:00PM
In participation with The Consulate General of Canada in LA
They are cultural curators. Arbiters of art. Simply put, they help decide what films you see at your local multiplex, on TV, or on your favourite streaming platform. Sit down with the experts and take advantage of a rare opportunity to hear from some of the most prominent film buyers, as they let you in on what they look for in their acquisitions, industry trends they’re watching, and get the inside scoop on what’s coming up.
Panel Participants Include:
- Amit Dey (Amit Dey, Director of Acquisitions and Production, UPHE Content Group)
- Dylan Wilcox (SVP Worldwide Acquisitions, eOne)
- Dori Begley (Co-Executive Vice President, Magnolia Pictures)
- Isabelle Stewart (Head of Acquisitions, Protagonist Pictures)
- Moderator: Robert Wong (Vice President, Creative BC)
AMIT DEY Having grown up in Canada, Amit graduated from Vancouver Film School specialising in Film Production and moved to Europe to pursue a wider film education through practice. Amit joined Universal in the Amsterdam office in 2011 after spending five years in the international headquarters in London, and is now based in Los Angeles managing global acquisitions and productions for the studio’s home entertainment division. Amit has been responsible for the acquisition or production of films including Ingrid Goes West, Don’t Think Twice, Ronaldo, 71’, Cop Car, The Overnight.
DYLAN WILCOX began his career at Miramax Films in 2000 in the publicity department. He joined Focus Features in 2004 as Manager of Acquisitions, where he acquired both packaged scripts and completed films for Focus Features and Universal International After two years heading the acquisitions initiative at Universal, he joined Relativity Media in 2012 as Senior Vice President, spearheading their theatrical acquisitions for the next three years. Dylan recently joined the worldwide acquisitions group at Entertainment One last year, buying content for both domestic and international distribution. Acquisitions highlights include The Kids Are All Right, Beginners, Kick Ass, Step Up 3D, A Dangerous Method, Don Jon, Oculus, and The Bronze, among others. Dylan is a California native and studied film at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
DORI BEGLEY currently serves as Co-Executive Vice President of Magnolia Pictures. Joining the Company as Director of Acquisitions in 2007, Begley’s breadth of filmmaker relationships and deal-making acumen quickly became an asset in Magnolia’s mission to release quality, auteur-driven narratives, documentaries and genre films. Elevated to Senior Vice President of Acquisitions in 2011, Begley forged a unique and nimble strategy to capitalize on the vicissitudes of the business, leveraging Magnolia’s position as both a proven traditional theatrical distributor and industry leader in collapsed window releasing. Having overseen nearly a decade of acquisitions for Magnolia Pictures, Magnet Releasing, Magnolia Home Entertainment and Magnolia International Sales, Begley’s role later expanded to include domestic sales for the 15-year-old distributor’s growing library along with the development of new theatrical distribution initiatives for alternative content. Begley also now collaborates on the distribution and marketing plans for all of Magnolia’s theatrical releases beginning with the unique strategy for Raoul Peck’s Oscar-nominated documentary I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO. Other notable recent releases include Ruben Östlund’s Palme d’Or winner THE SQUARE, Fatih Akin’s Golden Globe winner IN THE FADE, and titles by such acclaimed filmmakers as Werner Herzog, Lars von Trier, Terence Davies, Arnaud Desplechin, Alex Gibney, Jim Jarmusch, Park Chan-Wook, Ira Sachs and Albert Maysles. Begley began her career with Sony Pictures Classics in 2000 where she acted as the Manager of Acquisitions through 2006 working on an eclectic, prestigious slate of award winning titles from renowned filmmakers around the world. She is a Vassar College graduate and resident of Ft. Greene, Brooklyn.
ISABELLE STEWART joined Protagonist Pictures as Head of Acquisitions at the start of the year. At Protagonist, Isabelle is responsible for sourcing projects for international finance, production and sales that align with company’s track record of focussing on filmmakers with exceptional vision and storytelling skills. Protagonist’s current slate includes The Florida Project, Lady Macbeth, God’s Own Country, Beast and The Rider. Previously, Isabelle was Director, Worldwide Acquisitions and Production at Focus Features, where she worked on titles including Andrea Arnold’s American Honey, Damien Chazelle’s La La Land, Andrew Haigh’s Lean on Pete and Paolo Sorrentino’s upcoming Loro. Prior to Focus Features, Isabelle oversaw local language productions and acquisitions in the UK, Spain, Italy, Australia and France for Universal Pictures International Productions. Isabelle was born in London, is half French and holds a BA in Spanish and Italian from the University of Bristol. She began her career in film with an assistant role at Universal Pictures International and then held junior acquisition roles at StudioCanal.
ROBERT WONG After working for several years in a Vancouver chartered accounting firm, Robert first joined Creative BC when it was BC Film + Media. At that time, he became part of the organization’s newly forming tax credit team.
Now Creative BC’s Vice President, Robert markets British Columbia internationally as a destination of choice for projects and companies seeking a world class creative industries centre in which to do business. In his role, he leads the administration of Creative BC’s tax credit and granting programs, balancing attraction of international business with support for BC’s domestic content creators.
During his tenure with the organization, Robert has become the expert on motion picture tax credits, originally helping to launch the BC film and television tax credit program in 1998. He went on to play an integral role in the evolution of British Columbia’s motion picture industry tax policy.