Two days of free-to-attend content strands

The 2019 FOCUS programme featured a record number of keynotes, panels, masterclasses, workshops and presentations. 70+ sessions featuring 200+ speakers from film, TV, advertising, animation and games were on offer over the two days.

The over-arching theme was “Forces of Change – What’s next?”, looking at the impact of change on what we already know and also the potential impact of the changes we know are coming.

To make sure that it is completely relevant to the industry, the FOCUS programme is developed in consultation with a Content Advisory Board featuring representatives from leading industry bodies, including Pact, The Production Guild, Directors UK, BFI, BFC, UK Screen Alliance, Creative Europe UK, ScreenSkills, Advertising Producers Association and Women in Film & TV. It is curated by Sue Hayes and presented in association with our media partner Variety. For the last edition we were delighted to welcome Production Service Network as a content sponsor.

Download the 2019 Programme Schedule 

To see the FOCUS 2019 Networking events click here.

FOCUS 2019 Schedule

Click on the titles for more information
Day 1
Dec 03 2019


Registration opens at 9am. Print out your delegate badge to save time on the doors. Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, London N1 0QH.

straight 8 shootout premiere

straight 8  is the global one-super-8-cartridge-no-editing film challenge. Its latest ‘shootout’: a chance for creative companies worldwide to compete for charity with a new super 8 short film, made entirely...
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Cyprus, A natural Film Studio (Exhibitor Presentation)

Don’t miss the opportunity to discover all Cyprus has to offer as a natural film studio and find out more about the newly introduced Cyprus Film Scheme

Legal refresher for Film & TV producers

This hugely popular session returns to FOCUS 2019. The presentation will touch on legal topics relevant to producers and also give delegates some practical tips

Nobody Knows Anything!

A dynamic talk with speakers in the intersection of Entertainment, Finance, and Technology about where we were, where we are, and where we think it’s going.

Composing Video Game ‘Planet of the Apes: Last Frontier’

Steven Coltart will discuss composing and implementing emotionally charged music for video games, with a focus on his cinematic ‘Planet of the Apes: Last Frontier’ soundtrack using Unreal Engine, and...
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Save Money, Save the Planet – how thinking sustainably can help your budget (Green Zone)

‘Going green’ can get pushed down the agenda as the costs of a production rise. But more often than not, thinking sustainably will save you money. Join us for this...
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Find France in the Chilterns! – Waddesdon Manor (Exhibitor Presentation)

A case study of beautiful Waddesdon Manor and surrounding Estate, historic, contemporary, interiors and exteriors for filming all year round. The French chateau within minutes of the M25!

Sourcing and optimising public funding

Every month new incentives are launched but what are the conditions to access them?

Virtual Location Scouting – Scout without leaving the office.

Remote locations or tight pre-production timelines? Use the power of Virtual Production and VR to create a “virtual” copy of a real location that can be scouted from anywhere in...
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The Personal History of David Copperfield – A Masterclass

The Personal History of David Copperfield, written and directed by Armando Iannucci, opened this year’s BFI London Film Festival and is based on Dicken’s Victorian novel.. Realisation of the director’s...
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ITALIA: The place to film (Exhibitor Presentation)

Discover the many opportunities Italy offers to international audio-visual productions: including a 30% tax credit, plenty of regional incentives and services from the Italian Film Funds and Commissions, access to...
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Finding Archive Footage – In conversation with the specialists

The use of archive footage has become increasingly important and widespread across all of the creative screen industries – and much more than simply something to be allowed for in...
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What’s my role? Find your part in production sustainability (Green Zone)

We all have a role to play in creating more sustainable productions. Listen to our panellists explain exactly what their role is in helping a production to lower its footprint...
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Co-Production 101 – True or False?

Resistant to the idea of co-production? This session is designed to address 10 of the most common reasons that make producers nervous about co-production and discuss them in detail.

Bectu presents: Meet the Supervising Location Managers.

The Bectu Locations branch welcome you to join an in-depth Q&A with dynamic supervising location managers Georgette Turner (Wonder Woman 1984, Stan Lee’s Lucky Man ) .and Ben Ahmed (Hannah,...
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Nations & Regions – Challenges & Opportunities

Over the past few years there has been a recognition that there has to be a concerted effort to attract ideas and talent from outside of Soho With regional investment...
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Year after year Ukraine becomes brighter and more confident demonstrating its potential on the international content production market and reinforces its position as an attractive destination for international content producers....
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Intimacy Coordination: From the what and why to the how

Since #MeToo and HBO’s announcement of using Intimacy Coordinators, this role has found its way onto many sets in the UK and EU. But what does the role entail, when...
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Can productions come in under budget? Top 5 ways productions are wasting money without knowing (exhibitor presentation)

Staying on top expenses is hard. Keeping track of receipts is painful. And nobody likes carrying bags of cash around. Find out how production companies are taking control of expenses...
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Craftworks with David Reviews Part 1

We have teamed up with David Reviews to bring you a session filled with talks on creativity

Beyond statistics: New perspectives on inclusion and diversity

The commonly held view is that film and TV have a poor workforce diversity record. But statistics only tell part of the story: What does “good” inclusion look and feel...
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Zero Carbon Now! Make your next production carbon neutral (Green Zone)

We know we need to reach net zero carbon, and with a couple of smart moves we can do it super quick. Learn easier ways to make big carbon savings...
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Can’t Skip Filming in Portugal (Exhibitor Presentation)

Portugal created one of the most competitive incentive systems in Europe: a cash rebate of up to 30%, funded by the Tourism Board, applicable to film and TV

Transitioning: Branded Content to Narrative Film

In this discussion, Rachel and Richard Prendergast from Submotion, will outline their journey over the past few years, from making branded content to their highly acclaimed and moving short, Sylvia,...
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Maximising UK Tax Reliefs

A practical guide for the film & TV industry, from producers to suppliers Industry experts provide an overview of the UK’s TV and film tax reliefs, sharing insights into the...
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Future Proofing Filming in London

Film London presents its vision for the capital’s screen industries through its work around social and environmental sustainability.

The Global Gold-Rush Boom

The explosion of non-linear broadcast platforms, competitive global incentives and the appetite for cross culture content is driving global sales to a whole time high. This panel looks at what...
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Destination Greece: incentives, locations, infrastructure (Exhibitor Presentation)

Diving into the opportunities Greece offers to international audiovisual productions: 35% cash rebate, 30% tax relief, stunning, unique, locations in a country with an incredible cultural heritage, excellent English-speaking and...
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Waterfall and the use of emerging technologies – blockchain and AI

Maria Tanjala, Co-founder of Big Couch and FilmChain, will give an overview of emerging technologies and the benefits for filmmakers including:

Legal refresher for Film & TV producers

This hugely popular session returns to FOCUS 2019. The presentation will touch on legal topics relevant to producers and also give delegates some practical tips

Brexit logistics: What TV and Film makers need to know.

Our experts will provide absolutely bang up to date information about what TV & Film makers need to know about the impact of Brexit and clarify some of the confusions...
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Scaling up – the impact of a streamer in your local territory.

For Netflix, thinking globally means acting locally in terms of content and decision-making. Netflix has invested heavily in local foreign language productions. Creating a production hub in Madrid, investing in...
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Introducing the first purely visual location search engine (Exhibitor Presentation)

AI meets image recognition technology to improve Location Search beyond words. Location Managers – be the first to see – finding you unique ideas and inspiration for every shoot,...
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What has (Creative) Europe ever done for us?

Francesca Walker from Creative Europe Desk UK presents a quick-fire overview of the many ways the EU has benefitted the UK’s audiovisual industry.  As the current Creative Europe programme draws...
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One year later … Dark Sense revisited

One year ago Director/Producer, Magnus Wake  spoke about how he developed and financed his film Dark Sense. 12 months later he will outline the film’ US release and how he did...
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Art vs Science: Is Neurocreativity the answer to impactful imagery?

We know that emotions drive behaviour, so understanding the nonconscious impact of images and video can elevate your success. Neuroscience opens up a whole new world of insights – a...
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The UK’s Space Race – the reality of attracting international production

This discussion will provide an accurate update on the current situation as well as the UK’s plans for the future and its ability to support an even larger increase in...
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France’s Tax Rebate for International Production (Exhibitor Presentation)

Learn the essentials about France’s 30% rebate programme, designed for all sizes of budgets and for features, shorts, VR, VFX, and animation projects made entirely or partly in France.

MPC presents: The making of Disney’s The Lion King

  Disney’s remake of The Lion King released earlier this year is a wonderful example of how far technology has advanced. In this case study from The Moving Picture Company,...
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Understanding your market’s needs: Using the example of Greece’s step-by-step approach in redefining its audiovisual industry and attracting production.

Greece like many countries, now offers international producers a variety of tax incentives and rebates as well as stunning locations. Building upon this, EKOME, Greece’s strategic agency for the audio-visual...
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Facing the Future: What about the independents?

It has always been hard surviving as an independent producer, but there are fears the increasing dominance of the online streaming platforms will drive up costs even further making it...
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Madrid Content City (Exhibitor Presentation)

Presenting Europe’s largest comprehensive Spanish-language production center – an audio-visual production hub area of 140,000m2.
Day 2
Dec 04 2019


Registration opens at 9am. Print out your delegate badge to save time on the doors. Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, London N1 0QH.

Melissa Silverstein (Women and Hollywood) in conversation with Sara Putt

Melissa Silverstein. founder and publisher of Women and Hollywood, in conversation with Sara Putt, founder Sara Putt Associates. Women and Hollywood is an initiative and website that educates, advocates, and...
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Bridging the Chinese world (inc. Taiwan) and UK/Europe film production. (Exhibitor Presentation)

Ariel Liu, founder A Infinity A Films, who has 9 years experience working with Chinese film production in the Western world will cover topics such as: How to work with...
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Legal refresher for Film & TV producers

Presentation by Katrien Roos – Associate, Harbottle & Lewis LLP. This hugely popular session returns to FOCUS 2019. The presentation will touch on legal topics relevant to producers and also...
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Budgeting for Post Production

With increasing audience expectation and evermore complex delivery requirements, post-production budgets can be challenging. A panel of industry experts provide advice for effective budgeting in editing, finishing and VFX.

Perception: Location Politics

Currently, we are seeing global politics undergoing enormous change. It is no surprise that the creative screen industries are increasingly caught up in the story – the impact of an...
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Can you really be ‘green’ when you’re filming around the world? (Green Zone)

The stories we want to tell are set all over the world. So when a great story sends you to a far-off land, what practical steps can you take to...
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FILMING IN SLOVAKIA – GOOD IDEA! (Exhibitor Presentation)

Slovakia’s film and TV cash rebate will rise from 20% to 33% from January 1, 2020. The presentation will also include the country’s locations highlights, information about the film infrastructure...
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Blocking Bullying Behaviour

Jane Perry will be bringing a taster of her “Blocking Bullying Behaviour” workshop, originally designed for BECTU members, to FOCUS.

The documentary explosion – what’s going on?

Over the past few years documentary and the audience’s appetite for it has exploded. It is so popular. This discussion will look at the reasons why this has happened, what...
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Flexible Working across the Creative Screen Industries

A key area that has emerged over the past few years is the increasing need for skilled people to service and support the demand for content across all the screen...
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All Change – new and nimble ways of working if you want to survive

Moving between Film and Television in today’s market as a small independent production company demands a new and flexible approach across any project. In this workshop, Three Wise Monkey Productions...
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ATA Carnets: Future Landscape (Exhibitor Presentation)

In response to the Brexit uncertainty, and as a solution for the screen industries, boomerang carnets offers a simple solution for productions traveling to the E.U., The Brexit Carnet. Boomerang...
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Stories have consequences: Ways your content can help nature (Green Zone)

Making a programme sustainable behind-the-scenes is great, but as content producers we have the power to do so much more. This creative session will look at how you can embed...
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Be Marketing Ready for 2020: The Challenge of change.

Offering a personal and commercial perspective on how to achieve business growth, Steve Wheen, founder of content studio distillery, shares how he acted decisively to capitalise on distillery’s momentum, and...
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The Future is Green: A European Partnership

Partners from Interreg EU-funded project, Green Screen, come together to introduce strategies for reducing carbon footprint within the audio-visual production sector and supporting productions to achieve greater environmental sustainability. The...
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How to Job Share – Workshop

While there may be a recognition that we need more skilled people by the industries, there may also be a reluctance or worry on the part of the employer about...
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LMGI presents a Tale of 4 Cities

This discussion with LMGI location managers will explore the challenges, similarities and differences in filming in four cities – London, Toronto, Berlin, Los Angeles.

REGION OF VALENCIA, where filming is welcome (Exhibitor Presentation)

Region of Valencia counts on a very versatile and diverse architecture easily adaptable to every historical period and to every story. It offers 524 km of beaches and coastline, 23...
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Marseille, Land of Cinema (Exhibitor Presentation)

First filming destination in France after Paris (500 shootings /1100 shooting days per year), come discover the assets of Marseille for your shootings : spectacular landscapes, unique light, various sets,...
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StoryFutures Academy: Making the virtual a reality

In this session you’ll hear how the UK’s first National Centre for Immersive Storytelling is training up the UK’s Screen Industries to take advantage of the next evolution of the...
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Collaborate + Innovate: deal making in a new age of content creation

With more players than ever before fighting for finance, top talent and original content, how can producers structure deals to help break through a crowded market?

Unseen, Unexpected: Shooting in Trinidad and Tobago (Exhibitor Presentation)

This presentation will highlight the benefits of shooting in Trinidad and Tobago, an emerging location with vast potential and unlimited possibilities for your next film, television production, commercial or music...
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Nu Boyana Studios – Your Filmmaking Partner in Europe (Exhibitor Presentation)

From start to finish we appreciate your projects as our own. And we make the impossible possible, providing everything you wish for. You have heard about our unique studio complex...
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Games for Good

Games are brilliant at engendering empathy by allowing you to experience the life of other people first hand. The panel discusses how games can go beyond just entertainment exploring subjects as varied as...
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5 easy ways to reduce your carbon. If you do nothing else – do this! (Green Zone)

A quick fire session where we run through the top 5 things everyone needs to do to reduce their carbon. There are so many ways to reduce your environmental impact...
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PANAMA, THE EASY WAY TO SHOOT (exhibitor presentation)

For the past 5 years, Panama has been visited by large groups of European production companies who have found Panama a great location for documentaries, commercial productions and lately for...
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Focus on being Freelance

Over 50% of the creative screen sector is now freelance. Sara Putt , Managing Director Sara Putt Associates, will outline what that means in 2019.

THE PONDS: Diving into a successful low budget documentary

A conversation case study with ‘The Ponds’ producer and co-director Patrick McLennan chaired by Anna Mansi, Head of the BFI Certification Unit (and keen outdoor swimmer). The Ponds is a...
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Stepping up with ScreenSkills Support

How can you keep on top of your game in the fast-moving worlds of film and television? ScreenSkills, the skills and training body for UK screen, supports a range of...
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Craftworks with David Reviews Part 2

We have teamed up with David Reviews to bring you a session filled with talks on creativity

Tax for freelancers in film and TV

In this BECTU presented session, find out what you need to know about tax for freelancers in the creative sectors.

Film Finance and the Changing Landscape

This session will cover: Update on SEIS/EIS for Film, is there any movement here? What other types of finance can film makers access. What should they have ready for potential...
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States of Play: Converging Creativity

Merging the worlds of film and games or moving from film and TV into the world of games may to those who have developed their skills in one industry, appear...
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