Evolving Roles & Relationships: Sales Agents and Producers
Sales agents and producers from around the world discuss their roles, how they collaborate, what buyers want, and how to set your project up for sales success.
Clay Epstein, President, Film Mode Entertainment
Nadine de Barros, Co-Founder, Fortitude International
Christine Haebler, Producer, Screen Siren Pictures
Mark Padilla, President of Worldwide Sales & Acquisitions, Jackrabbit Media LLC
Clay EpsteinPresident, Film Mode Entertainment
Clay Epstein has over twenty years of experience as an Entertainment Executive. Since launching his own company in 2016, he is the President and Owner of Film Mode Entertainment, a worldwide sales and distribution entity with a producer friendly initiative. In addition to bringing films to audiences around the globe, Clay executive produces many of the company’s titles. As an Executive Producer, Clay is instrumental in working with filmmakers in the early stages of pre‐production to help build the financing, and creative elements to achieve these successes worldwide. To better help producers and directors who may be less experienced, Film Mode has an active consultancy division, offering producers expertise and guidance on financial models, marketing, and distribution strategies.
Film Mode represents over 50 independent feature films worldwide, with a client base that spans the globe. Recent successes include BREACH starring Bruce Willis, AS THEY MADE US starring Dustin Hoffman, and Candice Bergan, CRYPTO starring Kurt Russel, LITTLE PINK HOUSE starring Catherine Keener, and MONSTROUS starring Christina Ricci.
Prior to launching Film Mode, Clay was SVP Sales & Acquisitions at Arclight Films. He was instrumental in representing high profile films such as Paul Schrader ’s DOG EAT DOG starring Nicolas Cage, and the Spirig brother’s PREDESTINATION starring Ethan Hawke. Earlier in his career, Clay represented prestigious titles such as TSOTSI (2006, Academy Award Winner for Best Foreign Language,) and THE LAST STATION (2010, Academy Award Nominee for Best Performance by an Actress.) Clay earned a BA in Fine Arts, from California State University, Northridge majoring in Film Production and minoring in Italian Language.
In addition to his professional accomplishments, he holds the elected position of Chairman of Independent Film and Television Alliance. Clay is an instructor at UCLA Extension, and a frequent lecturer at film festivals worldwide., a member of PGA, FIND, BAFTA LA, and the Australian Academy Cinema Television Arts.
Nadine de BarrosCo-Founder & SVP, Fortitude International
Speaker bio details coming soon…
Mark PadillaPresident of Worldwide Sales & Acquisitions, Jackrabbit Media LLC
Mark Padilla has over 20 years of experience in the independent film and television industry. Currently the President of Worldwide Sales and Acquisitions at the Arizona-based company Jackrabbit Media. Mark oversees all acquisitions and worldwide sales rights to their projects.
Mark also teaches two courses at UCLA Extension focusing on the independent film business. One course is dedicated to marketing and distributing independent films across all platforms, while the other is an in-depth look at the acquisition process in Hollywood.
Previously, Mark was SVP of Sales and Acquisitions at DDI (Double Dutch International), a Toronto-based company. At DDI, Mark produced and executive produced several films. Including the action film THE DOORMAN, the hitman thriller THE VIRTUOSO, and the exciting horror film ESCAPE THE FIELD.
Before joining DDI, Mark was the VP of sales and acquisitions at Myriad Pictures. Mark was responsible for selling both new and library titles. He also managed a team of sales, marketing, and publicity executives. Before Myriad, Mark was VP of International Sales at Essential Entertainment; before Essential, he was the marketing manager at Arclight Films.
Mark started his career working as an international acquisitions consultant for multiple distribution companies worldwide, including international broadcasters such as Mediaset (Italy), Telecinco-Mediaset (Spain), and ProSeiben (Germany).
Mark has spoken on several panels discussing the international distribution market and has been featured in several industry trade publications regarding the global independent film market. Mark has also served as a jury member for independent feature films and short film festivals.
Christine HaeblerProducer, Screen Siren Pictures
In the film business since 1983, Christine Haebler started off in production on various big budget US studio films. She then moved into producing in 1995 with her first feature film earning a Best Motion Picture nomination for HARD CORE LOGO. The film was picked up by Quentin Tarantino for his distribution company Rolling Thunder. She then produced a varied group of feature films including, Scott Speedman’s first feature – KITCHEN PARTY directed by Gary Burns, Ashley Judd starrer- HELEN directed by Sandra Nettelbeck, Martin Freeman in – NIGHTWATCHING directed by Peter Greenaway and Cuba Gooding Jr/Val Kilmer’s Sci Fi action thriller HARDWIRED.
In 2010 she teamed up with Trish Dolman and Screen Siren Pictures- they have developed and produced many films together starting with Mike Goldbach’s DAYDREAM NATION (2010) starring Kat Dennings, Josh Lucas and Andie MacDowell, followed by Peter Chelsom’s HECTOR AND THE SEARCH FOR HAPPINESS (2014) with Simon Pegg, Rosamund Pike, Christopher Plummer, Jean Reno and Stellan Skarsgård.
She developed and produced the multi-award-winning film INDIAN HORSE (2018) directed by Stephen Campanelli. The film was executive produced by Clint Eastwood and won 22 awards internationally. To date it’s the highest grossing English Canadian feature film for Elevation Pictures.
Christine produced the 10-part TV mini-series TERMINAL CITY for UK’s Channel 4 and the 5-part YA miniseries CLUE for Hasbro.
She then served as Production Exec on SHUT IN with Naomi Watts and WARRIORS GATE written by Luc Besson both for Europacorp.
She also produced FRENCH EXIT (2020), the feature adaptation of author Patrick DeWitt’s acclaimed novel with Sony Classics, directed by Aza Jacobs, starring Michelle Pfeiffer and Lucas Hedges, which earned Michelle Pfeiffer a Golden Globe nomination and a CSA win for Best Actress.
She was one of the producers on Dev Patel’s upcoming directorial debut and starring vehicle MONKEY MAN for Universal.
Her latest project that she produced and developed entitled BONES OF CROWS, is a dramatic miniseries and feature film from Indigenous filmmaker and playwright Marie Clements, for the CBC and Fifth Season which premiered at TIFF 2022. The film has won 32 awards to date and is nominated for 11 more. The series Premiered on CBC on Sept 20th 2023.
She is also currently Exec Producing a feature Doc entitled 500 DAYS IN THE WILD by Dianne Whelen for Paramount + to premier internationally in 2024.