Sometimes – more often than not, actually – I get asked what I do exactly for a living and how a year in the industry I work in looks like. Although the answer changes according to the industry I am involved at the time of the question – sometimes it’s the film business, sometimes other cultural and creative industries –, I decided to give you a hint by summing up my past 12 months (from March 2021 to March 2022) work wise. Ready? Let’s go!
So, this past year I have worked solely for the film industry but as I said, as a consultant this is not a given: as a matter of fact, I had started 2021 working full time as a Content Manager on a project for a global corporation in the energy sector. But that’s another story. Moreover, as a freelancer I work with many different partners within a range of services and formats, so I guess it makes more sense if I divide my projects under this lens. Also, please note that I often provide my services through collaborations or third-parties institutions and initiatives, and, having signed many non-disclosure agreements, oftentimes I cannot “name the names”.
Strategy and Digital Communication
In the lightest and simplest team configuration, I worked with my colleague Roberto Braga with whom, from March to the end of December 2021, I had the pleasure to support, in different capacities, Alessandra Pedrotti Catoni’s documentary film Upper Story. On the Road to Well-Being; the summer tour of Francesco Fei’s coming-of-age drama Mi chiedo quando ti mancherò; and the EU-funded and TV series-focused research project DETECt – Detecting Transcultural Identity in European Popular Crime Narratives. Between June and December, we also provided social media strategies for five films (from animation to sci-fi, action and comedy) via the Milan-based entertainment marketing agency QMI.
In the meantime, I had the pleasure to continue collaborating with the Berlin-based film marketing agency Alphapanda, working on marketing strategies for several films at development stage (across horror, drama, science fiction, comedy, LGBTQ+) from Germany, Kosovo, Lithuania, Switzerland and the Netherlands, as well as on a branding project for Poland.
Training and Workshops
As far as my solo training activities are concerned, in July I joined the Mediterranean Film Institute Script to Film Workshops for the fifth time. Although only remotely this year, I worked with writers/directors Angelos Tsaousis and Katharina Rivilis on their projects HUMANΣ OF SILK ROAD and I’ll Be Gone in June, while delivering my usual lecture on marketing and audience development to all the participants.
Last November I had the opportunity to collaborate once again with TorinoFilmLab, whose Co-Production Fund is supporting the Argentinian film Puán by María Alché and Benjamin Naishtat. After working with the team on marketing and audience-centered topics, on 29 November I presented the case study during the Torino Film Commission Production Days, in the talk “Early Marketing for Your Film: A Case Study From the 2021 TorinoFilmLab Co-Production Fund”.
Back from Torino, the next day I ran a four-hours digital workshop for Ravensbourne University within the Emerging Film Technology unit of the BA (Hons) Digital Film Production, which kicked off with a presentation entitled “Marketing Before (And After) Filmmaking: An Introduction”.
In January 2022 I went to Switzerland to coordinate a very much welcomed TFL Extended on-site workshop focused on Audience Design at Solothurn Film Festival, “Making of Audience: When the Promotion Begins Before the Film”. Right after I joined the South Tyrol IDM Film Funding Script Lab RACCONTI #10. In the following weeks I had the pleasure to spend time with the teams of the selected projects, starting my consultancy on 25 January with the lecture “Film Marketing and Audience Development: First Approach and Tools”. I worked with Lorenz Tröbinger and Klara Pollak on their project Son, Ben von Grafenstein and Iris Sommerlatte on We Don’t Need Another Hero, and Daniel von Aarburg and Sophia Rubischung on Lizard Boy.
What about now? At the time of writing, I am working on a mix of consultancies that includes Laura D’Asta multi-platform documentary and a project from the Swiss-based production company Filmgerberei, while the next one… perhaps will be your own film?
I hope this post was of help to understand why, at times, it takes me a bit longer to explain what I do when someone asks me. All in all, after what the film industry suffered in 2020 (and still is going through), I still think that it’s a privilege to be able to work in this business and that we should enjoy a good streak of exciting collaborations whenever we have the chance. Plus, I am turning 40 this week, so what better time to celebrate?
By the way, I’ll be in Cannes this year, so the chances for a face-to-face drink or a coffee are higher than usual: if you’ll be there, don’t be shy!
[In the main picture: Beatrice Grannò and Claudia Marsicano in Mi chiedo quando ti mancherò, a film by Francesco Fei]