Marcel Grant - Founder & Selection Committee
“Being an Independent filmmaker myself and fully understanding the difficulties of trying to make a film that is either different or original, my intention, when starting WSFF, was to give writer/directors - working outside the tried and tested formulae of corporate filmmaking - the opportunity to show their hard work and creative integrity to an audience that is still looking for that. I believe our choices at WSFF does this, creating an internationally important selection of very diverse films from passionate filmmakers determined to speak their minds through the medium they all love…cinema. Is a good film something that simply entertains you for two hours, or one you may struggle with, or which provokes you, but then stays with you long after you have left the theatre?”
About Marcel Grant - A British filmmaker based in London and Berlin. He has written, directed and produced four feature films: Open My Eyes (2016), Coffee Sex You (2014), Just Inès (2010) and What's Your Name 41? (2005).
Conny Hammelmann - Berlin Director & Selection Committee
”As somebody living in Berlin, you really can’t complain about a lack of choice in events, festivals, parks – you can rush from one thing to the next. So why make the effort of taking a train to Angermünde and going to Stolpe to yet another event.? This is why: the minute you arrive in the middle of the beautiful, unspoilt Uckermark countryside, stand in front of the impressive Stolper Turm, wander around and relax, then later sit down in the Turm, forget every day's bustle and immerse into our „wonderous“ stories from all over the world, you will become part of a new film festival community. If you love films and are keen on learning something about how they come to life, talking with their creators and fellow festival goers in the most charming surroundings... you’ll love this!”
About Conny Hammelmann - After 16 years in the European and German film funding world, where she has travelled to many festivals and has contributed to many film projects from development stage to the screen. Conny joined the Berlin and Cologne based dubbing and subtitling company alias film und sprachtransfer as a shareholder and is mainly responsible for sales and acquisition. Alongside that, she works as a freelance agent with Trinity Movie Agency in Berlin. Between February 2012 to December 2016, Conny was the project manager of the German Federal Film Fund (DFFF).
Laura Million - Director of Operations and Communication
“Who doesn’t love films? They’re magical … taking you to different places, characters, stories and emotions. There’s such great opportunity as a filmmaker to bring so many emotions and challenges to your audience even in each specific genre. The best romance I’ve ever seen was a film full of war and horror, really hard to watch and impossible to forget. But the love story at its heart has never left me. I’m excited to be part of the WSFF team and to help bring the passion, stories and education of cinema to a wider audience.”
About Laura Million - Laura graduated with a degree in maths from UCL and a Masters in statistics at Manchester Victoria University. Her Masters thesis in analysis for a cardiological study led to her first job as a medical statistician at Withington Hospital, where she developed an interest in computer programming and moved to the banking industry working on a variety of systems. Her experience in programming and passion for data took Laura into the data warehousing world, where she has worked ever since, designing and building complex data systems supporting major organisations around the UK and Europe.
Yang Du - Voice of China
“Many years ago when I first came to the UK to study at Central Saint Martins College of Art, my culture study tutor asked the class, “Why would you want to be an artist or designer, does the world still need anymore?” I spoke up “Yes”, I said, “because we have something different to say. That is called a voice”. School is a place where we are searching for the self, and I was very lucky to be there in a completely different world of language and thinking, trying to learn about my individuality and strength. London offered me an equal platform as a young creative fashion designer regardless of where I was from. When Marcel came knocking, asking me to be one of the curators of WSFF, I had those words in my head: ’Voice of China’. We want to give an equal opportunity to discover the voice of Chinese filmmakers, directors of a new era, looking for films made with new ideas and perspectives. But most of all, we want to share this with you.”
About Yang Du - Born in Dalian, North China, Yang holds a BA and MA in fashion from Central Saint Martins. She worked alongside Vivienne Westwood and John Galliano before establishing her own label YANG DU in 2009. Yang became the first Chinese designer to receive a Newgen Award from the British Fashion Council in 2009. Most recently she has been working on Independent films in both Europe and China as a style director and fashion consultant. Furthermore Yang is a visiting tutor at Tsing Hua University in Beijing, and was recently named one of the most influential Chinese people by Forbes magazine.
Lucía Cabello - Short Film Curator
Spanish-born Lucia graduated from Santiago de Comportela University with a degree in Law and a Master's in Legal Practice. She then continued her studies at Bologna University in Italy with Digital Law, which included courses in Entertainment Law & Film Industry (Fondazione Cineteca di Bologna, Italy), as well as Curation & Exhibition Management at City University of London in the UK. Lucia lives in London where she currently pursues a career in teaching whilst continuing with her studies. She keenly participates in cultural events, one of them being the highly successful Spanish Film Nights where she is able to combine her passions for film, culture and teaching.
Theo Grant - Technical Director & Selection Committee
Theo began his journey in cinema after graduating with a media degree from Leeds Beckett University. He then started his career in the film industry as a projectionist in a private screening room in London’s Soho, where he build his unique skill set, working in high pressured, but highly rewarding environments. In 2017, Theo became Print Transport Manager at Soho House UK, as well as maintaining his technical duties as part of the in-house film team. Since 2018 Theo is the curator for 'Specialist Seasons’ at Soho House, focussing on exploring a variety of themes, directors & eras. At WSFF Theo is in charge of all things technical, as well as being part of the selection committee.