Jason Blum to speak at Australian International Screen Forum

Jason Blum (Photo: Gage Skidmore, via Flickr). 

Jason Blum, one of Hollywood’s hottest producers, will be among the speakers at the second annual Australian International Screen Forum in New York this month.

The founder of Blumhouse Productions, he specialises in highly profitable low-budget genre films including Get Out, Glass, Split, Halloween and The Purge,. Insidious and Paranormal Activity franchises.

According to The Numbers, he has produced or exec produced 66 films with a worldwide aggregate box office of nearly $US4 billion.

Comprising workshops, panel conversations and screenings, the event for US and Australian professionals will run from March 19-22 at the Lincoln Centre’s Francesca Beale Theatre.

Jennifer Kent’s The Nightingale will screen on opening night and Wayne Blair’s Top End Wedding will be the closing night attraction.

There will be sessions on financing, audience development, casting and creative relationships and festivals and markets, with a specific focus on international independent feature film and television production.

The forum’s ambassadors Baz Luhrmann, Catherine Martin, Deborra-Lee Furness and Hugh Jackman have worked alongside co-founders Chris Beale and Michael Kelleher to devise this year’s program.

Luhrmann said: “The tenacity and forthright independence that you find in the Australian filmmaking process is equally alive in the filmmaking process in New York. It is for this reason that they make great cousins and a cross-fertilisaton between the young, emerging creators in Australia and New York is something that CM and I are deeply committed to promoting.

“We were lucky to grow up in a country that believed in emerging talent and for that reason we are now able to do whatever we can to return the favour and support to a new generation of Australian filmmakers.”

HBO will host a case study with the filmmakers of United Skates, the Tribeca award-winning documentary, while Anthony Maras’ Hotel Mumbai will be the subject of a case study in international co-productions and marketing.

There will be screenings of Bruce Beresford’s Ladies in Black and Alex Grigor’s Jill Bilcock: Dancing the Invisible, and Beresford and Bilcock will take part in discussions.

The event is organised by the Australian International Screen Forum, which is dedicated to promoting the screen arts by connecting Australian film, TV and digital screen producers and screen talent to their US counterparts and distributors to achieve broader exhibition of their screen works.

Beale said: “I am very pleased with the line-up of films for this year’s Screen Forum. It’s been a strong year for Australian film evidenced by a record number of Australian films shown at Sundance.

“We have benefited greatly from the active assistance of our four ambassadors in creating a strong program of industry sessions that are sure to draw American and Australian industry professionals alike.”

Costume and production designer Martin added: “The Australian Screen Forum provides an opportunity for emerging Australian filmmakers to network in a meaningful way, whether the goal is to learn, access financing or make overall connections that help make their film.”

Early bird industry passes and individual tickets for the screening program and Screen Talks are available to purchase now. For more information go to here.