Industry guests

Information on the film professionals section


filmmaker, photographer and writer

Mika Johnson is a filmmaker, photographer and writer who directs VR projects, music videos, and fiction and documentary films. Recent works include a virtual reality adaptation of Act I of Franz Kafka’s “The Metamorphosis,” “Confessions of a Box Man,” a
surrealist feature inspired by Kobo Abe’s “The Box Man,” and “Forever Professor”: an award-winning film on Mark McKinley, a psychologist obsessed with time who has the largest collection of talking clocks in the world. From 2011 – 13, Johnson directed 15 episodes of “The
Amerikans”: a web series presently being made into a feature film. Based in Prague, Johnson teaches VR workshops, directing, documentary and is a guest speaker and consultant.

Here is a link to VRwandlung’s description



During his studies at FAMU production department he worked as line producer on multiple feature films mainly with the production company Bionaut films. In 2012, he co-founded Free Cinema – POFIV, a non-profit film education organization. In 2015 he graduated from FAMU and he co-produced a feature documentary by Martin Kohout The Czech Way. As a line producer, he worked on the last film of Jan Němec Wolf from Royal Vineyard Street. He attended EX ORIENTE with a film by Andrea Culková Testosterone Story and worked as a line producer on award winning film by Adina Pintillie Touch me Not(golden bear and best debut – Berlinale 2018). Currently he works as a freelancing producer on an interactive documentary Forgotten War.


Erwin M. Schmidt has studied film production and worked in production, international sales and for film festivals and was Wim Wenders’ 3D producer. He has an avid interest in new narrative formats and new distribution channels. In 2016 he co-founded the Propellor FilmTech Hub, together with the European Film Market of The Berlinale, the International Film Festival Rotterdam and the Copenhagen International Documentary Festival. In 2018, together with Oscar nominated producer Gian-Piero Ringel, he cofounded the FilmTech Office, a shared office for creatives and entrepreneurs in film, storytelling and tech. He is an organizer of the monthly FilmTech Meetup Berlin and the programmer of infiniTIFF, a section for new forms of storytelling at Transilvania International Film Festival.



Leen has been building startups in technology and media for almost ten years. From evangelising social media to monetising online video, she has experienced the front lines of the startup world. In 2014 she joined, the premier publication covering the European technology industry in depth as a COO. Convinced that the future of mobile video will be immersive, she founded LucidWeb, a VR and WebVR consulting and software development company. LucidWeb is research partner and co-publisher of The VR Fund European Industry Landscape and of’s investment analysis “State of the European VR Industry”. Leen is co-founder of the Women in XR Europe initiative, counting more than 400 female members across Europe. In het talk State of the European VR Industry she will share her comprehensive insights in the current European VR & AR landscape. Startups, investors, industry, you can’t miss this talk!


Qualitative Research Manager, Ipsos MORI

Neil Stevenson is a Research Manager at Ipsos Connect where he advises clients in the media and technology sectors. Neil has published several articles on VR, including evaluating the potential of VR to reach mass market adoption. Features include Marketing Week, Mediatel and the Association for Qualitative Researchers. He’s also presented papers at The Insight Show and Media Research Group. Neil is currently working with the BBC to understand how VR is adopted and used in-home amongst non-early adopters. He’s actively involved in running the Ipsos VR Sessions, connecting interesting thinkers, influencers and brands in VR. In addition to evaluating consumer reactions, Neil is currently developing VR research solutions at Ipsos to activate robust, speedy and cost- effective insights. Before joining Ipsos, Neil worked at a think tank on social policy issues. He holds a PhD in Political Communication.



An early adopter/adapter with 20+ years of experience in digital media, content and events across film, music, TV & videogames. 

Dan Benzakein is a digital media strategist with a long-standing background in entertainment & creative industries in France. He is the founder of Realities, the Romanian VR & AR Think Tank, a professional community dedicated to the emergence of virtual and augmented reality in Romania, and also writes occasionally about VR & immersive storytelling at imm3rsive.



Responsable de l’offre thématique Arte Future.

Ancienne élève de l’École normale supérieure, agrégée d’allemand, Aurélie Marx a commencé sa carrière professionnelle en tant qu’enseignante avant de rejoindre la direction d’Arte France.



Programmer Premiers Plans Film Festival Angers

Since 1989, the Premiers Plans Film Festival takes place each year in the city of Angers, France. In 2011 its competitive sections, programs and other events attracted some 68 000 filmgoers who discussed and shared their passion of cinema with young European directors and other professionals. Through the years, the Festival has become a major meeting of European cinematographic creation, as numerous directors such as Fatih Akin, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Joachim Lafosse, Matteo Garrone, Arnaud Desplechin, Xavier Beauvois, Nick Park, Cristi Puiu, Paolo Sorrentino and Thomas Vinterberg were originally discovered in Angers with the screening of their first films. Each year, the Official Selection presents 80 european first films divided in five competitive sections: European first feature films, European first short films, French first short films, student films, and European animated films, as well as two out of competition sections: free style and “next shot”.



Program coordinator Eye on Films

Developed in January 2011 by Wide with the support of the European Commission – Creative Europe MEDIA Program, Eye on Films is a label and a support platform dedicated to the promotion and circulation of first and second European films. With a network of more than 153 film professionals (including festivals, distributors, VOD platforms and sales agents based in more than 50 countries), we guarantee the promotion, exhibition and commercialization of more than 112 independent films worldwide.


Eye on Films (EoF) follows several objectives:

  • To coordinate a network of festival and distribution partners in both European and third countries
  • To coordinate a Label of first feature films, selected by the EoF partners (approx. 12 to 15 new titles per year, European and non-European)
  • To ensure the screening of these films in the EoF festival partners




The International Film Critics’ Week (Settimana Internazionale della Critica) is an independent section of the Venice Film Festival. Organised by the Union of Italian Film Critics’ (Sindacato Nazionale Critici Cinematografici Italiani – SNCCI), the Critics’ Week presents, in competition, a selection of seven first-time director’s full-length films. Two additional titles are presented out of competition. The seven films in competition are eligible for the “International Film Critics’ Week Audience Award” and the “Lion of the Future – ‘Luigi De Laurentiis’ Award for a Debut Film”. Acquistion manager at Academy Two is an Italian distribution company specialized in art-house films. Our slate includes award-winning works by world cinema masters of the likes of Olivier Assayas, Aleksandr Sokurov, François Ozon, and Andrey Zvyagintsev.



Acquisition manager at Pluto

Pluto is a world sales and festival distribution company devoted to bringing quality feature films to the international market and worldwide audiences. In focus are arthouse and cross-over films, works by emerging talents both international as well as German titles. Pluto Film’s objective is to make films circulate and to be seen across the world and distribution channels.




WIDE is a leading independent sales company currently representing more than 20 new feature films a year and a library of more than 500 fiction titles and 300 documentaries represented by the branch WIDE HOUSE. In 2011, Eye On Films (EOF) was created, which is a label focused on promoting first feature films and highlights emerging authors through its unique global network of film professionals. Our catalogue contains a variety of movies from internationally acclaimed directors (restored classics by Max Ophuls LOLA MONTES, J-L Godard VIVRE SA VIE among others) but also a selection of genre/horror and edgy dramas from around the world. In 2015, WIDE launched its Distribution departement, with the release of « BONTE DIVINE », a film by Vinko Bresan, which was a box-office success in Croatia and internationally distributed in more than 32 countries. In less than a year, already 3 films released in France.



Daniela Stanikova has been working in the audiovisual industry on various positions since 90s – e.g. programme coordinator for Karlovy Vary International Film Festival or documentary editor in the sales department of Czech Television. From 2010 to  2016 she was a member of the Expert Committee of Ministry of Culture Media and Audiovisual Department. She has been the head Creative Europe Desk since its very beginning in 2003.

Ruzova 13, 
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