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Berlinale Bloggers 2018 #BerlinalePeople: Damon D'Oliveira

Film producer Damon D' Oliveira from Toronto reveals his latest film ideas and how to make the perfect elevator pitch.

By Jutta Brendemühl

Name and role: Damon D’Oliveira, Toronto-based film producer of Conquering Lion Pictures Inc. with director Clement Virgo, … of RUDE (recently digitally restored by TIFF), LIE WITH ME (Berlin 2006), WHAT WE HAVE, THE BOOK OF NEGROES (EFM 2016), and Winner of 2016 Drama Series Days Pitch for THE ILLEGAL. 2017 CFC Award for Creative Excellence. 2018 Berlinale “10 Canadian Producers at EFM.“

This is my xxth Berlinale.
Not sure, I lost track after my 10th! I love this festival. Like Cannes and of course my home-town's TIFF, the Berlinale is a must-go A-festival. Lots of great connections made here, having had 3 films officially selected in the Panorama and two of my earlier shorts. Plus two projects in the co-pro market and Drama Series Pitch.

As a Canadian producer, I can’t miss the EFM because …
a) it is such a great meeting point to build European partnerships.
b) the festival’s as well put together as a BMW.
c) it provides excellent Valentine’s Day shopping in Berlin for my daughter!

My elevator pitch for my latest project:
ORGANIC, for the people. A psychological thriller set in the world of fruit distribution where a mysterious 20-something drifter suddenly finds herself the primary suspect in a contamination crisis.

Most important meeting I will have in Berlin:
With whoever wants to buy my next film.

Love or hate Potsdamer Platz:
Appreciate the post-modern influences but hate those Siberian winds that rattle through. A short walk away is Peter Eisenman's Holocaust Memorial, which is an astonishingly meditative and disorienting experience (in a good way) if you need a break from the hustle of the Platz.

Wildest party I normally attend:
By far, the annual Teddy Awards queer bash put on by the Panorama.

It will have been a great Berlinale 2018 when …
I’ve been able to see Stephen Soderbergh’s newest iPhone-shot movie, UNSANE.
And the temperature rises to 15 degrees.
 

Part of an ongoing series of mini profiles on the blog German Film @ Canada on the movers and shakers that make the Berlinale one of the most important events in the international film calendar: the filmmakers, programmers, curators, industry promoters and visitors, from rookies to veterans.

 

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