What’s the Buzz – Thursday 28 September 2017


We are in full swing here at JHWFF. People are happy and getting some great business done, so all credit to the brilliant Festival organisers!

Yesterday kicked off  with the Amplifying Impact Networking Breakfast  in which filmmakers brainstormed how best to get indigenous people involved in the wonderful content filmed in their countries,

The Commissioners from STV, BBC NHU, NHK , as well as Animal Planet/Science Channel, ORF WNET and BBC Natural World shared their wish lists with us.

” VR is both a gift and an opportunity’ said the panel in The Aesthetics of VR session, which delved deeper into the specifics of directing and shooting VR.

We also had a Reality Check – in the form of a great discussion on the challenges and future of immersive technologies.

And, last but not least, it’s time to reveal today’s Rising Stars. We asked our NHN corporate members to nominate people in their team who they felt deserved special recognition or a pat on the back. Find out who  Terra Mater’s Rising Star is here , and also check out who  Evolutions have chosen

And we are looking forward to the Awards Ceremony tonight ….



9:00am – 10:00am Finding Truth in the Mis-information Age

Seriously, what IS a fact? How do we stay credible and gain an audience’s trust in a world filled with fake news and manipulated or distorted information.
Made possible in part through support from the National Science Foundation 
Facilitator: Paula S. Apsell, Senior Executive Producer, Director, NOVA & ScienceNOW, WGBH Science Unit
With: Debbie Banks, Campaign Leader for Tigers & Wildlife Crime, Environmental Investigation Agency; David Dugan, CEO and co-founder, Windfall Films; Marcos Orellana, Director – Environment and Human Rights Division, Human Rights Watch
In: Explorers Room Jackson Lake Lodge

9:00am – 10:00am: Visual Effects & Natural History Storytelling

Visual effects are best recognised in blockbuster action movies, but they are also a powerful storytelling tool in natural history. Top producers and creatives examine how visual effects can enrich the narrative and the ethical issues that are raised concerning VFX in documentary storytelling.
Facilitator: Paul Schleicher, Executive Producer, axisVFX
With: Jon Bardin, Senior Director of Production & Development, Discovery Channel; John Downer, Executive Producer and Director, John Downer Productions; Mike Gunton, Creative Director – The Natural History Unit & Factual BBC Worldwide, BBC Studios; Howard Jones, Co-Founder & Visual Effects Supervisor, Axis VFX
In: Grizzly Jackson Lake Lodge

10:30am – 11:30 am: The D Word
Embedding Diversity in Audiences, Content and Partners
News flash: Embracing diversity is more than a social movement. The economic impact has been deep and measurable. The creative opportunity with including diverse voices and perspectives drives impact and resonance. This session unpacks the spectrum of possibility with those working to amplify diversity in our industry at every point of opportunity.
WithPamela A. Aguilar, Senior Director of Programming & Development, PBS; Effie Brown, Producer; Karen Greenfield, Vice President of Production & Business Operations, Nat Geo Wild; Julian Hector, Head of The Natural History Unit, BBC Studios
Facilitator & Session: Producer Julie Ann Crommett, Vice President – Multicultural Audience Engagement, Walt Disney Studios
In: Explorers Room Jackson Lake Lodge

10:30 am – 12:00pm: Student & Emerging Finalist Showcase
Between Two Lichens (4 minutes) – The word “symbiosis” was invented to describe how an alga and a fungus live and work together to make up a lichen. An international team of scientists had to fundamentally change their perspective to discover the third symbiotic partner 150 years later.
The Healing Lizard (with Fernanda Prudencio) (12 minutes) – In the heart of South America lies a land of contrasts and ancient traditions – Bolivia. High up in its mountains, lives a tiny lizard.  A whole culture is about to be revealed through this incredible reptile. The Healing Lizard highlights the fragile relationship that exists between nature, tradition and culture, showing the various elements of its complex interaction, which needs to find a balance in order to achieve sustainability. Having the lizard as a common thread, the story is told through three different characters; a biologist, a subsistence farmer and a traditional healer. Each reveals a different perspective of one reality. Science, nature, tradition, belief, faith and culture, are some of the themes that this film explores.  Equilibrium and harmony is what a traditional cultures are trying to find, but what happens when harmony and balance breaks down? The Healing Lizard is an engaging and visually stunning film that embarks on a complex journey, told through the story of a tiny creature.

Wild Expectations (with Rene Arneda and Christian Munoz Donoso) (42 minutes) – Wild Expectations follows the adventures of two regular guys, both wildlife enthusiasts and good friends, as they travel to Chilean Patagonia in search of a very unique puma, the elusive “No Tail”. They utilize guiding skills learned in Africa for tracking animals, following signs provided by nature. All life forms excite the dynamic duo, nothing is too big or too small. The relationship between the presenters is the key to presenting the animal subjects in a fresh new way as they joke and have a laugh between delivering natural history and behavioral information. The presenters are accompanied by a small film crew, well experienced in the field of wildlife cinematography, who are also part of the adventure and featured in the production.
In: Antelope 2 Jackson Lake Lodge

Lunch and a Movie
12:00am – 2:00am: Impact Finalist Showcase
Sponsored by Discovery Communications: Chasing Coral (a Netflix documentary, Exposure Labs); Huntwatch (IFAW for Discovery); Ivory Games (a Netflix documentary, Terra Mater Film Studios, Vulcan Productions in association with Malaika Pictures in association with Appian Way).
WithJon Bardin, Senior Director of Production & Development, Discovery Channel; Kerry Branon, Producer, International Fund for Animal Welfare; Walter Koehler, CEO, Terra Mater Factual Studios; Richard Ladkani, Film Director & Cinematographer; Richard Moos, Producer, International Fund for Animal Welfare; Larissa Rhodes, Director of Creative Development, Exposure Labs
In: Explorers Room Jackson Lake Lodge

5:00pm – 11:00pm: Grand Teton Awards Gala
Sponsored by Panasonic and Jackson Hole WILD

Get ready for a night to remember as we recognize the films and filmmakers selected by this year’s jury as this year’s award winners! Join us at the beautiful Center for the Arts in Jackson Hole for an evening of celebration, drinks, eating and dancing to the music of Jackson Hole Six!

4:30, Buses begin leaving Jackson Lake Lodge
5:30, Cocktail Reception
6:00, Theatre doors open
6:30, Awards Presentation
8:00, Dinner, Music & Gala Celebration
9:30, Buses begin returning to Jackson Lake Lodge
11:00, Last bus leaves for the Lodge. Really.

Where? Center for the Arts


11:30am – 12:30pm: Getting Creative with Drones
Explore the creative side of using drones with some of the best in the business. Hear from a panel of drone experts about their experiences and advice to creatively use this popular specialty camera.
Facilitator: Vanessa Boshoff, Creative Producer & Head of Development, VisionHawk Films
With: Nel Boshoff, Aerial Cinematographer; Patrick Dykstra; Nick Wolcott, Elevated Productions
In: Antelope 1 Jackson Lake Lodge


There are two speed pitching session scheduled for Thursday; one at 9:00am and the other at 11:00am, both taking place in the Osprey room Jackson Lake Lodge.

Advanced sign up was required: www.signupgenius.com/go/10c0b4aaba92da2f58-2017

Participating organizations include:

ARTE, BBC Natural World, Curiosity Stream, Nat Geo Digital Platforms, Nat Geo WILD, Nature/WNET, NHK, NOVA, Off the Fence, ORF/Universum, PBS International, Science Entertainment Exchange, Smithsonian Networks, Vulcan Productions.

IMPORTANT: Slots are 12 minutes, which includes 2 minutes fortransition. Pitches will last 10 minutes, and will be timed.


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