News Reel & Blog

Written by Jack Hopkins on 13th April 2018

MIPTV is the place to be if you’re in the buying, selling, financing and distributing entertainment content market. It takes place in the (usually) sunny Cannes and over the last few days there were some huge announcements and ground-breaking deals made – here are our highlights from this year’s event.

The head of content strategy and planning at Facebook kicked off the week with a digitally charged talk about technology in the entertainment sphere, and the restrictions that surround it in a saturated marketplace. Matthew Henick stated that, “the issue with these golden ages is innovation becomes harder; it reduces creative risk-taking.” With 70% of the consumption of Netflix occurring on a television maybe it’s going to be the quality of content that’s going to make companies stand-out rather than their innovative ways of delivering it?

Robert Rodriguez also rocked up at Cannes to talk about his latest project, The Limit. The Machete, Sin City and From Dusk ‘Til Dawn director is returning with a live-action, short form virtual-reality series. It will premiere  on Surreal, a VR app being launched after for VR headsets later this year in an attempt to attract a younger, millennial audience through their smartphones.

The scripted web-series, Carmilla, won this year’s MIPTV 2018 Brand Content of the Year award.It follows the life of a vlogging student whose roommate goes missing, and is replaced by the mysterious Carmilla. The series has taken the digital world by storm, with over 71m views on YouTube and being  viewed in over 190 countries.

Finally, there was also an insightful talk on the influx of more substantial female characters in scripted drama. The overriding consensus was that it was the rise of women in show running, direction and production that was the main antagonist for the change if roles in television series’, best witnessed in shows like Homeland  and Black Mirror.

We hope everyone had a great time out there, even if it was raining for most of it!


Written by Jack Hopkins on 6th April 2018

We all recognise Joaquin Phoenix from his earlier roles in Signs and Gladiator, but he’s gradually found his recent calling in quirkier roles that have sculpted his career, in one way or another. From his self-enforced hiatus/retirement after his appearance in 2010’s I’m Still Here, he’s been working on stylish roles that have refined his acting skills, making him as one of the finest (and in demand) actors around.

His return to acting in 2012 in The Master sparked this change of direction for Joaquin. He’s always  been an actor that has chosen quality over quantity, performing in one film a year for most of his career. Her in 2013 and Inherent Vice in 2014 both received critical acclaim and have now elevated him to a point where the roles are coming in thick and fast.

This year’s You Were Never Really Here has sparked a new era for Joaquin. He stars as Joe, an ex-marine turned hitman who goes on a rampage to try and save a local girl from a whole world of trouble. Phoenix delivers an incredibly steely yet relentless performance, adding yet another stylish string to his experienced bow.

Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Away On Foot (which is coming out later this year) couldn’t be further away from his performance in You Were Never Really Here. The film follows John Callaghan and his life from his accident at the age of 21 to his sobriety which began at the age of 27. 43 year old Phoenix plays the 27 year old in the last stages of his life, so it’ll be interesting how he makes the transition from a relentless killer to a vulnerable alcoholic. Also this year, which could be seen as a metaphor for his rise to an even higher level of acting, Joaquin plays Jesus in Garth Davis’ Mary Magdalene which follows Rooney Mara as Mary (Rooney Mara), on her quest to elevate herself in a male-orientated world.

Joaquin has three more film lined up for release in 2019 which we’re so excited for, further showing how his majestic rise to acting stardom is set to continue.