Experts from the industry

The Beeston Film Festival Jury comprises of well-established film directors, writers, actors and professionals from the film industry. They will be judging the films that feature in the festival to discern the winners of each category.

Frank Harriman

Frank Harriman - UK

Frank Harriman is an award-winning filmmaker, writer and educator. Currently dividing his time between developing his own creative projects and inspiring a new generation of young filmmakers to take their first steps into the industry, he uses the opportunity of judging at Beeston to recharge his own artistic batteries. As he says, “Watching the incredible talents on show can be such an inspirational experience, it’s easy to forget I’ve got a job to do.”

Adam Anwi

Adam Anwi - UK

Writer & Director Adam Awni is a London based Director who has a background in music promos and corporate videos. His recent short film “Bunny” is currently on the festival circuit having garnered 3 International awards and 8 nominations.

Tommy Draper

Tommy Draper - UK

Derbyshire born Tommy Draper is a writer of both short and feature films. Tommy has won many awards for his short films and was BAFTA long-listed for Stop/Eject. His zombie feature film debut, Wasteland, has been released on DVD in America, Germany and Japan. Currently he has 4 short films in post-production, most notably the fantasy short Songbird. He is writing several more shorts and features, with the aim of them going into production next year.

Gino Van Hecke

Gino Van Hecke - Belgium

Gino founded Zeno Pictures (Belgium) in 2006 to buy, release and distribute (almost) forgotten cult films, and other unique pictures and worldwide (cult) hits. “Already as a child, I was a big movie fan. Later, I attended film school in Brussels and graduated as an editor in 1993. Just like director Quentin Tarantino, I started working in a video store, which I swapped after 7 years for a job at the biggest rental organization in Belgium. I attended the Cannes Film Festival for the first time in 2004, quickly followed by the American Film Market in Los Angeles, the European Film Market in Berlin and the Hong Kong Film Market. In 2006, I released my first film in the Benelux, The Tiger Blade, which led to me starting my own company, Zeno Pictures.” In September 2017 Gino received Buyer of the Year for the region of Benelux Award at Indywood Film Market.

Francesca Levi

Francesca Levi - UK

Francesca Ruth Levi is a filmmaker that specialises in live cinema and site specific pieces. Her short films have been screened all over the world and she has had the pleasure to work on a number of exciting projects including Live Cinema's project 'The Unfilmables' creating live music cinema with composer Mica Levi and alongside Caberet Voltaire, Wrangler and filmmaker Tasha Tung. Francesca also runs a film festival called Everyday Arias ( www.everydayarias.com ) which is dedicated to short films that utilise opera within everyday life, the festival also embraces submissions from world theatre traditions such as Kathakali, Kabuki, Chinese opera etc. Francesca is super excited to be seeing some of the wonderful films selected for the festival

Thomas Grascouer

Thomas Grascouer - France

Thomas Grascœur is a French award-winning director and actor. As an actor, he often appears on French Television (Flic tout simplement, by Yves Rénier, with Mathilde Seigner and Philippe Torreton, Alice Nevers, Clem, Nos Chers Voisins, Plus belle la vie...). He's also acting on stage in Paris both in classical and modern plays. As a director, his two last films have been selected in more than 60 festivals and won more than 20 awards, including the Audience Award at the Beeston Film Festival. His first one, A Parisian Bourgeois takes a break, a modern adaptation from a short story by the French writer Guy de Maupassant, is regularly broadcasted on OCS (Orange Cinema Series, the French channel of HBO).

Melissa Skirboll

Melissa Skirboll - USA

Melissa Skirboll is an award-winning director, writer, actor and producer. Her short film MY DINNER WITH SCHWARTZEY made its UK premiere at Beeston Film Festival in 2019 and she is thrilled to be participating in the 2020 festival as a judge. SHWARTZEY was a finalist in the Bermuda Short Film Festival, and has since been awarded “Best Dramedy: at the Manhattan Film Festival. It continues to play at festivals around the world. With over 10 years of directing for theatre, Melissa turned her eye to film in 2016 with “Show & Tell Tango”. “Tango” premiered at the at the Västerås Film Festival in Sweden in September 2017. An official selection in 20 festivals worldwide, “Tango” has garnered 3 wins and 6 nominations for directing, acting, writing and short film.

Billie Vee

Billie Vee - Greece

Billie is a London based actress and screenwriter of Greek origin. Having worked extensively in Greek and Cypriot television and theatre, she moved to London, where she has performed in theatre, including Pleasance Theatre London, Southwark Playhouse, Old Red Lion, Upstairs at the Gatehouse, New Diorama Theatre as well as in independent films, commercials and recently in webseries and a TV pilot. She is also a screenwriter, with five short films under her belt so far. Her last award-winning short film ‘Testing Greta' has been officially selected for festivals across the UK, US and Europe, including the BAFTA qualifying Aesthetica Film Festival and British Urban Film Festival. Billie is in preparation of a feature film which she's written and will also be acting in.

Marina Anna Eich

Marina Anna Eich - Germany

Producer, Head of Aquisition & Distribution, Public Relation, Actress. After high school, Marina Anna Eich studied Spanish, English and French in Ecuador, Canada and France. She studied Dance at the Dance Academy at the Opera Leipzig and at the University of Music and performing Arts in Frankfurt/Main. As an actor and dancer she performed in several film- and television productions, for example as 'Eva Braun' in a documentary movie for the Japanese television. In the year 2000 she met the team of wtp and since then works for the film company as actor, producer and is responsible for the PR, sales and distribution. Since 2009 she is product manager for the DVD Label which focuses on arthouse titles. In 2002 she was awarded the BEST FEMALE ACTOR AWARD during the Night of Bavarian Shorts (on the occasion of the AFM American Film Market Los Angeles/USA) for her acting perform a short film “Call it Love”. Marina Anna Eich was a member of jury at several festivals.

Victoria Gravenstede

Victoria Gravenstede - UK

Victoria is passionate about stories and storytelling and has spent a lifetime absorbing any and every story that came her way. She spent eight years retelling some of them and creating her own as a tour guide travelling around Europe and Canada before returning to the UK 5 years ago where she met Rebekah Louisa Smith. For the last two years she has worked with The Film Festival Doctor to support emerging Filmmakers as they launch their stories to the world and help them negotiate the festival circuit.

Anna Wallace

Anna Wallace - UK

Buckinghamshire born Anna Wallace is a final-year English student and the Head of Writing for the University of Nottingham's Film Making Society. As a member of its committee she runs regular screenwriting workshops for members and helps to foster the University's burgeoning film and writing talents. The writer and co-producer of '22:36', a student-made short currently in the final stages of post-production, Anna is a life-long film and television junkie, and aspires to be a full-time screenwriter.

Deepika Suseelan

Deepika Suseelan - India

A post graduate in Communication and Journalism with University First Rank and gold medal from University of Kerala (India), Deepika Suseelan started her film programming career in 2010 as Programme Assistant for International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) and later became the Programme Manager of the festival in 2014. In 2017, she left IFFK and joined the International Film Festival of India (IFFI, Goa) as Senior Film Programmer for the 48th edition of the festival. IFFI is one of the most important and oldest film festivals in Asia. She served as Head of Film Programming for the prestigious Golden Jubilee edition of the festival in 2019. In a career spanning 10 years, she has done 18 international film festivals which include IFFK, IFFI and International Documentary and Short Film Festival of Kerala (IDSFFK).

Dr Sharon Coleclough

Dr Sharon Coleclough - UK

Dr. Sharon Coleclough completed her PhD in Cinematic Performance at the University of Salford in 2014. A Senior Lecturer in Film Production and Sound Design at Staffordshire University, her work combines the theory and practice of moving image production, and the ways in which meaning is created through the technical application of craft. Recent publications consider the relationship sound and the city focussing upon Berlin, with another article exploring the relationship of BAME actors to lighting and camera, with an inspiring lecture series commission from Learning on Screen on the same subject. Sharon works internationally on the collaborative digital project, “The Laptop Tour” which considers the ways performance can be realised through the use of technology. Sharon has worked in both the UK and USA on varied moving image projects and continues to maintain those links whilst also working in education.