Guiding Lights 5 Mentees (l-r): Afarin Eghbal, Martin Wallace, Alexa Seligman, and Andrew Lang.
Guiding Lights 5 Mentees (l-r): Afarin Eghbal, Martin Wallace, Alexa Seligman, and Andrew Lang.

Guiding Lights 5 - Mentee Update No.2

23 December 2013

As 2013 draws to a close, we look back on the achievements of the Guiding Lights 5 mentees in a series of spotlight pieces that look at their individual stories.

Afarin Eghbal

Alongside an ever-growing list of accolades for her multi-award winning animated-documentary, Abuelas, in 2013 Afarin was named a Screen International Star of Tomorrow. Over the past year she has been working on the development of her feature, Paris Syndrome, a psychological drama based on the condition of the same name, and continued to attend and sit on jury panels at film festivals around the world with Abuelas.

Afarin’s mentor Bart Layton, who directed The Imposter, has been very generous in his support of her, also offering access to the staff and resources at his company Raw. Opening up these networks has been an important outcome for Afarin, and we look forward to seeing how this mentorship continues to evolve in the future.

Martin Wallace

As well as focusing on the development of a number of feature projects, this year Martin has been working on a collaboration with musician Jarvis Cocker. Made for the BFI and BBC Storyville, The Big Melt is ‘a twisted-time capsule for future generations’, which combines archive film and live music as a homage to steel, Sheffield, and industry.

In addition to being matched with David Mackenzie as his mentor, Liverpool-based Martin has found being part of the Guiding Lights cohort and meeting up with peers around training and networking events of great benefit.

Alexa Seligman

With a varied slate of projects in development, including an adaptation of Stephen Fry’s Hippopotamus, Alexa recently launched a crowd-funding campaign to release the soundtrack album for The Fold, the first feature produced through her production outfit The Electric Shadow Company, released in cinemas March 28th, 2014. You can listen to some of the music from the film on the crowd-fund page here.

Over the past few months, Alexa’s mentor Andrea Calderwood has provided feedback and guidance on developing the slate, along with invaluable business advice around growing a sustainable and successful production company. Andrea’s input has fed into Alexa and The Electric Shadow Company’s new ventures, forming a digital arm, Rabbit Foot, and setting up an investment fund ESF.

Andrew Lang

Since the beginning of the year, Andrew has been busy directing commercials in exotic locations for the likes of Coca Cola, FIFA and Samsung, spent time in Italy working on a new script, and had his short comedy Pussy People go into development as a series for ITV in the US. He was also Director of Photography on the 2013 SXSW Audience Award winner The Short Game, and currently has two feature projects in early development.

During his time with his mentor Joanna Hogg, Andrew has gained insight into Joanna’s writing and development process, and received a lot of input on his future projects. Andrew’s looking forward to developing his writing, so that he can write the next projects that he directs.

Read Guiding Lights 5 – Mentee Update No.1 here and Update No. 3 here.

Guiding Lights is the UK film industry’s leading mentoring programme. Aimed at writers, directors and producers already actively developing a career in features, it provides support through high-level mentoring, complemented by a range of training and networking activities.

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