by | Sep 26, 2019 | Past Panels


Name of Seminar

If you are an independent filmmaker, the hardest part is getting the funding to actually make your film. This panel of experts will provide real world solutions to your issues and illustrate methods that can be mastered to make your dream a reality. Q&A to follow.


PANEL 4: SUNDAY October 20th — 10:00am-12:00pm

VENUE: LA Live – Regal Cinema , 1000 West Olympic BLVD., Los Angeles 90015 (3rd Fl-screening room) Auditorium 12

Deborah Gilels (Moderator)

Deborah Gilels experience in the entertainment industry has run the gamut from film/television production and development, to mergers and acquisitions in the international film market and public relations for film companies, writers, actors, authors and directors. From 2000- 2014 she was a senior executive with the Japanese media company Media Design Institute, acquiring television product for Japan TV and producing an entertainment talk show for Japan and South Korea. As a development executive, she has also worked with JVC’s entertainment division. Gilels has run a successful media consulting PR company for the past 14 years, assisting writers, filmmakers, and actors launch their careers in the entertainment industry, as well as promote independent feature films and documentaries, by way of public relations, marketing, distribution and project development.

Among the films she has launched are: Keiko the Untold Story of the Star of Free Willy, Cevin Soling’s award-winning documentary The War on Kids on Pivot, the Chazz Palminteri- Andie MacDowell family drama Mighty Fine for Lionsgate, the US premiere of the documentary Fallout and James Haven’s short film Court of Conscience starring his father Jon Voight and the

late Anton Yelchin. She did publicity for anime series Lupin 3rd Part 4 on Adult Swim in May 2017, Lupin the 3rd Part 5, Megalobox on Crunchyroll. She also was the lead publicist on Fathom Events release of Hayao Miyazaki’s Lupin the 3rd: The Castle of Cagliostro, where she set up the filmed interview with John Lasseter to promote the film. Gilels is currently launching the indie film The World Without You starring Radha Mitchell and James Tupper, Valerie McCaffrey’s acclaimed short Dirty Bomb, about the Jewish prisoners who sabotaged Hitler’s V2 Bomb, and Hajji starring The Walking Dead’s Ross Marquand.She has successfully promoted films in festivals such as Dances WithFilms, LA Femme, Starz, Toronto International Film Festival, Palm SpringsInternational Film Festival, New Filmmakers, St. Louis, UN Film Festival, and has represented feature films and documentaries in markets such as AFM, Berlin, Cannes, and MIP-TV. She executive produced the award-winning documentaries Bearing the Torch: Politics & the Games for ESPN/Hearst Entertainment and The Gilligan Manifesto soon to be released by Gunpowder. Prior to that, as a development executive and producer Gilels collaborators included actors Robert Duvall, Jenna Malone, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Rachel Leigh Cook; writers and directors A. Scott Berg, Michael Hirst, and Paul Verhoeven. Companies and producers such as: Warp Films, Disney, ESPN, Wind Dancer Films, Lionsgate and New Line Cinema/TV.

She has also held executive positions at Fox, Warner Brothers TV and PFG Entertainment. In that capacity, the films she has worked on as a development executive include: Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead starring Christina Applegate and David Duchovny, Crossing the Mob starring Jason Bateman, Showdown in Little Tokyo starring the late Brandon Lee and Cary- Hiroyuki Tagawa, Penthathlon starring Dolph Lundgren, Enemy of the State starring Will Smith, A Cooler Climate starring Sally Field and Judy Davis, and A Slight Case of Murder starring William H. Macy.


Cathya Jentis

Caytha is a successful independent writer/producer who started filmmaking in her early forties while driving carpools in suburbia as a mother of two.  Her stories are typically female centric character driven heightened reality comedies. She has written and produced features, a short form scripted series and an award winning stage play.  Her last feature that she also directed, “Bad Parents,” can be seen on HBO. She plans to be in production on her fourth feature this December. Caytha has an MFA in Screenwriting from UCLA and a BS in TV/Film from Syracuse University.  She began her career as a literary agent in New York. Caytha was recently profiled by the Writers Guild East and recognized as an age disrupter by AARP. She has appeared on many panels and podcasts including the prestigious MA Conference for Women and is a member of WGAE, PGA and NYWIFT.  

Jeanette B. Milio

Jeanette B. Milio is a Producer / Executive Producer of motion pictures and television programming. Over the span of twenty-five years and working across three continents, she has been involved in over 45 motion picture and television projects, with a total production value exceeding $250 million, and including Academy Award ® winning talent in front and behind the camera. 

Born and raised in Germany, Jeanette’s B. Milio’s career started in 1989 with RTL Television’s prime time programming producing German formats of “The Price Is Right”, “Family Feud”, “Jeopardy”, among others. For ARD Network she produced the fictional prime-time drama Wildbach for 5 seasons. 

In 1999, Jeanette immigrated to the United States and focused on theatrical motion picture production and financing. She produced the Fox / Constantin Film feature Timeshare starring Nastassja Kinski, Timothy Dalton and Kevin Zegers.  Her work with various German media funds, lead her to take over the management of Camden Equities, a media investment fund launched by Far East National Bank in Los Angeles. The fund invested in the production, acquisition and worldwide distribution of over 40 television and theatrical projects for HBO, Showtime, ABC, USA Network, Disney, Lionsgate, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros., Disney, and others. 

Around 2010 she launched the media investment fund Magnet Media, which included around 60 equity investors. She  financed and produced the thriller 13, starring Jason Statham, Academy Award ® winning actor Mickey Rourke, Sam Riley, Ray Winston, Michael Shannon and Curtis Jackson aka 50 Cent (distributor: Paramount Vantage);  The Experiment, directed by Paul Scheuring, starring Academy Award ® winning actors Adrien Brody and Forrest Whitaker, as well as Cam Gigandet (US Distributor Sony Pictures); and Dark Tide, starring Academy Award ® winner Halle Berry, directed by John Stockwell (US distributor Lionsgate), among others. 

Since 2014 Jeanette B. Milio focuses on television series production and financing. She managed the TV series and brand Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan, which aired for 10 seasons on the National Geographic Channel. She is the Executive Producer and Creator of the beauty competition series “Global Beauty Masters“, which aired on TLC. She further executive produced its spin-off series The Look All Stars, which airs on the CW Channel. At present Jeanette is developing a prime-time drama series, which is produced in Europe ion 2020. Jeanette recently financed and started production on two seasons of the one-hour reality TV series Dog Masters, which airs on Animal Planet in 2020. And, she is financing and producing a short film and related feature film entitled Comfort Zone starring Emmy and Tony Award winning actor Jeffrey Scott Basham.

Jeanette B. Milio is a member of the Producer’s Council for The Producers Guild of America, an executive member of Women in Film and a member of the Cannes Film Festival Producer’s Network. Furthermore Jeanette B. Milio is an inspirational speaker for the Global Female Leaders’ Summit in Zurich and the co-founder of the Film Finance Forum Zurich. Jeanette B. Milio teaches Film and Television Financing, as part of UCLA’s online Entertainment Business Management Program. She recently published her first book on the subject entitled Entertainment Financing Today.

Jeanette B. Milio holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business (University Cologne, Germany), studied screenplay writing (USC, Los Angeles).  

Jeanette B. Milio in an expert and international speaker on subjects matters including film & television production, financing and distribution, from the development and packaging of commercially viable motion picture & television content to successfully distributing them worldwide.

Jeanette B. Milio resides in California with her husband and their three children, and She is a passionate yoga practitioner and holds a Yoga Alliance teaching certificate.

Ilyssa Goodman

Ilyssa Goodman is a proven leader who has increased the corporate value of some of the largest entertainment brands in the world, including Disney, FOX, ABC Family Channel, Discovery Networks, Warner Bros., Paramount Pictures, Netflix and Amazon among others. Ilyssa draws upon a unique dual perspective having served as both senior management for studios, broadcasters and distributors as well as performing as an independent sales agent and producers rep, brokering numerous global distribution deals on behalf of producers.  

Having started her career working in distribution for Miramax Films in NY, Ilyssa moved to Los Angeles for a post at Universal Studios and eventually became Vice President of Filmed Entertainment for the international production and distribution company, Bonneville Worldwide Entertainment (BWE).  At BWE Ilyssa supervised the distribution of an extensive film and television library, marketing content for all media platforms throughout the world. Along the way, Ilyssa developed a great eye for marketable entertainment content, forged strong industry relationships and became an expert dealmaker

In 2012 Ilyssa contracted with RGH Entertainment to design and implement their distribution strategy that includes traditional distribution models while leveraging all new and emerging digital distribution channels to fully maximize content value.  For RGH, Ilyssa has sold branded content directly to more than 75 countries around the globe and has brought to the company, lucrative distribution deals with Paramount Pictures, In-Demand, Netflix and Warner Digital among others.

Ilyssa currently works as an independent sales agent, successfully licensing film and television properties for independent producers across the globe.  Additionally, Ilyssa is the producer for Warner Bros. “Cinderella Story†film franchise and recently directed the teen films “The Standoff†on Amazon Prime and the recently released film “Next Levelâ€.  Along with running her distribution consulting group, Ilyssa has producing and directing deals with major Hollywood production companies as well as independent financing entities.


Nina N. Ameri,

Nina N. Ameri, Esq. is a partner at ONE LLP a boutique entertainment and intellectual property law firm.  Mrs. Ameri has vast experience in the field of entertainment law. She has handled production legal on a multitude of independent films, new media and television projects. Mrs. Ameri is also counsel to individual producers, writers and directors negotiating and drafting their talent agreements on their behalf.  Mrs. Ameri represents filmmakers who need assistance and counsel navigating the development, production and distribution of independent films. In addition, Mrs. Ameri regularly represents clients in the following entertainment transactions: acquisition of intellectual property and life story rights, entity selection and entity formation, talent agreements, investor agreements, attachment and shopping agreements and distribution agreements. During her free time she enjoys binge watching independent films and going to amusement parks with her husband, son and daughter. She is a Los Angeles native and an avid networker.