LOS ANGELES, CA (Saturday, March 8, 2019) – Day one of The Producers Guild of America (PGA)’s 11th annual Produced By Conference was a full-blown hit as more than 1,000 attendees packed the two-day conference at Warner Bros. Studios. The day featured engaging conversations from producers and prominent entertainment figures across film, television, and new media including Mindy Kaling, Nancy Meyers, Toby Emmerich, Peter Roth, Michael Douglas, Danny DeVito, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Meg Whitman, Marci Wiseman, Michael B. Jordan, Shivani Rawat and Ian Cooper.
Compelling panels and conversations covered a wide range of the hottest trends in entertainment—from the new age of horror, to the power of podcasts and creating content with a conscience. Below are highlights from the day one panels, as well as photos for your use.
Day One highlights include:
Michael B. Jordan spoke about the personal responsibility of choosing socially conscious projects among content creators. “Starting in front of the camera, from the actor’s perspective, it’s all about the heart. It’s about wanting to create bodies of work and tell stories that will make people go home and think thoughts that will weigh heavily on their heart.”
In a packed session, Mindy Kaling and Nancy Meyers discussed their shared experience as female leaders in the industry. In an empowering session, Kaling said, “I feel honored that I am sitting here on this stage with you in the room. Female filmmakers can point to the PGA and say it can be done.” Nancy encouraged producers to have a strong will and persevere.
Danny DeVito sat down with long-time collaborator Michael Douglas where they reflected on almost 50 years of friendship, working on projects together and the humanity that producers must bring to filmmaking. DeVito said, “It is friendship, it is relationships. It’s all about keeping in touch and being with people you care about.” Douglas also reflected on the #MeToo movement saying, “This #MeToo movement has been phenomenal in bringing women into our industry more than ever before.” Douglas continued, “We know there have been some mistakes by a lot of people or some people but I don’t think it’s a large population. I do feel that it’s important to remember we all mutually love this process and to be kind to each other.”
In one of the most-anticipated sessions of the day, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Meg Whitman, the founders of the yet-to-be-launched streaming service Quibi, shared for the first time many new details concerning their audacious new content service, including:
The service will launch on April 6, 2020.
They will be releasing 7,000 pieces of content in one year.
Quibi will publish 25 pieces of content every day.
It will cost $4.99/ month (with ads).
They have deals in place with directors Steven Soderberg and Antoine Fuqua.
Toby Emmerich and Peter Roth participated in a lively discussion where they touched on Warner Bros. approach to making DC films; the cancellation of Whiskey Cavalier, with Peter Roth hinting that it might not be the show’s last hurrah - “So it ain’t over yet.” When asked about Disney’s acquisition of Fox and what it means for Warner Bros., Emmerich said, “I’m jealous, because they're going to be number one for the foreseeable future. However, he added, “I do think it creates the opportunity for us to take measured risks with films that maybe they wouldn't see us the theatrical opportunities that we will.”
In the Keys to the Kingdom panel Mark Gill, commented on the growing tensions between China and U.S. by saying, “Up until about two days before Cannes I would’ve said China was extremely important and then our president opened his mouth again and basically scared away the Chinese for the moment. I’m hopeful that doesn’t last for a long time…. it is absolutely true that without China we’re all in big, big trouble so I’m hopeful that we can all come to our senses and see that we get more from joining up than fighting each other.”