Doctor Rebekah Louisa Smith began her film industry career in 2008, working as a producer on Wales’ most successful national horror film festival, the brilliantly-named Abertoir Horror Festival. And now, ten years on, she is having a stab at awards success herself. With a bold move into thriller film production, she aims to fly the flag for Britain and help revive the classic horror genre in the UK.
A decade ago, she created her company The Film Festival Doctor, the name a nod to her academic past. Rebekah has a PhD in Film and Audience research, her thesis based on the work of her hero Quentin Tarantino. Fear not, The Doctor and her team will continue to pen prescriptions for success and are committed to transforming the lives of independent films through festivals.
Their aim is to give these films and their makers visibility, awards, opportunities and recognition within the industry. Currently, the company- which has offices in London and Los Angeles- has helped win over 500 awards for their clients and her team have supported over 585 creatives across the world guiding them on their journeys to success.
In 2018, Worcestershire-born Rebekah worked extensively on the feature length documentary George Michael Freedom: The Director’s Cut which has been screened at over 25 international festivals. It has won 5 awards and was shown in competition at the 26th Raindance Film Festival.
The Film Festival Doctor has assisted on triumphant film festival and awards campaigns for Martin Kemp’s Stalker, The Boy With A Camera For A Face (45 festivals and 13 awards), Arrivederci Rosa (25 festivals), Beyond The River (winner of 2 SAFTA awards, the South African BAFTAs), Commune (30 festivals including the BAFTA-qualifying London Short Film Festival), Soldier Bee (BAFTA-recognised Aesthetica Short Film Festival), Placebo: Alt. Russia (International Film Festival Rotterdam), the BAFTA- shortlisted documentary Noma: Forgiving Apartheid and the South African long-listed Oscar entry film Kalushi: The Story Of Solomon Mahlangu.
But now she hopes for a slice of success herself. The Film Festival Doctor’s production arm is working on a number of full length horror movie projects with an array of Great British talent.
Rebekah says: “It’s a very exciting time for us. The film festival work we do is thriving and will continue but I have also always harboured a desire to move behind the camera. We have some fascinating projects and will be flying the flag for British film around the globe. “The horror genre is a constant fascination for me and audiences worldwide. We want to be a powerhouse of creativity and talent and showcase British brilliance to the rest of the planet. Britain’s definitely got talent and we want to celebrate that.”