Camilla Deakin

Lupus Films' Camilla Deakin, producer of new animated feature Ethel & Ernest, is headed to the Producers Lab Toronto.

  • Camilla Deakin

What’s your connection to the British Council?
The British Council very kindly put me forward for this year’s Producers' Lab at the Toronto International Film Festival, organised by European Film Promotion and the Ontario Media Development Corporation. I’ve never attended Toronto Film Festival before so I am very grateful for this opportunity.

What are you working on right now?
I've just produced Roger Mainwood's animated feature Ethel & Ernest, which has its world premiere at the BFI London Film Festival in October. Now, I am working on Lionel The First, which is an ambitious new family film based on The Book of Beasts by E Nesbit, acclaimed author of The Railway Children, Five Children & It and The Phoenix & The Carpet. The film tells the story of Lionel, an ordinary 11-year-old boy, who through a quirk of heritage becomes King of Great Britain and discovers magical secrets and a dastardly plot in the palace.

Who originally turned you onto film?
My mum and dad. They took us to the cinema to see great films such as The Sting and Monty Python and the Holy Grail, as well as introducing us to classics such as Some Like It Hot, Guys & Dolls and Destry Rides Again.

What has been your career high so far?
Producing my first animated feature film, Ethel & Ernest, which is due for release in the UK in October. It was wonderful working closely with author Raymond Briggs, director Roger Mainwood and composer Carl Davis, who are all creative geniuses. The film has turned out wonderfully and I am so proud of what we have achieved.

What was your first job in the film industry?
I was a researcher and assistant producer on a documentary series about classic motorcycles for Channel 4, which was shot on Super 16mm.

What's the key piece of advice you’d give to someone starting off in film making?
Be curious, and be adaptable. Your career path doesn’t always follow the direction you were expecting.

What is your favourite British film?
Kind Hearts and Coronets, because Alec Guinness gives such a wonderful performance as nine different members of the D'Ascoyne family, both male and female!

If you could have directed/been involved with any film ever made, which one would it be?
Yellow Submarine – because I would have loved to have been in the creative maelstrom that was the TV Cartoons studio in Soho in the late 1960s, and also I love the Beatles!

What’s the first film you remember seeing?
Pinocchio. I was absolutely terrified when it got to the bit where Pinocchio is swallowed whole by the whale and I had to hide under the seat in the cinema!

What’s your favourite line or scene from a film?
The line in Some Like It Hot when Osgood (played by Joe E. Brown) proposes marriage to Daphne (played by Jack Lemmon in drag).  After many excuses as to why he can’t marry Osgood he finally pulls off his wig and says “But you don't understand, Osgood! I'm a man!” and Osgood replies “Well, nobody’s perfect!”

Favourite screen kiss? 
The spaghetti and meatballs scene in Lady and the Tramp.

Who’s your favourite screen villain?
Cruella de Vil in 101 Dalmations. She's evil but very stylish.

Who would play you in the film about your life?
Jennifer Lawrence – because she’s smart, funny and she can handle herself in a fight.