Spotlight 3

Funding and Distribution

This episode of The SohoLIFF Spotlights ​is all about funding and distribution. Liz Farahadi talks to Daria Polunina at Post Production House Molinare and award-winning filmmaker Athena Mandis about their experiences with producing, film development and crowd funding.


[Recorded 23rd April 2021]

Daria Polunina 

Daria Polunina

Daria has a diverse background and has seen the film production process from different angles and stages. 

She has been working with Soho’s most recognised Post Production House – Molinare – for over 6 years now and has been on their Board of Directors for over 4 years. 

Daria is also an Executive Producer of an independent British comedy feature LOVE TYPE D, starring Maeve Dermody and Tovah Feldshuh, which premiered at the Edinburgh Film Festival in summer 2019. 

On other projects, Daria has been involved with script editing and was a Script Supervisor on a Short.

Her current field of work is Private Equity Investments and M&A.

Athena Mandis 

Athena Mandis

Athena is an award-winning filmmaker and a Lecturer in Film Practice at QMUL. She is preparing for her first feature and building her portfolio to support this endeavour.

This year she has directed two high-end shorts despite the pandemic and continues with the development of Xenos. Losing Grace  has just began to be selected to IFFs. She is working with the Festival Doctor to promote this work.

She is also in post-production with the second short film project Daughter, she is finishing a documentary on Greek Cypriot diaspora in London.

She was a finalist on Enter the Pitch (2020) with her next short film project, The Return, set in Cyprus. Xenos was shortlisted for Sundance Screenwriters Lab 2021. In September 2019 it was selected for the Torino Development Lab and in 2018 it won best script at Cyprus IFF.

Her short film script Fox was shortlisted for both the Blue Cat and Shore Scriptwriting competitions (2017). The film was never made, but served as the seed for Losing Grace. She is currently developing two features; a TV Series  and producing a short film.