Meet Jean-François Camilleri, President of the jury of the 13th edition of the Festival du film Merveilleux.

Jean-Francois Camilleri is a well-known name in Cinema. With a career of more than 30 years in the industry, he has never stopped being passionate and innovating about cinema.

He began his career at Disney by moving to Los Angeles to work as International Marketing Manager for Buena Vista International, a subsidiary of Disney, which distributed Disney’s movies internationally. During this period Jean François Camilleri built the foundations that helped him in his career. He built his relationships and especially learns how American companies work.When he returned to France, Jean François embarked on his first major project. He helped to set up Gaumont Buena Vista International, a new subsidiary of Buena Vista International which distributes Disney’s films in France.

For more than 25 years Jean Francois, has evolved in the company and has strengthened the company with him. He was involved in the merger of several Disney subdivisions in France to form a single, coherent and clearer conglomerate. This development has boosted all the sectors at Disney, including communication, distribution, marketing, and more. Disney has always had a special relationship with France, starting with its creator Walt Disney and all the stories inspired by French culture. After the mergers, this relationship was strengthened and Disney gained one of the most important places in French cinema.

In 2008, inspired by the special relationship between Disney stories and nature, and driven by his commitment to environment, education, violence and racism, Jean Francois Camilleri created the Disneynature label. Thus, he uses the impact of the world-famous conglomerates to get important messages across in a positive and informative way. Thanks to this label, he was able to create films such as Earth, one of the first films dedicated to nature to be so successful at the cinema.

For 14 years Jean Francois Camilleri was Chairman of The Walt Disney Company France (since 2009) Benelux (since 2012) Maghreb & French-speaking Africa (since 2016), defining the Company’s strategic direction for all its different businesses and brands.

In 2019, Jean Francois Camilleri decides to leave Disney for a new adventure. He co-founded Echo Studio, a film production, as an extension of what he had already done. He says in an interview: “I’ve always believed that images (cinema, but also series) could change the world. We want our films to have an impact, to make sense. Through well-told stories, we believe we can raise public awareness of issues such as education, access to water, the environment and human rights.”

With Echo Studio, Jean Francois produces films in partnership with other producers or directly with the authors. The format can be a film, a series, a short film, a documentary or fiction. The genre is not restricted as long as the format and genre correspond to the subject matter. The special feature of their Studio is that they work directly in partnership with associations to build their film and support the subject further than just showing what’s going on. Echo Studio also wants to offer support but also solutions.

Since its inception, Echo Studio helped produce some twenty films. In its film released last February, “Les gardiennes de la planète” by Jean-Albert Lièvre, the production team worked directly with 4 recognised associations for the protection and preservation of marine life: IFAW, Project Rescue Ocean, la Fondation de la mer and Longitude 181. Together they have launched a campaign to raise awareness of the importance of whales and the danger man poses to them. Together they chose to keep the film crew to a minimum, thereby limiting the environmental footprint of this production.

Jean François Camilleri has decided to produce films that will have an impact on our society. We are delighted to have a jury president with such experience and dedication on our festival.

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Echo Studio website: