Productive Film Productions – A Masterclass with Drew Locke & Aaron W. Graham

In partnership with the Directors Guild of Canada – Manitoba District Council

December 16th (7:00 PM to 8:30 PM) – Via ZOOM

Price: $20


During this 90-minute ZOOM panel session, long-serving Unit Production Manager and Line Producer Drew Locke and moderator Aaron W. Graham will engage in an in-depth session on working within the film and television industry.

The line producer functions as a chief operations officer in running the production. During pre-production, responsibilities include supervising the assembly of the shooting company, recruitment of key personnel and services, and production organization for how to shoot the script and transform it into a movie. 

The line producer plans start dates for everyone and everything and monitors the budget in the lead up to picture. Film production generally follows a rigorous schedule. The line producer facilitates casting, location scouting, set building and decorating, offices and stages, wardrobe, props, stunts, physical and visual effects, camera, lighting, rigging, transportation, cast, crew and union relations, travel, cast and crew accommodation, contracting of legal permissions and agreements, safety and risk management, prep and shooting schedule. In short, the line producer oversees the joint planning, negotiations, implementation and accounting for production.

A wide collection of topics will be discussed and then engage with the participants in a 20-minute question and answer session. 

Some topics that will be covered:

  • Working on large scale film productions.
  • The hiring process within production.
  • How to get your start within the film industry and how to develop your skills.
  • How to develop positive working relationships and get the best out of your team.
  • How to deal with conflicts and challenges within production.


Drew Locke is a Unit Production Manager and Line Producer primarily based out of Vancouver, British Columbia. He served as Unit Production Manager on Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s The Revenant, a project shot in Alberta and British Columbia, Canada. The film would garner 12 Academy Award nominations and a Best Actor Oscar for Leonardo DiCaprio, and a DGA award for himself. 

Other career highlights: working with legendary Producers Larry Franco, Jeff Stott, Steve Golin, and Mark Gordon. Production Managing two blockbusters with filmmaker Roland Emmerich (2012 and White House Down), working with the late Robin Williams (twice, RV and Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb), and observing such world-class cinematographers as David Tattersall, Emmanuel Lubezki, Dean Semler and Russell Carpenter. 

He was also the Unit Production Manager on Season One of “See”, the Jason Momoa-Francis Lawrence-Directed Apple Streaming Hit.  Most recently, he was the Unit Production Manager for Swan Song on Apple+, starring Academy Award Winner Mahershala Ali and Glenn Close. 


Aaron Graham is a film writer and Production Manager based in Canada. He is a full member of the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC) and serves on the DGC Manitoba district council’s executive branch. He was also elected as a board member with Film Training Manitoba and instructs multiple FTM courses.

Aaron also has an extensive background in freelance film writing including the publications Screem Magazine and Art Decades. A partial list of his interview subjects includes Terry Gilliam, John Landis, James Gray, Richard Franklin, Charles B. Griffith, Stuart Gordon and Richard Linklater. Graham was also selected to the Berlinale Talent Campus at the 2009 Berlin International Film Festival.

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FTM is a non-for-profit charity of the Province of Manitoba’s sector council program through the Department of Economic Development and Jobs. FTM builds a highly skilled and adaptable film industry workforce to support the activities of Manitoba production companies. FTM collaborates with members of the film and television industry to identify the training needs within the community. 

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