Max Howard (former President of Warner Bros. Feature Animation, an executive at Walt Disney Feature Animation, Executive Producer at DreamWorks Feature Animation, Producer at Exodus Film Group and consultant through his company Max Howard Consulting Group) will visit Ballyfermot College from the 7th to the 10th November next to deliver a series of master classes.

These classes are primarily aimed at BCFE students and industry guests but there are limited places for others so contact Gareth Lee at if you are interested.

The master classes, which are supported by the Irish Film Board, will be delivered in the Anna Brett Hall, Ballyfermot College Media Building on the following dates and times:

Monday 7th November 9-1pm: Creating An Effective Story and How To Pitch It (Part 1)

Tuesday 8th November 9-1pm: Producing Independent Animated Films

Wednesday 9th November 9-1pm: Acting For Animation and Character Design

Thursday 10th November 9-1pm: Creating An Effective Story and How To Pitch It (Part 2 – Interactive Pitching Session)

In addition there will be an industry-focused evening event (invite-only) with Max Howard (supported by the Irish Film Board and Animation Ireland) on Tuesday November 8th, 7-10pm in The Sugar Club on Leeson Street.

See below for more information on the master classes and Max Howard.

SESSION 1: Creating An Effective Story and How To Pitch It (Part 1) – This talk/workshop will cover how to succinctly create and effectively pitch a story for any type of film and TV production, live action or animation.

SESSION 2: Producing Independent Animated Films – This talk/workshop will look at the opportunities and challenges of producing ‘independent’ animated feature films. Every facet of the feature animation industry is tackled, from story development and physical production to marketing and distribution. Starting with an overview of the marketplace right through to the opportunity to enter a film for Academy Award consideration for Best Animated Feature Film. Max’s experience in working on over 12 feature films, plus 7 short films, provides an unparalleled insight into the challenges and opportunities of bringing an animated film to fruition.

SESSION 3: Acting For Animation and Character Design – The Acting For Animation talk/workshop looks at great acting, utilizing performance examples from both animation and live action. At the heart of any animated film is the requirement that the animators understand and utilize the tools an actor will bring to a role. It is not the technical aspects of animation that create a great performance but a fundamental understanding of the characters motivation.

Max’s career began as a child actor in the British theatre, subsequently working as a director and producer. He has worked with some of the world’s greatest actors, directors and writers. It is this backdrop that allows him to offer this unique program on Acting for Animation. This talk/workshop is designed to broaden the appeal and originality of character design, to establish a unique set of criteria that, used correctly, will enhance a designer’s outlook and originality. You will be taken through the entire development process, giving you the tools necessary to bring your new characters to life and charm your audiences.

SESSION 4: Creating An Effective Story and How To Pitch It (Part 2 – Interactive Pitching Session). This session will include working ‘live’ on specific stories, providing a practical application for the applied techniques that will have been outlined earlier in Part 1. This session will require three attendees to pitch their story ideas for a short, TV or feature with each pitch lasting no more than 15 minutes. Max will then have 30 minutes to discuss each project.

Max Howard

Max Howard created and ran studios for Disney in London, Paris, Orlando and Los Angeles, working on some of Disney’s most memorable films including Who Framed Roger Rabbit, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King.

As President of Warner Bros Feature Animation he oversaw such hit movies as The Iron Giant and Space Jam. At DreamWorks, he was co-executive producer for Spirit, Stallion of the Cimarron.

Max Howard is currently producing a series of animated feature films for Exodus Film Group. The company’s first production, Igor was released in 2008.

For more information see