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​UNIC Launches Eighth Edition of the Women’s Cinema Leadership Programme

Brussels: 19 June 2024 - The International Union of Cinemas (UNIC), the European cinema trade grouping, today launched the eighth edition of its Women’s Cinema Leadership Programme, a 12-month mentoring scheme for women in cinema.

As a result, another cohort of talented female cinema professionals - fourteen this year - will get an exclusive opportunity to learn, enjoy networking opportunities and receive career advice from outstanding women executives from across the cinema landscape, each recognised for their leadership and business successes.

The programme remains UNIC’s flagship initiative to help address the gender imbalance at senior levels of the industry and works to encourage and empower female professionals as the industry looks to realise its full potential. The 2024/25 edition welcomes the following key female leaders and rising female professionals from the cinema exhibition landscape, representing 11 countries and 27 companies:


Marie-Laure Barrau, General Manager Northern Europe, Deluxe Cinema, France-Belgium
Claire Beswick, Founder & CEO, The Living Room Cinema, United Kingdom
Alexandra Body, Marketing & Communications Director, CinemaNext, France
Tania Cinquino, Senior Marketing Manager, Exhibition Brand and Experiences, Cineplex, Canada
Natasha Fernandes, Chief Financial Officer, IMAX Corporation, Canada
Sara Frain, Director of Marketing and Distribution, Picturehouse Cinemas, United Kingdom
Kate Gerova, Co-founder / Creative Director, Mustard Studio, United Kingdom
Shona Gold, Executive Director of Brand, Marketing & PR, Vue, United Kingdom
Finola McLoughlin, Executive Director, EMEA Theatrical Distribution, Warner Bros Pictures Group, United Kingdom
Anne Cécile Mulin, Director, Commercial Strategy, Universal Pictures International, United Kingdom
Anny Schmit, Managing Director, Sony Pictures Releasing, Belgium        
Michelle Stevens, Commercial Director, Powster, United Kingdom
Béatrice Tourvieille, Deputy CEO, Marketing & Digital, Pathé Cinémas Services, France
Miek Vanden Broeck, Head of Supply Chain & Business Health, Barco Cinema, Belgium.


Züleyha Azman, Marketing Director, KINO Rotterdam, The Netherlands
Carla Boyd, Senior Social Media & Content Marketing Manager, Cineworld Cinemas, United Kingdom
Anne Marte Espeseth, Cinema Manager, Bølgen Kulturhus, Norway
Nanna Isholm, Assistant Event Coordinator, Closing Supervisor and Projectionist, Empire Bio, Denmark
Ariana Italia, Film programmer, Pathé, Switzerland
Karolina Kus, Deputy Head of Cinema Programme, Curzon Cinemas, United Kingdom
Elpitha Lyssary, Marketing Manager NI, Omniplex Cinema Group, Ireland
Angela Malvone, International Distribution Specialist, Rai Cinema, Italy
Kinga Merkl, Inside Sales Consultant, Christie Digital Systems, Hungary
Hannah Murray, Account Manager, Vista Group, United Kingdom
Laureen Philippe, International Account Manager, ICE Theaters, France
Héloïse Robert-Besson, Ticketing Manager / Customer Service Manager, The Boxoffice Company, France
Benedikte Schuitema, Head of Sales & Marketing, Head of Kiosk Operation, Staff Manager, Fram Kino, Norway
Cheima Selmi, Senior Theatrical Trade Marketing & Business Analysis Manager, Warner Bros. Discovery, France.

Welcoming this latest edition of the programme, UNIC CEO Laura Houlgatte commented:

​“Since its launch in 2017, the programme has created a vibrant community of over 140 inspiring female professionals. Many thanks to each one of these fantastic women for their dedication - watching their journey has been immensely inspiring. Huge thanks also to our ‘Champions of the Programme’ IMAX Corporation, Vista Group and Barco, who are supporting us in our endeavour to achieve a diverse talent pool.

A warm welcome to our new mentees and mentors and congratulations to our graduating cohort! And in the words of Ruth Bader Ginsburg – “As women achieve power, the barriers will fall”.

Notes for editors

The UNIC Women’s Cinema Leadership Programme is a 12-month cross-sector, international mentoring scheme for women in cinema exhibition.

Launched in 2017, the Programme is rooted in the belief that gender-balanced leadership in cinema exhibition is imperative for business success, better governance and equity in the industry.

More information here.

The International Union of Cinemas (UNIC)

The International Union of Cinemas/Union Internationale des Cinémas (UNIC) represents the interests of cinema trade associations and cinema operators covering 39 countries in Europe and neighbouring regions. More information at

Champions of the UNIC Women’s Cinema Leadership Programme:

About IMAX Corporation

IMAX, an innovator in entertainment technology, combines proprietary software, IMAX, an innovator in entertainment technology, combines proprietary software, architecture, and equipment to create experiences that take you beyond the edge of your seat to a world you've never imagined. Top filmmakers and studios are utilizing IMAX systems to connect with audiences in extraordinary ways, making IMAX's network among the most important and successful theatrical distribution platforms for major event films around the globe.  Streaming technology company SSIMWAVE, an IMAX subsidiary, is a leader in AI-driven video quality solutions for media and entertainment companies. 

IMAX is headquartered in New York, Toronto, and Los Angeles, with additional offices in London, Dublin, Tokyo, and Shanghai. As of December 31, 2022, there were 1,716 IMAX systems (1,633 commercial multiplexes, 12 commercial destinations, 71 institutional) operating in 87 countries and territories. Shares of IMAX China Holding, Inc., a subsidiary of IMAX Corporation, trade on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange under the stock code "1970."   

IMAX®, IMAX® Dome, IMAX® 3D, IMAX® 3D Dome, Experience It In IMAX®, The IMAX Experience®, An IMAX Experience®, An IMAX 3D Experience®, IMAX DMR®, DMR®, Filmed For IMAX™, IMAX LIVE™, IMAX Enhanced™, IMAX nXos®, SSIMWAVE® and Films to the Fullest®, are trademarks and trade names of the Company or its subsidiaries that are registered or otherwise protected under laws of various jurisdictions. For more information, visit You may also connect with IMAX on Instagram (, Facebook (, Twitter (, YouTube ( and LinkedIn (

About Vista Group International

Vista Group International Ltd (Vista Group) is a public company, founded in New Zealand in 1996 and listed on both the New Zealand and Australian stock exchanges in 2014 (NZX & ASX: VGL). Vista Group is a global leader in providing tech solutions to the international film industry. With brands including Vista, Veezi, Movio, Numero, Maccs, Flicks and Powster, Vista Group’s expertise covers cinema management software; loyalty, moviegoer engagement and marketing; film distribution software; box office reporting; creative studio solutions; and the Flicks movie, cinema and streaming website and app.

For more information, visit

About Barco

Barco, headquartered in Kortrijk (Belgium), is a global company leading in visualization, networking, and collaboration technology. Its innovative solutions drive advancements in the healthcare, enterprise, and entertainment markets. At the heart of Barco’s success are over 3,000 dedicated ‘visioners’, each passionately contributing to driving change through technology.

Listed on Euronext (BAR), Reuters (BARBt.BR), and Bloomberg (BAR BB), Barco realized sales of 1,050 million euro in 2023. For further insights, please visit or connect on X, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook.

Barco. Visioneering a bright tomorrow. © 2024

Further Enquiries | @UNIC_Cinemas 

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