Despite being unable to watch TV or films until his early teens due to the constraints of his Mennonite background, Grove was curious about art and film. He, thus, followed up formal art school training at Central Technical School in Toronto with a series of jobs behind the scenes in the film industry.
Working as a scenic artist on 68 feature films and over 700 commercials in his native Toronto, he developed a distaste for the wasted resources on set and union bureaucracy that prevented aspiring filmmakers like himself from getting their own features off the ground.
Elliot moved to London in the late 1980s and in 1993 he launched the Raindance Film Festival, a festival devoted to independent filmmaking and its emerging talent. In 2009 he was awarded a doctorate from the Open University at Plymouth College of Art.
Initially, Raindance catered mainly to American independent filmmakers, but over the years the participants have become more global. The 2012 festival line-up included 101 independent features and 150 shorts from 52 countries.
Elliot lectures on screenwriting and filmmaking throughout the UK, Europe, North America and Japan; in 1992 he set up the training division of Raindance which now offers nearly two dozen evening and weekend masterclasses on writing, directing, producing and marketing your film. These courses are designed for those with no formal training who want to break into the film industry, or for professionals who want to refresh their skills. Making films is expensive, so Elliot and Raindance work on the assumption that course participants do not have Hollywood-scale amounts of money to throw around.
In 2001 Focal Press published his book: Raindance Writers Lab: How to Write and Sell the Hot Script (ISBN 0240516362). His second book, Raindance Producer’s Lab Lo-To-No Budget Filmmaking was published by Focal Press in July 2004. Both books have had multiple reprints. 150 Workouts To Becoming A Filmmake was published by Barrons (USA 2009) and has since been translated into French, German, Spanish and Italian.
His production company operates under the Raindance banner and is currently developing a slate of ten features. In 2005 he produced The Living and the Dead an arty British chiller, the world premiere which was at the Rotterdam Film Festival in January 2006. Elliot stopped producing features between 2007 and 2012 because of his involvement with Raindance. In early 2013 he re-launched production with the stylish thriller Love.Honour.Obey which started principal photography on 12 May 2013. It was written by Mark Rogers and is directed by cult film director Ate de Jong (Drop Dead Fred). Grove anticipates two more features will be shot in 2013.
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- Elliot Grove at the Internet Movie Database
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- Raindance Website
- British Independent Film Awards
- Raindance Film Festival Facebook
- Making the Film interviews Elliot Grove