Saturday, December 31, 2011

Support What You Believe...and get a tax deduction before midnight!


It's the last day of 2011! If you need a tax deduction, please support the things you believe in by making a donation before midnight to the non-profit org of your choice!!...


Wishing you all a great 2012!!

Friday, December 2, 2011

2012 Sundance Film Festival Announces Films in Spotlight, Park City at Midnight, Next <=> and New Frontier


2012 Sundance Film Festival Announces Films in Competition


Give the gift of passion @focalpress and be entered to win a Kindle Fire! bit.ly/focalholiday #focalholiday

Digital Hollywood NYC 2011 - Part 2

reprinted from Ted Hope's Blog: Hope For Film

TED HOPE: Jacques Thelemaque returns today to complete the download of his lessons learned from Digi Hwood knowledge fest. What's the future? Does anyone know? This much I DO know: I would love to have one person cover for our HopeForFilm community all the film related seminars over the course of the year, be they in NYC or LA, and compare what can be gained from these conferences and how they vary. I wonder if we can find a sponsor... I wonder more if we could find one person who can endure -- even with the enticement of tasty sandwiches!

Digital Hollywood NYC 2011 - Part 2
by Jacques Thelemaque

The second day of Digital Hollywood started earlier, but I was there on time, excited by the film-specific panels and those bagels, croissants, muffins and pastries with my name on them....READ MORE


Screenwriting means writing for anything with a Screen

Reprinted from Sean Hood's blog: Genre Hacks

Screenwriting means writing for anything with a Screen
by Sean Hood

Lately, I've been advising screenwriters to look beyond traditional movies as their platform for storytelling....READ MORE

Digital Hollywood NYC 2011 - Part 1

reprinted from Ted Hope's Blog: Hope For Film

TED HOPE: Conferences abound in the US Film Biz and sometimes seems like another example of industries that still financially prosper in a field that has regularly been headed downwards (18% drop in theatrical attendance this year anyone?). Yet, as corporate focused as they often are, they do point to a tendency to continued education. Perhaps most hopefully they point to a willingness for our industry to evolve and embrace some aspect of change. We sent Filmmakers Alliance (link) founder and past HopeForFilm contributor (link) Jacques Thelemaque to Digital Hollywood NYC to get the perspective for the truly free film community.

Digital Hollywood NYC 2011 - Part 1
by Jacques Thelemaque

I don't go to seminars and conferences as often as I used to. Mostly because getting anything beyond a sales pitch out of them is like panning for gold. I've lost patience with sitting through hours of presentations to get a single nugget of new/good information. There are exceptions, however (such as Ted and Christine Vachon's excellent master class which I will post a blog about soon), so I was genuinely excited for the opportunity to attend Digital Hollywood NYC last week. READ MORE.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

New World Distribution in the Old World

Reprinted from Ted Hope's Blog.

Ted Hope: Quick tell your investors! Indie Film is safe again. The big waterfall of profits is starting to mount. Haven't you heard the news? VOD is making it all good again. Simple as making a good film that people know of and want to pay for. Seriously though, the news has been coming in and now we are getting numbers about how films perform here. And they look pretty sweet...

The Film Collaborative's Orly Ravid fortunately wants us to know even more and has done some research on the prospects of EU Digi Distro. And now I am smiling. You will be too.

New World Distribution in the Old World

By Orly Ravid

As DVD sales continue to crumble (allowing us to use less petroleum), VOD is growing (now in 65.7 million US homes -- about 55.7% of TV homes, according to MagnaGlobal). Digital distribution revenues are starting to percolate and be more reliable. Worldwide revenue from video-on-demand movies and TV programs will reach $5.7 billion in 2016, up 58% from revenue of $3.6 billion in 2010, according to a new research report. The tally does not include pay-per-view sports events, adult entertainment or subscription-based VOD services such as Netflix, Amazon Prime and Google, among others, according to London-based Direct TV Research Ltd. It should be noted this is not all related to new film but rather making catalog or library content available digitally. According to the study, “Internet-based TV (IPTV) is projected to overtake digital terrestrial TV (DTT) in revenue nextyear to become the third largest platform globally. Indeed, VOD revenue from DTT is expected to be largely confined to Western Europe” (source.)



Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Canon Hollywood Professional Center FREE Educational Event Dec 1

EOS C300: On-set DIT Workflow for Post Production

Presented by: Michael Cioni, Light Iron Digital
Program: Professional Development Seminars & Workshops
Date: December 01, 2011
Time: 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Fee: Free of charge. Advanced registration required.
http://www.learn.usa.canon.com/events_calendar/event_details/cll_events/20111201_hollywood_onset_workflow_pro_cll.shtml
Location:
Canon Hollywood Professional Technology & Support Center
6060 Sunset Blvd
Hollywood, California 90028
Organization:
Canon Live Learning
Questions:
CanonLiveLearning@cusa.canon.com

Get up close and personal with the EOS C300 at Canon's Hollywood Professional Technology and Support Center. In this Canon Live Learning exclusive event, you'll hear from a Canon Tech rep on the powerful technology and design behind the EOS C300's success.

Guest presenter, Michael Cioni, of Light Iron Digital, will also give insights on the EOS C300 workflow that he gleaned from his experience on the short film, Sword, directed by Felix Alcalá and Larry Carroll. A Canon rep will be available for product Q&A, after which attendees are invited to a product touch and try.

The event is FREE. Limited seats are available. Pre-registration required :
http://www.learn.usa.canon.com/events_calendar/event_details/cll_events/20111201_hollywood_onset_workflow_pro_cll.shtml

Sunday, October 30, 2011

FREE MOFILM WORKSHOP/COMPETITION FOR LA FILMMAKERS ON NOV. 12TH!!


On November 12th, Filmmakers Alliance will be the first film collective to host "MOFILM Live LA." A workshop/competition that will allow you to create branded entertainment in a single day!

The event will give the first 100 FA members and LA filmmakers who sign up at http://mofilm-live-la-fa.eventbrite.com a full day with MOFILM advertising experts, and a top-name brand (to be named on the day of the event). FA Members and LA filmmakers who sign up in time will then be given a project brief as well a cameras and laptops - to create/finish a spec commercial for the brand. At the end of the day, the spots will be screened for the experts and the winning team will each receive an HD camera. Judges at previous events have included the producers of Titanic and Avatar, Iron Man, and Pretty Woman.

The winning spot for all nine participating LA colleges and organizations will receive two tickets to the South By Southwest (SXSW) Film Festival - complete with air, hotel and VIP treatment.

Sign up at http://mofilm-live-la-filmmakers-alliance.eventbrite.com now, to participate in this workshop/competition with MOFILM in Los Angeles. Remember that space is limited. The first 100 to sign up only. It's FREE, equipment provided, just bring or buy lunch.

Hope to see you there!

Monday, October 24, 2011

VISIONFEST 2011 Pictures posted!






Here's some VisionFest 2011 pictures.

Check them out HERE and HERE!

See ya next year!!






Jeff Orgill on “Anatomy of a Prescreen Launch”


Reposted from a guest post on Ted Hope's blog by Jeff Orgill

JUNKIE NURSE: Anatomy of a Prescreen Launch

We’ve all been wondering if somebody would figure out a way to successfully release films online. Shari Candler’s recent article on this site mentioned that Prescreen was taking a stab at it. I sent in our movie Junkie Nurse (Boppin’ at The Glue Factory).

Lee from Prescreen called and said they wanted JUNKIE NURSE. I was jazzed about being featured. I’d been mired in some contractual BS and this was the kick in the pants I needed to get back into the groove. I had an attorney review the contract, he gave me the thumbs up, and I got to work.


Sunday, October 23, 2011

“What One Learns About Film Financing From Film Financing Conferences”


“What One Learns About Film Financing From Film Financing Conferences”

reprinted from a guest post on Ted Hope's blog by Gary Baddeley.






Friday, October 21, 2011

What's one thing you'd change about movies?


The Black List (twitter: @blcklst) and Focal Press (@focalpress) want to know the ONE thing you’d change about movies. $500 prize pack for best answer! http://bit.ly/nm6cmk



Thursday, October 20, 2011

VISIONFEST 2011 ROCKED!!


Just want to send a BIG THANKS to all who attended VisionFest 2011 and all others who helped create a truly amazing night. We were honored to have Semih Kaplanoglu and Christine Vachon with us and they certainly did not disappoint. All else was equally superb! The feedback has already been tremendous and it's because of the community that came out to support us and the work many of you did on the screen and off.

Pics and video to follow soon.

Cheers to you all. And deep gratitude.

See ya next year!!


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

VISIONFEST 2011 IS OFFICIALLY BEYOND CAPACITY!


VISIONFEST 2011 IS OFFICIALLY BEYOND CAPACITY!


http://visionfest-2011.eventbrite.com/


However, that doesn't mean that seats won't be available (this is L.A., after all, so no guarantee all confirmed will indeed show up).

Nonetheless, whether you bought a ticket or are on the guest list, please make sure you get there as close to 7:00 p.m. as possible to insure a seat. Anyone arriving after 7:45 cannot be guaranteed a seat.


Beyond that, should be a fantastic night!


SEE YOU THEN!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

One Week Away - VisionFest 2011: Films, Food, Drink, Fun and Christine Vachon




REMINDER:

VisionFest 2011 is ONE WEEK AWAY!

Don't miss this amazing event on October 19th! Details below...

Tickets are now on sale. There are a limited amount of discounted tickets available for our FA Family. Please go here: http://visionfest-2011.eventbrite.com/. Enter the discount code: FriendsofFA

See you all there!


Filmmakers Alliance Presents

VISIONFEST 2011

2011 will be our 14th Year of VisionFest, Filmmakers Alliance annual screening and celebration bringing together the best of LA’s independent film community and regularly attended by overflowing audiences and press.

The evening begins with the presentation of the NILSSON AWARD, curated and presented by the award’s namesake and inaugural recipient, ROB NILSSON. The award acknowledges and celebrates bold, direct, honest and aesthetically challenging filmmaking that is often unrecognized by the mainstream independent film community. This year's Nilsson Award recipient is Turkish filmmaker Semih Kaplanoğlu.

Next is the presentation of the VISION AWARD to an established filmmaker whose artistic ambition and consistent filmmaking excellence provides artistic inspiration to emerging filmmakers all around the world. Past recipients include MIke Figgis, Terry Gilliam, Wim Wenders, Allison Anders, Alexander Payne, David O. Russell, Werner Herzog, Mark and Michael Polish, Kevin Smith, Ted Hope and last year’s recipient, Nicolas Winding Refn.

2011 Vision Award Recipient
CHRISTINE VACHON

Independent Spirit Award and Gotham Award winner Christine Vachon co-founded indie powerhouse Killer Films in 1995 with producing partner Pamela Koffler. Based out of New York, Killer has produced more than 45 acclaimed independent films including Todd Haynes' Venice Film Festival Award-winning I'M NOT THERE and last year's Best Canadian Feature at TIFF, CAIRO TIME. Over the past decade and a half the two have produced some of the most celebrated American indie features including Academy Award-winning films FAR FROM HEAVEN, BOYS DON'T CRY, ONE HOUR PHOTO, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, HAPPINESS and SAFE. In television, Vachon executive produced the Emmy-winning program, This American Life, for Showtime and more recently the two have collaborated on the upcoming miniseries Mildred Pierce for HBO. Killer Films was honored with a 10 year retrospective at the New York Museum of Modern Art in 2005.


The presentation of awards will be followed by a program of some of the best short films produced in the previous year. We are pleased to announce the following films:

Inside This World of Mine (3:59) by Sean Morris

The Wanderer (14:30) by Aaron Garcia

The Director (1:30) by Destri Martino

Debutante Hunters (12:42) by Maria White

White Knuckles (3:46) - 3D Director Eric Kurland

Abigale (16:00) by Robert Machoian and Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck

All Is Not Lost (3:24) - 3D Director Eric Kurland

The Legend of Beaver Dam (12:00) by Jerome Sable, Produced by Michael Blaha

Total program length: 68 mins.

And we will have a special Public Service spotlight on Tamika Lamison's Make A Film Foundation with a screening of the org's new film Deep Blue Breath directed by Patricia Cardoso.


The evening finishes with a high-energy party on the rooftop of the Downtown Independent Theater catered by some of Los Angeles' best restaurants. Lots of delicious food and drink until late into the night.

VISIONFEST 2011 SPONSORS INCLUDE:
HBO
Focal Press
SAGIndie
Kodak
Zooppa
International Film and Television Alliance
WGA
Singha Beer
Tres Sietes Tequila

Monday, October 10, 2011

Genre Hacks: Amazon Studios: An Interview with Roy Price


Read my friend/collaborator Sean Hood's post about Amazon Studios.

In 2010 Amazon.com launched Amazon Studios and promised to "develop movies in a new way." They had strange new ideas about mass collaboration, a focus on original content from unknown filmmakers, and lots and lots of money to spend on prizes, test movies, and eventual script purchases. So how's that working out for 'em? Read here:

Genre Hacks: Amazon Studios: An Interview with Roy Price

Sunday, October 9, 2011

“WE ARE ALL SCABS”: Some Contradictions in U.S. Independent Film Culture


Thought-provoking article from my buddy Donal Foreman...


“WE ARE ALL SCABS”: Some Contradictions in U.S. Independent Film Culture
by Donal Foreman
(reposted from The Brooklyn Rail)

Attending the five-day Filmmaker Conference at this year’s Independent Film Week, organized by the Independent Film Project and held at Lincoln Center, I was reminded of the synopsis for an Abel Ferrara film that has yet to be made. It’s a film that playfully pivots on the mythologies and contradictions of the American independent filmmaker:

In a parallel universe, where independent filmmakers literally wage battle against the studios in a war-torn Hollywood, a 24-year-old former indie actress-cum-underground war hero decides to join the studios to direct her first film.

Hollywood cinema has always explored scenarios of individual struggle against systems of power and control, and there has been a romantic discourse of independent film using this archetype to describe its struggle against Hollywood. But in the decision “to join the studios to direct her first film,” Ferrara intimates the more pragmatic instincts of many filmmakers: to make their film at any cost, even if it means collaborating with forces that are politically and culturally destructive. As producer and social media powerhouse Ted Hope put it on one conference panel this year: “We are all scabs. We’re all willing to undercut each other [to get our film made].”

Acquiring studio financing for a first feature is an extremely rare privilege. But in the past decade, even the once-prevalent model of independent film financing—a mixture of private investment, foreign pre-sales, and, at the other end, depending on the endorsement of A-list festivals and critics, an all-rights buyout by an established distributor—has become both a rarity and oftentimes a financial loss-maker. In its place there has been a flurry of experimentation in fundraising and distribution, for which the internet has been pivotal: if you’ve already come across terms like D.I.Y. distribution, crowdfunding, and transmedia, then you know the terrain. These new models have become home to the kind of contradictions Ferrara plays with above. The mini-industry of talks and panels which has emerged alongside this experimentation is perhaps the best place to observe these contradictions in action—and IFP’s Filmmaker Conference, which exists alongside the market and workshop stands of Independent Film Week, is one of its foremost iterations.

Among these emerging models, “cutting out the middlemen” is an enduring theme. In a key polemic on his blog three years ago, Hope wrote that we were on the verge of a “truly free film culture” which would bypass the influence and interference of “those that control the apparatus and the supply.” Hope’s implication was that film had not been truly free or independent up until this point: despite the “demystification of production” since the ’90s, most films still needed to be filtered through corporate distribution outfits in order to be seen widely. Peter Broderick, a D.I.Y. distribution guru and consultant presenting at the conference this year, speaks of a shift from distributor control to filmmaker control and from “anonymous consumers” to “true fans.” Both Hope and Broderick use mythic language—Hope calls for us to “fight for our independence,” and Broderick speaks of emigrating to the “New World of Distribution”—to suggest a vision of a radically democratized film culture in which autonomous creators and audiences engage with and support each other directly.

They were joined at the conference by another key theorist, Jon Reiss, who launched a book, co-written with the Film Collaborative and marketing strategist Sheri Candler, entitled Selling Your Film Without Selling Your Soul. Their conception of soul-selling seems to be epitomized in the all-rights distribution deal, in which filmmakers relinquish control in exchange for a flat fee that often barely covers their costs and a percentage of revenues that rarely materializes. Instead, they cite filmmakers who customized and managed their own distribution and marketing, mobilizing social media-generated fanbases to earn revenue through a mixture of theatrical screenings, direct and third-partner DVD and VOD sales, and crowdfunding.

This discourse has not gone unquestioned in the filmmaking community. One rebuttal came in the form of last year’s “Take-Back Manifesto,” posted by filmmaker Michael Tully on his indieWire blog. The manifesto repudiates the fashion for pre-production marketing, asserting that “the final product is all that matters,” and “all of this talking about ‘finances’ and ‘connecting’ and ‘publicity’ is the insidious language of a corporate, numbers-before-content mindset.” Around the same time, producer Mike Ryan, another of this year’s panelists, wrote a piece for IFP’s own Filmmaker Magazine, warning that “in the rush to embrace new methods of promotion and distribution…worthy yet seemingly unpromotable films will be completely ignored.” Ryan even went so far as to say that the reason that many great films are “having a hard time finding an audience” is because of the influence of the “corporate consumer-entertainment machine” on audience tastes, not poorly devised social media campaigns.

Tully raises a key point about the pervasiveness of corporate marketing strategies within models that are supposedly radical because of their evasion of corporate mediation—and in fact there are several filmmakers, such as Hunter Weeks, one of the subjects of Reiss and Candler’s book, who use their self-built fanbase as leverage in making deals with corporate brands. Ryan is also acute in recognizing audience taste as a contingent, social construction rather than a reality to be catered to. But Tully ends with the plea, “Can we get back to talking about movies, please?” And while he’s right that, in the rush to discuss these new models, questions of formal innovation in cinema seem to end up all but ignored—retreating into cinephilia doesn’t address the central problem.

Jon Jost, a brilliant and long-suffering stalwart of U.S. cinema, is probably the grouchiest detractor of the D.I.Y. marketing discourse. Commenting on a post by Hope listing 20 things “we must all try to do before shooting,” Jost lists a ream of great auteurs who he doubts “ever gave 10 seconds of thought to the above. This is not about filmmaking, it is about marketing. This is 100 percent bought and sold into the Great Market Economy mentality, and there isn’t a milligram of ‘truly free’ about it at all.”

The mentality Jost identifies isn’t going to just disappear by ignoring it—and for any filmmaker who wants to create his or her work full-time and find a way for people to see that work, it’s very difficult to escape it entirely. Any attempt at sustainability or distribution inevitably involves building and trading various forms of social and symbolic capital. But that doesn’t mean these processes need to be acquiesced too unquestioningly either.

In a presentation entitled “How to Design a Winning Distribution Strategy,” Broderick spoke of changing the world as one of the primary goals of most filmmakers he meets. He argues that persuading corporations is the most effective way to do so because of the great difficulty of achieving anything through legislative, electoral, or grassroots campaigns. Instead, he says, “if you can persuade corporate decision-makers that the change you are seeking is in their interest, hundreds of thousands of consumers can be affected.” The unexamined assumptions here are too numerous to mention, but let’s at least point out the treatment of consumer identity and corporate power as a priori universalities, which apparently can be harnessed for change but are in themselves immovable. The apparent ubiquity of these views in the media world (look at most TED Talks for further evidence) may go some way towards explaining why the rhetoric of democratization and filmmaker control has so easily obscured the ways in which capitalism is extracting value from these new experiments.

The middlemen haven’t gone away. Out of over 100 panelists speaking at the Filmmaker Conference, it was striking how few were filmmakers and how many were agents, publicists, distributors, and festival programmers—reminding me of the quip that the most lucrative consumer base in the indie film world is indie filmmakers. The impression was that the New World hadn’t made these roles redundant so much as forced their renegotiation. Several of this year’s distributor-panelists stated that they weren’t interested in acquiring a film unless its makers had already “built” their audience and achieved a powerful social media presence, effectively offloading a layer of their marketing duties as a positive externality.

Whereas in previous times films were offered up to the distribution circuit to be either rejected or accepted as viable commodities, their makers are now being asked to lead that process of commodification themselves, to integrate it into their art and sometimes package themselves along with it. In a way, this “democratization” of the commodification process creates an opportunity for filmmakers to think more critically about how their work functions in, and serves, current social and economic arrangements—and ask how they might be able to interrupt and challenge these arrangements rather than feed them.

Simultaneous to the opening of Independent Film Week, Occupy Wall Street began its intervention in downtown Manhattan. Strangely enough, some of the same questions posed at Lincoln Center have been posed in this ongoing occupation. Questions like, “How can we spend more of our time doing what we love to do?” But while downtown the emphasis was how to free ourselves from monetized work, uptown it was how to turn our love into monetized work. And yet we all know that independent cinema wouldn’t exist without networks and affinities of cooperation, friendship, and trust—and new models of distribution do create new possibilities in this regard.

There are old possibilities, too. Director-producer Antonio Campos talked on a panel entitled “Paying the Bills” about how, for the past 10 years, he and his collaborators have split every paycheck three ways, rotating work-for-hire duties so that at least one of them could be dedicated to creative work at all times. Another panelist interjected, “Are you saying we should all become communists?” To which Campos replied, “Yeah, well, essentially that’s how it works: you’re a communist until you’re a capitalist.” I wonder about the inevitably of that “until.”


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

DONAL FOREMAN is an Irish filmmaker, critic, and programmer living in Brooklyn.

Friday, October 7, 2011

"Boppin' At The Glue Factory" on Prescreen


My buddy Jeff Orgill's movie "Boppin' At The Glue Factory" is premiering today at https://prescreen.com/movie/Junkie-Nurse - it's awesome. Jeff is a talented, long-time FA member and I'm proud to support him!

Also, I don't know much about Prescreen, but sounds interesting and something filmmakers might want to be investigating/tracking.

You can start by watching "Boppin' At The Glue Factory". Check it out if you like dark comedies. Or weed....

https://prescreen.com/movie/Junkie-Nurse

VISIONFEST 2011 LINE-UP ANNOUNCED!


VisionFest Tickets Available NOW! - http://visionfest-2011.eventbrite.com/

A limited amount of discount tickets are available for our FA family. Enter the discount code: famember.

We're excited to announce the line-up of films for VisionFest 2011!!

But first, we want to congratulate ALL of the filmmakers who submitted films. Filmmakers Alliance is about making films and those of you who are making them keep FA rocking along. We are deeply grateful to you!!!

Here is the program line-up:

Inside This World of Mine (3:59) by Sean Morris
The Wanderer (14:30) by Aaron Garcia
The Director (1:30) by Destri Martino
Debutante Hunters (12:42) by Maria White
White Knuckles (3:46) - 3D Director Eric Kurland
Abigale (16:00) by Robert Machoian and Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck
All Is Not Lost (3:24) - 3D Director Eric Kurland
The Legend of Beaver Dam (12:00) by Jerome Sable, Produced by Michael Blaha

And we will have a special Public Service spotlight on Tamika Lamison's Make A Film Foundation with a screening of the org's new film Deep Blue Breath directed by Patricia Cardoso.

It will be a GREAT program and an amazing night!


2011 will be our 14th Year of VisionFest, Filmmakers Alliance annual screening and celebration bringing together the best of LA’s independent film community and regularly attended by overflowing audiences and press.

The evening begins with the presentation of the NILSSON AWARD, curated and presented by the award’s namesake and inaugural recipient, ROB NILSSON. The award acknowledges and celebrates bold, direct, honest and aesthetically challenging filmmaking that is often unrecognized by the mainstream independent film community. This year's Nilsson Award recipient is Turkish filmmaker Semih Kaplanoglu.

Next is the presentation of the VISION AWARD, given each year to an established filmmaker whose artistic ambition and consistent filmmaking excellence provides artistic inspiration to emerging filmmakers all around the world. Past recipients include MIke Figgis, Terry Gilliam, Wim Wenders, Allison Anders, Alexander Payne, David O. Russell, Werner Herzog, Mark and Michael Polish, Kevin Smith, producer Ted Hope and filmmaker Nicolas Winding Refn.

2011 Vision Award Recipient

CHRISTINE VACHON

Independent Spirit Award and Gotham Award winner Christine Vachon co-founded indie powerhouse Killer Films in 1995 with producing partner Pamela Koffler. Based out of New York, Killer has produced more than 45 acclaimed independent films including Todd Haynes' Venice Film Festival Award-winning I'M NOT THERE and last year's Best Canadian Feature at TIFF, CAIRO TIME. Over the past decade and a half the two have produced some of the most celebrated American indie features including Academy Award-winning films FAR FROM HEAVEN, BOYS DON'T CRY, ONE HOUR PHOTO, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, HAPPINESS and SAFE. In television, Vachon executive produced the Emmy-winning program, This American Life, for Showtime and more recently the two have collaborated on the upcoming miniseries Mildred Pierce for HBO. Killer Films was honored with a 10 year retrospective at the New York Museum of Modern Art in 2005.

The presentation of awards will be followed by a program of some of the best short films produced in the previous year. We are pleased to announce the following films:

Inside This World of Mine (3:59) by Sean Morris

The Wanderer (14:30) by Aaron Garcia

The Director (1:30) by Destri Martino

Debutante Hunters (12:42) by Maria White

White Knuckles (3:46) - 3D Director Eric Kurland

Abigale (16:00) by Robert Machoian and Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck

All Is Not Lost (3:24) - 3D Director Eric Kurland

The Legend of Beaver Dam (12:00) by Jerome Sable, Produced by Michael Blaha

Total program length: 68 mins.

And we will have a special Public Service spotlight on Tamika Lamison's Make A Film Foundation with a screening of the org's new film Deep Blue Breath directed by Patricia Cardoso.




The evening finishes with a high-energy party on the rooftop of the Downtown Independent Theater catered by some of Los Angeles' best restaurants.



VISIONFEST 2011 SPONSORS INCLUDE:











VisionFest 2011

October 19th at 8:00 p.m.

Downtown Independent Theater

251 S. Main St.

Los Angeles, CA 90012

Map to Downtown Independent Theater:


View Larger Map

NOTE: Parking is not free. There are several parking structures near the theater. $9 parking is available right next door to the theater on the north side. However, $5 parking is available at the Los Angeles Times parking structure at 213 South Spring Street.

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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

VisionFest Kickoff and FA Meeting On Streets of downtown LA!!

That's right, FAers and Friends of FA!!

We are having a VisionFest Kickoff party and VERY informal FA Meeting right on the street in downtown L.A. THIS Saturday at 6 p.m. SHARP!! Don't be late!!

Why? Because the amazing Mexicali Taco Co. roving food grill will be set up there at 6 p.m. and the line forms very fast. After we grab some grub and drinks (drinks provided by us, of course), we'll go over the VisionFest plans and then some brief talk about FA. Then, we'll hang and drink and eat more, if we like. Or go do something else fun together.



It will be our most unusual meeting (and our last before VisionFest), so we hope as many of you as possible can attend. Especially those of you who are helping with VisionFest.

Finally, I am only in L.A. for the month of October, so I'd love to see as many of you as possible!!

See ya Saturday!!


FA Meeting/Hang and VisionFest Kickoff
Saturday, Oct. 8th at 6 p.m. (sharp!)
1820 industrial St. (downtown LA off of Alameda)
Los Angeles, CA 90021

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Get "Connected" with Tiffany Shlain's new film!


Multiple Award-winning Sundance documentary “CONNECTED: An Autoblogography about Love, Death & Technology,” directed by Tiffany Shlain Opens in LA this Friday at @ArcLightCinemas Hollywood (w/ Q & A following 7:40pm show) BUY TIX & Watch Trailer at: http://bit.ly/24ObaY

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Tickets Now Available For VisionFest 2011!


TICKETS NOW AVAILABLE FOR FILMMAKERS ALLIANCE'S

VISION FEST 2011!


Click HERE to order before they run out!!


****************************************************************************


CHRISTINE VACHON ANNOUNCED AS 2011 VISION AWARD RECIPIENT!


Independent Spirit Award and Gotham Award winner Christine Vachon co-founded indie powerhouse Killer Films in 1995 with producing partner Pamela Koffler. Based out of New York, Killer has produced more than 45 acclaimed independent films including Todd Haynes' Venice Film Festival Award-winning I'M NOT THERE and last year's Best Canadian Feature at TIFF, CAIRO TIME. Over the past decade and a half the two have produced some of the most celebrated American indie features including Academy Award-winning films FAR FROM HEAVEN, BOYS DON'T CRY, ONE HOUR PHOTO, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, HAPPINESS and SAFE. In television, Vachon executive produced the Emmy-winning program, This American Life, for Showtime and more recently the two have collaborated on the upcoming miniseries Mildred Pierce for HBO. Killer Films was honored with a 10 year retrospective at the New York Museum of Modern Art in 2005.


VisionFest 2011 set to take place at the Downtown Independent Theater on Oct. 19th!

Click HERE for more details!



Wednesday, September 7, 2011

REMINDER: Sign up NOW for AFM: Nov. 2 – 9, Register Early for Best Rates






November 2-9, 2011 / Santa Monica, California

Plan now to be part of the global event that has launched over 10,000 films

Over 8,000 professionals from 70+ countries
The global film industry converges in Santa Monica every November for eight days of deal-making. Hundreds of millions of dollars in production and distribution deals are sealed every year on both completed films and those in every stage of development and production.

Discover the Latest Trends, New Possibilities and What’s Next at the AFM Conference Series
Learn from the best and most dynamic players in the film industry in this unmatched global classroom. Get the most from the AFM… attend the Conference in the morning and visit the market in the afternoon. Conference sessions run Friday to Tuesday, 9:00am to 1:00pm.

Develop. Package. Pitch. Finance. License. Distribute.
Whatever segment of the film industry you work in, AFM is a must-attend event, because in Hollywood, one meeting can define a career.

REGISTER EARLY!


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

REMINDER: Deadline for VisionFest short film submission is September 16th! TEN DAYS AWAY!


Don't forget to submit your film, now, to Filmmakers Alliance's 14th annual VisionFest. The legendary event features awards presentations, a screening and gala celebration.




SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS:

•  The filmmaker (director and/or producer) must be based in Los Angeles and able to be in attendance for VisionFest 2011.
•  The film must be no longer than 30 minutes. Shorter is MUCH preferable.
•  The film must have been completed after August 2009.
•  The film cannot have screened previously at VisionFest.
•  An HD master of the film is available for the event one week prior to the event.
•  All submission materials are received by 6:00 p.m. Semptember 16th, 2011.

Membership in Filmmakers Alliance is NOT a requirement. However, should you choose to  join Filmmakers Alliance, your submission fee shall be applied toward your annual membership dues (normally $125 per year). Each submission also entitles filmmakers to one free ticket to VisionFest 2011.


TO SUBMIT:

Please pay the the submission fee, if necessary, and complete the submission form found HERE (fees waived for dues-paying FA members). All submission form fields are required. Then, mail a DVD copy of your film. You can pay the submission fee via the provided PayPal button or you can mail in a check to the same address provided for mailing A DVD copy of your film. The VisionFest 2011 mailing address is:

Filmmakers Alliance
Attn: VisionFest 2011 Submission
12228 Venice Blvd. #406
Los Angeles, CA 90066

Alternatively, you may send us a link to your film online. Please fill out that option on the submission form. Keep in mind, however, presentation is important, so it must be an easy-to-access link at the highest possible streaming or download quality.

Your submission cannot be processed until ALL of the below are completed:
1. Submission form is completed/submitted.
2. The submission fee is paid, if necessary.
3. A DVD copy of your film (or streaming/download link) is received in our office. 


All materials MUST be received in our office no later than 6 p.m. on September 16th, 2011.

Don't miss the LA Premiere of Calvin Reeder's Sundance film "The Oregonian" on Sept. 23rd at Cinefamily!!

Hey LA Film Community!!

Don't miss the LA Premiere of Calvin Reeder's Sundance film "The Oregonian" on Sept. 23rd at Cinefamily!!

Calvin and Lindsay (the film's lead actress) will be there and they are both amazing peeps!!

Don't miss this incredible film and a fantastic chance to support true Indie Cinema in L.A.!!

http://www.cinefamily.org/films/friday-night-frights/#the-oregonian


What It's Like To Have Your Film Flop At The Box Office


My good buddy and creative collaborator, Sean (Hood), posted a question on Quora and provided an answer that went viral, getting picked up by several newswires and dispersed throughout the internet on the same day. It's a great post, giving a thorough, thoughtful insider's view. It was inexplicably met with a lot of impassioned responses - some wonderfully supportive and some personally hostile. Most of the negative responses were very uninformed and mostly posted by that horde of closeted angerphiles that seem to live all over the web. But don't think their responses didn't affect Sean. However, he's aware that's the risk you take when you choose to share your personal perspective about ANY issue. So, I share it with you here, if you haven't already read it. Please be thoughtful (even if critical) in your responses. Thanks.


  
What's it like to have your film flop at the box office?
By Sean Hood


When you work "above the line" on a movie (writer, director, actor, producer, etc.) watching it flop at the box office is devastating. I had such an experience during the opening weekend of Conan the Barbarian 3D.


A movie's opening day is analogous to a political election night. Although I've never worked in politics, I remember having similar feelings of disappointment and disillusionment when my candidate lost a presidential bid, so I imagine that working as a speechwriter or a fundraiser for the losing campaign would feel about the same as working on an unsuccessful film.


One joins a movie production, the same way one might join a campaign, years before the actual release/election, and in the beginning one is filled with hope, enthusiasm and belief. I joined the Conan team, having loved the character in comic books and the stories of Robert E. Howard, filled with the same kind of raw energy and drive that one needs in politics. 


Any film production, like a long grueling campaign over months and years, is filled with crisis, compromise, exhaustion, conflict, elation, and blind faith that if one just works harder, the results will turn out all right in the end. During that process whatever anger, frustration, or disagreement you have with the candidate/film you keep to yourself. Privately you may oppose various decisions, strategies, or compromises; you may learn things about the candidate that cloud your resolve and shake your confidence, but you soldier on, committed to the end. You rationalize it along the way by imagining that the struggle will be worth it when the candidate wins.


A few months before release, "tracking numbers" play the role in movies that polls play in politics. It's easy to get caught up in this excitement, like a college volunteer handing out fliers for Howard Dean. (Months before Conan was released many close to the production believed it would open like last year's The Expendables.) As the release date approaches and the the tracking numbers start to fall, you start adjusting expectations, but always with a kind of desperate optimism. "I don't believe the polls," say the smiling candidates.


You hope that advertising and word of mouth will improve the numbers, and even as the numbers get tighter and the omens get darker, you keep telling yourself that things will turn around, that your guy will surprise the experts and pollsters. You stay optimistic. You begin selectively ignoring bad news and highlighting the good. You make the best of it. You believe.


In the days before the release, you get all sorts of enthusiastic congratulations from friends and family. Everyone seems to believe it will go well, and everyone has something positive to say, so you allow yourself to get swept up in it. 


You tell yourself to just enjoy the process. That whether you succeed or fail, win or lose, it will be fine. You pretend to be Zen. You adopt detachment, and ironic humor, while secretly praying for a miracle.


The Friday night of the release is like the Tuesday night of an election. "Exit polls" are taken of people leaving the theater, and estimated box office numbers start leaking out in the afternoon, like early ballot returns. You are glued to your computer, clicking wildly over websites, chatting nonstop with peers, and calling anyone and everyone to find out what they've heard. Have any numbers come back yet? That's when your stomach starts to drop.


By about 9 PM it's clear when your "candidate" has lost by a startlingly wide margin, more than you or even the most pessimistic political observers could have predicted. With a movie its much the same: trade magazines like Variety and Hollywood Reporter call the weekend winners and losers based on projections. That's when the reality of the loss sinks in, and you don't sleep the rest of the night.


For the next couple of days, you walk in a daze, and your friends and family offer kind words, but mostly avoid the subject. Since you had planned (ardently believed, despite it all) that success would propel you to new appointments and opportunities, you find yourself at a loss about what to do next. It can all seem very grim.


You make light of it, of course. You joke and shrug. But the blow to your ego and reputation can't be brushed off. Reviewers, even when they were positive, mocked Conan The Barbarian for its lack of story, lack of characterization, and lack of wit. This doesn't speak well of the screenwriting - and any filmmaker who tells you s/he "doesn't read reviews" just doesn't want to admit how much they sting.


Unfortunately, the work I do as a script doctor is hard to defend if the movie flops. I know that those who have read my Conan shooting script agree that much of the work I did on story and character never made it to screen. I myself know that given the difficulties of rewriting a script in the middle of production, I did work that I can be proud of. But it's still much like doing great work on a losing campaign. All anyone in the general public knows, all anyone in the industry remembers, is the flop. A loss is a loss.


But one thought this morning has lightened my mood:


My father is a retired trumpet player. I remember, when I was a boy, watching him spend months preparing for an audition with a famous philharmonic. Trumpet positions in major orchestras only become available once every few years. Hundreds of world class players will fly in to try out for these positions from all over the world. I remember my dad coming home from this competition, one that he desperately wanted to win, one that he desperately needed to win because work was so hard to come by. Out of hundreds of candidates and days of auditions and callbacks, my father came in....second.


It was devastating for him. He looked completely numb. To come that close and lose tore out his heart. But the next morning, at 6:00 AM, the same way he had done every morning since the age of 12, he did his mouthpiece drills. He did his warm ups. He practiced his usual routines, the same ones he tells his students they need to play every single day. He didn't take the morning off. He just went on. He was and is a trumpet player and that's what trumpet players do, come success or failure.


Less than a year later, he went on to win a position with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, where he played for three decades. Good thing he kept practicing.


So with my father's example in mind, here I sit, coffee cup steaming in its mug and dog asleep at my feet, starting my work for the day, revising yet another script, working out yet another pitch, thinking of the future (the next project, the next election) because I'm a screenwriter, and that's just what screenwriters do.


In the words of Ed Wood, "My next one will be BETTER!"

Friday, August 26, 2011

Finished A Draft Of My First New Script In 5 Years!


Sorry, but I have to pat myself on the back because it was an extremely difficult birth...

Also, because I HATE WRITING!!!! Especially the first draft. It's lonely, scary, often frustrating/confusing, sometimes dredges up difficult feelings and puts me in a perpetual "brain fog". When it's flowing (2% of the time), it's orgasmic. But most of the time, I'd rather get a proctology exam.....

I know, I'm being a little dramatic for someone who's written over a dozen scripts. But it frustrates me that it never seems to get any easier - whether I'm writing something simple and/or formulaic or if I'm trying to write something that pushes the boundaries of my abilities. Seems not to matter. It's always a struggle.

But the worst part of it is over.

And - to belabor the birth analogy - the script is, by all accounts so far, a very healthy, unique baby that should develop nicely.....

Now, it's time for cigars and champagne.




Wednesday, August 10, 2011

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS - VISIONFEST 2011!

Filmmakers Alliance is now announcing a CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS for VisionFest 2011.

The call is for Los Angeles-based filmmakers only (or able filmmakers able to be present at the event in Los Angeles). This fantastic event is now entering its 14th year.

For more details go here: http://www.filmmakersalliance.org/VisionFest.html.




Thursday, August 4, 2011

Filmmakers Alliance Screening at Echo Park Film Center - August 15th!


Hey, my LA peeps!

Would love to see you at our FANTASTIC screening series. Always a great party and a great line-up of films. As usual, the filmmakers will be there to give you the stories behind the films.

Films and Filmmakers - that's what it's all about!

The next Filmmakers Alliance Screening at The Echo Park Film Center will be Monday, August 15th at 7:30 pm.

Come and see what FA members and other members of the LA and global filmmaking community are up to creatively, and support the great work that the EPFC people are doing in our community. The center is a volunteer run organization that offers fantastic super 8mm film classes, youth classes, and much more, so we do ask that you leave a $5 donation at the door to help keep the Center going.

There is a brief Q&A after each film, not to mention complimentary food & drinks. So come on out and eat, drink, connect and watch!

Here is the line-up:


Ocularist
Director: Vance Malone
8 mins
An ocular prosthetician unites the dexterity of a skilled craftsman with an artist's textural caress in his unique creations: custom acrylic eyes so vibrantly alive it seems a cruel twist of fate that they are unable to see.



A Day's Work
Director: Rajeev Dassani
17 mins
“A Day’s Work” examines the hopes and fears inherent to the immigrant story, both on the part those crossing the border and those learning to live in a rapidly changing America. When violence erupts, the prejudices of all involved are brought to light and mistrust, assumption and language stand as barriers to an easy resolution.



Waiting Room
Directors: Robert Machoian and Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck
9 mins
After a significant event takes place, a man experiences unexpected suspension of time.



The Wonder Hospital
Director: Beomsik Shimbe Shim
12 mins
A surreal journey through a mysterious hospital that alters the perception of physical beauties.



All in All
Directors: Charlie Reff and Jacki Sextro
12 mins
Over the past month at Christian sleep-away camp, Marissa and Jeremy have grown in their love with God together. The two teens have also found an unspoken need for each other within their fellowship. Set against the surreal backdrop of enthusiastic leaders and Sunday school ritual, the couple will finally share their feelings before they say their goodbye.



The Majestic Plastic Bag
Director: Jeremy Konner
4 mins
Narrated by Academy Award-winner Jeremy Irons, this "mockumentary" video, hammers home the stark reality of California's plastic bag pollution situation.



The Rambler
Director: Calvin Reeder
13 mins
A stranger takes to the lonely highway with his guitar and traveling sack.


Total program running time: 75 mins.


Screening sponsored by CAZT - http://pro.CAZT.com

Appily Ever After….

There's some great iPhone apps reviewed in this series of blogs. Must haves for filmmakers!

Ben's Blog » Blog Archive » Appily Ever After… pt 1

Ben's Blog » Blog Archive » Appily Ever After… pt 2

Ben's Blog » Blog Archive » Appily Ever After… pt 3

Wednesday, August 3, 2011



Presented by Sundance Institute
Saturday, August 6, Cinefamily@The Silent Movie Theatre

Don't miss our first-ever Comedy ShortsLab: LA, a one-day symposium on the craft of comedic short form filmmaking and exhibition.

New participants include Mike White (Year of The Dog, School of Rock, Freaks and Geeks), and Danny Pudi (Community), and Romany Malco (The 40-Year-Old Virgin).

Other participants include Julie Delpy (2 Days in Paris), Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland), Bobcat Goldthwait (World's Greatest Dad), Troy Miller (Flight of the Conchords, Parks and Recreation), Miguel Arteta (Cedar Rapids, The Good Girl), Scott Aukerman (Comedy Bang Bang: The Podcast, Producer of Between Two Ferns), the creative, production, and marketing team from Funny or Die, and more.

Tickets are $200. Click here for more info.

Comedy ShortsLab: LA Program Lineup
  • Creating Comedy - From creating a comedic premise to finding what works for an audience, tune into this discussion around the discovery and development of the comedic voice.
  • Performance Enhancement - A conversation about the sometimes turbulent but always vital relationship between actors and directors. From rehearsals and blocking, to improv and timing, we look at what works best and what doesn't work at all.
  • Funny or Die: Creating Hit Online Comedy - Funny or Die walks us through the creation process of the funniest web videos online today from writing, directing, producing, distributing, and marketing to case studies on specific videos.
  • From Short Script to Short Film - A roundtable conversation with the team behind several montage films for the Academy Awards, including Troy Miller and his veteran short-form collaborators as they share insights on comedic timing, structure, and production.
  • Make ‘em Laugh: Signature Styles Connecting to Ideal Audiences - Filmmakers who have created a loyal fan base with their distinctive short films share the path they forged to finding their voice and their audience.
  • Cocktail and Networking Reception

Get Tickets

Tickets Still Available: Sundance Shortslab!

If you have trouble viewing this post, click here.
ShortsLab
SUNDANCE INSTITUTESUNDANCE FILM FESTIVALSUPPORT OUR MISSION

Presented by Sundance Institute
Saturday, August 6, Cinefamily@The Silent Movie Theatre

Don't miss our first-ever Comedy ShortsLab: LA, a one-day symposium on the craft of comedic short form filmmaking and exhibition.

New participants include Mike White (Year of The Dog, School of Rock, Freaks and Geeks), and Danny Pudi (Community), andRomany Malco (The 40-Year-Old Virgin).

Other participants include Julie Delpy (2 Days in Paris), Ruben Fleischer (Zombieland), Bobcat Goldthwait (World's Greatest Dad),Troy Miller (Flight of the Conchords, Parks and Recreation), Miguel Arteta (Cedar Rapids, The Good Girl), Scott Aukerman(Comedy Bang Bang: The Podcast, Producer of Between Two Ferns), the creative, production, and marketing team from Funny or Die, and more.

Tickets are $200. Click here for more info.

Comedy ShortsLab: LA Program Lineup

  • Creating Comedy
    From creating a comedic premise to finding what works for an audience, tune into this discussion around the discovery and development of the comedic voice.
  • Performance Enhancement
    A conversation about the sometimes turbulent but always vital relationship between actors and directors. From rehearsals and blocking, to improv and timing, we look at what works best and what doesn't work at all.
  • Funny or Die: Creating Hit Online Comedy
    Funny or Die walks us through the creation process of the funniest web videos online today from writing, directing, producing, distributing, and marketing to case studies on specific videos.
  • From Short Script to Short Film
    A roundtable conversation with the team behind several montage films for the Academy Awards, including Troy Miller and his veteran short-form collaborators as they share insights on comedic timing, structure, and production.
  • Make ‘em Laugh: Signature Styles Connecting to Ideal Audiences
    Filmmakers who have created a loyal fan base with their distinctive short films share the path they forged to finding their voice and their audience.
  • Cocktail and Networking Reception

Get Tickets