X

Looks like you are a new visitor to this site. Hello!

Welcome to Hope For Film! Come participate in the discussion, and I encourage you to enter your email address in the sidebar and subscribe. It's free! And easy! If you have any suggestions on how to improve this website or suggestions for topics please don't hesitate to write in to any of the blogs.

You can also follow me on Twitter or Facebook.

(If you keep getting this message, you probably have cookies turned off.)

January 21 at 11:21am

Hope For The Future pt. 12: The List #’s 47 – 52

Fifty-two reasons to be cheerful.  Enough to get through all the weeks ahead, and even some that have already passed.  We complete our list just in time to not let Sundance get you down even if you didn’t sell your film.  I didn’t even list that are so many good films to discover at the festival.  Well, here’s to a good year.  And to finding at least another 52 reasons in the months ahead.

47. Actors are truly embracing indie film and seem to be doing it because they love it. We know they don’t do it for the money or just because the schedule is short and shooting quick, but when you know they are getting offered bigger paydays and chances for true stardom and yet they still keep on doing indie movies, you have to accept they do it because it is the kind of cinema they adore. Michelle Williams , Paul Giamatti, Marisa Tomei, Peter Skaarsgard, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Sam Rockwell. Quality actors delivering quality work time and time again.

48. The Jacob Burns Center in Westchester has raised over $20M for a Media Literacy Center and it looks like an incredible addition to our culture and a wonderful model for others to follow. Imagine if every community had something like this! Check out the press release at:http://www.burnsfilmcenter.org/news/newsimages/MediaArtsLab_pr.pdf .

49. Power continues to decentralize. Time and time again it is proven that a good idea can triumph and change will follow it. Frank Leonard’s brain child, The Black List, the annual report that lists executives favorite scripts, has been instrumental in getting unique (dare we say “quirky”) projects appreciated, bought, and even made. Sundance was once the be all and end all of festivals. Virtual festivals like From Here To Awesome give everyone a chance at being seen now.

50.We are getting new film movements faster and faster. 2007 was the year of Mumblecore. 2008 was the year the neo naturalists broke (Wendy & Lucy, Chop Shop, Ballast, etc.). The speed of which common aesthetics form speak of better communication. Multiple filmmakers working in the same vein can only lift the conversation higher and raise the bar for technique. Work will progress faster and the audience will again benefit.

51. Life sustaining tools slowly are proliferating. The Freelancers Union Health Care program offers a good option for indie filmmakers looking to have basic health care coverage. Creative Capital alum Esther Robinson’s brainchild Art Home Online, offers artist financial planning services and consultation on home buying. As we live in a nation without real government support for the arts, creators have to assume they will be partially financing their work themselves — developing the wherewithal to plan for the future and not put oneself at significant financial risk is part and parcel to being able to choose what stories you will tell.  Of course if we simply had state health care, not only would we be less at risk, but we’d have a significant percentage of our incomes that we could devote elsewhere.

52. The great beacon of hope I find in the film horizon is the often TFF-cited Lance Weiler and his gang of collaborators at The Workbook Project and From Here To Awesome. The open source generosity and advocacy stemming from their platforms provide a plethora of information and point to the real possibility that artists everywhere can not only create the work they want but have the ability to find, access, and join with audiences everywhere. They show that power is not in the hands of the establishment but in the community. Lance and his team having taken a host of good ideas and put them into action — and it appears to be just the tip of an iceberg that we can expect to come from them. The revolution is being podcast; it’s time you got the URL tattooed onto your soul.

  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print
January 4 at 11:04am

Sundance Trailers

2009 can already be marked as the year that filmmakers and distributors launched trailers prior to Sundance and Slamdance. We won’t yet have the majority of filmmakers being truly prepared, but new ones seems to debut daily.

I imagine next year the festival catalogue might link to the trailers. Hopefully at least the online version. Maybe they will link to clips too. For now though, we have to be content to find them ourselves.
A few weeks back we posted about Cinematical’s growing list. We can now add six more to it:
Dead Snow; dir by Tommy Wirkola (hat tip: TrailerSpy)
Disturbing The Universe: William Kunstler; directed by Sarah & Emily Kunstler
Manure (teaser); directed by The Polish Brothers (hat tip: /Film)
Roseancrantz & Guildenstern Are Undead (slamdance); directed by Jordan Galland

Taking Chance; directed by Ross Katz (hat tip: /Film)

We Live In Public; directed by Ondi Timor (hat tip: Thompson On Hollywood)
Once again though it should be noted that The Workbook Project is on it for you.  For those of you that are thinking of next Sundance already, Zak Forsman has a post on how to cut an effective indie trailer.  Check it out.


  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print
January 1 at 5:00pm

What Got This Blog Started (For Me)

The conditions were there.  People were already talking.  Everyone over at The Workbook Project and FH2A were already leading the charge.  More voices were needed though.  And I was asked to give this talk, see…

Now you can truly see how much I need my hands to be able to speak.  This is just part one of six.  And  yes, it is my way to stay nasally through all six.  The rest are all there on Vimeo — so I just learned.  Check them all out, or not.

What of course will keep this blog going in the new year will be your participation.  We have so much ground to cover.  What is working well?  What isn’t? What are the goals and what are the steps to take us there?  We can’t wait for someone to lead us.  We must collaborate.  
Independent film culture — its content and its infrastructure — is at stake.  
I tell my son that it is a great time to be young because there is so much exciting stuff that MUST get done to save the planet.  Okay, so I give him a bit bigger agenda.  All I want from  you is to save indie film.  Happy New Year!


  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print
December 30 at 11:30am

Tools Update: Theatrical Mapping Project

Jon Reiss writes:

I suggest TFF add the theatrical mapping project from the Workbook Project
“tools” section of the Truly Free Film site (consider it done, Jon! – Ted). This map was my first step in the theaters that I contacted for our theatrical release of Bomb It and as such was hugely instrumental in our release. We found other theaters that were not on the map and have since added them. The map was set up by the wonderful Lance Weiler – and it only expands if you contribute – so if you have a theater (or college campus) please add it – its very easy. I like Ted’s idea of potentially having another list or map of college campuses that screen independent film. We are working on booking Bomb It currently into colleges – so if you have any suggestions – send them along!

jon@jonreiss.com


  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print
December 5 at 10:12pm

Wanted: Web Strategists & Consultants

We have gotten several requests from filmmakers regarding whom they could hire to help them design plans for their films.  First, I think those filmmakers need to move beyond the focus on the film itself, and ask how they can design a web strategy for their work in general.  But moving beyond that issue, I unfortunately don’t have many people to point them to (I would love to hear any recommendations you have).   Fortunately, once again, a lot of great resources and individuals have been gathered over at The Workbook Project.

If you are looking for a consultant or strategist for your web plan, check out Motive on the WBJ site.  Alex Johnson, Ana Domb, Micki Krimmel, Jon Reiss, Hunter Weeks, Liz Rosenthal, and of course Lance Weiler and Arin Crumley are available for hire.  If you are going to Sundance, you best get them on your team sooner rather than later.


  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print
November 24 at 11:02am

NYC DIY Dinner Conversation Concludes: Part 2

The wine flows, and the blab goes on.  See and hear and embed it here.

Or watch it right here right now right below.


  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print
November 23 at 11:00am

NYC DIY Dinner Conversation Continues: Part 1

How will the “indie” model change?  Why is it inevitable? Hear the scoop here.  You can see it there too.  Will the truth be told before too much wine is consumed?  You be the judge.

Will Christine’s prediction be true?  I think I let the others get a word in edgewise.  Granted some of my rant is recycled from some other events, but the others are pretty fresh I think.


  • Digg
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • Print

This site could not have been built without the help and insight of Michael Morgenstern. My thanks go out to him.

Help save indie film and give this guy a job in web design or film!