All posts tagged: filmmaker

Tips on Marketing Your Short Film or Web Series

How To Market Your Short Film or Web Series [ and spread the word about your fundraising campaign ] 1. First things first – consider your audience. Is your short film or web series a comedy? Horror? A horror comedy? Know who would genuinely enjoy your project and who wouldn’t. Make your intended audience as defined as possible. The tendency will be to say that anyone of any age will be interested in your project, but that’s simply not the case. Be honest with yourself. 2. After you’ve pinpointed your audience, create a marketing timeline that coincides with production. For example, during pre-production you will want to start developing a fan base through social media, and by the end of your film you may be looking for distributors and sharing your press kit. Have a marketing strategy for every point of production and beyond. 3. If you are fundraising for your film or web series, be sure to build hype before you launch your campaign. Know that you will essentially be marketing for two entirely …

LA Film Fest ’15: Making Cool Shit with OK Go

This past Friday night I attended Making Cool Shit: The Music Videos of OK Go at the LA Film Fest. The event featured a screening of 10 of OK Go’s music videos, followed-up by a Q & A session with the band’s lead singer, Damian Kulash. “Have you seen OK Go’s new music video?” is a question I’ve been hearing for years. They’re name has become synonymous with the kind of entertaining and imaginative music videos that leave you thinking, “How the hell did they pull that off?” During his talk Kulash made it exceedingly clear that he and his bandmates don’t see themselves as filmmakers, per se, but rather musicians who enjoy creating something that’s fun and visually highlights their music. But I see it differently. Maybe they don’t care about the technicalities of cinematography or traditional editing, but they care deeply about framing; and as Martin Scorsese says “Cinema is a matter of what’s inside the frame and what’s out.” Below are some of my favorite OK Go music videos that were featured at the event. Please share your favorites in the comment …

Unsettling & Beautiful: “A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night”

I’m not one for reviewing movies, so lets call this a brief one-sided discussion in which you are welcome to join in the comment section below. A few weeks ago I watched Lily Ana Amirpour’s A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night because it was available on Netflix and I remembered reading such great things about it after its 2014 Sundance premiere. The reason I wanted to write a bit about Amirpour’s film is because it felt so new and original to me that it demanded a post of its own. A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night takes place in a close-to-empty Iranian town called Bad City. The film’s tone is new wave cool, with a spaghetti western vibe and a vampire-horror theme. Although her style of filmmaking is clearly influenced by many genres, I believe Amirpour’s film transcends all genre stereotypes. With A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, I felt like I was watching something important unfold before my eyes. It’s one of those films, like 8 1/2 or Mulholland Drive, that’s iconic the very moment it’s completed. I want to hear from you! What did you think about A …

Suggested Reading: In Defense of Vin Diesel

My reading recommendation for the week is an article by Joey Eschrich for Slate’s Brow Beat entitled Vin Diesel Is Not a Macho Lunkhead. He’s So Much More. The article spoke to me because, like many others, I had a few preconceived ideas about Diesel based on the hyper-masculine characters he often plays. But by learning more about him both as an actor and filmmaker, I am reminded that one should not judge a book by its cover. Vin Diesel may have big muscles and a deep voice, but that does not equate a lack of intellect or talent. Have you always assumed Vin Diesel is a simple-minded meat-head? Read the article and let me know if it changes your idea of him in any number of ways.

10 Facts About Francis Ford Coppola on His Birthday

1. Francis Ford Coppola was born in Detroit, Michigan on April 7th, 1939, but grew up in a New York suburb. 2. When he was young he caught polio, so during his quarantine he practiced puppetry and spent time watching movies. 3. He graduated with a drama degree from Hofstra University and went on to receive an MFA in Film Production from UCLA in 1967. 4. He is considered a part of the New Hollywood wave (or American New Wave) of filmmaking, which includes other masterful directors such as Martin Scorsese, Stanley Kubrick, Mike Nichols, Hal Ashby, Roman Polanski, Steven Spielberg, and George Lucas, among others. 5. His family is full of accomplished filmmakers and actors including, but not limited to, Sofia Coppola, Nicolas Cage, Jason Schwartzman, and Gia Coppola. 6. He owns a successful winery – the Francis Ford Coppola – of which I can personally vouch for. 7. Supposedly George Lucas based the Star Wars trilogy character Hans Solo on Coppola. 8. He is credited for directing 12 different actors in Oscar nominated performances, …

Quotes on Creativity

“Creativity takes courage.” – Henri Matisse “There’s nothing creative about living within your means.” – Francis Ford Coppola “Every artist was first an amateur.”- Ralph Waldo Emerson “Creativity is an act of defiance.”- Twyla Tharp “You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” -Maya Angelou “Drama is life with the dull bits cut out.” – Alfred Hitchcock “I’m drawn to filmmaking that can transport me. Film can immerse you, put you there.” – Kathryn Bigelow “The enemy of art is the absence of limitations”- Orson Welles “My focus is my art, and that’s what I love to do. I have to be really passionate in order to do something. I’ve turned down many things that I just didn’t believe in.” -Beyoncé Knowles “Cinema should make you forget you are sitting in a theater.” – Roman Polanski “True art is characterized by an irresistible urge in the creative artist.” – Albert Einstein “It seems that the greatest difficulty is to find the end. Don’t try to find it. It’s there already.”- Sofia Coppola “The essence of all beautiful art, all great …

Artists On Art

“Art is either plagiarism or revolution.” – Paul Gauguin “Good art provides people with a vocabulary about things they can’t articulate.” – Mos Def “I think an artist’s responsibility is more complex than people realize.” – Jodie Foster “Every artist was first an amateur.”- Ralph Waldo Emerson “True art is characterized by an irresistible urge in the creative artist.”- Albert Einstein “I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t, say any other way – things I had no words for.”- Georgia O’Keeffe “A guilty conscience needs to confess. A work of art is a confession.”- Albert Camus “I’ve been called many names like perfectionist, difficult and obsessive. I think it takes obsession, takes searching for the details for any artist to be good.”- Barbra Streisand “I don’t think there’s any artist of any value who doesn’t doubt what they’re doing.”- Francis Ford Coppola “You don’t take a photograph, you make it.”- Ansel Adams “Find a beautiful piece of art. If you fall in love with van Gogh or Matisse or John Oliver Killens, or if you fall in love with …

Martin Scorsese’s Open Letter To His Daughter

In an open letter to his daughter, and in many ways all aspiring filmmakers, Martin Scorsese expressed why he believes that the future of filmmaking is bright. The letter was originally published by Italian magazine L’Espresso. “Dearest Francesca, I’m writing this letter to you about the future. I’m looking at it through the lens of my world. Through the lens of cinema, which has been at the center of that world. For the last few years, I’ve realized that the idea of cinema that I grew up with, that’s there in the movies I’ve been showing you since you were a child, and that was thriving when I started making pictures, is coming to a close. I’m not referring to the films that have already been made. I’m referring to the ones that are to come. I don’t mean to be despairing. I’m not writing these words in a spirit of defeat. On the contrary, I think the future is bright. We always knew that the movies were a business, and that the art of cinema …

Film School or No School?

What do Stanley Kubrick, Quentin Tarantino, Terry Gilliam, and David Fincher have in common? Aside from their magnificently acclaimed careers, all four directors opted out of school and decided instead to jump head first into the film industry. On the other-hand, greats like Spike Lee, Martin Scorsese, George Lucas, and Darren Aronofsky attended film school before developing their careers. So, what’s the better option? Film school, or no school? A lot of young aspiring filmmakers ask: “Is film school worth it?” Simply put, the answer depends on the type of person you are and what you’re interested in taking away from the experience of receiving an arts degree. First, you must know that film school is not for everyone, and it’s certainly not necessary to begin a career in the film industry. But even if the program you’re pursuing isn’t prominent, you’ll still get something out of it. What’s important is if what you get out of your experience is worth it to you. In my case, I believe it was. Sure, you can learn how to be a filmmaker …