Valerie Weiss finds that trial and error can be scary when editing, adding animation, and mixing sound, but it can also bring the filmmaker’s vision, finally, to life.November 30th, 2010 | Valerie Weiss
Filmmaker Valerie Weiss shares her experiences financing, planning, and producing her independent feature film, Losing Control, through a behind-the-scenes series. In this installment, Weiss writes about how she chose and collaborated with her editor, colorist, sound mixer, and others involved with the tricky but rewarding post process.
In my last film journal, I talked about the production of my feature independent film, Losing Control, a quirky, romantic comedy about a female scientist who wants proof that her boyfriend is “the one.” I discussed the trials of production—locations falling through, lack of sleep, and stretching an already
Katherine Brodsky spoke with the now departed filmmaker in Toronto.November 23rd, 2010 | Katherine Brodsky
From a childhood of activism to the Reagan campaign of 1984, the late George Hickenlooper wrestled with politics on and off screen. He discussed his final effort, Casino Jack, a fictional re-telling of lobbyist Jack Abramoff's rise and fall, opening on December 17th, with The Independent.
There’s no doubt that making a political film was meant to be in Casino Jack director George Hickenlooper’s future.
Randi Cecchine challenges the documentary community to pull together, avoid the pratfalls of pleasing too many constituencies, and maintain open dialogue about the reality of getting docs funded and seen.November 4th, 2010 | Randi Cecchine
In anticipation of this month's Distribution U, hosted by IFP, The Independent's Randi Cecchine continues to investigate the changing landscape of documentary funding and distribution with notes from the field and a call for community.
Anyone who cares about documentary filmmaking wants to know: In the current post-financial crisis, insecure-industry environment, how can filmmakers fund projects and reach audiences when traditional distribution models have crumbled...when even established filmmakers can’t secure the kinds of distribution deals, broadcast partnerships or investment/foundation funders they used to rely on?
The Sixth Camden International Film Festival focuses on filmmakers’ growth as it grows in leaps and bounds itself.September 29th, 2010 | Maddy Kadish
For six years now Ben Fowlie has been luring the documentary world north to the Camden International Film Festival. They come for pitch opportunities, a seminar for film professionals, a semester-long partnership with the University Maine, and for docs that embrace an activist edge.
The Camden International Film Festival (CIFF) is a documentary-exclusive festival that takes place September 29th through October 3rd in a picturesque Maine coastal town. It’s a small, but growing festival founded six years ago by Ben Fowlie, who also programs and coordinates the event.
Print journalist Geoff Edgers takes a turn as a documentarian with "Do it Again," about his tireless effort to reunite the Kinks.September 23rd, 2010 | Erin Trahan
What if your favorite band had separated and you could be the reason they reunited? What if you could convince Sting to sing and play guitar with you backstage? Music journalist Geoff Edgers dared to dream and from those dreams came his first documentary, Do it Again. He discussed the making of with The Independent's Erin Trahan.
With latent teen rocker angst and a career as a print music journalist threatened to the point of extinction, Geoff Edgers hit mid-life determined to shake things up. Part one of his plan: get the Kinks back together after a decades-long split between the band’s two lead figures, brothers Ray and Dave Davies. Part two: in lieu of a reporter’s notebook, bring a documentary film crew.
Getting your independent film seen often means packing it full of famous actors. At the Toronto International Film Festival, Katherine Brodsky discovered that to be especially true for films made in Canada.September 21st, 2010 | Katherine Brodsky
At the close of the Toronto International Film Festival and after taking in most of the fest's new Canadian releases, Katherine Brodsky noticed a common import: American fame.
Barney's Version is a Canadian film with a lot of stars, especially American ones like Paul Giamatti and Dustin Hoffman.
In a special to The Independent, Kurt Brokaw reviews the new documentary, “Something’s Gonna Live.”September 9th, 2010 | Kurt Brokaw
The documentary Something's Gonna Live, and Kurt Brokaw's review of it, pay homage to the often unsung cinematic auteurs -- production designers, art directors, and directors of photography. Brokaw says it's, "one to watch for."
Chances are you didn’t know who decided to make Jimmy Stewart a stamp collector in Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo, but it was the production designer, Henry “Bummy” Bumstead. You might also have forgotten who aged the wood in the bleak gallows from which the convicted killers in In Cold Blood are hanged, but that was another production designer, Robert Boyle.
"Going green" might be en vogue—and environmentally responsible, of course—but what does sustainable filmmaking really entail?August 4th, 2010 | Steven Abrams
Prompted by Miranda Bailey's recent documentary, Greenlit, The Independent's Steven Abrams asks two eco-experts for tips on simple, environmentally conscious filmmaking methods.
Miranda Bailey's recent film-within-a-film documentary, Greenlit, portrays the hopes and eventual challenges of making the production of The River Why "green." There's an initial hope that making the Why production eco-friendly is doable, and even money-saving.
In an interview with FilmBuff's Chris Horton, The Independent asks about the evolving landscape of digital distribution, and whether or not it's an independent filmmaker's new best friend.July 30th, 2010 | Courtney Sheehan
More and more filmmakers use digital release platforms like iTunes, Netflix Streaming, and Video-on-Demand. Chris Horton, head of acquisitions for FilmBuff, explains the role his company can play in digital distribution.
FilmBuff is a digital distribution service provided by Cinetic Rights Management (CRM). Although FilmBuff is less than three years old, its sister company, Cinetic Media, has been a major player in film sales since 2001.
Playboy is one of the most recognizable brands in the world, but we're guessing not many people know that the Playboy Foundation funds social change documentaries.June 28th, 2010 | Maddy Kadish
You'll likely be surprised when you find out exactly what types of films the Playboy Foundation is passionate about making. A hint? Nudity is not a requirement.
Damned in the U.S.A. (1991)
Heart of the Matter (1994)
In the Family (2008)
The Most Dangerous Man in America (2010)
The Times of Harvey Milk (1984)
When Billy Broke His Head…. And Other Tales of Wonder (1999)
What do all these films have in common?