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Old September 5th, 2003, 01:38 PM   #1
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Your opinions on an 'Indie Film Night' Event

So I've hooked up with a friend who recently started doing after-hours events for the local chamber of commerce. The chamber has been wanting to appeal to a younger, hipper crowd as the stigma of chamber members is old, well-to-do men who hang around and count their money. My friend is the right person for this, as he's been doing this sort of thing for a few years.

Anyway, he had expressed interest to me in the past of setting up an Indie Film night, as we'd had discussions on this in the past. And after his last event, a local performing arts theatre approached him with a desire to put an event on at their location. They have projection capabilities, so naturally we think this is just the right time to launch an Indie film night. So I thought I'd come here and get some feedback from you fine folks... if you were attending such an event, what would you like to see?

There are a few things that are a definite - there will be food and there will be drinks (we have sponsors for both of these), and the whole point of it is to schmooze. The theatre wants publicity, the chamber wants to be hip, my friend wants to put together a fun event and earn his living, and I want to promote local film.

Outside of that, we figured we'd send out a call for locally produced short films 20-minutes and under. We'd then sift through them and find a few 'featured artists' that we could introduce to the community and let them screen their short films (or perhaps show trailers for their features). Many chamber members would be there, and my goal would be to pack the place with local filmmakers; producers, directors, actors, and other crew members. If it goes well, we'd make it a recurring thing.

What would you guys like to see at a local filmmakers event such as this if there was/is one in your town?
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Old September 5th, 2003, 02:21 PM   #2
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Let me know if you ever pull it together. I'll make the drive to Orlando. Sounds like an great idea !
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Old September 5th, 2003, 04:38 PM   #3
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Hello,

Hey keep me posted on this thing, as i am in the Orlando area, and would be interested in seeing where this thing goes..

I believe there is something kind of like this now here , where a group of filmakers meet once a month, and produce short films as a challenge, and they screen their shorts..

I believe it is called something like creative stages.. try to google that, and you should fine it.. the problem I have with it is they meet on a tuesday evening, which is a work night for me..

Mike
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Old September 5th, 2003, 04:53 PM   #4
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Jes, I know about Creative Stages - it's in Winter Park, close to where I live. I've heard mixed things about it but I applaud anybody doing anything like what they're doing. This will be similar, but less of a creative exercise and more of a get-to-know type event, to bring the community together and let those not in the industry realize that there are a lot of up-and-commers brewing here in this underrated city...

I will keep everyone posted, that's for sure. If anyone has suggestions/input, please throw 'em out!
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Old September 6th, 2003, 11:02 AM   #5
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My biggest gripe about local filmmaking events (festivals, screenings) is that the films are not at all interesting; they're made without any regard to story, acting, camera placement, lighting, or sound. It doesn't matter if they come from Hollywood or your neighbor's backyard, 90% of films are not worth watching. So my suggestion would be to find some really good films that will keep the audience in their seats (and want to come back for more).
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Old September 6th, 2003, 11:49 AM   #6
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Yeah I hear you on the low quality stuff.. i look as much as i can at other peoples work.. and quite a bit on the web.. and do not see a lot of high quality stuff.. Sometimes the stuff looks pretty good, but no much of a story.. but of course that disease is rampant in hollywood to..

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Old September 6th, 2003, 07:13 PM   #7
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Definitely, I don't want to bore the pants off of anyone. Fact is though, we'll have what we will get via submission - so if we get 20 poor submissions, well, we'll just have to wing it somehow and show very few. Maybe supplement it with other not-so-local films (with permission).

Either way, we're going to have film buffs there along with people who could give 2 sticks about film - who are just there for the networking and whatnot. The goal is to have enough of other stuff going on (areas for food, drink and shmoozing) so we can keep everybody happy.

Keep the advice comin'!
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Old September 8th, 2003, 11:52 PM   #8
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Been having some successful meetings and it looks like this is close to becoming a reality. So I'm bumping this up to see if anyone else would like to offer up some opinions.

If you had an Indie Film night in your town, what would you like to see? Would you submit your short film or trailer for viewing? What itinerary would most appeal to you? What would keep you coming back for more?

Thanks all.
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Old September 15th, 2003, 01:51 AM   #9
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i have films. and they have played in public to rave reviews

Hi Imran,

Congrats on starting a film event! May you not lose your mind.

If you want to take a look at my films, I have a site where you can watch tiny low-res versions of them.

I've played several festivals and commercial theatres in the US, and TV in Belgium and Austria(so I've been told).

And if you don't like em good luck to you.

http://www.feminalefilms.com
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Old September 28th, 2003, 10:21 AM   #10
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All you really need is a few really outgoing personalities to lubricate the evening. You should get at least one or two decent films. If the submissions are poor then it'll be a little harder to make the evening fun, but still doable. Most "film-makers" I meet are more then happy to talk about how/why they did a project and that usually makes it more interesting then it is (or isn't) on it's own.

If it were me, I'd emcee the event with a couple cool, down-to-earth guys (or gals) and I'd introduce the film-makers and have them give a few brief comments about the how and why part... You can pull people into some sort of emotional connection even before the lights dim.

In a situation like this people like to be lead and educated while being entertained... this approach will keep sub-stellar films from feeling awkward to the audience and everybody will understand where the film-maker is "coming from" and why his film is as it is, either from age, budget, or experience.

Since you already said you have refreshments, just find those couple cool people to host it and you'll be fine.

If you aren't blessed with a magnetic personality and you don't know anybody who fits that bill, then you might consider a local comedy troop... now stick with me on this one... many towns have a cluster of great personalities, who belong to a comedy club. These people are often a great resource for actors as well. Often they have acting experience and just want to get as much exposure as possible... also let them know that they'll get the opportunity to plug their comedy club as well as meet local film-makers that will be interested in casting them.

I always look for win/win deals. Good luck with your film night.
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Old September 28th, 2003, 10:40 AM   #11
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That's all great advice, and some stuff I hadn't thought about. Thanks!

Been working on getting all the deals done the past couple of weeks, and it looks like it's going to be a reality. I'll be posting all the information on a site pretty soon. Looks like it's going to be at the end of November; this gives me enough time to work on the publicity and to start taking submissions of local filmmakers. All your input is very helpful.
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Old September 28th, 2003, 10:51 AM   #12
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Try one of the local morning radio duos that exist in every town in America. They're always up for hire in the afternoons and evenings. Might even get the radio station to sponsor your event...free publicity!

And since radio celebrities all secretly want to be TV celebrities, film some short comedy sketches of them to show between entries to keep things lively (and mostly to sell them on the idea of emceeing for you).
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