Mobcaster is Crowdfunding Indie TV

September 14th, 2012

Mobcaster is another crowd-funding site, but specializes exclusively on indie produced television content. It has it’s own online TV channel (Mobcaster TV) – which will broadcast the funded shows’ series and will share ad revenue (50/50 net split) with the show’s creators.

Mobcaster sells advertising around the series broadcast on Mobcaster TV and all Showrunners of such shows are entitled to half of our net advertising revenue. Because Mobcaster TV is dedicated to audience supported (and funded!) TV, Showrunners will have the opportunity for greater revenue participation than nearly anywhere else online!” – from mobcaster.com/faq 

Mobcaster’s biggest success to-date is a show called The Weatherman (watch the pilot episode here). It not only surpassed its $72,500 goal, but it will get a distribution deal with TiVo’s digital streaming service.

I watched The Weatherman pilot episode and it was really funny, well written and produced (by Dark Heart Productions). They are setting the bar pretty high for all the other proposed shows that will try to get funded through Mobcaster.

If you have an idea for a TV show – go ahead and pitch it (free of cost) to the Mobcaster audience. Follow their steps: Pitch -> Fund -> Produce -> Broadcast.

Online Video Contests – A Site That Has Them All

September 7th, 2012

I try to post as many filmmaking/video contests that are available online – but this site – Online Video Contests – has ’em all!

We are a resource for filmmakers, directors, animators, and amateur video enthusiasts to easily find (and win) video contests. – from onlinevideocontests.com/about

You can search and sort the types of contest that best fit your interest/needs from their easy-to-use “find contests” tab. They are currently running 165 total contests, with a cash value of $660,903. Check it out!

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On My Block NYC Film Challenge

August 26th, 2012

On My Block is a film challenge that brings communities closer together by inviting filmmakers to create short narrative or documentary (1-5 minutes) films on their NYC block . The only rule (besides being located in one of the 5 New York City boroughs) is that you can only use your neighbors within a one block radius for all the cast and crew of your film. Read all the rules and eligibility requirements here.

Also, check out their “Filmmaking Steps” for some production tips – like how to recruit your crew, Pre & Post steps and more.

Watch Ryan O’Hara Theisen, one of the co-founders of On My Block Films, explain the mission behind OMB Films and some of the benefits of being an On My Block filmmaker:
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Once your film is submitted and approved, it’ll screen online on the OMB Vimeo Channel. After Oct. 31st, it goes offline and the top scoring (most amount of Vimeo Likes) 30 films move on to Judges round. They’ll pick the final 15 which will be screened at a yet to be disclosed location in New York City.

Submissions are open until October 31, 2012. Submit your film now.

Gathr is Theatrical On Demand

August 20th, 2012

Gathr is a new service that attempts to democratize theatrical distribution by allowing the movie-goer the ability to bring independent films to local theatres – coining the phrase, “TOD” Theatrical-On-Demand. Described as if “Kickstarter met Netflix and had a love child,” (from Filmmaker Magazine) Gathr utilizes Kickstarter’s crowdfunding route as a down payment reservation for local theaters. Screenings can only happen if a minimum number of people reserve tickets before a screening request expires. If the minimum is reached, then the venue is guaranteed the funds committed because all reservations are not just intentions to attend, but a paid in full (credit cards are charged) pledge.

Gathr was created by a fellow filmmaker Scott Glosserman (IMDB) who was frustrated by the distribution process he experienced with his own films…

I was so disappointed by the difficulty I had getting my movies out there that I decided our industry had to innovate or filmmakers like me were going to continue to languish.”

There are similar services out there that you should also check out like OpenIndie, Tugg and Eventfull.  I’ve also covered a few others in a previous post titled, “DIY Screenings & Distribution.” The success of these types of non-traditional distribution outlets will greatly benefit our ability to collate an audience for our independent films.

Lars Von Trier – Project Gesamt

August 16th, 2012

Avant-garde (see Dogme 95) director Lars Von Trier (IMDB) announced this month the creation of a user-generated collaborative art project called Gesamt.

The concept gesamtkunstwerk can be explained as ‘the universal work of art’ or ‘synthesis of the art’. It refers to a piece of art that has been made up of many different types of art. Film is one of the only types of media which can accommodate several types of art forms at once. By using the idea of Gesamt in a user-generated film project we are taking the concept one step further: A universal work of art is not only created by many different art forms but also by a diversity and multitude of people. — from the official press release (PDF)

The project will be produced by the Copenhagen Art Festival and asks participants to submit their own reinterpreted films or audio pieces (up to five minutes in length) – inspired by these selected artists:
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Paul Gauguin
Albert Speer
Cesar Franck
James Joyce
August Strindberg
Sammy Davis Jr.

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Important Note: You can choose to reinterpret one or several of the artworks within the same material. But the six art pieces should NOT be depicted directly in your material.  If they are, your material will not be included in the final film.  Read the OFFICIAL RULES.

Lars Von Trier sets the rules (above), you create the material and the Danish director, Jenle Hallund will put it all together.

 

Gesamt will premiere on October 12. 2012 at Kunsthal Charlottenborg in Copenhagen.

Submit your film here (before the September 6, 2012 deadline).

Canon and Ron Howard Launch Project Imagination Again

August 15th, 2012

Canon is once again launching its photo-inspiring-film, user-generated assignment with director Ron Howard called, Project Imagination.  Last year was their inaugural project launch where they collected submitted photos that inspired a short film called, “when you find me.” Directed by Bryce Dallas Howard (28:44 – watch it below):

This year, they are looking for you to submit photos in 10 different tenets of storytelling. Here are the 10 themes:

  1. SettingAny location or environment
  2. TimeRepresents time of day or within history
  3. CharacterCan be anyone or anything
  4. MoodConveys atmosphere, tone or emotion
  5. BackstoryA history that promotes fuller understanding of the narrative
  6. RelationshipA relationship between anyone or anything
  7. GoalWhatever the character is pursuing
  8. ObstacleAnyone or anything in the character’s way
  9. The unknownCan be anything unexpected, a twist
  10. ?The 10th theme will be revealed at a later date (TBA in September)

A judging panel will then select the finalists. Ron Howard and a public vote will determine the winners. Then, 5 celebrity directors – actors Jamie Foxx, Eva Longoria, musician James Murphy, fashion designer Georgina Chapman and Twitter cofounder Biz Stone – will choose 10 photos, one per theme, which will inspire their upcoming films.

Upload/submit your photos [highlight] here [/highlight].

Win $1,000 Scholarship in Fair Trade Colleges & Universities Short Film Contest

August 12th, 2012

Fair Trade Colleges & Universities (a non-profit campaign to institute ‘fair trade’ on campuses across the U.S.) is running a short film contest with a grand prize of $1,000 scholarship, a trip to Latin America with a documentary team – plus other prizes!  If you’d like to know what their organization is all about – check out this video (below):

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The Contest:

Produce a short (30-90 second) film using your unique perspective as a current or former college student to explain the important role that students can play in the empowerment of farmers, workers, artisans and consumers through Fair Trade.

Eligibility:

You must be currently enrolled or have been enrolled in an institution of higher learning in the past 5 years in order to enter.

Grand Prize –

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    • Trip to Latin America with a Fair Trade documentary team
    • $1000 Cash Prize
    • Keurig Coffee Brewer + a year’s supply of coffee
    • $250 Fair Trade gift card
    • A free trip to the 2nd National Fair Trade Campaigns Conference

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2nd Place Prize –

    • $500 Cash Prize
    • Keurig Coffee Brewer + a year’s supply of coffee
    • $100 Fair Trade gift card
    • A free trip to the 2nd National Fair Trade Campaigns Conference

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3rd Place Prize –

    • $250 Cash Prize
    • Keurig Coffee Brewer + a year’s supply of coffee
    • $50 Fair Trade gift card
    • A free trip to the 2nd National Fair Trade Campaigns Conference

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The contest is open for submissions now – [highlight]click here[/highlight] for more information

5 Awesome Kickstarter Funded Filmmaking Tools

August 10th, 2012

Kickstarter is a great place to pitch your film for crowdfunding, but it’s also an ideal place for funding filmmaking gadgets and tools. In fact, this area has an advantage over other creative endeavors where supporters are not only showing their interest in a product, but also pre-ordering it – guaranteeing a profit before it goes to market!

Here are five great filmmaking tools that met their funding goals through Kickstater:

Digital Bolex Camera – It’s a a 2K RAW Digital Cinema camera that will sell for $3,000.  Here’s their pitch:

Once upon a time, motion picture cameras that created high-quality images were affordable for all filmmakers on any budget. Consumer 8mm and 16mm cameras like the original Bolex shot footage that could be projected on any movie theater screen.

In today’s digital market, ‘affordable’ and ‘consumer’ have become synonymous with ‘low-quality’ — but it doesn’t have to be that way. Introducing the Digital Bolex D16, the first digital cinema camera to shoot RAW at a price anyone can afford.

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[/framed_box]Other reviews of this product:  “Digital Bolex – Viva la Revolution!” – zacuto.com

Genie – A motion control time lapse device.  Here’s their pitch:

The Genie! A simple, affordable and extremely easy to use device used for motion control and image capture for Time Lapse Photography + more. The Genie is an all-in-one device used to combine image capture with motion control, capable of either panning or linear movement that’s commonly used in Time Lapse Photography. Simply attach your camera to the top of the Genie, plug it in, and program it to move and shoot to your desired needs.

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[/framed_box]The SnapFocus – The SnapFocus is a cinematic one man band with grip-level focus control.

The SnapFocus allows filmmakers to pull focus and steady the camera on the move, making it easier to achieve Hollywood production value on a shoestring budget. Focus on the fly and give your documentary or cinema vertiè footage an expensive look, or add production value to your projects with really cool technical focus pulls. 

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[/framed_box]Other reviews of this product:  “JJ Abrams Loves the New Indie Film Gear Snapfocus” – jokeandbiagio.com

+ Rhino Slider –  It’s a camera track designed to to give lateral movement when shooting.

Get amazing cinematic video with a GoPro, iPhone, DSLR or RED. The most affordable, ultralight and versatile 48″ slider ever.

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[/framed_box]Other reviews of this product:  “Rhino Slider for DSLR filmmakers Glides Past Kickstarter Target” – gizmag.com

 + The Aviator Travel Jib – A portable, lightweight jib-arm.

Get big budget camera moves from a jib (crane) that weighs less than a bottle of soda, fits in a backpack, and sets up in seconds.

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[/framed_box]Look out for all these products when they come to market.

Tom Cruise (Dot Com) Offers Guidance to Aspiring Filmmakers

August 5th, 2012

I was pleasantly surprised that TomCruise.com has a series of filmmaking posts and guides that cover a wide spectrum of information and resource links for anyone interested in a career in movies. [note title=”Pictured:” align=”right” width=”250″] Tom Cruise with director, Steven Spielberg on the set of Minority Report. Photo from tomcruise.com [/note]Admittedly, I am a fan of Mr. Cruise’s films, but I’m not one that peruses actors/celebrities’ websites. I’ll credit Filmmaking.net for making me aware of these articles and guides when it recently published a post that referenced one of these articles from tomcruise.com. I greatly appreciate and sympathize the effort that the team at tomcruise.com put into their accumulation of numerous links in their guides (similar to what I do here at Filmlinker).

The TomCruise.com team wants to help you make your Hollywood dreams come true! Whether you are an aspiring actor, director and filmmaker, film editor, producer, screenwriter, stuntman or visual effects artist, we have complied guides for several of the most in-demand professions in the movie and television industry.” – tomcruise.com


Check out the list of guides that they’ve compiled:
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TOMCRUISE.COM “ASPIRING…” GUIDES

  • Aspiring Directors and Filmmakers Guide – Find out about numerous filmmaking techniques (including mobile!), film festivals, contests and competitions that could give your project exposure, award much-needed funds or offer training programs to advance your career in films.
  • Aspiring Visual Effects Artists Guide – Tips, Training, and Resources for a job in the field of post –production. As technology advances at lightning speed, the need for visual artists is on the rise.
  • Aspiring Actors Guide – Resources, Training, and Tools to take you to the top. Including a guide to Mobile Apps for training in an acting career.
  • Aspiring Stuntman Guide – Tips, Resources, and Information to help you launch your career as a stunt performer.
  • Aspiring Visual Effects Artists Guide – Tips, Training, and Resources for a job in the field of post –production. As technology advances at lightning speed, the need for visual artists is on the rise.

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Short Films find Digital Distribution via the new Go Social Film iPad Magazine

August 3rd, 2012

Go Social Film Magazine is a new (free) iPad (only) monthly publication that showcases international short films – along with behind-the-scenes production content, exclusive filmmaker interviews, unseen footage, and interactive multimedia articles.  Subscribers can watch these short films in their entirety and filmmakers get exposure to a wider audience.

Go Social Film is a welcome addition to indie filmmaking. There are not that many platforms where shorts have a voice outside the festival circuit, Go Social Film is a great opportunity to be heard.”  – Alex Sufit, director “Gentlemen In Squalor.”

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Here are some of the featured short films included in Issue #2:
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  • “Slug Invasion” (IMDB) Animation – Director: Casper Wermuth, Denmark
  • “O-Ring” (IMDB) Drama – Director: Ondřej Hudeček, Czech Republic
  • “Gentlemen in Squalor” (IMDB) Musical – Director: Alex Sufit, United Kingdom
  • “Phlegethon” (IMDB) Drama – Director: Vadim Vatagin, Russia
  • “Finding Benjaman” (IMDB) Documentary – Director: John Wikstrom, United States
  • “Gravity of Belief” (IMDB) Comedy – Director: Martin Gooch, United Kingdom

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The Go Social Film Magazine App is available for free download in the iTunes Store.