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Media Inc Magazine appoints Scott A. Capestany Editor-In-Chief

In an aggressive move by Media Inc Publishing, one of the longest running print publication companies in the Pacific Northwest with over 25 publications, General Manager of the group John Rusnak announced the appointment of Award Winning Film Producer and Indie Film business executive Scott A. Capestany to helm Media Inc Magazine as its new Editor-In-Chief.

Long before the internet, the publication began in the late 1980s as the sole media+film resource and news platform to complement the growing indie film scene in the Seattle, WA market and also to keep its readers up on film festival news, regional film productions and also help production crews members to find jobs.

Over the years, the publication circulated among a regional footprint throughout the Pacific Northwest stretching from Seattle to Portland and Eastern Washington as a well known staple among cinephites.

Early in 2015, Capestany was commissioned by the publication to write a few editorials on the current landscape of Film/TV productions in the region. His cover story “TOP influential Women in Film and Media in WA State” gained the attention of Indie Film communities that quickly led to multiple partnerships with film festivals, businesses and organizations whose mission statements supported spearheading Women In Film, gender equality and diversity throughout Hollywood.   “We are very excited to see Scott take this publication into the 21st century and look forward to seeing his new vision enhance the publications reach and growth”, said Rusnak.  MI Publishing ownership said they were quite confident in Scott’s abilities to carry the torch of the magazine and has no doubt his choice as the successor will bring exciting new content, readers and partnerships around the world for the first time in the company’s history.

Soon after taking the reigns of the magazine, Capestany invited trusted film industry colleague, film financier and Producers Guild of America member ANNE MARIE GILLEN into the fold to further support him in his quest to promote and connect with emerging and high profile Women in Film in Hollwood.  “Scott’s resilience and drive over the years and watching him grow as a reputable player in the business was more than enough to join his team.” Gillen said.  “Scott is quickly evolving into one of Hollywood’s premier Impact Producers.  His explosive energy, ability to quickly formulate partnerships across industry platforms and communicate with the new digital age filmmakers and players is impressive”.

We got a chance to sit down with our new fearless leader to share with us his vision for the future of MI Magazine.

MI:  Congrat’s on your new appointment!

Scott A. Capestany:  Thanks.  When the ownership group approached me, the timing just happened to be perfect.  I’m eager to focus my attention with the new appointment in building a new editorial and mobile support team that will support and stand behind the new branding of the publication including my ongoing advocacy for Women In Film and diversity within the creative space.  Another component I’m excited about is adding a sports and artist lifestyle segment to the publication that highlights the explosive new media growth in those spaces.  The ambition is to eventually offer more of an international scope of entertainment + media related content to our publication online to compliment and grow our print publication still in circulation from its original roots in the Pacific Northwest.  

MI:  Tell us more about the new direction of the publication and how it’s fitting into the new digital media space.

SAC:  One of the first things we tackled was enhancing our online social media engagement component for our readers.  We are now platforming our brand and editorial content aggressively and consistently on twitter.  Many of our followers and engagers are some of the industry’s most active and vocal supporters of our primary editorial content coverage – Indie Film + Women In Film + Diversity in the entertainment space.  Which helps with the growth of our audience and exposure for our partners and advertisers.  With industry news and press coverage PR now primarily being streamlined through the various digital platforms on smartphones and tablets, our plan is to continue to grow our audience through these new technologies.  Secondly, we are aggressively partnering with top international and domestic film festivals as their exclusive Media partner.  The partnerships and press coverage we have in place at high profile indiefilm meccas and markets such as  Sundance, Tribeca, SXSW, American Film Market, Seattle International Film Festival and Whistler International Film Festival to mention a few, help bridge the gap of emerging filmmakers and creatives with the rapidly evolving media world.  Showcasing unique aspects of their festivals and events daily on our online platforms (twitter @MediaIncMag) and quarterly in print issues help connect more people to these unique film festivals and markets.  We are also slated to launch a series of interactive social experiences and events for our community through LIVE stream broadcasting and monthly mixers at our partners and film festivals around the world.

MI:  How did you get involved in the Film/TV business?

SAC:  Shortly after attending a Sundance Film Festival a while back, I found myself drawn to the energy of this extraordinary tribe of creatives called ‘Indie Filmmakers’.  They all seemed to have this contagious “rebel” almost “maverick” approach to getting things done.  Doing what ever took with limited resources to get a film made, find an audience, buyer and move to the next project swiftly.  Thinking  outside the box and bucking the traditional ways of creating and presenting visual arts was what really drew me in.  I found a way to apply my business background to this newly discovered world of brilliant creative artists and help them.  That’s when the producer was born.  I knew that I had something to offer the indie film world both as a writer, creator and most importantly someone who could connect and educate these creatives on the ‘business’ components of the industry.   Unfortunately, there is a very low number of indie filmmakers that know very much about the business side of the industry.  It’s mostly all about art and expression for creatives.  It’s radically improved in the last five years with the explosion of digital technology tools now available for creatives to create, market and share their content by themselves.  So the timing was perfect for me when I arrived into the scene.   

MI:  How would you describe what is taking place in the current landscape of Film/TV production?

SAC:  I call it the ‘Perfect Storm’ with the three most important  components converging simultaneously and changing so rapidly. Technology, creativity and consumption.  Many people dropped out of the entertainment industry business because of the lighting speed technology and the time it takes to develop and foster professional relationships.  So it’s really opened it up for new emerging creatives that understand the new digital landscape and are leveraging this technology to grow the “New Hollywood”.  You can now pitch a complete stranger at a film market, festival or conference and within days they are investing and often times partnering with you in your endeavor.  Technology has helped bridge the gap of uncertainty in our business.  Content is King in this business more than ever before.  With the emergence of digital distribution, everyone is looking for contact all all platforms and it’s more easy in today’s landscape to get projects pushed along to production if the relationships are there.  The demand for content is unparalleled from any other time in movie making history.  Netflix and Amazon combined are in the process of spending close to $10 Billion dollars for 2017 and likely to increase that aggressive content acquisition well into the future.   So I’m glad I stuck around for this amazing moment in time.  The growth curve for many these days is too much to stay on top of, thus they drop out and revert back to archaic business models that no longer work in the modern world of movie making.   Thanks to getting my first computer in 1981 for Christmas,  I’ve always been a “techie” kind of guy that’s had a computer and cell phone since they came out and have stayed well ahead of the curve within the new digital landscape.   Especially when it comes to engaging decision makers at the studio and network level.  They most all have brilliant tech minds and quite savvy withing the new Hollywood digital landscape.  So I speak their language quite well.  Applying and harnessing the latest technology allows me to navigate the terrain with ease and lightning speed efficiency.  Today’s landscape of film making truly is a manifestation of what I imagined it could become when I was a kid and young business professional in the 90s.  Most everything the imagination conceives in the story telling world now can be produced on screen for worldwide audiences and viewed at the touch of a button 24/7.    And now in this quite extraordinary time, at a fraction of what it cost 5-10-15 years ago.

scott-on-stage-2

Scott A. Capestany pitching ‘My silent Voice’ on stage at the VARIETY Faith Based Film Summit. He was 1 of 12 selected from around the world.

 

MI : What film projects are you involved in as a Producer now?

SAC: My team and I are involved in multiple projects in a variety of production stages including our headlining project which is an action/adventure thriller feature film THE RAINFOREST .  (See story on page  15).   It’s a story about a group of international explorers and scientists that set out to a mysterious Rainforest to investigate a series of tribal legends, riddles and search for a ancient lost civilization myth.  We also are working on a magical family film MY SILENT VOICE that’s about a young deaf girl, her love for horses and her heroic journey to the equine winners circle.  

HOME-SLIDER-IMAGES-Capestany Films

 One of my personal favorite projects that I’m a creator on is an adventurous TV series titled THE ADVENTURES OF SAMMIE DRAKE.   It’s a story about a young 9-year girl who just graduated from the 3rd grade and convinces her parents that she’s old enough to join the family treasure hunting business.  If you remember the adventures of Pippy Longstocking and the illuminating moxy of little Punky Brewster (of the 80s) with a dash of Nancy Drew mystery, audiences and especially younger kids will quickly identify and connect with Sammie and her brave adventures.  Sammie’s bold and brave spirit allows her to do everything the boys can do highlighting our support and advocacy of gender equality.   We are also developing both an APP and VR interactive products with this series similar to the Dora the Explorer brand. 

MI: Tell us about your vision and new direction you are taking with MEDIA INC MAGAZINE.

SAC:  We are currently laser focused on re-branding the publication and designing effective “Editorial Impact” campaigns for our new generation of readers, influencers and strategic partners.  We’ve already partnered with multiple film festivals as their media affiliate providing coverage and connecting with indie filmmakers to help them promote their projects with solid press coverage.   It’s one thing to get a write-up on an unknown blog and another thing to get a write-up in a globally distributed magazine print publication and have a professional digital link coming from that legitimate digital source.  One of the first things we jumped on was the social media platform that this publication had very little exposure on.  We’ve grown our twitter, IG and FB pages 700% since taking over and still primed for fresh new engagement daily.  So being a fresh new print publication in the digital world has worked to our advantage growing our communities and engagers.   We are already becoming a well known media publication outlet both Nationally and Internationally within the Indie film world.  We have already covered Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, Seattle International Film Festival and the American Film Market this Fall.  We are also very excited to add a new segment beginning with this publication –  SPORTS.    We’ll be doing editorials that have a new media focus within major organizations like the Pac-12 Network (See page 33) whom are expanding their digital new media footprint and audiences using the power of technology.  

Media Inc Cover BEST with Scott

MI:  What is the current distribution, circulation and frequency of the magazine?

SAC:  We are a FREE quarterly print publication circulating around 5K+/- throughout the Pacific Northwest and West Coast Cities (Seattle, Portland, LA and global film festivals). You can now find us on the racks (just to the right as you walk in the door) at LA’s largest Indie bookstore in Hollywood BOOK SOUP on sunset Boulevard.  We are strategically planning to expand circulation and take the publication to other markets through partnering with domestic and international film festivals, industry organizations and entertainment entities that support Indie Filmmaking. 

All photos, images, soundbites and writings of Scott A. Capestany are COPYRIGHTED and protected under US Copyright laws.

Scott is represented by Beverly Hills lawfirm Bloom Hergott Diemer Rosenthal LaViolette Feldman Schenkman & Goodman, LLP

You can follow MEDIA INC and CAPESTANY FILMS on Twitter/IG

For Scott’s full Biography – IMDB

 

 

Scilla Andreen

WA State’s Most Influential Women in Film, TV and new Media

Scott A. CapestanyBy Scott A. Capestany Editor-In-Chief

Over the past decade, a growing band of Pacific Northwest talented and fierce female creatives have taken the regional community of independent film, TV, media and music by storm. This two-part cover story takes us into the hearts and minds of some of Washington’s and Oregon’s most admired and influential women who have helped pave the way on how we consume media, create films/music, produce visual art (films) and empower others through their creative and artistic talents. Their work today continues to push the limits of innovation by contributing to the ever-growing and quickly-evolving landscape of our region’s multi-media sector. We are proud to call these women ‘our own.’ But most importantly, so very grateful for what they do for others through their leadership, inspiration and love within our communities.

For part one of this cover story, we are honored and excited to commemorate the careers and achievements of 18 unique and fascinating women from Washington State within the world of film, TV, media and creativity. Highlighting their profound and worthy contributions is just one factor we took into consideration. The other, which is equally important throughout the process of creative collaboration, is the leadership and teamwork skills that each of them have so admirably displayed over the years. Our selection is not in any order of significance, but rather a collective equal presentation celebrating women pioneers that have fought hard in their professions, stepped outside the box, made their voices heard and, most importantly, become game-changers that continue to push for equality and women empowerment in the entertainment space.

Congratulations to these outstanding women from the Pacific Northwest, and be sure to look for part two of this story, which will feature women in film from Los Angeles, in the next issue of Media Inc.

SCILLA ANDREEN, co-founder and CEO of Seattle-based IndieFlix, has truly become one of the most iconic empresses of women empowerment and influence within the world of indie filmmaking.

Scilla Andreen

Scilla Andreen

What Variety magazine calls ‘the Netflix of indie films,’ IndieFlix is now the world’s premier online indie film streaming service that specifically provides a platform for content representing independent thinkers, offering a unique and never-before-seen distribution and revenue model for filmmakers. Content that is featured on the IndieFlix platform allows filmmakers to get paid through metrics involving ‘minutes viewed’ and most recently can now access all their films’ data of their actual viewing audience.

“We created IndieFlix with the filmmaker in mind first that offered more than just a platform for showcasing their finished films,” Andreen said. Currently now in beta  testing, IndieFlix filmmakers can for the first time have access to all the necessary data as to who, where, and how consumers are viewing their content, which she believes is a game-changer in the industry.

As a veteran entrepreneur, Andreen’s work over the past two decades as an Emmy-nominated costume designer, award-winning filmmaker, producer, popular speaker, international film festival juror and dedicated advocate of independent film has helped open up doors and inspired millions of creative artists, both in front of and behind the camera. Her recent empowerment documentary project run through her IndieFlix foundation, which highlights ordinary women doing extraordinary things, recently returned home to Washington State after making a national tour around the country featuring a band of young female filmmakers interviewing and highlighting other women’s empowering stories. The documentary now is being screened at hundreds of schools across the nation. Her current project Screenagers is a fascinating look into today’s youth and their usage of digital technology, directed by Seattle physician and award-winning filmmaker Delaney Rustin. Visit www.indieflix.com and www.screenagersmovie.com for more.

Having directed every single one her seven feature films in Washington State, (Click HERE) our next woman of influence likely does not need a formal introduction. If you have had your eye on the Pacific Northwest Indiefilm line-up over the last decade, writer/director LYNN SHELTON has essentially embodied what women in film and Washington State filmmaking has become. Along with her good friend and Seattle producer Mel Eslyn, Shelton feels there needs to be a greater effort by Washington State legislation to see the value and benefit of making films and TV shows in Washington.  (This published prior to the renewal of the 2017 incentive program).

“The thing about the Motion Picture Competitiveness Program is that it’s so beautifully engineered and designed to benefit the Washington State economy and professional filmmakers,” said Shelton. “In fact, Washington State was the first state ever to create a film incentive that included union standards, like pension health benefits.”

Lynn Shelton

Lynn Shelton

Spending half her time in L.A., Shelton works both as a writer and director for a number of well-known network and studio projects. Her work has been seen on Netflix, Showtime, Fox and 20th Century TV in episodes of series such as Mad Men, Shameless, Master of None, Fresh Off the Boat, New Girl and Maron.

Shelton also feels that it is a very unique time for women in film. “I believe that we as women are upon a very special moment that I hope is not wasted,” she said. “A moment of opportunity… that I hope is not wasted.” Now that the conversation of women in film and the lack of gender diversity among directors in Hollywood has been brought to the forefront of the media, Shelton senses a much more profound willingness and actual  desire of women wanting to change the pattern by hopefully enhancing the numbers of women directors at large in the workplace. Shelton is actively pushing to bring her next feature to the Evergreen State, produced with our next featured woman of influence and her good friend, Mel Eslyn.

One of the most decorated and hard-working independent film producers from Washington State is MEL ESLYN. Having begun working on movie sets at the age of 14, Eslyn’s resilient and admirable work ethic has spanned two decades, leading her to producing over 15 films, including 3 of Lynn Shelton’s 6 major feature films. Over the last handful of years, she has produced a series of feature films that have screened at some of the world’s top film festivals, including Sundance, Toronto, Tribeca and SXSW. She recently won the prestigious Piaget Producers Award at the 2016 Film Independent Spirit Awards that honors emerging producers who, despite highly limited resources, demonstrate the creativity, tenacity and vision required to produce quality independent films. The annual award includes a $25,000 unrestricted grant funded by Piaget.

Mel Eslyn

Mel Eslyn

“One of the biggest hurdles for me as a producer has been my ability to bring more of my films to Seattle. Once projects reach a certain budget, a state film incentive comes into play quite significantly as to where the film is made,” Eslyn said. “It’s my goal in the next year to bring at least one, if not two, feature films to our market that in turn will help bring more awareness to legislation to see the huge benefits a feature film has on impacting local community’s business and economy.” One of Eslyn’s biggest contributions to the Washington State film scene over the years has been her loyalty to her crew and co-workers. Although a number of her films have been filmed outside of Washington State, she brings along many local crew people to work alongside her.

When it comes to connecting the Pacific Northwest’s growing pool of talented actors, casting director NIKE IMORU, CSA, is the one woman who not only gets the job done, but is counted on by the leading producers throughout Washington and now in Los Angeles to find the most talented performers in film and TV. Nike, pronounced “Nee-Kay,” has been a professional casting director in Washington for over 10 years and currently is the lead casting director for the state’s largest recurring cable TV series, Z Nation.

Nike Imoru

Nike Imoru

“It’s been my goal ever since I began casting to offer more to actors during the casting process than what typically they would get during an audition,” Imoru said. Known around the region as a true “actors coach,” she is a classically trained professional theater actor herself who hails from the U.K., where she also taught acting at a few prestigious schools before becoming a full-time CSA. She recently opened up a state-of-the-art casting studio facility in West Seattle, where she will be spending most of 2016 casting and supporting Z Nation. Visit www.nikeimorucasting.com or find Nike Imoru Casting on Facebook: ‘Act with Inspiration.’

With approximately 45 film festivals and competitions each year for filmmakers and folks to attend around the state, STEFANIE MALONE, executive director of the world’s largest youth film festival NFFTY, helms a quite impressive and quickly growing international festival in downtown Seattle each spring. Now in its 10th year, NFFTY (National Film Festival for Talented Youth) receives over 950 submissions from over 20 countries around the world made by youth filmmakers between the ages of 5 and 25.

Stefanie Malone

Stefanie Malone

An Emmy Award-winning producer herself, Malone’s work in the PBS arena for many years led her to Seattle, where she became the community engagement and education director for Seattle’s local PBS affiliate, KCTS. Although her full-time commitment to NFFTY year-round occupies most of her bandwidth, her ongoing relationship with KCTS and WETA (the Washington, D.C. PBS affiliate) allows her to pursue her true passion and love for developing and producing documentaries. “It’s hard to leave PBS entirely after being with them so long, so I’m grateful I can continue to work within that space where I still think it is an excellent platform for filmmakers to showcase their films and TV shows,” Malone said. Her team of likeminded leaders and growing numbers of supporting staff at NFFTY has allowed the festival to expand its annual events and festival offerings to the public. Visit www.nffty.org.

Working for the City of Seattle as executive director for the Film+Music Office, KATE BECKER leads a staff of seven who oversee a multitude of resources and permitting activities that help facilitate filmmakers, musicians and special events. Whether it be a feature film, TV series, commercial or new media production that involves city parks or hundreds of locations run by the city, Becker’s team truly is the ‘one-stop shop’ for the professional filmmaker. Each year, the city issues over 400 film permits for projects filmed in and around the city.

Prior to working with the city, Becker served in leadership roles at Kate BeckerSeattle Theatre Group, Art Share L.A. in Los Angeles, and the New Art Center in Newton, Massachusetts. She co-founded Seattle’s Vera Project and the Old Fire House, nonprofit art- and music-based all-ages venues that have helped build Seattle’s creative economy talent pipeline. Becker has also produced more than 1,000 all-ages shows and numerous major fundraisers and galas. Talking about women in film, Becker said, “I’m so happy to work in a market (WA State) where so many talented women are leading our local industry by producing and creating exceptional content which is a true feather in our cap.”

Becker also works quite diligently as one of Washington State’s top interactive advocates for helping bring new filmmakers to the state from around the world while attending national and international festivals and markets. “We are excited the members of the film industry are actively convening in pursuit of a production facility to be located in Seattle,” she said. “Something like this could do wonders for the film/TV and media landscape.” Visit www.seattle.gov/filmandmusic.

As co-founder and owner of Mighty Tripod Productions (MTP), one of Seattle’s most respected actor development, management and indie production companies, ANGELA DiMARCO truly has become an empowering woman of influence, both in front of and behind the camera. With a genuine heart to help others (she is known as ‘Mama DiMarco’ among her circle), she helps mentor and prepare actors for the rigorous road of working in the business.

Angela DiMarco

Angela DiMarco

“MTP is an evolution of who I was, growing up without having quality training and mentorship that I believe is a major cornerstone of becoming a professional artist,” said DiMarco, who runs the company with her talented and award-winning husband David Hogan, who himself has over two decades of theater, film, TV and talent leadership under his belt.

“David and I wanted to create a platform in Mighty Tripod Productions for Northwest actors taught by Northwest actors, available to all ages to hone their craft, build their confidence and, most of all, be mighty,” she added. You can find DiMarco on all social media channels under Mighty Tripod Productions, her own hashtag #dontwaitcreate and at www.mightytripod.com.

Once a creative artist decides he or she wants to take the plunge into the world of acting or modeling in the Seattle area, TERRI MORGAN’s TCM Models and Talent Agency would be considered by many one of the most well-known and reputable agencies in the state. Starting up in 1979 as a modeling agency over in Eastern Washington, Morgan decided to take her love for helping others within the industry to Seattle and opened up a new location downtown in 1990, where they remain today. By 1998, her well-seasoned staff established a new talent division that has provided actors opportunities in commercials, feature films, TV series and new media requiring on-camera talent.

Terri Morgan

Terri Morgan

“Coming from a modeling background myself, I know how hard it can be to break into the business not knowing how to navigate the oftentimes intimidating and rigorous demand of the business or how the auditioning and selection process works,” she said. “TCM specializes in counseling and advising talent by offering a well-developed road map for actors and models to utilize if they choose to enhance their careers.” Visit TCM at www.tcmmodels.com.

One of Washington State’s best known features is its rich and vibrant Native American culture and history. Our next woman of influence has spent over a decade developing an awareness  and sensitivity to the power of media and film as a modern storytelling tool for local communities, primarily the indigenous people of the region. As co-founder and executive director of Longhouse Media, now in their 11th year, TRACY RECTOR (Choctaw/Seminole Tribe) has produced over 350 film shorts, worked with over 40 tribes from around the United States, and has served over 3,000 youths by bringing filmmaking tools to tribal students from around the country to help them tell their own stories. Her work has been featured by Cannes Film Festival, ImagineNative and National Geographic’s All Roads Film Project, while also leading the first filmmaking team from Seattle to have a documentary on PBS’ Independent Lens and appearing in the Smithsonian’s Museum of the American Indian. Not to mention, she’s a recent Sundance Film Institute Lab fellow participant and Tribeca Film Festival all-access grantee to boot.

Tracy Rector

Tracy Rector

Aside from being an award-winning director/producer and advocate, Rector developed and launched the quite successful educational program ‘SuperFly,’ a program that challenged students to create 5 films in 36 hours, which then screened in conjunction with the Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF).

“SIFF’s decade-long collaborating with Tracy on ‘SuperFly’ was an exceptional opportunity that not only provided exemplary training and experience to youth across cultures, but built bridges between the Native community and their neighbors from cities across the USA. Today, Tracy’s new ‘4th World’ program continues that depth of intent, as we are proud to be working with her to fill the need for additional training for up-and-coming Native filmmakers,” said Dustin Kaspar, education director at SIFF.

Rounding off her admirable leadership throughout the communities of the Puget Sound, Rector currently sits as City of Seattle Arts Commissioner.

“My vision is to bring traditional and contemporary education together on a foundation based in environmental stewardship,” said Rector. As a monthly series, her ‘Indigenous Showcase’ program at the Northwest Film Forum also blends culture with community. She added, “The Indigenous Showcase program screens films made by Native Americans or in part supported by the Native American community.” Read more about Rector at www.longhousemedia.org and www.clearwaterstories.org.

Abby Dylan

Abby Dylan

With the growing number of actors and performers living and arriving to Seattle, ABBY DYLAN is a woman whose lengthy multi-decade experience in the industry has landed her passionate voice for actors at the top of the most prestigious organizations in show business. Dylan is an elected member of the SAG-AFTRA Board, where she serves as the National Chairman of the SAGIndie Committee and ViceChair of the Legislative Committee. In addition, she is also a director of the SAG-AFTRA Foundation Board, and was appointed to serve on the Board of Washington Filmworks by both Governor Christine Gregoire and Governor Jay Inslee. In 2016, Dylan also was appointed to the Board of the SAG Foundation as their new secretary. For more, visit www.sagaftra.org, www.sagindie.org, and www.washingtonfilmworks.org.

Every spring, Seattle ushers in one of the biggest and longest-running city-wide events, the Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF). Ranked as one of the top film festivals in the world, SIFF showcases over 450 films, shorts and documentaries from over 80 countries throughout a 25-day odyssey. BETH BARRETT, director of programming, spearheads the division along with her team of staffers and volunteers that help formulate the line-up and presentation of films each year. Barrett has been with SIFF since 2003, joining as an intern in communications and quickly moving along into the programming division. Over the course of her tenure, she has watched SIFF grow from 5 staff to now over 25 full-time staffers.

Programming essentially works with the incoming filmmakers each Beth Barrettyear, streamlines communication between programmers and watches hundreds of films leading up to the festival with the objective of bringing the best films they can find from around the world and our own region to screen in Seattle. To help local filmmakers from Washington State showcase their films on an international platform, SIFF offers a unique ‘Northwest Connections’ showcasing. “The program is designed to help elevate local filmmakers to international attention that essentially represent a microcosm of the work being done by Pacific Northwest artists with projects of all types of films, genres, styles and lengths,” Barrett said.

Her commitment to bring some of the best films from around the world made by women is a top priority while paying close attention to her final design of the festival’s programming. “It’s really important to me to have women from all around the world represented here at SIFF on an equal footing every year,” said Barrett.

Be sure to mark your calendars for May for this spectacular presentation of world cinema right here in Seattle by visiting www.siff.net for all the events, parties and screenings.

Recently winning the ‘Best TV Personality’ award put on by KING 5 in 2015, ANNY HAVLAND has been making a huge splash in the world of online empowerment through her uplifting reality TV/Web series called Talk It Up TV. Originally from Bellingham, Havland came to Seattle to explore more opportunities using her magical gift of connecting and inspiring others. In 2010, she co-founded and now produces her own series that boasts over 5,000 YouTube subscribers from all around the world.

Anny Havland

Anny Havland

Talk It Up TV is a new style of media that is reality TV at its best with a positive twist. Instead of reporting and highlighting negative tragedies, we share these real-life stories with our viewers and create a positive ending to each story with a shocking act of kindness that are unforgettable,” Havland said. Each episode is lined with a powerful, very uplifting and heartfelt message that offers a life-changing experience for the individual. Visit Havland online at www.talkituptv.com or by using the hashtag #tiuarmy.

One of Seattle’s most dynamic documentary filmmakers is ROSALIE MILLER. Her handful of films she has produced in just the last five years have screened at over 100 film festivals worldwide under her own banner, Wanderhouse Productions. Her independent production company focuses on producing micro-budget narrative and documentary projects with an emphasis on digital media production. The Wanderhouse website boasts: “We are dedicated to creative collaboration, compelling storytelling, and subject matter intended to inspire others.”

Rosalie Miller

Rosalie Miller

Miller’s resilient and fierce approach to the filmmaking process radiates wherever she goes with quite vocal and well-developed skills in pitching, fundraising and audience engagement. Her feature-length documentary Personhood (now in post-production), which documents the burgeoning personhood movement and the far-reaching impact of laws designed to protect the fetus, won both the Women in Film Seattle Professional Grant and the 2015 American Documentary Film Fund.

Aside from her work behind the camera, Miller is a member of SAG-AFTRA and is a well-known actress who has appeared in dozens of feature-length films, shorts, commercials and TV series in Washington State. Miller is currently in production on her next documentary, an intimate portrait piece about Seattle-based dance artist and drag queen, Jody Kuehner (aka Cherdonna Shinatra). Visit www.wanderhouseproductions.com and www.personhoodmovie.com for more.

Producer LEAH WARSHAWSKI has over a decade of experience in film and TV production. Warshawski has worked on some of TV’s biggest series, including Lost, Survivor and Alias. She recently wrapped her own feature-length documentary Big Sonia, which in 2015 won the prestigious $50,000 film grant award given annually by True Productions in partnership with the Seattle International Film Festival.

Leah Warshawski with her doc subject and grandmother, Sonia.

Leah Warshawski with her doc subject and grandmother, Sonia.

“The process of documentary filmmaking is becoming more about the films’ campaigns than just about the actual movie being made,” Warshawski said. “Big Sonia has been a story I’ve always wanted to tell about my own grandmother. So we decided early on to develop a nationwide campaign for major cities that would also educate and involve local communities around the country surrounding her story.”

Warshawski also is currently working with local filmmakers Jo Ardinger and Rosalie Miller on the doc Personhood as producer. “When Jo approached me to join the team, I just couldn’t say no because of the impact I knew this film would make on our communities and country,” she added. Her current projects can be found at www.bigsonia.com.

RYAN DAVIS is a professional film publicist, communications specialist and co-founder of Seattle’s Smarthouse Creative. With over 30 years of combined experience in film marketing, publicity, distribution, programming and exhibition, Smarthouse Creative helps filmmaking teams find their audiences and bring attention to their work during all phases of their projects, from fundraising to festivals to distribution. They also work with select film festivals, non-profits and startups to deliver digital strategy, publicity and audience engagement services to position clients at the forefront of their respective industries.

Ryan Davis

Ryan Davis

For over a decade, Davis has worked in nearly every aspect of the film business including documentary film producing, film festivals, distribution, exhibition and sales. She and Smarthouse have placed multiple projects on media platforms such as HBO, CNN, The
New York Times, newspapers and local radio. Independent film projects that Smarthouse has run PR/marketing on have screened all over the world. Prior to Smarthouse, Davis served as a marketing leader for multiple non-profit arts groups and organizations including the Northwest Film Forum and Northwest Folklife.

Smarthouse Creative gets Media Inc.’s vote for best local indie film PR & marketing firm! Visit  www.smarthousecreative.com.

If there is one woman creative in Seattle that personifies the fastest and hardest-working bird on earth—the hummingbird—it most certainly is producer/actor LORRAINE MONTEZ. For over a decade, Montez has appeared in over 20 films as an actress and over a dozen films as producer. She is known widely in the local film community for her unlimited amount of energy and drive she pours into her daily routine as a filmmaker, educator, mentor and actor.

Lorainne Montez

Lorainne Montez

After noticing that fewer roles were being offered in film and TV to more mature women as a performer in the local market, she took the initiative to begin writing and soon formed her own production company, Abundant Productions. “I strongly believe in the laws of attraction,” Montez said. “I wanted to create a company that would attract goodness, abundance and creativity.” A recent feature film she produced under her Abundant flagship, The Hollow One, was acquired by Raven Banner Entertainment for international and domestic distribution.

Montez has been a vocal and active member of Women in Film for many years and recently served as the marketing and communication chairwoman for WIF Seattle. As a producer who feels there needs to be a bigger pool of well-educated filmmakers in the art of marketing and producing skills, Montez also instructs a marketing and producing class at Shoreline Community College. She also heads up a monthly workshop called Abundant Creative Playground, a platform where writers and professional actors come together in an interactive creative setting to enhance literary material. It’s a process she calls “disrupting the writing process in a productive and unique way.” Find out more at www.abundantproductions.net.

Award-winning journalist MAUREEN FRANCISCO is a woman whose journey into the world of TV and media has been quite unique. After arriving from the Philippines as a young girl to Federal Way, Washington, she learned to speak English by watching the nightly news. Fascinated by The Oprah Winfrey Show, Francisco was quickly inspired to pursue a career in journalism, which led her to an early career working for major network affiliates (CBS, NBC, ABC and FOX) around the country as a news reporter after graduating from Pacific Lutheran University. Upon her return to the Puget Sound in 2004, Francisco continued her work in TV at Northwest Cable News.

Maureen Francisco

Maureen Francisco

By 2013, she joined her husband as co-executive producer of NW Productions. Their company produces live shows, including the Pacific Northwest qualifying events for the Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageants from Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington
States. “We coordinate and produce all of the events for both pageants in our region including doing the PR for our title holders and contestants under a separate division of NW Productions,” Francisco said. “We are in charge of procuring sponsors, selecting judges, screening contestants for eligibility requirements and finding our host venues.”

NW Productions also produces red carpet events, women empowerment workshops, and reality/talk show programming throughout the Puget Sound. Visit www.maureenfrancisco.com.

With 1 in every 10 Americans now using online dating services, the number of people looking for love online has never been greater. SUSIE LEE, CEO and founder of the dating app Siren, took things into her own hands a few years ago by creating an entirely new approach to the virtual world of online dating. “Our members set the tone of our community; we focus on connections that matter in a respectful space,” said Lee. “Siren is a platform where wit and personality shine.” Lee’s brainchild won the App of the Year by GeekWire in 2015, and recently landed an additional $500,000 in funding to help expand their 20,000 membership base and operations.

Susie Lee

Susie Lee

The app works quite differently than most apps, in that members receive a “Question of the Day” asked by artists and other types of creatives in the local community. The questions ignite conversations, which in turn promote members to uncover their true personalities organically, rather than with a generic profile and photo.

A graduate of Yale, Columbia and UW with degrees in molecular biophysics and biochemistry, science education, and art, Lee uses her skills as a social sculptor to amplify humanity in technology. Her work has been collected by numerous institutions including the Denver Art Museum, Mitchell Center for the Arts, Frye Art Museum, and Crystal Bridges Museum of Art. For more, go to www.susiejlee.com.

We invite you to learn more about the women of influence within TV, film and media as we continue our coverage in our next issue, which will feature women from the state of Oregon.

Features writer Scott A. Capestany is an award-winning producer, educator and advocate for women in film. Visit him at www.capestanyfilms.com and all social media platforms @capestanyfilms. Email producer@capestanyfilms.com.

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2017 Sundance Film Festival – Short Film Lineup!

This week, the Sundance Institute in Park City Utah will be presenting sixty-eight (68) short films that will compliment the feature length line-up at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival running January 19-29, 2017.

Media Inc Magazine will be reporting LIVE via TWITTER and FACEBOOK LIVE  throughout Park City interacting with filmmakers and bringing you daily/hourly updates on news and exclusive interviews with some of the worlds most talented creatives making the cut this year in all categories.  Our coverage this year will include some of the 40 featured length films Written and/or Directed by #WomenInFilm.  Over 175 total films (shorts, docs, animation and features) will be showcased at one of the worlds most prestigious film festivals over the course of 10 days.

To give you an idea how competitive the selection process was this year,  there were over 8000 films submitted!  With only 68 Shorts and 110 features (including docs) making the final cut.  Roughly 1 in every 40 films submitted got an invitation.

Sundance has been best known as the crown jewel of indie film festivals that have helped discover some of the greatest filmmakers now working in Hollywood over the last 35 years.

With more than 9,000 playwrights, composers, digital media artists, and filmmakers served through the Sundance Institute programs over the last 35 years, the Sundance community of independent creators is more far-reaching and vibrant than ever before.

If you have been selected for any Institute lab program or festival, you are a member of this community. Sundance alumni receive support throughout their careers, including access to tools, resources and advice as well as artist gatherings and more. Alumni are also encouraged to actively contribute to the Institute’s creative community and to our mission to discover and develop work from new artists.

The Institute’s support for short films extends internationally and year-round. Select Festival short films are presented as a traveling program at over 50 theaters in the U.S. and Canada each year, and short films and filmmakers take part in regional Master Classes geared towards supporting emerging shorts-makers in several cities. Sundance Institute’s Documentary Film Program, supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and in partnership with The Guardian and The New York Times’ Op-Docs, provides grants to makers of documentary shorts around the world, including new filmmakers in Cuba featured in a Special Event program at this year’s Festival.

Mike Plante, Senior Programmer for the Sundance Film Festival, said, “Each year we see more short films from around the country and from more regions around the world, which is exciting as we want to discover new voices to support. This year’s crop captures the full spectrum of what short films can be: emotional, hilarious, horrifying and touching — sometimes all at once.”

Among the shorts the Festival has shown in recent years are World of Tomorrow, Thunder Road, Whiplash, The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom, Gregory Go Boom and Edmond.

The Short Film program is presented by YouTube.

U.S. NARRATIVE SHORT FILMS

American Paradise / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Joe Talbot) — A desperate man in Trump’s America tries to shift his luck with the perfect crime in this story inspired by true events.

Cecile on the Phone / U.S.A. (Director: Annabelle Dexter-Jones, Screenwriters: Annabelle Dexter-Jones, Ellen Greenberg) — Overwhelmed by doubt and confusion after her ex-boyfriend’s return to New York, Cecile embarks on a series of telephone conversations that serve only to distract her from the one conversation she really needs to have.

Come Swim / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Kristen Stewart) — This is a diptych of one man’s day, half impressionist and half realist portraits.

GOOD CRAZY / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Rosa Salazar) — A complex chick deals with a vanilla beau, a shitty brunch and a dead coyote all in a Los Angeles day. There’s batshit crazy and then there’s good crazy—she fits somewhere in between.

Hardware / U.S.A. (Director: Stephen Jacobson, Screenwriters: Ellen Stringer, Stephen Jacobson) — An amateur electronic-drum enthusiast travels to a housewares trade show looking to strike up the perfect business partnership. When things don’t go as planned, he finds himself at the mercy of the electronic drumbeat playing in his head.

Hold On / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Christine Turner) — Family bonds are tested when a young man is left to care for his grandmother one morning.

Hot Seat / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Anna Kerrigan) — Teenaged Andrea uses a male stripper to gain the respect and admiration of cool girl Daphne in this exploration of coming-of-age sexuality and teen girls’ complex relationships, based on a true story.

I Know You from Somewhere / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Andrew Fitzgerald) — A young woman incurs the wrath of the internet after she inadvertently becomes a viral sensation.

Kaiju Bunraku / U.S.A. (Directors: Lucas Leyva, Jillian Mayer, Screenwriter: Lucas Leyva) — Here’s a day in the life of a husband and wife living in a world of giant monsters.

Laps / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Charlotte Wells) — On a routine morning, a woman on a crowded New York City subway is sexually assaulted in plain sight.

LostFound / U.S.A. (Director: Shakti Bhagchandani, Screenwriters: Shakti Bhagchandani, Emre Gulcan) — This story portrays a day in the life of a woman in the Nation of Islam.

Lucia, Before and After / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Anu Valia) — After traveling 200 miles, a young woman waits out Texas’s state-mandated 24-hour waiting period before her abortion can proceed.

New Neighbors / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: E.G. Bailey) — How far will a mother go to protect her children?

Night Shift / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Marshall Tyler) — Get a glimpse into a day in the life of a bathroom attendant in a Los Angeles nightclub.

Rubber Heart / U.S.A. (Director: Lizzy Sanford, Screenwriters: Lizzy Sanford, Anna Cordell) — After a painful dry spell, a woman attempts to have a one-night stand.

Shinaab / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Lyle Mitchell Corbine Jr.) — A young Anishinaabe man struggles with his place in the inner city of Minneapolis.

Toru / U.S.A. (Directors and screenwriters: Jonathan Minard, Scott Rashap) — An infant’s life is transformed by a new technology.

INTERNATIONAL NARRATIVE SHORT FILMS

5 Films About Technology / Canada (Director and screenwriter: Peter Huang) — Take a satirical look at the dumber side of technology.

And so we put goldfish in the pool. / Japan (Director and screenwriter: Makoto Nagahisa) — One summer day, 400 goldfish were found in the swimming pool of a secondary school. This is a story about the four 15-year-old girls who put them there.

And The Whole Sky Fit In The Dead Cow’s Eye / Chile, U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Francisca Alegría) — Emeteria is visited by the ghost of her patrón, Teodoro. She believes he has come to take her to the afterlife—but he has more devastating news.

Dadyaa — The Woodpeckers of Rotha / Nepal, France (Directors and screenwriters: Pooja Gurung, Bibhusan Basnet) — Atimaley and Devi’s village is haunted by memories. When a dear friend leaves the village without saying goodbye, the old couple faces a dilemma: keep living with the memories or leave the village for good?

Dawn of the Deaf / United Kingdom (Director and screenwriter: Rob Savage) — When a strange sound wipes out the hearing population, a small group of deaf people must band together to survive.

Dear Mr. Shakespeare / United Kingdom (Director: Shola Amoo, Screenwriter: Phoebe Boswell) — An exploration of Shakespeare’s intentions when writing Othello explores the play’s racial themes in historical and contemporary settings, and draws wider parallels between immigration and blackness in the UK today.

The Geneva Convention / France (Director and screenwriter: Benoit Martin) — As Hakim is waiting for the bus after class, he is caught in a vendetta between teenagers. He’s not exactly keen to be involved, but can he avoid it?

HEAT / Poland (Directors and screenwriters: Agata Trzebuchowska, Mateusz Pacewicz) — A young boy does an unusual favor for a friend, assuming his identity to visit his senile grandmother. The woman takes him for a walk, and tells him about the biggest mystery of her life.

Kao Shi (A Test) / China (Director and screenwriter: Zuxiang Zhao) — In a small-town high school, days before the college entrance exam, teacher Chen Jun finds out that the father of his most promising student has died in a mining accident. Telling him—or not—bears heavy consequences.

MappaMundi / Luxembourg, Austria (Director and screenwriter: Bady Minck) — Through the eyes of cosmic cartographers, the viewer takes a voyage through 950 million years of Earth history and 15,000 years of cartography. This accelerated journey visualizes the change in our world—a change unnoticeable in a single lifetime.

Mare Nostrum / France, Syrian Arab Republic (Directors: Rana Kazkaz, Anas Khalaf, Screenwriter: Rana Kazkaz) — On a Mediterranean shore, a Syrian father makes a decision that puts his daughter’s life at risk.

Pedro / Portugal (Directors and screenwriters: André Santos, Marco Leão) — Pedro gets home at dawn. Before the young boy falls asleep, his lonely mother drags him to the beach.

Slapper / Australia (Director: Luci Schroder, Screenwriters: Luci Schroder, Sam West) — A broke and rebellious teen navigates a suburban wasteland, hustling money for the morning-after pill—before it’s too late.

What Tears Us Apart / France (Director and screenwriter: Wei Hu) — A Chinese couple visits the daughter they gave up for adoption 30 years ago. While meeting the French adoptive parents, language barriers become apparent and the birth mother’s hidden emotions rise to the surface.

DOCUMENTARY SHORT FILMS

Alone / U.S.A. (Director: Garrett Bradley) — This investigation into the layers of mass incarceration and its shaping of the modern black American family is seen through the eyes of a single mother in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Bayard & Me / U.S.A. (Director: Matt Wolf) — Walter Naegle’s boyfriend, Bayard Rustin, was a famous civil rights activist 30 years Walter’s senior. In the 1980s, Bayard decided to adopt Walter for legal protection. This love story is about a time when gay marriage was inconceivable.

Close Ties / Poland (Director: Zofia Kowalewska) — Barbara and Zdzislaw will soon celebrate their 45th anniversary—despite their constant bickering, and the fact that Zdzislaw spent eight of those years living with another woman. This is a portrait of a relationship that, somewhat inexplicably, perseveres.

Deer Squad: The Movie / U.S.A. (Directors: Pipus Larsen, Kenneth Gug, Scott J. Ross) — Kelvin Peña, a charismatic 17-year-old from rural Pennsylvania, shares his story of going viral after befriending a group of wild deer in his backyard.

The Diver / Mexico (Director: Esteban Arrangoiz) — Julio César Cu Cámara is the chief diver in the Mexico City sewer system. His job is to repair pumps and dislodge garbage that flows into the gutters to maintain the circulation of sewage waters. THE NEW CLIMATE

Fish Story / United Kingdom (Director: Charlie Lyne) — Behind a fishy tale lies this search for the truth.

Hairat / Ethiopia (Director: Jessica Beshir) — One man’s nightly ritual brings solace to the lovelorn of Harar.

Legal Smuggling with Christine Choy / U.S.A. (Director: Lewie Kloster) — Academy Award–nominated documentary filmmaker Christine Choy undergoes an adventure of wild proportions when she accidentally smuggles cigarettes.

My Father’s Tools / Canada (Director: Heather Condo)— Stephen continues producing traditional baskets to honor his father and thus finds peace in his studio as he connects with the man who taught him the craft.

Project X / U.S.A. (Directors: Laura Poitras, Henrik Moltke) — A top secret handbook takes viewers on an undercover journey to the site of a hidden partnership. Based on NSA documents, this film reveals the inner workings of a windowless skyscraper in Manhattan.

The Rabbit Hunt / U.S.A. (Director: Patrick Bresnan) — On the weekends during the harvest season, 17-year-old Chris and his family hunt rabbits in the sugarcane fields of the Florida Everglades.

Ten Meter Tower / Sweden (Directors: Maximilien Van Aertryck, Axel Danielson) — People who have never been up a 10-meter diving tower must choose whether to jump or climb down in this entertaining study of people in a vulnerable position.

Tough / United Kingdom (Director: Jennifer Zheng) — New light is shed on childhood cultural misunderstandings when a Chinese mother and her British-born daughter speak as adults for the first time. Some things can only be understood with maturity.

Visions of an Island / U.S.A. (Director: Sky Hopinka) — Indigenous and foreign presences coexist on an Alaskan island in the center of the Bering Sea. THE NEW CLIMATE

Waiting for Hassana / Nigeria (Director: Ifunanya Maduka) — In 2014, 276 teenage girls came together for exams in Chibok, Nigeria—by dawn, nearly all had disappeared, and their school was burned to the ground. Jessica, an escapee, shares her haunting account of a friendship violently interrupted by Boko Haram.

White Riot: London / United Kingdom (Director: Rubika Shah) — In 1977, immigration divides Britain. What happens when a punk fanzine challenges the status quo?

MIDNIGHT SHORT FILMS

Do No Harm / New Zealand (Director and screenwriter: Roseanne Liang) — 3:00 a.m., 1980s Hongjing: In an aging private hospital, a single-minded surgeon is forced to break her physician’s oath when violent gangsters storm in to stop a crucial operation.

Fucking Bunnies / Finland (Director: Teemu Niukkanen, Screenwriters: Antti Toivonen, Teemu Niukkanen) — Raimo’s comfortable, middle-class bubble is burst when a Satan-worshipping sex cult moves in next door.

Hot Winter: A film by Dick Pierre / U.S.A. (Director: Jack Henry Robbins, Screenwriters: Jack Henry Robbins, Nunzio Randazzo) — One of the first films in American cinema to address climate change, Hot Winter: A film by Dick Pierre, was also a hardcore porno. All sex scenes have been removed as to not distract from the conscious message. THE NEW CLIMATE

A Nearly Perfect Blue Sky (Un ciel bleu presque parfait) / France (Director and screenwriter: Quarxx) — You might think that Simon lives a monotonous life, but you would be wrong—contrary to appearances, he doesn’t live alone among the ruins of an old farm. Between kidnapper and guardian angel, he never takes his eyes off his roommate.

Pussy / Poland (Director and screenwriter: Renata Gasiorowska) — Alone at home one evening, a young girl decides to have a solo pleasure session—but not everything goes according to plan.

The Robbery / U.S.A. (Director: Jim Cummings, Screenwriters: Jim Cummings, Dustin Hahn) — Crystal robs a liquor store—it goes pretty OK.

Summer’s Puke Is Winter’s Delight / Japan (Director and screenwriter: Sawako Kabuki) — Painful events become memories over time. Still, we vomit and eat again. Life is eco.

ANIMATED SHORT FILMS

The Bald Future / France (Director and screenwriter: Paul Cabon) — Being a bald man sucks. Knowing you’ll become one is worse.

Black Holes / U.S.A., France (Directors and screenwriters: David Nicolas, Laurent Nicolas) — Dave is about to lead the first mission to Mars when he’s teamed up with a sentient melon, who claims to be the reincarnation of a fashion designer, upstaging his big moment and driving him to the brink of madness.

Broken – The Women’s Prison at Hoheneck / Germany (Directors: Volker Schlecht, Alexander Lahl, Screenwriters: Alexander Lahl, Max Mönch) — This animated documentary about Hoheneck, the main women’s prison in former East Germany, is based on original interviews with former inmates. It’s a film about political imprisonment, forced labor and enormous profits on both sides of the Iron Curtain.

Drawn & Recorded: Teen Spirit / U.S.A. (Director: Drew Christie, Screenwriters: Drew Christie, Bill Flanagan) — This is the story behind one of the most iconic songs ever written, animated in the style of a pop-up book.

How’s your prostate? / France (Directors: Jeanne Paturle, Cécile Rousset, Screenwriters: Jeanne Paturle, Cécile Rousset, Cécile Mille) — One friend tells the other about the very strange time when, beside a swimming pool, she learned about her father’s prostate, his erectile function and his nighttime fantasies.

It’s a Date / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Zachary Zezima) — This film explores miscommunication, perceptions and vulnerability in the modern world. Everyone is an alien at first.

Jonas and the Sea / Netherlands (Director: Marlies Van der Wel, Screenwriters: Ruben Picavet, Marlies Van der Wel) — Jonas has dreamed of living in the sea all his life, but it’s impossible. Or is it?

The Laughing Spider / Japan (Director: Keiichi Tanaami) — The early childhood memory of aerial attacks leaves a lasting impression, with strong stimulus and disquiet.

LOVE / France, Hungary (Director and screenwriter: Réka Bucsi)— Abstract haiku-like situations reveal the changing atmosphere on one planet caused by a meteoric impact in a distant solar system. Inhabitants on this pulsing planet become one with each other, in various ways, in this three-chapter exploration of affection.

Nighthawk / Slovenia, Croatia (Director: Špela Čadež, Screenwriters: Gregor Zorc, Špela Čadež) — Attempting to remove an unresponsive badger from a dark road, a police patrol soon realizes that the animal is not dead but rather dead drunk. Things take an even stranger turn when the creature wakes up.

Nutag — Homeland / Canada (Director and screenwriter: Alisi Telengut) — This hand-painted visual poem explores the ideas of diaspora, homeland and the mass deportations of the Kalmyk people during World War II.

Summer Camp Island / U.S.A., South Korea (Director and screenwriter: Julia Pott) — Oscar and his best friend, Hedgehog, just got dropped off at summer camp. Once the parents leave the island, the strangeness lurking beneath the surface is revealed—aliens exist, horses become unicorns and there are monsters under the bed.

Trumpet Man / Hong Kong (Director and screenwriter: Emily Wong) — A turntable springs out a woman named Avocado; her instinct creates a man called Soul. Passion swings both, and an uncertain madness strikes Soul heavily. Seeds of passion breed conflict among five men, eventually leading Soul to a deeper understanding of life.

Victor & Isolina / U.S.A. (Director: William Caballero) — Creatively visualized through 3D printing, two elderly Latinos embark on a resonating he said/she said account of the events that led them to live separately after more than 50 quirky and stressful years together.

One film announced today was funded through a Kickstarter campaign: Black Holes.

The Sundance Film Festival®
The Sundance Film Festival has introduced global audiences to some of the most groundbreaking films of the past three decades, including Boyhood, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Fruitvale Station, Whiplash, Brooklyn, Twenty Feet from Stardom, Life Itself, The Cove, The End of the Tour, Blackfish, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl, Super Size Me, Dope, Little Miss Sunshine, sex, lies, and videotape, Reservoir Dogs, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, An Inconvenient Truth, Precious and Napoleon Dynamite. The Festival is a program of the non-profit Sundance Institute®. 2017 Festival sponsors to date include: Presenting Sponsors – Acura, SundanceTV, Chase Sapphire®, and Canada Goose; Leadership Sponsors – Adobe, AT&T, DIRECTV, and YouTube; Sustaining Sponsors – American Airlines, Canon U.S.A., Inc., Francis Ford Coppola Winery, GEICO, Google VR, The Hollywood Reporter, IMDb, Jaunt, Kickstarter, Omnicom, Stella Artois® and the University of Utah Health. Sundance Institute recognizes critical support from the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development, and the State of Utah as Festival Host State. The support of these organizations helps offset the Festival’s costs and sustain the Institute’s year-round programs for independent artists. Look for the Official Sponsor seal at their venues at the Festival. sundance.org/festival

Sundance Institute
Founded in 1981 by Robert Redford, Sundance Institute is a nonprofit organization that provides and preserves the space for artists in film, theatre, and new media to create and thrive. The Institute’s signature Labs, granting, and mentorship programs, dedicated to developing new work, take place throughout the year in the U.S. and internationally. The Sundance Film Festival and other public programs connect audiences to artists in igniting new ideas, discovering original voices, and building a community dedicated to independent storytelling. Sundance Institute has supported such projects as Beasts of the Southern Wild, Fruitvale Station, Sin Nombre, The Invisible War, The Square, Dirty Wars, Spring Awakening, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and Fun Home. Join Sundance Institute on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

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INDIEFLIX CEO Scilla Andreen – Community engagement

Raising Awareness without spreading Fear

By Scilla Andreen – CEO/Co-Founder of INDIEFLIX

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I want to help. I think we all do, we just need a

clear path to follow. But how do we raise awareness to formulate a plan of action without spreading fear?

How do we respond to homelessness, global warming, mass shootings etc.? I feel completely out of my wheelhouse. I’m at a loss of how to approach the situation. It’s just so big. Thank goodness there are amazing organizations working tirelessly to address so many of these issues but I don’t even know how to begin the vetting process to identify which organizations to support.

The steady stream of negative images and overwhelming numbers bombarding us at lightening speed is paralyzing. We live in survival mode. My silver-lining syndrome is greatly challenged.

However…

I think we can start by paying more attention to our immediate community. Let’s figure out how to really be there for each other. Let’s put our phones down and look up into each other’s eyes. We need a closer look and a long term fix.

Technology has got to play key a role. Let’s celebrate the positive and acknowledge, even pay tribute to the incredible and often invisible people who shape our lives. Let’s get to know each other; perhaps we might notice when someone is going off the deep-end. We need to talk to each other and share our stories, the good stuff, the mundane and the tough stuff. We need to listen. Ideas will percolate and maybe, just maybe an actionable plan will emerge.

I think about the work we do at the IndieFlix Foundation. We support stories mostly in the film and VR medium to start conversations that turn into movements. The Foundation works closely with the IndieFlix Corporation to access the globe and as a result the response has been incredible. Students, families and educators share how our work has helped to save lives, transform communities and empower women all over the world. I am proud of this work, our team, our partners and the incredibly talented women and men we work with every day but there’s got to be more we can do? Whatever it is I know for sure we have to do it together.

indieflix

My mother used to say, “after me you come first” I used to think she was so selfish but now that I’m the adult, I understand. It’s the same premise as, put your oxygen mask on first and then your child. If we don’t take care of ourselves how can we take care of each other? And if we can’t take care of each other how will we be able to spot when someone is in distress? How can we make the world safer? Perhaps by being the best living, breathing, role models every day; maybe that will create a halo effect. It’s a start.

Sharing thoughts from 38k feet

Scilla will be a featured speaker at the 2016 SEATTLE INTERACTIVE CONFERENCE Oct 18-19, 2016.  This a is ‘Must Attend’ Seattle event for those engaged in the creative, tech and business communities.

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Scilla Andreen, mother, filmmaker, CEO & Co-Founder IndieFlix, Founder IndieFlix Foundation, Executive Producer Empowerment Project, Screenagers, Angst, Speaker SIC16

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HollyShorts Film Festival welcomes Pacific Northwest Alliance!

Award Winning Seattle Filmmakers set to showcase films at the 2016 LA Hollyshorts Film Festival!

Seattle, WA — Media Inc has partnered with Hollyshorts Film Festival as their official press affiliate this year covering the events from the iconic TCL Theater and the Roosevelt Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard Aug 11-20.

HollyShorts Film Festival announced last week the 3rd annual inclusion of  the “WA State Film Showcase” for their line-up of special film short screenings.  Hosted at the iconic Grauman’s  Chinese Theater on Hollywood Boulevard and other LA venues (The Roosevelt Hotel, Harmony Gold Theater, OHM Nighclub, Ignited Spaces, Avenue 17 Studios, 33 Taps and Redbury Hollywood), the 12th annual Hollyshorts Film Festival will be featuring works from 400+Indie Film shorts from around the world during a week long odyssey between Aug 11-20 packed with of screenings, conferences, parties, panels, workshops and special events.  Nearly 3000 films from every continent were submitted this year.

Ben Andrews and David S. Hogan

Ben Andrews and David S. Hogan

Pacific NW production companies Evil Slave (ES), Abundant Productions (AP), Mighty Tripod Productions (MTP), Modern Motion (MM) and Capestany Films (CF) will be featuring works from PNW Filmmakers.    Headlining the showcase will be the World Premier of 2015 Award Winning Hollyshorts screenplay “The Lunchbox Brigade”.  Produced  collectively by Lorraine Montez, Ben Andrews, David S. Hogan, Marissa Fujimoto, Ryan Wagenhauser and Christopher Meuer,  this warm and adventurous coming of age tale featured over WA state with a cast and crew filmed entirely in the Evergreen State.

The Lunchbox Brigade follows a neighborhood squadron of kids that discovers their brother-in-arms, Johnny, has gone to camp for the summer. They determine a rescue is in order, and together they embark on an antic-filled plan to infiltrate enemy territory (aka summer camp) and free their friend. But when their leader, Teddy, discovers that Johnny actually wants to be at camp, he must lead the Lunchbox Brigade in a touching tribute to the loss of one of theirown.Media Inc Roosevelt party banner

Casted by David S. Hogan of Mighty Tripod Productions, the local talent included Kyan Zielinski as Teddy, Forrest Campbell as Bugsy, Malakai James as Logan, Kristoffer Holtan as Clyde, Eden Campbell as Sue and Alex Silva as Johnny.  “I had a great time casting the talent for this great film.  The amount of talent we saw during the auditions was very impressive.  The kids that were ultimately cast are some of the region’s best young performers I’ve seen,” said Hogan.   

Hollyshorts is listed by MovieMaker Magazine as one of the “top 25 festivals worth the entry fee,” HollyShorts awards the winner of the screenplay competition with an automatic entry in the following year’s festival.

Seattle-based producer and filmmaker Ben Andrews, creative director of Evil Slave, recognized an opportunity to create a strong alliance of filmmakers from Seattle, Tacoma and Los Angeles when he met the HollyShorts leadership early in 2014 at SXSW. “It happened pretty quickly,” said Andrews. “I discussed the need to highlight Washington filmmakers and they discussed the need to expand and further their outreach.”

“It’s truly an honor to see our dreams becoming a reality, having our esteemed HollyShorts Screenplay competition winner Kyle Thiele get his short made via our partners Evil Slave, Abundant Productions and Mighty Tripod Productions along with Shoreline Community College’s Filmmaking Department,” said Theo Dumont and Daniel Sol, HollyShorts co-founders. “This alliance truly signifies the new pathway between the Pacific Northwest and Hollywood, a bridge that creates incredible opportunities across the board for filmmakers everywhere and we are delighted to be involved.”

Lorainne Montez

Lorainne Montez

Pacific Northwest producer Scott A. Capestany, Creative Director at Capestany Films, has sponsored and supported this new alliance and movement since its inception. “We are proud sponsors of the HollyShort film festival each year in support of Ben Andrews’ efforts in helping bridge the gap between the L.A. indie film market and our local market,” he said. “His resilient efforts have helped open up new relationships between Puget Sound businesses and Hollywood decision makers that support the growth of our Washington State economy and our vibrant film/TV local industry.”ATP Blue poster_HS laurel

Capestany’s latest film “Across The Pond” starring University of Washington alum and now Hollywood writer/producer/actor PARIS DYLAN, was selected to screen during this years WA Film showcase.  “It was an honor and privilege to have worked with such a great team on this film. Pulp Digital Productions really pulled out all the stops and delivered an impressive film.   Rene (Bourke) really worked hard leading us all for over a year to make this film come to reality,” Dylan said.  “I’m so proud of our amazing team, Pulp Digital Productions, Paris Dylan, and special mention to Capestany Films for their consulting, guidance, and marketing expertise to see this film through to showcased in the worlds entertainment capital of Hollywood at this prestigious Hollyshorts Film Festival.” Said Executive Producer and lead actress Renee Bourke.  Also supporting the 2016 Hollyshorts Alliance are industry leaders Terri Morgan of TCM MODELS and Peter Barnes of  CLATTER & DIN, Inc.Hollyshorts 2016

“I’m honored to be the winner of the 2015 Screenplay competition with HollyShorts and am impressed with the professional caliber of the Pacific Northwest filmmakers producing the short,” said Thiele, writer and director of The LunchBox Brigade.

The 12th Annual HollyShorts Film Festival and Film Conference/Film Market is scheduled for August 11-20, 2016 at the world famous TCL Chinese Theatres.  The WA State Film Showcase will take place August 14, 2016 from 10am-2pm followed by an Abundant Playhouse special screenwriting event.   MEDIA INC MAGAZINE will host a special kickoff event at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel Saturday August 13th from 7-10pm. RSVP HERE.  Visit www.hollyshorts.com for more information. Hollyshorts on Twitter and Instagram

Extras Only: An Interview with Lance Mitchell of Flannel Background

Flannel Background is a talent agency representing a deep roster of extras and background actors for Northwest-based productions.

The agency was formed last year when Triple L Talent, owned by Anne Lillian Mitchell, was restructured and separated into two entities: Mitchell Artist Management (MAM), which focuses on principal actors, and Flannel Background, which focuses on extras.

Lance Mitchell

Lance Mitchell

“An extras agency focuses on extras’ needs, assuring that production does not have to shoulder that responsibility,” explains Lance Mitchell, owner of Flannel Background, when asked about the importance of an extras-only agency. “Not only do we supply the ‘everyday’ real person, we prepare them to enter the work environment on set.”

He continues, “Whereas principal actors come on set with knowledge, training and procedure, we educate those who are breaking into the business or looking for their 15 minutes of fame. My first experience on set, I had no idea what to expect. An agent is there to walk you through the process, from what to expect to support on set to assuring those payments come in a timely manner. I’m just an ordinary guy who stepped on set one day. I ‘get’ what information an extra needs to be successful. We assist with not only bookings, but familiarizing our talent with film terminology, set etiquette, and the tools they need to be successful.”

Flannel Background operates on both sides of Washington state, building a roster in the Seattle and Spokane areas in order to “best service our clients’ needs,” says Mitchell. “We assure a reliable, confident, and prepared extra. We are a resource for those asking ‘Where to start?’ or ‘What’s it like to be on set?’”

The company recently provided extras to both seasons of the Spokane-based Syfy series Z Nation, ensuring that each scene teemed with terrifying zombies. Other recent projects include industrial and commercial bookings for WSU, AT&T, Rubbermaid, Best Buy and several others. “We have one extra who’s become our go-to gal for any industrials that include eyedrops,” says Mitchell.

And Flannel Background is always looking to add to its roster, aiming to have the widest range of talent possible.

“When it comes to extras, we need everything and anything,” he says. “You never know what production might ask for. We cover a variety of skills, body types, age ranges, and ethnicities. We cast a wide net in what we look for to anticipate productions’ needs.”

Since becoming the owner of Flannel Background, Mitchell has relished all of the experiences that come with building a new agency. What has he enjoyed most?

“The hunt!” he says. “There is a thrill in the tight timelines and finding the impossible. The enthusiasm when we call to book talent is contagious. There is no better feeling than fulfilling a dream.” MI

If you are looking for background actors, visit www.flannelbackground.com. Interested in becoming an extra? Visit the website and complete the instructions under the “JOIN” tab.

Water Buffalo’s Owner Reflects On Nearly Two Decades in Business

Water Buffalo's water trucks on the set of 'Murder in Law.'

Water Buffalo’s water trucks on the set of ‘Murder in Law.’

By Phyllis Bown Guest Columnist

I started Water Buffalo in 1996 with one cute little 1,500-gallon water truck. It was my goal to be the most diverse water truck company in the area and provide our customers with great service with fully equipped trucks.

This year will mark 19 years in business. We have grown to six water trucks and two water trailers. We have been involved with the film industry for over 10 years. We have done many car commercials and still shoots, as the Northwest has so many beautiful locations. We’ve helped make rain and get the wet look on productions like The Road, Battle in Seattle, Waste Management, and most recently a Washington State Lottery commercial and Carhartt’s farm series.

'Murder in Law' filmed several scenes at Water Buffalo's shop in Bonney Lake.

‘Murder in Law’ filmed several scenes at Water Buffalo’s shop in Bonney Lake.

I love working with the film industry, as the work that you do lives on in print. The people that we get to work with are always great and there are so many good memories and good food.

By far my best experience was working with Screaming Flea Productions on their pilot for Murder In Law. They were casing the Bonney Lake plateau area, where we are located, to find a spot to shoot their “desert” scenes. They needed a rocky area without too many trees, as the segment was set in the California desert and about a family that owned a water trucking company.

Bown's 1976 Dodge Dart gets a cameo in the production.

Bown’s 1976 Dodge Dart gets a cameo in the production.

They stopped by my shop to look over the water trucks, which this time were needed not to make rain but to be part of the scenes. I have a large area of gravel parking around the shop and with nothing working out for them at other hopeful shooting locations, they asked if they could film at my place. I couldn’t turn them down; what a unique opportunity. Not only did my truck get a starring role, but my truck driver got in on the action, my kids and I were extras in the jail and party scenes, and my shop, office and living room were also used. My 1976 Dodge Dart also got to be a getaway car for the bad guy. I always joked that I wanted to be “craft services” in a movie and I also got that wish, helping make iced tea and opening up my kitchen and dining area for the cast and crew. It felt like a holiday with lots of people coming in and out and having a great time filming. I’m not sure anything can top that.

Bown and her daughter get in on the action.

Bown and her daughter get in on the action.

Water Buffalo has also helped out on many Mud Obstacle Runs here in the Northwest, such as Dirty Dash, Warrior Dash and Tuff Mudder, and provides potable water service for Hempfest, Festival of The River and many other events. We’ve even sprayed down the hot crowds at a Kenny Chesney Pre-Concert Party.

Whatever you can think of doing with bulk water, we can help.

For more information, visit www.waterbuffaloinc.com.

CASTING DIRECTOR SPOTLIGHT

Casting QA Nike_Imoru-065-Edit-2Nike Imoru  
Nike Imoru Casting
www.nikeimorucasting.com
Nike Imoru, CSA, is delighted to announce the opening of an additional casting studio in Seattle. It means we will be able to extend our casting reach and make connections with many more actors, agents, managers, commercial clients, producers and directors across the State. It’s an exciting move for us and we very much look forward to serving our Seattle-area clientele. The NIC casting studios in Spokane will remain open and continue to serve Spokane-area projects. In a gesture of collaborative enterprise, we are also thrilled to be sharing resources and creative synergy with Credence Productions, a company of producers and talent managers who are bringing their dynamic East-West Coast management team back to Seattle. Key Credence staff include: Tom Klassen, Co-Founder and Head of Talent; Michael Bloom, VP of Talent; Dawn Wilson, Manager and Producer; and Riley Charles, Head of Operations.
Seattle Location / Nike Imoru Casting
1705 Westlake Ave N #105, Seattle, WA 98109
Nike Imoru Casting is located in the McHugh building, on the west side of Westlake Ave N in Seattle. There are hundreds of public parking spaces in a lot across the street from us, on the east side of Westlake.

casting - Lori Lewis Lori Lewis  
FreeSpirit Casting
www.freespiritcasting.com
Lori had an extensive background in the entertainment industry as an entertainer/actor before discovering casting and how much she loves it! She launched FreeSpirit Casting (FSC) on May 1, 2013 with the indie film Deep Dark, followed by the web series Exceptionals, along with several local commercials. In 2014, Lori was asked to cast the indie film Lily on Saturday, two more series, Runestone and Camp Abercorn, along with several more commercials.
“At FSC we like to do things a little differently,” says Lori. “For example, all the commercial jobs we cast in 2014 were done without the need for callbacks. This saves everyone time and money. Another thing different about FSC is the follow-up with talent after casting, letting all know whether they were cast or not. It’s such a simple thing to do with today’s technology.”
Simply put, Lori loves actors, the collaborative creativeness of this industry and finding new talent. Because of her background, Lori makes an extremely effective and empathetic casting director, stating, “I strive to be the type of casting director I always hoped I’d get to audition for when I was an actor.”

casting Denise GibbsDenise Gibbs  
Foreground Background LLC
www.foregroundbackground.com
Denise Gibbs, owner of Foreground Background LLC, grew up in the world of theater and music performance as a director, writer, performer and actor. In 2006 she made the jump from theater to film and television production. Before doing film, she was the project manager of a local graphic & web design firm. She also became the managing editor of a local newspaper, while producing and directing small local children’s theater, a reader’s theatre and event planning for faith-based family events.
Denise has been a part of the casting process for numerous local and national commercials, television, film, corporate videos and new media projects here in the Pacific Northwest. She directed the first season of The Vanessa Waller Show, a talk show that won the SCAN TV Award for Favorite New Program. And she was part of the producing team that won the Accolade Competition Winner award for the film Of Yesterday and Tomorrow.
Denise currently works as an extras casting director for most of the major film, television and commercial projects that come to Seattle. She also does principal casting on smaller projects. Denise has found having a background in theater and journalism also provides a foundation for working on commercials that involve “real people casting.”

Casting Amey ReneAmey René  
Amey René Casting
www.ameyrene.com
Amey René is a casting director with over 15 years of industry experience. She started her casting career with Jeff Greenberg on the Emmy Award-winning show Modern Family. She now casts feature films, television and commercials. Amey is a member of the Casting Society of America. Recent projects include the films Captain Fantastic and Laggies, both filmed in Seattle, as well as commercials for Nike, GoldieBlox and the University of Washington.

Production Survey: A Snapshot of 2014

Feature films, television series, commercial projects and more dominated the production landscape in 2014, but what exactly does that mean for the folks in the local industry? We surveyed a few Northwest production professionals to find out more.

 

Kelly vanderlindaKelly Vander Linda
KVL Editorial
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes. Being both an editorial boutique and independent editor is working well.

What projects did you work on?
Experienced a good increase in work. Especially with commercial projects. Some credits: Washington’s Lottery via We Are Royale/Cole & Weber, Group Health via DNA, T-Mobile via Publicis, UW via Hornall Anderson, MultiCare via Hydrogen, JMI via Straightface/Laughlin Constable, Golden1 via DNA. Booked or on hold through January with more.

What could have made your year better?
The late spring into summer period was slow. That is not a complaint.

Tanya Tiffany
Tiffany Talent
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was a highly successful year for Tiffany Talent Agency. We have experienced double-digit percentage growth in bookings for the fourth year in a row, by both number of jobs booked and total dollars paid to our talent, while not significantly increasing the size of our talent roster over the past five years. We have also added a new full time agent to our team to handle the increased volume of business.

What could have made your year better?
We believe the best thing that could happen to the Washington film industry would be to see the cap raised on the film incentive. With our 2014 film incentive used up by May of this year, there are many productions that would have shot in Washington, but moved on due to lack of any available incentive. We feel confident that if the film incentive cap was raised, there would be a lot more business pouring in for all of us.

Cody Hurd - Glazer's CameraCody Hurd
Glazer’s Camera
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
This year has seen exciting key product introductions in the photo and video industry. We are seeing photographers diversify their portfolios and general consumers taking more video content than ever before.
We have seen the shift to 4K this year, brought to fruition by camera releases like Panasonic GH4, Sony A7s, and the Black Magic Cinema camera. With the momentum of Black Magic, customers are incorporating more Video RAW files into their workflow. Drone sales are also on the rise, which continues to push creative options for our industry.

What could have made your year better?
Being in South Lake Union has its benefits, although the high number of constructions projects—including our own—can make it congested in our neighborhood. We are on the path to building our new store, where our old store once stood, which will house all of our departments and ample underground parking.

Cast Iron StudiosEryn Goodman, Lana Veenker & Ranielle Gray
Cast Iron Studios
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was hands down the best year in our 15-year history, thanks to the incentive increase that allowed additional projects to shoot in Oregon, and the rebounding economy that brought back some healthy commercial gigs. Really couldn’t ask for anything more than a busy year, a cracking team, great projects, and wonderful clients. Let’s continue making magic!

Gary KoutGary Kout
Southern Oregon Film and Media
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
By any measure, 2014 was an incredible year for Southern Oregon Film and Media (SOFaM) and for production in Southern Oregon.

Why?
We kicked off the year with Ashland being named the #2 Top Town to Live and Work as a MovieMaker by MovieMaker Magazine. Southern Oregon appeared on big screens in not one, not even two, but three theatrical films that were released nationally: Redwood Highway, Night Moves and Wild. And next year, it will be seen in Brother in Laws and Black Road, two more films made entirely in Southern Oregon. It appeared on the small screen as well, most recently on an episode of Restaurant: Impossible and as the backdrop for a Budweiser commercial. Local production was up, including spots, corporate videos, long and short narratives, and more. Our organization received new funding, hired its first paid staff member, and membership in the organization is at an all-time high!

What could have made your year better?
There’s always something that could be better—more productions, more members, more awards—but it just gives us something to strive for in 2015!

Mondo Catering-215Sarah Baltazar
Mundo Catering
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was a very successful year for Mundo Catering. We appreciate receiving such a warm welcome from the local film industry.

What projects did you work on?
We provided onsite and drop off catering for several productions, including Grimm, Portlandia, West of 7th and Runestone. We also catered for several commercials, including companies like Nike, Hyundai, Harley Davidson, Adidas and Dr. Pepper. We have made some amazing contacts, and really appreciate all the repeat clients.

What could have made your year better?
There are always challenges facing small businesses, especially when the business is new. Retaining quality employees for such a demanding industry is always difficult, along with keeping all equipment in top condition. The work is challenging, but rewarding.

douthwaiteJohn Douthwaite
Production Partners
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Production Partners has enjoyed a successful 2014, our 17th year in the same location above the Old Spaghetti Factory on Seattle’s waterfront. We continue producing high quality television and radio commercials for our long-time loyal customers and have also added a couple of wonderful new clients and technological advances during 2014.

What projects did you work on?
We are proud to produce television, radio commercials and print advertising for Westmark Hotels in Alaska and the Yukon. A personal favorite is our monthly comedic “Anchorman” series for Performance Kia, written by John Douthwaite and starring comedian Dean Oleson. New client Schick Shadel Hospital has also provided stimulating projects for our creative team.

What could have made your year better?
Producing the Bud Light Super Bowl TV commercials would have made the year better, but other than that, I can’t complain. Well I could, but it wouldn’t do any good. Thank you to all our partners in production!

Bend Film ToddLooby_colorTodd Looby
BendFilm
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes, BendFilm 2014 was a record year in attendance, festival revenue, and a record number of Northwest-made films. Independent filmmaking and appreciation of independent filmmaking is alive and well in the Northwest!

What could have made your year better?
We would like to have even greater visibility and appreciation from Washington and Northern Oregon. We will work hard to increase our reach to these great areas of independent filmmakers and lovers.

pattiPatti Kalles
Kalles Levine Casting
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Better than last year.

What projects did you work on?
National Swiffer commercial; Amazon TV pilot Man in the High Castle.

What could have made your year better?
More work. No incentives to bring work here in Washington. More press to make Washington a friendly town to shoot in. Crew from out of town complain that the public doesn’t like anyone shooting in Seattle. We need press and more help from the government.

EMAEd Mellnik
EMA Video Productions, Inc.
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
This was a great year for live video streaming events. I think live streaming has come of age. Most people even know what live streaming is, which is different than only a year or two ago when it was a vague term for most.

What projects did you work on?
In 2014 EMA Video streamed a musical play by The Northwest Children’s Theatre to the Doernbecher Children’s Hospital; we streamed a four-day Holistic Medical Conference in Minneapolis; we worked on the Portland Blues Festival with 8 cameras and sent the mix to two jumbotron screens; and as the videographer for the Oregon Ballet, we recorded several of their performances. Those were the highlights, but we loved doing the smaller jobs this year as well.

What could have made your year better?
The only negative thing about 2014 was that it went by too fast! I hope there will be more groups running conference events deciding to stream the event live on the web this next year.

colleenbell (2)Colleen Bell
Bell Agency
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes, a very successful year. In the past two years, the Bell Agency has done better than any year in our 23-year history. We have developed a new business plan that has brought in many more clients, talent and work. Our talent base is some of the hardest working, loyal talent in Washington and Oregon. We know it takes hard work to make it in this economy and we have continued to meet this challenge head on. We have had a talent in almost every production that has come into Washington and Oregon due to the high caliber of our talent. We understand that we can only be as good as the talent we ask to join our agency.  The Bell Agency talent have booked jobs with Amazon, Nordstrom, Mazda, Chevy, Les Schwab, Microsoft, NFL, Sounders, WSU, Grimm, The Librarians, Fred Meyer, Puffs, Disney, Zumiez, Carhartt, Boeing and so many more just this year.

What could have made your year better?
Loyalty from our talent is what drives us to continue to grow successfully. Despite rumors that the Bell Agency has changed its name in the Oregon market, we want to assure everyone that we are still one agency thriving in both Washington and Oregon. All in all, the year was very successful and we couldn’t be more proud of our talent, and more thankful for our loyal clients.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAJon Nigbor
Media272, Inc.
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes, 2014 was very successful. We saw our sales and production more than double.

Why?
Two years ago, video was a “nice to have.”  Now, it is a “need to have.”

What could have made your year better?
Business owners are more reluctant than ever to spend. Taxes, health care, and paperwork are horrible time and resource drains. The uncertainty that taxes will increase disproportionately because someone believes “they deserve to pay more” is outrageous. Business owners deserve every reward they’ve earned.

Kathleen Lopez, MS
Location Manager
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes! Successful. I sent the production designer for a series pilot to Seattle/Woodinville.

What could have made your year better?
Increase in the Washington film incentive.

Amey René
Amey René Casting
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes! We were lucky enough to work on the NIKE commercial “Train it True,” featuring Richard Sherman, which showcased a lot of local PNW talent and was directed by the legendary music video director Mark Romanek. We did the local Seattle casting for the feature film Captain Fantastic, which is the directorial debut of actor Matt Ross and stars Viggo Mortensen and shot in Woodinville, Washington. In 2014, Amey René Casting Seattle also got its own permanent offices. We are located in the Saturn Building in Fremont.

What could have made your year better?
We are working on providing continual audition workshops for PNW actors. With more and more nationally recognized projects coming to shoot in the Northwest, we want actors to be ready to showcase their talents and book the job!

Eric Goetz
Composer
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
Yes.

What projects did you work on?
I scored four animated short films for Seattle University and The Gates Foundation, and worked on a number of iPhone/iPad apps.

What could have made your year better?
As a composer, I feel like I’ve hit a glass ceiling in Seattle’s film industry. This year, I had seven films in SIFF, but made a combined total of less than $10K on them. When bigger budget films shoot here, they inevitably end up doing their post in L.A., regardless. If it weren’t for one or two really good local video game clients, I would not be able to earn a living as a film composer in Seattle.

Kyle LeMire
miracleADwallet.com
Was 2014 a successful year for you?
2014 was a successful year for Miracle AD Wallet, LLC. Mostly because it was our first. I started the film equipment e-commerce company to sell Call Sheet Wallets to eco-friendly ADs and PAs: The Miracle AD Wallet. We donate all profits to programs like Plant-it-2020, that reforest and reduce carbon emissions worldwide.

What projects did you work on?
This year alone, we’ve distributed Call Sheet Wallets to Todd Haynes’ Carol, Portlandia Season 5, House of Cards Season 3, CSI: Cyber, among others. And we’ll now be available not only on www.MiracleADwallet.com, but also on FilmTools.com and in their three L.A.-area stores.

What could have made your year better?
2014 couldn’t have been better.

Doc Thoemke
TMKey Film
What projects did you work on in 2014?
tmkeyfilm.com provides HD underwater filmography (with no divers) and nearshore salmon habitat assessment documentation in Puget Sound’s deepest substrate. 2014 completed projects: Chehalis River underwater filming lost Gill Nets called Ghost Nets 6; tons of nets removed. Located invasive species club tunicate (sea squirts) in Hood Canal, Puget Sound. Identified substrate hot spots, E. coli in the drinking water, Sea Snow, red and green algae. Started the TMKey Film YouTube channel.

What could have made your year better?
Expanded funding for research filming health dangers to the public. Serious changes taking place in regards to E. coli and red algae—your drinking waters are unsafe. The health of Puget Sound has around 20 more years. Big surprise—health dangers to walk the beach, play in the sand, shellfish toxins. More is coming.

Anniversary Special

Three Northwest companies—a casting director in Portland, a production services company in Seattle, and a soundstage/gear rental company in Portland—celebrated major anniversaries in 2014. Cheers to their success!

 

CELEBRATING 15 YEARS

CastIronStudios- Casting Director Eryn Goodman, Casting Director Lana Veenker, Casting Associate Ranielle Gray.Lana Veenker,
Cast Iron Studios

What does this anniversary mean to you, your staff, and your clients?
We held a big blow-out celebration for our fifth anniversary, but our tenth was in the middle of the recession, so we were pretty hunkered down and didn’t do much. For our fifteenth, what I’m really celebrating is that Eryn Goodman (Casting Director) and Ranielle Gray (Casting Associate) have stuck with me through thick and thin all of these years. Eryn just tallied her nine-year anniversary with Cast Iron Studios in September, and Ranielle’s eighth is coming up in February.

How did you celebrate, and with whom?
Instead of shelling out a bunch of dough for a big party, I’m treating them to a spa day, upgrading their computers, and implementing an employer-matching retirement plan. We all have a lot on our plates this fall, so we decided to hold off on the next blow-out until the 20th. For now, I just want to show my appreciation for all their hard work.

How has your business changed over the years?Cast Iron Studios - grimm
Early on, I was chief cook and bottle washer; doing their jobs plus mine, and working every evening and weekend. Now that we have such a solid and deeply experienced team, I can focus more on marketing and business development, knowing that our clients are in excellent hands. We all have more regular hours as well, especially since advances in technology keep us from having to stay in the office late at night editing, or racing to the airport to catch the last FedEx.

What is one memorable moment from your career?
There have been many highlights, but walking the red carpet at Cannes for Gus Van Sant’s Paranoid Park was a big one. I lived in France for many years and still visit often, so Cannes was like the Oscars for me. Being assigned to the same limo as Tilda Swinton was just icing on the cake!Cast Iron at TIFF with jean marc vallee

What’s next for your company?
We are working on putting together a development division, with the hopes of eventually establishing a film fund that would be at least half from Northwest sources, in order to retain leverage to keep the projects local. It’s a slow process, as we’re investigating an approach that I don’t think has been done in Oregon before. In the meantime, we’re looking for other ways to put our local, national and international connections to good use, possibly by helping to secure distribution for high-quality local content that has already been produced, but has not found a home. We’re taking our time in order to identify the right niche for our skills and resources within a rapidly changing industry.

CELEBRATING 20 YEARS

Clatter IMG_6625Vince Werner,
Clatter&Din

What does this anniversary mean to you, your staff, and your clients?
To me, it means: ‘Twenty years? We must be doing SOMETHING right!’ This isn’t a business that generates huge profits or even predictable revenue, so it’s not that we’re surfing along on a cash cushion. We’ve always operated on a rather squishy ‘fun first – people first’ mantra. We try to create a fun and creative environment for our team here, and for our clients, and it has resulted in low turnover, relative stability and loyal customers. So, I guess 20 years means a validation of that principal. Maybe not quite as much validation as a retirement home in the San Juans, but at the end of the day, I’ll take it. I’m proud of what we are and where we’ve been.

How did you celebrate, and with whom?Clatter2027
We threw a classic animal-house style kegger, which has always been our style. No maudlin speeches, no security people checking a guest list—just music, drink, food and an excuse for the creative community to come hang out and have a great time. I think there were about 500 or so people here, so of course I didn’t get to spend much time with any of them, unfortunately. Particularly gratifying was seeing several agency principals, colleagues, our past employers—people who have been such a big part of that 20-year history. Maybe 10 percent of the people there have ever written a check to Clatter&Din, and yet everyone there has been an important part of the story, and I’m full of gratitude for all of them. I’ll always remember that night, but that’s partly because I couldn’t get near the bar!Clatter2032-CC

How has your business changed over the years?
What HASN’T changed? When we started, we leap-frogged the tech prowess of our predecessors with our whopping total of 9 gigabytes of online media storage. Microsoft was our first client, and we won that with our ability to deliver audio as sound files on Magneto/Optical disks. We were very bleeding edge, although we didn’t even have email, and our first website was years away. Also, the local talent pool was robust, and in the days before Vimeo and FTP, creative teams actually came to sessions! Therefore, the place was hopping with people-energy every day! It seemed like a constant good-time laugh riot. Our connected world has reduced that personal interaction to a certain degree, and I do occasionally get wistful about that. However, the biggest change has been the integration of media creation disciplines. I think we did a pretty good job of seeing that coming, adding ‘light weight’ video and web services, anchored to our ‘heavy’ audio infrastructure. It took a while, but I think we are finally starting to look pretty smart about that!Clatter NWUkes_w_Barnes

What is one memorable moment from your career?
There are many, but what pops to mind is winning the Radio Mercury award with a spec spot written by Ken Bennett for a long gone Fremont-based brew-your-own-beer place. We beat out Budweiser’s talking frog campaign in the humor category. I got to put on a tux and spend some of the prize money in NYC with Ken and my lovely wife, Mary. That also reminds me of another New York experience: being in NYC for a trade show during the ‘95 Yankees – Mariners series, and watching Edgar’s RBI double bring Griffey around from first for the win—all while sitting in Mickey Mantle’s Bar across the street from Central Park. We were even on national TV for about 3 seconds. That was pretty sweet!

What’s next for your company?Clatter2030
Navigating change while maintaining culture is always the biggest challenge. The landscape for media creation and consumption is obviously being re-made, and the disruption is accelerating. We’ll try to be both smart and proactive in keeping ahead of that curve. I think we’ll see continued evolution in what we do, how we do it, and even who we do it for. I DO believe there will most certainly be a 30th Anniversary Party. And you’re invited!

CELEBRATING 20 YEARS

Chris Crever,
Cine Rent West

What does this anniversary mean to you, your staff, and your clients?
This 20th anniversary milestone is huge for all of us. The production industry has been completely transformed in the last 20 years. In 1994 very few of us could have predicted the role digital technology would play in producing and distributing video. YouTube was still 11 years in the future.
Those of us who’ve been around since the ‘90s can remember weathering several downturns in the industry. But the fact that we’ve not just survived but actually thrived throughout this change is a testament to our staff and clients.
In our industry 20 years is worth celebrating.

How did you celebrate, and with whom?
We took a moment to acknowledge this landmark with our staff, then told everybody to get back to work. We had a big deadline.

How has your business changed over the years?cinerentwestphoto1
When Cine Rent West opened its doors for business in 1994 as a production facility, film was king. Gregg Snazelle, who was an icon in the San Francisco film community, purchased the building from animator Will Vinton and moved his production business to Portland. He outfitted it as a full soundstage, brought in cameras, and set up editing rooms. One of his first major jobs was editing Mr. Holland’s Opus, which received several Oscar nominations.
After Gregg’s untimely death in 1999, the facility was run by his son Craig for a year. Then in 2000 he worked out a deal with me (Chris Crever), who was working as a 1st AC and looking to invest in a facility. In January of 2001 I assumed ownership.
In the early days we were fortunate to have a steady client base who did big film shoots. We worked with companies like Tyee Films doing long format productions for clients like Bowflex. But in the past ten years, camera technology has improved to require less intensive lighting. And there’s been an immense pressure to cut budgets. We’ve continued to keep busy by being more nimble. Quickly turning around the facility for shorter shoots and smaller crews.
At the same time we’ve filled the office portion of the building with industry-specific tenants. We currently provide space for designers, entertainment attorneys, production bookkeeping, and small production companies.

What is one memorable moment for you and your company?
It’s tough to narrow it down to just one. Our 185 most memorable moments came when we did the Old Spice YouTube campaign with Weiden+Kennedy. Over three days we shot 185 short videos with actor Isaiah Mustafa. He wore his signature bath towel and stood in a rustic log cabin set, while sending out holiday greetings to the world.
That was one of three similar campaigns. The last one we shot here was the bathroom showdown with Fabio.

What’s next for your company?
Twenty years ago it was impossible to predict where the production industry would be today. In just the past 5 years the rate of change has accelerated noticeably. So we’d be crazy to try to predict what production will be like in the next 20 years. In 2034 will they even call what we’re doing “video”?
We’re going to keep doing the things that have made us successful to this point: paying attention to and embracing change, working hard to meet our clients’ unique needs, and supporting the next generation in the production industry.