Around L.A.

AFI FEST 2011 RECAP: The Dish and the Spoon

SAGindie — Friday, December 2nd, 2011

SAGIndie was very pleased to sponsor a screening of the indie film, THE DISH & THE SPOON at the 2011 AFI Fest. After the screening, writer/director Alison Bagnall participated in a Q&A.

2011 Film Independent Forum: October 21-23

SAGindie — Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

For the past seven years, Film Independent has gathered industry insiders, thought provokers and game changers for a not to be missed weekend of panel discussions, seminars and one of a kind networking sessions.

This year’s Film Independent Forum, taking place October 21-23 at the Directors Guild of America, will cover a wide array of topics from real solutions for getting financing, recent legal challenges facing documentarians, insight into working the festival circuit, and options for filmmakers marketing and releasing their own work. For the first time, we’ll also look at working inside the box – an exploration of the new horizons and opportunities in television.

The Film Independent Forum will take place October 21-23 at the Directors Guild of America.

It is a weekend like no other – a true field guide to independent producing – and an incredible opportunity for filmmakers at all levels looking to expand their circle of connections.

Register now at the Film Independent member rate:

Past speakers have included:

Bob Berney, FilmDistrict; Sara Berenstein, HBO Documentary Films; Davis Guggenheim, director, Waiting for Superman; Joe Drake, Lionsgate; Nicholas Chartier, producer, The Hurt Locker; Azazel Jacobs, director, Terri; Lynette Howell, producer, Blue Valentine; Celine Rattray, producer, The Kids are All Right; John Sloss, Cinetic; Ted Sarandos, Netflix; Rena Ronson, UTA; Steve Golin, producer, Babel; Ron Yerxa, producer, Little Children; Mark and Jay Duplass writers/directors, Cyrus; Marina Zenovich, director, Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired

For information on speakers, panels and more, please visit the Film Independent forum site.

Filmmakers Alliance Presents: VisionFest 2011

SAGindie — Monday, October 17th, 2011

SAGINDIE is a proud sponsor of VISIONFEST taking place Wednesday, October 19 at 8:00 PM at the Downtown Independent Theater in Los Angeles.

Register now with a special SAGIndie discount code: FriendsofFA


2011 will be the 14th Year of VisionFest, Filmmakers Alliance annual screening and celebration bringing together the best of LA’s independent film community and regularly attended by overflowing audiences and press.

The evening begins with the presentation of the NILSSON AWARD, curated and presented by the award’s namesake and inaugural recipient, ROB NILSSON. The award acknowledges and celebrates bold, direct, honest and aesthetically challenging filmmaking that is often unrecognized by the mainstream independent film community. This year’s Nilsson Award recipient is Turkish filmmaker Semih Kaplanoğlu.

Next is the presentation of the VISION AWARD to an established filmmaker whose artistic ambition and consistent filmmaking excellence provides artistic inspiration to emerging filmmakers all around the world.  Past recipients include MIke Figgis, Terry Gilliam, Wim Wenders, Allison Anders, Alexander Payne, David O. Russell, Werner Herzog, Mark and Michael Polish, Kevin Smith, Ted Hope and last year’s recipient, Nicolas Winding Refn.

Independent Spirit Award and Gotham Award winner Christine Vachon co-founded indie powerhouse Killer Films in 1995 with producing partner Pamela Koffler.  Based out of New York, Killer has produced more than 45 acclaimed independent films including Todd Haynes’ Venice Film Festival Award-winning I’M NOT THERE and last year’s Best Canadian Feature at TIFF, CAIRO TIME.  Over the past decade and a half the two have produced some of the most celebrated American indie features including Academy Award-winning films FAR FROM HEAVEN, BOYS DON’T CRY, ONE HOUR PHOTO, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, HAPPINESS and SAFE. In television, Vachon executive produced the Emmy-winning program, This American Life, for Showtime and more recently the two have collaborated on the upcoming miniseries Mildred Pierce for HBO.  Killer Films was honored with a 10 year retrospective at the New York Museum of Modern Art in 2005.

The presentation of awards will be followed by a program of some of the best short films produced in the previous year. We are pleased to announce the following films:

  • Inside This World of Mine (3:59) by Sean Morris
  • The Wanderer (14:30) by Aaron Garcia
  • The Director (1:30) by Destri Martino
  • Debutante Hunters (12:42) by Maria White
  • White Knuckles (3:46) – 3D Director Eric Kurland
  • Abigale (16:00) by Robert Machoian and Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck
  • All Is Not Lost (3:24) - 3D Director Eric Kurland
  • The Legend of Beaver Dam (12:00) by Jerome Sable, Produced by Michael Blaha

Total program length: 68 mins.

And we will have a special Public Service spotlight on Tamika Lamison’s Make A Film Foundation with a screening of the org’s new film Deep Blue Breath directed by Patricia Cardoso.

The evening finishes with a high-energy party on the rooftop of the Downtown Independent Theater catered by some of Los Angeles’ best restaurants.


Special Screening for Students of L.A. Intensive

SAGindie — Friday, August 5th, 2011

On Wednesday, August 3rd, we hosted a special event for the students of the American Pavilion’s L.A. Intensive Program. We screened the indie film, HAMILL, and director OREN KAPLAN was in the house for a very special Q&A.

RELATED ARTICLE: Filmmaker Interview: EBEN KOSTBAR and JOSEPH MCKELHEER, writers/producers of HAMILL


SAGindie — Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER: SAG Offers Indie Filmmakers Low-Budget Advice

SAGindie — Monday, June 6th, 2011

The Hollywood Reporter on the “BIG NAMES, SMALL BUDGETS” panel we did at the Produced By Conference.

Read the article HERE.

19 Films Set for Los Angeles Film Festival Competitions; Premieres & More

SAGindie — Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

“Details of the Los Angeles Film Festival were unveiled today with 200 feature films, shorts, and music videos on tap for the event’s 2011 edition, including 19 films screening in the ten-day event’s Narrative and Documentary Competition. LAFF will return to its downtown hub at L.A. Live with 27 World, North American, and U.S. premieres set to screen.

The number of films competing in the narrative and documentary competition categories increased this year from 18 to 19, of which 11 are world premieres and 8 are North American or U.S. premieres. The number of female feature filmmakers also increased this year from 21 to 23.”

Read the rest at INDIEWIRE.

2011 Independent Spirit Awards: Unpredictable

Will Prescott — Thursday, February 24th, 2011

The Spirit Awards will air on IFC on Saturday, February 26th, 2011 at 10/9c. Hosted by Joel McHale.

Los Angeles Film & New Media Producers Needed

SAGindie — Tuesday, December 14th, 2010

Are you a producer? Are you based in Los Angeles? Then SAG needs your help!

The Screen Actors Guild is looking for qualified Independent Film and New Media Producers to participate in a special focus group in early January. The overall purpose is to gain a better understanding of how producers work with SAG as well as some real world views of SAG’s new online production center.

If you are interested, please email the following items to

  • Name
  • Email
  • Phone
  • Primary field of expertise (e.g. new media, indie film, or both)
  • Link to IMDB page or list of current filmography

Please note that this a purely volunteer-based opportunity and that only Producers with legitimate production experience will be considered.

Thanks and all the best,


A Must Read: Joe Drake’s Filmmaker Forum Keynote Speech

Will Prescott — Monday, November 1st, 2010

Joe Drake, Lionsgate co-COO and president of its Motion Picture Group, delivered the keynote speech Saturday morning at Film Independent’s 2010 Filmmaker Forum. If you weren’t lucky enough to attend, then you should definitely read the transcript that’s posted over at indieWIRE. It’s an extremely inspirational (albeit harshly realistic) talk about creating and maintaining traction in this business.

Some of my favorite quotes from Mr. Drake:

“Hard work is a prison sentence only if it does not have meaning. Once it does, it becomes the kind of thing that makes you grab your wife around the waist and dance a jig.”

“90% of your success is what you have in your briefcase. 10% of your success is how effective you are at influencing others to act on your behalf.”

“So, for all of you who want to ask me, “How do I get my movie financed?” Part of the answer is this: Forget about all the reasons not to do it. Forget about all the films that failed. Forget about all the films that didn’t get into Sundance, or got there, and didn’t get a distribution deal out of Sundance. Choose instead to focus on what has worked and learn from opening your eyes up to the marketplace around you.”

Read it all here: