Archive for the ‘For Students’ Category

Robert Bresson – A Bibliography

Thursday, June 26th, 2008

Jane Sloan, Shmuel Ben-Gad, and Frank Blaakmeer at Masters of Cinema have compiled what appears to be the most comprehensive (complete?) Robert Bresson bibliography in the world. As someone whose passion for Bresson’s work led him to trying to read Notes on Cinematography in the original French back when the English translation was out of print, well, it pleases me deeply to see the hard work that these scholars have produced.

Here’s a quote from one of the 2000+ sources listed, J. Hoberman’s “States of Grace” (Village Voice, September 27, 2005):

Do this job long enough and you learn to accept certain realities. Some people will laugh at Written on the Wind and cry over Sleepless in Seattle –instead of vice versa. There are reviewers who find Godard boring and think Lukas Moodysson is a genius. And although it is tiresome to hear two-buck chuck extolled as Chateau Lafite Rothschild, you realize that hey, this is America — everyone’s got an opinion, and if it weren’t for bad taste, many folks would have no taste at all. But I reach the edge of my tolerance in the case of Robert Bresson.

Bluntly put, to not get Bresson is to not get the idea of motion pictures — it’s to have missed that train the Lumiere brothers filmed arriving at Lyon station 110 years ago.

Celtx 1.0

Tuesday, June 10th, 2008

Celtx, the free screenwriting/pre-production software, just launched its 1.0 version.

According to the press release, new features include: 

    1. Adapt To – a single click now converts a fully formatted script of one type into a fully formatted script of another – for example a Stageplay to a Screenplay – displaying instantly the multi-media potential of your work.

    2.  Comic Book – a new editor to write properly formatted Comic Books, and a common framework for collaboration between writer and artist.

    3.  iPhone – now view your Celtx projects from just about anywhere with a display optimized for your iPhone.

    4.  Catalogs – a new organization and searchable dashboard view of all your story’s elements and production items.

    5.  Sidebar – annotate and break down each scene with notes, media (images, audio, and video clips), and production items through an easy to manage, thoroughly upgraded new sidebar.

    6.  Project Scheduling – has been vastly upgraded to fully integrate with the script breakdown and provide a Call Sheet and a host of new shooting reports.

    7.  Storyboarding – you can now choose from a variety of ways to view and manage your images, create a storyboard outline based on your script, and add shot descriptions to each image.  

I’ll try to dig into this in the next few weeks and give a report. But first, I’ve got about 500 emails to reply to and some bags to unpack from my European travels.

A New Coat of Paint

Thursday, March 27th, 2008

To overstate the obvious, there’s a new look here at SRF.

As I prepare for the premiere of my new film, Quick Feet, Soft Hands, I have been doing some re-tooling of the Lovell Films website. Since I was already spending hours digging around in web design apps it seemed like a logical time to revamp this site as well. SRF has looked the same for nearly two and a half years, which is ages in cyber-time. I, for one, am happy to see a change.

As for the content, nothing’s changed. Self-Reliant Film is the same ol’ website you know and love.

The only difference of any significance is that I’ve tried to create more of a bridge between this site and the Lovell Films site, which promotes my own film work. There was a kind of design schizophrenia going on between the two sites — they didn’t look like they represented the same person, and the links between the two were virtually hidden. The links certainly not hidden in real life — the blogger and the filmmaker are one and the same — so I’ve tried to address that a little with the nav bar at the top.

So, that’s the main difference. If you’re compelled to explore the Lovell Films site, go for it. And if not, I hope you continue to enjoy what you find here.

Ok, enough about the re-design.

Coming soon: The remainder of my long-delayed reviews of Apple Color training tutorials.

ADDENDUM: Oh yeah, one more change: You may notice that the banner of the site has been shortened from “self-reliant filmmaking” to “self-reliant film.” That’s what I call this blog, that’s what most other people call this blog, and that’s the URL of the blog. So it was time to have the banner actually use the proper name.

SXSW 08: Blogs, Buzz, and Buddylists

Sunday, March 9th, 2008

This afternoon I’ll be moderating the Blogs, Buzz, and Buddy Lists panel at South by Southwest. If you’re in Austin for SXSW, stop by. You’ll see:

Karina Longworth: film blogger, Spout.com

Victor Pineiro: Writer-Producer, “Second Skin” – premiering at SXSW

Ian Schafer: CEO, Deep Focus

Alison Willmore: Film blogger, IFC.com

… along with yours truly.

And if you don’t catch the panel, I’ll be in town through Wed blogging about the screenings and panels I attend. Drop me a comment or email and we can connect.

UPDATED: Two more sites that we discussed on the panel today:

All These Wonderful Things

The Workbook Project

Documentary Film Festival for Students

Tuesday, March 4th, 2008

I usually don’t post film festival calls for entries — there are just far too many of them — but this is one I couldn’t pass up: The Reality Bytes Film Festival is Northern Illinois University’s student film documentary film festival. As most of you know, NIU was the site of a mass shooting on their campus a couple of weeks ago.

I received a bulk email from their PR director on Sunday. Here it is in full:


First, we want to thank everyone who has called or e-mailed with messages of support over the past few weeks. We are still coming to terms with the tragedy that occured on our campus Thursday, February 14, and it will be a long journey. However, the journey does begin with the first steps and in that spirit, the Reality Bytes Film Festival is still taking place, but with a change in the deadline and screening dates.

With that said, I am writing to you on behalf of Northern Illinois University and the Reality Bytes Student Documentary Film Festival. The festival is currently in its eighth year under the directorship of Dr. Laura Vazquez and is continuing to grow. The event prides itself on being open only to students and being affordable with only a $20 entry fee.

We have already started to receive films from schools all across the country and the outlook for this year’s festival is excellent. Our goal each year is to continue to have a venue where students can showcase their amazing documentary filmmaking talents against their peers.

The submission deadline for students is now March 8, 2008 and the documentaries must be under 30 minutes length. Any style or genre of documentary will be accepted. The application form for this year’s festival can be viewed and printed as a PDF file by visiting the Reality Bytes website at the following URL:

http://www2.comm.niu.edu/~realitybytes/index.html

The screening event will be held on April 4th and 5th and cash prizes will be awarded on April 5th. The best of festival winner will receive $200 and Avid video editing software, second place will receive $150 and third place will receive $100.

Thank you. We are looking forward to seeing all of the great student work coming out of your university.

Sincerely,

Kathy Giles
Public Relations Director for Reality Bytes
Northern Illinois University

 

 

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If you’re a student filmmaker with a documentary, send it on in. It sounds like a neat festival, it’s an affordable entry fee and, in some way, however small, by submitting your film you’ll be helping the NIU community move forward after a terrible tragedy. I imagine this edition of the festival will be pretty special.