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Bringing a Storybook World to Life on an Indie Budget

By Reuben Guberek

One of the craziest things about filmmaking is the leap of faith you take when starting a project without knowing yet how you’re going to solve all the challenges. It’s both thrilling and nerve wracking to commit yourself to an ambitious production, crowdfund the money, and then know there’s no going back.

The End of Summer Equals Rejection! But Does it Have To?

by Fi Dieter

The first few leaves are crunching on the ground; A sign that Summer is at its end, and with it, the hopes of many aspiring writers and writer/directors. That’s right. The end of Summer is when several major contests and fellowships announce the lucky few…

The Power of Comic Sans

By Sophia Hasegawa (Actor / Writer)

If you’re like me, you’ve always spent more time thinking about writing than actually writing. My childhood consisted of countless barely-started novels and journals, doodled story-boards that I got two pages into, and fantastical worlds I would daydream about but never write…

The thing is, I struggle with executive functioning and extreme procrastination…

Out Of The Cocoon

by John L Curtis

2002. Windows down. Coldplay’s “Clocks” was blasting and I thought the entertainment industry was about to be served to me on a silver platter.

I had just moved to Los Angeles with my big fish/small pond acting credits under my belt. Get to LA. Get an agent. Get in the union. Regularly book TV and film gigs. This was going to be easy…

5 Useful Steps You Can Take when You Have To Create On a Tight Deadline

By Fi Dieter

Whether you’re like me, sprinting to deliver the “final revised polished” draft of your thesis screenplay, or you suddenly got the news that you have 48 hours to prep for a pitch that could change your career, we all know the feeling of having to deliver our best work under pressure…

Growing a Production Company In a Pandemic

Creating a Film Festival and Film Community

By Nick Hellyer

Art is collaboration is art is collaboration is art…

Got it?

Crowdfunding – A Case Study

by Leah Cevoli

Unless today is your first day on the internet, you’ve probably come across a few crowdfunding campaigns, perhaps you’ve pledged to one, or maybe you’ve even participated in or run one yourself. Either way, I don’t think I need to remind you that it’s hard work, and yet I’m about to. See, I’ve managed somewhere around 75 successful campaigns and coached and consulted on hundreds more and I can pretty much spot a winner right off the bat…

Congrats First Frame Fellow Sofia Ayerdi!

In their 60th year, SIGMA Cine will honor the legacy of SIGMA founder Michihiro Yamaki and the passing of the baton to his son and current CEO, Kazuto Yamaki, by giving away $60,000 in scholarships to aspiring young artists. We are so proud of Sofia for being one of the few selected!


By Christine Weatherup 

I’ve always wanted to work on both sides of the camera, but it wasn’t until recently that I found the way to make it happen. A little bit about me: I’ve been acting professionally for 20 years. In that time, I’ve had some fun network credits (Katy Clark in Watchmen, and I was seduced by Thandie Newton in Westworld)…

Becoming a Filmmaker at 55

by Mark Hensley

I am a re-recording mixer by trade. I’ve been doing that for over 25 years, and have received three Cinema Award Society Nominations, three Emmy Nominations and an Emmy Award for mixing “Genius: Picasso.” Being a filmmaker/director/producer was…

Acting: Dancing Your Way to Your Character

By Kit DeZolt

There’s nothing new about dance and physical theater as a way to create a character, as it stems back to Shakespeare’s time, if not further. However, as a dancer, actor and improviser, here’s a few ways on how I utilized dance to create my characters…

Disabled But Able

by Nadar Bahu

My name is Nader Bahu. I have a one-of-a-kind disability that speaks to the incessant challenges disabled people face. Yet I have also had some remarkable victories, and my story is one which your readers should know.

My story is a special one because I have experienced a lot of self doubts due to losing my abilities over time…

Fall First Look

by Adrienne Hayes

TV and movies are my heart! I especially have a soft spot for broadcast TV.  It’s one of the only things still largely accessible to so many people no matter their financial status, and the networks seem to be pushing their stories to be deeper and have higher production value now that they compete with the big streamers. TV is also where we can really get to know the characters…

Why I Love These Cameras?

by Karl Whinnery

Karl here from the Jason Rising team. We just released our love letter to the Friday the 13th franchise – our fan film, Jason Rising. I filled a few roles on the movie – Executive Producer, Cinematographer, Editor, VFX, and Color. For this video I wanted to talk about why used the Blackmagic Pocket 4k cameras and how that was a huge advantage when filming…

Filming Action Sports

by Scott Fitzloff

What exactly is action sports cinematography?

Well I’d say what makes it unique is that it often is a physical (dare I say) athletic pursuit in its own right. Depending on the subject matter, an action sports cinematographer needs to put him/herself right in the action with their subject…

Making “No Monsters Allowed” – A Stop-Motion Short

David Burgis

“No Monsters Allowed” is a dialogue-free stop-motion short film about a little girl who gets so scared by the horror movie her older brother watches that she can’t sleep at night. It straddles the line between children’s movie, horror and comedy, all in a 3-minute package that I’m ridiculously proud of…

Always Plan With the
End In Mind

Aeolan Kelly

There are a lot of things I wish I’d known before I started working in film and TV. By far however, as a film & TV editor, the best piece of advice I’ve ever received about how to work successfully on industry projects was to always start with the end in mind. In other words, know where…

How To Shoot Action on a Budget

Gedaly Guberek

Action movies are awesome! Seeing fights, explosions or chase scenes have been part of cinema from the very beginning and they continue to be popular. Unfortunately, action tends to be very expensive to produce, so indie producers tend to shy away from it. But if you have a story that would benefit from action…

Finding the Creative In the Chaos

Kate Rees Davies

When the Covid 19 Pandemic was officially announced and everyone went into lockdown, I also lost my daytime survival production job and saw no way to be on set directing projects any time soon. It was scary to lose that steady paycheck and not get any projects up on their feet. Though I didn’t know it at the time, the year would become a blessing in so many ways…

Filmmaking, video games, and the future

Harrison Wade Reishman

You’re the director of this movie. You’re on location, on set, walking along the Normandy coastline. You look out to the sea and observe the hundreds of Higgins boats filled with actors and extras dressed as Allied soldiers approaching the shore. You look back to the awaiting ranks of German infantry actors and extras, guns at the ready. The realism is flawless…

Multiculturalism Is In My Blood

an interview with filmmaker Christina Kallas

“I never understood why people want to be among people who all look, think and feel like they do.”

Filmmaker Christina Kallas talks about her journey from accidental tourist to a passionate aficionado of New York as she completes her third NYC feature film in six years, a film about the day the infamous No Dancing Law was repealed.

Waiting For the Punchline

“Waiting for the Punchline” is a short film about a girl from the Mid-west who follows her comedian boyfriend out to LA only to find he’s with another girl… Now she has to find a path for herself, all while fantasizing about murdering her ex.

My name is Christina Marie Leonard and I am the writer and producer of “Waiting for the Punchline.” The idea for this film originated while I was working at a pool hall…

Student Filmmaking in the Time of Covid

The Coronavirus Pandemic has brought many major changes to how we make films today. Heavy contact tracing and strict social distancing guidelines are limiting opportunities to fulfill casting, crew calls and access to essential resources for large scale productions. However, even with these strict guidelines, Hollywood has been able to successfully adapt to these changes and forge ahead. Yet many college students are reducing their senior thesis and undergraduate…

Filming New England Style

an interview with filmmaker Louise Nessralla

How long have you lived in the New England area? What area do you live in?

I was born and bred in Massachusetts and currently am based in Brockton, which back in the day was known as the “City of Champions” because of famed boxers like Rocky Marciano and Marvin Hagler. It’s been exciting to see Brockton grow from what was once the shoemaking capital in the early 20th century to now having major studio projects like Detroit and American Woman filmed here.

Making Vintersea’s “Crack of Light”

“Crack of Light” from Vintersea’s album Illuminated is easily the most epic music video HotKarlProductions has been involved with. This blog post covers the preparation and filming for the Alvord Desert phase of our most ambitious shoot to date. We spent over 6 months on this video.

Quick about me – Karl Whinnery – I make music videos/films and play bass in Vintersea. It’s nice to have a foot in both worlds as we can get really…

Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Film in Austin, Texas

By Screenwriter and Austin native Garrett Hargrove

10. Since there aren’t as many filmmakers here, as a writer I have found myself in a tight knit group that not only trusts my writing but wants me to be involved creatively for the entire process. In L.A. writers aren’t often even invited to set, here they welcome my presence.

9. Although there is not as much local ‘name’ talent living here, most actors and actresses love Austin and will jump at the chance to film here…

From Jobless Wanderer to Smithsonian Photographer

by photographer Joel Bryant

When my cat died the first week of March, I thought to myself: “There’s no way this year could get any worse.”

I had just started rehearsing a play in Palm Springs, had another play in NY right after, standup comedy and corporate gigs booked through the summer and a few trips to Europe. All…

Should I Relocate to Atlanta?

an interview with filmmaker T.C. Barrera

One of the biggest decisions a filmmaker might make in their life is whether to move to a new film market. Atlanta has become the largest filming city in the country so even Los Angeles filmmakers are considering making the move. In January we will launch our Atlanta Blackmagic Collective chapter to help filmmakers meet others in the area and learn from those already out there working….

6 Greatest Lessons I Learned On My Documentary Filmmaking Journey

by filmmaker Jia Wertz

After two decades of working in the fashion industry, at the age of 41 I decided to switch careers and go into filmmaking. Yes, people did warn me that the movie business is a tough industry to break into and especially difficult if you are starting out late and don’t have the time to work…

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