Archive for January, 2008

DIFF ‘08

31st January 2008

The Jameson Dublin International Film Festival will be on from February 15-24, and will feature a large selection of Irish and international films, a Jonas Mekas Retrospective, an examination of the impact of Music on Film, and a focus on New Italian Cinema.

The festival will also showcase a special screening of Irish Film Board funded short films. It will offer an opportunity for festival-goers to see both established and emerging Irish filmmakers. Many of the films have been acclaimed both in Ireland and internationally, and cover a diverse range of subjects and genres.

New Media Course in NI

31st January 2008

IFTN reports that Campbell Ryan Film productions in association with Northern Ireland Screen will host a free New Media Writers workshop in Belfast. Nuno Bernardo, creator of the interactive TV series Sofia’s Diary, will tutor the course.

The New Media workshop is an opportunity to learn about this rapidly evolving medium from one of the acknowledged global experts. The workshop will run on the 9th and 10th February at Queen’s Film Theatre, Belfast.

Nuno Bernardo is Manager of beActive Produções Interactivas and creator of the interactive TV series ‘Sofia’s Diary’. She is considered to be a leading world expert in New Media and has given seminars at Venice Digitale, MIPCOM France and BAFTA London.

The workshop is free and split into stages over two days. A the end of the first day writers who are interested in developing their own New Media project, and also the possibility of working with Campbell Ryan Productions, will leave their contact details at the seminar and be given the chance to pitch their ideas in the final part of the workshop the next day.

Campbell Ryan Productions are seeking new individual writers for an upcoming new media production series so the workshop is an opportunity to showcase your writing skills.

Places on the course are limited and the closing date for applications is Wednesday 6th of February. Details about how to apply are on the web site.

The Big Secret

30th January 2008

Robert J. Elisberg, writing in the Huffington Post discusses the great secret of filmmaking as discussed by legendary Hollywood executive, Irving Thalberg.

Irving Thalberg knew both the craft and business of movie-making together as well as anyone ever in Hollywood. Here’s what Irving Thalberg said about writers:

“The most important part in filmmaking is played by the writers. We must do everything in our power to keep them from finding out.”

The writers have found out.

And the AMPTP corporations have only themselves to blame. They opened the hidden door, turned on the overhead light, and let writers inside to read the magic book.

Here’s what the Book of Secrets says. There’s only one chapter.

“In order to make anything, we need a script.

“Audiences pay or tune in to see actors, but actors need something to say. Directors bring everything together, but directors can’t direct a blank page.

According to Elisberg, once writers have realised their originating power then they should go out and create their own projects and bypass the studio system, thanks in part to the Internet. Which some writers are already doing because the current strike has prompted them into this action. Elisberg believes the AMPTP have made a huge mistake in forcing the writers into examining their traditional relationships with the studios:

It’s a blunder of epic proportions, because the door the AMPTP opened also leads to copyright ownership for writers. And this has been their Holy Grail for decades. And the AMPTP corporations brought this all on themselves.

3m Increase for NI Arts

29th January 2008

According to The Stage the arts in Northern Ireland have obtained a £3 million boost in funding after a protest campaign against the original inadequate budget.

The announcement comes after a several years of “chronic under-funding” and a proposal in the Assembly’s draft budget that arts council chairman Rosemary Kelly described as “tantamount to sounding a death knell over large areas of arts activity”. The new allocation of £7.55 million for 2008/11 represents a 67% increase on the original sum proposed for the period and includes £1.7 million for the year ahead.

While welcoming the new money, arts council chief executive Roisin McDonough also noted that the allocation still fell short of the funding necessary for Northern Ireland’s arts sector to achieve parity with its British and Irish neighbours.

“It means we are now in a better position to look after the needs of our core organisations,” she said. “But the additional £1.7 million for 2008/9, while certainly an improvement, won’t be enough to sustain all of our clients and falls well short of the extra £9 million per annum needed to help us to develop a truly healthy and vibrant arts sector.”

The finance minister, Peter Robinson, also announced a £5 million Creative Industries Seed Fund that will be administered by the Arts Council.

WGA Sign More Deals

28th January 2008

Even though the WGA is in a media blackout over its ongoing talks with the AMPTP, the Union is still signing interim deals with Hollywood studios. United Hollywood reports that independents, Lionsgate and Marvel Studios, have agreed to the WGA’s terms.

The other companies that have already signed to the deal are: United Artists, The Weinstein Company, Worldwide Pants, Spyglass Entertainment, MRC, Jackson Bites, Mandate Films, and Sidney Kimmel Entertainment.