INDUSTRY INSIGHTS: 18 Ways to a Sustainable, Truly Free Film Community
Ted Hope is an independent producer and co-founder of New York production company This is that, with partner Anne Carey. Click on Talk Back to discuss with other NALIPsters!
Article by Ted Hope
You say you want a sustainable and truly free film community and culture? Then it's time to take some action.
I wish I could give marching orders instead of discussion points. I wrote this to encourage, but you can use it as a litmus test for whether you really want an independent and diverse culture. Which are these are you doing? Which of these are you willing to do?
There is the capacity for many more of us to create and prosper from creative media work. This capacity can also close up and vanish along with our audiences. The canaries are now the size of Big Birds, and we somehow have been able to ignore them.
The time is now. If we don't fully own the absolute necessity to change how we've all been working, we�won't be working -- and we won't have the illuminating, inspiring, transforming films that we now enjoy.
It's your choice, but action is required.
Mentor:�if you have been working in the film industry for at least five years, you certainly have the knowledge to help lift somebody else up. Ideally this would be someone from a much different background than yourself (more on that later) so things don't have to stay the same. That said, those that you lift up will also carry on some of your knowledge, so the bonds that need to be strengthened hopefully will be.
2009 ALMA Awards Winners
By the Associated Press
"Nothing Like the Holidays" had a merry time at the ALMA Awards. The ensemble family drama starring John Leguizamo, Debra Messing and Freddy Rodriguez won three awards at Thursday's ceremony, which recognized achievements by Hispanic artists in film, television and music over the past year. Leguizamo, screenwriter Rick Najera and director Alfredo De Villa were each awarded trophies for their work in the film category.
Penelope Cruz won the film actress award for "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" while "Twilight" makeup artist Jeanne Van Phue and hair stylist Mary Ann Valdes picked up awards for their behind-the-scenes work. David Archuleta and Pitbull won prizes in the music category during the ceremony at UCLA's Royce Hall. The show is scheduled to be televised Friday by ABC.
Honorees in the TV category included Benjamin Bratt from A&E's "The Cleaner" as drama actor, Lauren Velez from Showtime's "Dexter" as drama actress, Oscar Nunez from NBC's "The Office" as comedy actor, Selena Gomez from Disney Channel's "Wizards of Waverly Place" as comedy actress and Latino Public Broadcasting in the documentary category.
Oscar De La Hoya received the Special Achievement in Sports Television award while Salma Hayek was given the Anthony Quinn Award for Industry Excellence. Rita Moreno presented a tribute to the late Ricardo Montalban. ALMA Awards creator Raul Yzaguirre was awarded the first-ever PepsiCo Adelante Award for his lifetime of service to the Latino community.
The ALMA Awards were created in 1995 by the National Council of La Raza, a national Latino civil rights and advocacy organization, as part of its effort to promote diverse and fair portrayals of Latinos in the media. ALMA stands for American Latino Media Arts and means "soul" in Spanish. George Lopez and Eva Longoria Parker hosted this year's ceremony.
E! Online lists the 2009 ALMA Awards winners as:
- Actor, Film: John Leguizamo, "Nothing Like the Holidays"
- Actress, Film: Penelope Cruz, "Vicky Cristina Barcelona"
- Drama Actor, TV: Benjamin Bratt, "The Cleaner"
- Drama Actress, TV: Lauren Velez, "Dexter"
- Comedy Actor, TV: Oscar Nunez, "The Office"
- Comedy Actress, TV: Selena Gomez, "Wizards of Waverly Place"
- New Musical Artist: "David Archuleta"
- Dance Recording: Pitbull, "I Know You Want Me, Calle Ocho"
- Documentaries: Latino Public Broadcasting
- Makeup: Jeanne Van Phue, "Twilight"
- Hair Stylist: Mary Ann Valdes, "Twilight/Ugly Betty"
- Writer: Rick Najera, "Nothing Like the Holidays"
- Director: Alfredo De Villa, "Nothing Like the Holidays"
- Fashion Icon: Jessica Alba
- Anthony Quinn Award for Industry Excellence: Salma Hayek
- Special Achievement in Sports Television: Oscar De La Hoya
- PepsiCo Adelante ALMA Award: Raul Yzaguirre
Emmy Telecast Was Lacking in Diversity
By Greg Braxton, The Los Angeles Times
If trophies were handed out for promoting diversity in nationally televised award programs, CBS' telecast of the Primetime Emmy Awards would not stand much of a chance to win. On a night dedicated to spotlighting the television industry's best and brightest, it was difficult to see many people of color onstage during the three-hour ceremony.
Few minorities were represented as nominees in Sunday night's telecast. Only one individual nominee of color received an award, Shohreh Aghdashloo for supporting actress in a movie or miniseries for HBO's "House of Saddam."
The lack of diversity was just as evident in the presenter ranks. Out of 39 presenters, three were minorities, all African Americans -- Chandra Wilson of "Grey's Anatomy," Tracy Morgan of NBC's "30 Rock" and LL Cool J of the new CBS program "NCIS: Los Angeles."
"I was sitting in my chair and kept sinking lower and lower," said Vic Bulluck, executive director of the NAACP's Hollywood office. "It shows a clear lack of creativity and vision in network television. In this age of President Obama, the networks are clearly on the wrong side of history. You don't see families like the Obamas on network television."
Executives of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, the governing body behind the ceremony, could not be reached, while CBS executives declined to comment.
Last year, the National Assn. for the Advancement of Colored People issued a 40-page report titled "Out of Focus -- Out of Sync" that accused the networks of perpetuating a segregated view of America and failing to diversify behind the camera as well. The NAACP report found that CBS employed the fewest minority writers and producers among the four major networks.
However, the report also praised CBS for hiring more minority development executives than its rivals and for having an African American lead in a prime-time show, Dennis Haysbert of the now-canceled "The Unit." CBS later hired Laurence Fishburne as the lead of its popular "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation."
"Where are the [former NBC entertainment heads] Brandon Tartikoffs and the Warren Littlefields who are looking for the next 'Cosby Show' or for people of color that will appeal to all Americans?" added Bulluck. "If the people working at the networks now are writing and creating what they know, then we need new people in there."
This summer, CBS Entertainment President Nina Tassler was asked at the annual press tour about the lack of diversity in CBS' comedies.
A reporter stated that the shows, which include "The Big Bang Theory," "How I Met Your Mother" and "Gary Unmarried," revolve around "affluent white people."
Replied Tassler: "They're not all affluent."
Call for Entries: The Webby Awards
Giving online film and video creators a chance to deliver one of its famous five-word speeches, The Webby Awards today kicked off its 14th annual call for entries at www.webbyawards.com. Entrants can submit work in more than 25 film and video categories, including Best Online Comedy, Best Individual Performance, and Best Viral Video. The early deadline is October 30, 2009.
Hailed as the "Internet's highest honor" by the New York Times, The Webby Awards is the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet, including online film and video, Websites, interactive advertising, and mobile websites.
"The Webby Awards gives winners - from desktop video artists to network producers to acclaimed actors and directors - a chance to shine in the global Webby spotlight," said David-Michel Davies, executive director of The Webby Awards. "We look forward to honoring the innovators who are shaping the future of entertainment."
2009 online film and video winners included: Next New Networks' "Bill O'Reilly's Producer - The Unseen Footage!" (Video Remixes/Mashups), Onion News Network (Best Writing), FunnyorDie's "Prop 8 The Musical" (Comedy: Individual Short or Episode); and MTV Networks' "Stickman Exodus" (Animation). A list of all winners and nominees, including links to their individual 5 word speech videos, can be found here.
The 13th Annual Webby Awards received nearly 10,000 entries from over 60 countries. The awards season was capped by a star-studded June gala in New York City hosted by Saturday Night Live's Seth Meyers.
Online film and video categories are judged by a panel of more than 85 entertainment industry leaders that includes The Sundance Channel's Larry Aidem, Director Darren Aronofsky, Showtime Chief Matt Blank, 20th Century Fox Chairman Jim Gianopoulos, Martha Stewart, Harvey Weinstein, and executives from YouTube, Next New Networks, MTV and Comedy Central.
Nominees for the 14th Annual Webby Awards will be announced in April 2010, and winners will be honored at a ceremony in New York City on June 14, 2010.
Call for Entries: "People's Awards" International Short Film Festival
The "People's Awards" International Short Film Festival is held in Quito, Ecuador, and its mission is to promote artistic or alternative films that contribute to the better knowledge and understanding of world filmmaking.
Mail-by deadline: October 21, 2009
For details and to apply, please visit the festival's website. First prive is US$1,000 in cash and a trophy to the best short film. Special mentions to the best short in each category.
4) 1 minute (exact length must be one minute)
Call for Entries: PaleyDocFest09 Pitch Workshop
In the PaleyDocFest09 Pitch Workshop on Sat., Oct. 15, 2009 at the Paley Center for Media in New York, five emerging nonfiction filmmakers pitch their ideas to a panel of distinguished documentary producers. The producers give them feedback on their concept as well as their presentation skills. The winner will receive a $5,000 grant, sponsored by SnagFilms, to be used toward the completion of the pitched film. Enter your project now to be selected for the workshop!
Deadline for entries: Sept. 25, 2009
Confirmed panelists at the workshop include: Rick Allen, Chief Executive Officer, SnagFilms; Diana Holtzberg, Vice President - USA Operations Acquisitions, Project Development, Sales, Films Transit International; Molly Thompson, Programming Director, A&E IndieFilms. Additional panelists to be announced at a later date.
Entries are now being accepted; complete submission guidelines and entry forms can be found online here.
Deadline Approaching: ITVS Diversit Development Fund
ITVS seeks producers of color to develop single documentary programs for public television. The Diversity Development Fund (DDF) provides up to $15,000 for project research and development. Activities may include travel, scripting, preliminary production for fundraising/work-in-progress reels, or other early phase activities. Projects should speak to the ITVS mission to serve underserved audiences, explore complex issues, inspire dialogue and express points of view seldom seen on commercial or public television.
Deadline: September 25, 2009
For more information please visit: