Make It Happen

Film Producing in Wales

Posts Tagged ‘Oscars

We Should Come Up With Some Kind of Strategy

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It’s taken the same length of time some people take to make a feature film, but finally 17 is complete and DVDs have been sent out to those who took part in the production. Now, though, the film takes on a new life – a year (or so) on the festival circuit. The thing is – where to start?

Submitting to festivals is faster and easier than it ever has been, thanks to web sites like Short Film Depot and Without A Box. Our budget for festival entries is small to say the least, so we have to choose wisely.  Thankfully, quite a lot of festivals are still free to enter, and so will only cost you a DVD, postage and the time it takes to complete the entry form, which might only be a few seconds if you’ve already submitted the film’s information via one of the submission web sites.

We’re focussing on festivals by using a simple criteria.

  • British festivals – we’ve made a film that might work best with a British audience.
  • Festivals with a student competition – Jamie and I were both postgraduate students when we shot the film, and it was produced as part of our courses, so we qualify.
  • Festivals with themes that relate to our own film.  We haven’t made the Karate Kid Part II, but our film covers youth violence, bullying, coming of age, confrontation and revenge among other themes.
  • How much is it to enter?  We’re on a tight budget, so we need to be convinced it’s worth entering a particular festival as the entry fees will mount up quickly.

As always, you need to be up on festival politics, and it helps to find out which festivals are ‘hot’.  You might want to find out which ones might qualify you for the Oscars, just in case…  If you’re interested in how to make a successful short film, then a great case study is Gone Fishing directed by Chris Jones.  Pick out the story of the film from Chris’ blog.

If/when we get accepted by a festival, it will be a real validation of our work.  It wouldn’t hurt to win an award, either.

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Written by Matthew Redd

June 11, 2009 at 5:49 pm

My, What a Gripping Life You Do Lead

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Not much point talking Oscars, as everyone has said everything that needs saying by now. Obviously, well done to Christian Colson and everyone involved in the success of his film.

I’ve been a bit slack on the blog front recently, though not as slack as Freeth, who incidentally has just posted his monthly update. I want to try and post more opinion and less ‘diary’ type entries on this blog, and will make an effort to do so – I’m trying to find the balance really. As per usual, it’s been another busy week, but I have found the time to test out another social networking tool – twitter. I’m not sure how useful it will be for me as yet, but feel free to let me know what you think as I haven’t really sussed it out.

Things are really getting going with the musical, and we’re currently looking for locations as one location will be pivotal to the story, while the workshops are continuing and the casting process is on the way. We’ve brought in Steven Harris, a choreographer from London with a lot of West End & touring experience, and he’s been putting the kids through their paces. Those who don’t make it into the production should have benefited a lot from working with Steve.

My application for the Engage programme was rejected. I asked for feedback and got no response. They’re either very busy, or avid blog readers who have me pegged as a male chauvinist pig.

I’ve also been tidying up some paperwork on Avoiding Christian Bale, whilst the rough cut is being reviewed ready for the next stage.

I’m hoping to bring some news of the short film I shot with ‘award-winning director’ Jamie Bolton back in september 2007, as it looks like we will be grading it in glorious HD soon. It will be fantastic to finally have the film finished and start submitting it to festivals – it’s been a long, drawn out process mostly due to my work commitments, and Jamie moving to London to work for Working Title. Of course, congratulations are due to Jamie and ACB director Paul Howard Allen, as the short film ‘Triple Word’ (they co-directed) won the Best Post Graduate Fiction award at this year’s Ffresh festival.

That’s my week in words.

Ich Bin Ein Berliner

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I’ll be heading over to Germany in the first weekend of February for a few days at the Berlin Film Festival*. I’m hoping to meet a lot of new people and see a few people I’ve already met when I’m out there, and it’s another great opportunity to learn more about the industry and raise awareness of the projects that we’re developing at Tornado. I’ve been to Berlin a few times as a tourist and when on tour with bands, and it’s a great city to visit, so I’m looking forward to it. Vivien will be there as well, so I’m sure we’ll be talking about Avoiding Christian Bale with a lot of people, and we plan to take a few scenes with us on DVD to start the sales drive.

If you’re over there yourself, drop me an email.

Following on from this post, the Oscar nominations were obviously announced this week and I’m shocked to see no nomination for Michael Sheen. There’ll be riots on the streets of Port Talbot.

Have a great weekend.

*Notice to Would-be Burglars: I have an extensive CCTV setup running in conjunction with a comprehensive alarm system in my flat. No point even trying.

Holding Back The Tears

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According to The Western Mail, a performance poet from Cardiff has described the omission of Michael Sheen from the BAFTA nominations “another example of anti-Welsh bias”. Michael’s been nominated for three different awards in the past, but is yet to win – whether he cares about it or not, I have no idea. I haven’t seen Frost/Nixon as yet, and to be honest, I think I’ll give it a miss and see Role Models instead. Hopefully that doesn’t make me anti-Welsh.

Imagine if shed lost

Imagine if she'd lost

It’s awards season in the film world. The Oscar nominations are announced soon, and unfortunately Karl Francis’ latest film didn’t make it into the most recent shortlist for the Best Foreign Language Film award. Surprisingly, neither did Gomorrah.

As we know, the voting and nominations in all of these events are hugely influenced by the politics of the various factions within the industry, and of course the internal politics of the organisation hosting the ceremony. The Golden Globes (still weirdly described as “a barometer for potential Oscar contenders” despite rarely picking the same winners) was torn apart by Nikki Finke in her blog, where she described the event as “a completely meaningless awards show by a scandal-riddled organization”. Half the Oscars seem to go to whoever ran the best campaign and it’s been that for a long time.

That said, I look forward to any nominations for awards that I might receive in the future, regardless of who is dishing them out. Hopefully being a Welshman won’t stand in my way.

Written by Matthew Redd

January 16, 2009 at 4:56 pm