Sync Up Cinema 2014
Louisiana's Film industry conference during Jazz Fest
Scheduled for April 28th - 30th and held at the New Orleans Museum of Art, Sync Up Cinema 2014 is just around the corner! A total success last year, NOVAC is thrilled to partner once again with the Jazz & Heritage Foundation to bring back leaders and tastemakers in the national and local film industry for an exciting reboot of our conference, screenings and events.
NOVAC is proud to feature marquee conversations with filmmakers like television writer/producer Julie Plec (Creator & Executive Producer, The Originals & Vampire Diaries) and taste maker Franklin Leonard (Producer & Creator, The Black List and blcklst.com) as well as the latest film from John Sayles, Go For Sisters and the Slamdance hit, Vanishing Pearls by local filmmaker Nailah Jefferson, among others. Stay tuned for more info and the complete Sync Up Cinema as it becomes available.
CONFIRMED SPEAKERS FOR SYNC UP CINEMA 2014
Julie Plec, The Originals
executive producer skillfully juggles work in film and television as both a producer and
a writer. In addition to executive producing The Originals,
Plec co-developed and executive produces The Vampire Diaries,
currently in its fifth season, and has collaborated with executive producers Greg Berlanti and Phil Klemmer on new series The Tomorrow People,
the story of a small group of people gifted with extraordinary paranormal abilities, which she also executive produces for The CW. Additionally, Plec’s screenplay adaptation The Tiger’s Curse
is in development at Paramount, and she will produce the feature @emma
with Darko Entertainment. Plec got her start as a television writer and co-executive producer for the series Kyle XY,
which she produced for the show’s three-year run. Other produced television credits include Wasteland
and Dawson’s Creek.
Past feature production credits include Scream 2
Greg Berlanti’s Broken Hearts Club,
Wes Craven’s Cursed
and The Breed.
is the founder of the Black List
, the yearlypublication highlighting Hollywood’s most popular unproduced screenplays and the startup birthed to continue its mission. Over 225 Black List scripts have been produced as feature films earning more than 175 Academy Award nominations including three of the last five Best Pictures and seven of the last twelve screenwriting Oscars. Franklin has worked in development at Universal Pictures and the production companies of Will Smith, Sydney Pollack and Anthony Minghella, Leonardo DiCaprio, and John Goldwyn. Since 2010, he has been named one of Hollywood Reporter’s
35 Under 35, Black Enterprise Magazine’s
“40 Emerging Leaders for Our Future,” AOL Black Voices
“30 Black Hollywood Game Changers,” The Wrap’s
“12 Innovators Who Are Changing Hollywood,” and Fast Company’s
“100 Most Creative People in Business.”
is a NYC-based filmmaker, whose film The Strange Ones
(co dir. Christopher Radcliff) premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, and has since screened at over 100 festivals worldwide, including SXSW, Rotterdam, Clermont-Ferrand, and Tokyo has has received numerous awards, including several Oscar-qualifying festival wins. Lauren Wolkstein has also directed the acclaimed short films Cigarette Candy
(best short film, SXSW 2010) and Social Butterfly
, which premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. She recently produced Jonathan's Chest
which premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and will head to SXSW next month. Lauren earned her MFA in film from Columbia University, where she received the Plum Pictures Most Promising Filmmaker Award. Lauren was also selected as one of Filmmaker Magazine's 25 New Faces of Independent Film this year. She also finds Scottish Folds to be irresistible.
was born and raised in New Orleans and Vanishing Pearls
is her debut
feature film. In March 2010, Nailah formed Perspective Pictures to tell stories that shed light on little known issuesand positively influence lives. One month later when the BP Oil Spill occurred, Nailah found her first subject, the little known fishing community of Pointe à la Hache, LA. Before launching her own production company, Nailah worked on numerous productions, including writing & producing the documentary Historically Black
, narrated by Samuel L. Jackson and produced by Nerjyzed Entertainment about the legacy of Historically Black Colleges and Universities; and workingon the PBS three-part series RACE: The Power of an Illusion
by California Newsreel - a look into the concept of "race". She also worked for Lee Daniels Entertainment during the making of the film Tennessee
and development of the Oscar winning film Precious
. Nailah earned a BS in Film and Television from Boston University and a Masters in Integrated Marketing Communication from Emerson College. She is currently working on a series of short films entitled Dying is the Easy Part
while she creates cutting edge visual content as the Creative Director for singing group Arin and Alex. Hot off of 2014 Slamdance Film Festival, Vanishing Pearls
will make its Louisiana debut at Sync Up Cinema.
(Actress,Writer/Director, Producer) is a
native of Omaha, Nebraska and is currently starring in the John Sayles film Go For Sisters
for which she has just been nominated for an Independent Spirit Award in the category of Best Supporting Actress.
She recently joined Viola Davis and Jennifer Lopez in the cast of Lila & Eve
, currently shooting and will be recurring on the new Showtime series, Happyish
. Yolonda made her debut in the award winning HBO feature, Stranger Inside
in 2001, which she won an IFP Gotham Award and received her first Independent Spirit Award nomination . She also appeared in Denzel Washington’ s award winning film Antwone Fisher
, as well as the independents film Yelling To the Sky
, Woody Allen’s Whatever Works
, and Joshua Sanchez’s FOUR
. In television, Yolonda is best known for her role as documentarian Dana Lyndsey on Treme
, and appeared in the HBO/David Mamet, Phil Spector biopic, 24, Law and Order
, Law and Order: Criminal Intent
, and The Unit
in a role David Mamet wrote for her, himself. Yolonda made her directorial debut last year, with Breaking Night
, shot in New Orleans. The short film about a young girl taking control of her destiny, has officially become the music video for the famed Manfred Mann song, Blinded By the Light
, which it features, and is currently in rotation on VH-1 Classics.
CONFIRMED FILMS FOR SYNC UP CINEMA 2014
Go For Sisters by John Sayles
Presented by New Orleans Film Society
The 18th feature film written and directed by independent cinema pioneer John Sayles, Go For Sisters is the story of two friends, Bernice and Fontayne, who were so close while growing up they ‘go for sisters’, but time sent them down different paths. Twenty years later, those paths cross: Fontayne is a recovering addict fresh out of jail, and Bernice is her new parole officer. The film stars 2013 Independent Spirit Award nominee Yolanda Ross, LisaGay Hamilton and Edward James Olmos. This screening is presented by the New Orleans Film Society. Check out the trailer here.
Vanishing Pearls by Nailah Jefferson
Jefferson's documentary tells the story of the residents of Pointe à la Hache, Louisiana, whose ruined fishing community continue dealing with the aftermath of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, one of the worst man-made environmental disasters in US history. Narrated by Samuel L. Jackson. Check out the trailer here.
Bayou Maharajah by Lily Keber
Bayou Maharajah explores the life and music of New Orleans piano legend James Booker, the man Dr. John described as “the best black, gay, one-eyed junkie piano genius New Orleans has ever produced.” A brilliant pianist, his eccentricities and showmanship belied a life of struggle, prejudice, and isolation. Illustrated with never-before-seen concert footage, rare personal photos and exclusive interviews, the film paints a portrait of this overlooked genius.
Stay tuned for more up to date information on screenings, speakers and events at Sync Up Cinema 2014!