For filmmakers and movie lovers, the Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) was the only place to be last Thursday evening when NOVAC rang in it’s 39th year with Watch My Movie!, a panel discussion covering everything you’d ever want to know about the current state and changing models of marketing and distribution for independent film.
That night the CAC was buzzing with words like Festival-Markets, VOD, Transmedia, Theatrical vs. Online, DIY, Marketing Strategy, Knowing Your Audience, Theatrical Tours and so much more. Moderated by Jolene Pinder, Executive Director of New Orleans Film Society, the Watch My Movie! panelists were a virtual who’s-who in the independent film world including: Independent Film Pioneer, Ira Deutchman (Emerging Pictures, Fine Line Features, Columbia University); Web Distribution Player, Andrew Mer (SnagFilms); Game Changer, Todd Sklar (Range Life Entertainment, IFP Producers Lab, Exit Through the Gift Shop); Innovator, Janine Saunders (Workbook Project); and Festival Guru, Gianna Chachere (Hamptons International Film Festival, Patois Film Festival).
Below: Bebe of Pontchartrain Wines with the coveted Composer Gift Basket
After the panel, experts and audience members gathered in the atrium and galleries of the CAC and satisfied their sweet tooth with birthday cake and toasted to NOVAC’s 39 years of connecting filmmakers to the community with wines, courtesy of Pontchartrain Vineyards, champagne, donated by NOVAC Board President – Darcy McKinnon, and Tales of the Cocktail‘s original Peach Punch. In honor of NOVAC’s birthday the organization also sent filmmakers home with over $3,000 worth of raffle and silent auction prizes. Some of the goodies included Movie Magic Budgeting and Scheduling Softwares, NOFS, NOVAC and Ogden Museum memberships, Free Camera Rentals, Subscriptions to MovieMaker Magazine, Spa Services, Kodak and Panavision apparel and gifts, a Signed DVD Box Set from HBO Series Tremé, tickets to New Orleans Ballet, Opera and Orchestra performances, and a whole lot more.
Aside from the generosity of our charitable raffle donors, this event would not have been possible without the support of our sustaining sponsor, Southern Theatres’ Theatres at Canal Place, our Supporting Sponsors Acme Film Productions, IATSE 478 and Second Line Stages, and the Official Hotel of Watch My Movie!, Loews New Orleans Hotel who donated 8 luxurious nights to our panelists. Additional support was provided by St. Bernard Parish Government Office of Film and Television who generously captured the event on video and will be airing segments of the event on Channel 76. For a complete list of sponsors and Raffle Donors visit the Watch My Movie! sponsor page.
NOVAC would also like to salute the NOVAC interns and Watch My Movie! volunteers: Billal Jaber, Brent Mahaffey, Sarah Mandel, Sophie Franks, Corrina and Michele Chaney and Ji Un Choi, without whom this event could not have operated so smoothly.
Filmmaker Program Coordinator and WMM Panelists get a little wacky after the event. (Left to Right: Gianna Chachere, Andrew Mer, Janine Saunders, Todd Sklar, Ashley Charbonnet, Jolene Pinder, Ira Deutchman)
After Watch My Movie!, NOVAC is hopeful that it won’t be long before we see more and more locally generated films hitting the screens, web videos, On Demand outlets or whatever the next exhibition medium is in store for the future.
Be sure to stay tuned to the NOVAC newsletter and website for excerpts from the Watch My Movie! panel discussion and guest blog from Watch My Movie! panelist and Workbook Project Creative Producer, Janine Saunders.