Maverick Artist & Innovator Forums - The Biz of Art Part 1: Development

Biz of Art Part One

Maverick Artist & Innovator Forums - The Biz of Art Part 1: Development

Running Time: 90 mins

Saturday, March 5th from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm at Hall Todd Studio Theatre (SJSU)

The Biz of Art Part 1: Development

Join a panel of leading producers and studio/distribution leaders to discuss the best ways to develop movies from script to screen. Forum topics include: acquiring material, developing a script, star packaging/casting and funding strategies.

Moderated By: Peter Belsito - PETER BELSITO grew up in New York City and graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison and from the Masters film program at UCLA where he was a graduate teaching assistant at UCLA Film School. He was a founding member of Newsreel, a radical anti war student filmmaking collective. He was a founding member of the Independent Feature Project (IFP) in New York City in 1981 and opened the IFP office in Los Angeles (now FIND). He was a founding member of the Chicano Cinema Coalition. After graduating from UCLA he worked professionally as a cinematographer, produced feature films and feature documentaries and wrote screenplays. His produced documentary ‘Valley of Tears’ is playing the festival circuit now (LA Latino FF, Margaret Mead FF 2003) and is being distributed US by Seven Arts. He worked in publishing for ten years for Charles T. Munger, Vice Chairman of Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway, and assisted Sydney Levine in founding FILM FINDERS in 1988 as a blue chip film acquisitions tracking, consulting and publishing firm. He came on board full time in 1995 as a FILM FINDERS partner, Head of Sales and Marketing as Executive Vice President. Fourteen years after Ms. Levine’s successful launch of Film Finders, Peter recently founded the growing Film Finders Consulting division. Both Peter and Sydney have been involved for the last fifteen years in professional education and with young filmmakers via countless festival and market panels and forums and active course involvement with such institutions including Harvard, Wharton, the Maurits Binger Institute of Amsterdam, ACE of Paris, Rotterdam Cinemart, IFP New York, IFP West of Los Angeles etc. Both have originated and coordinated panels and conferences for various institutions as well as Film Finders. He lives in West Hollywood, California and travels extensively throughout the year to film festivals and markets worldwide. In July 2006 FILM FINDERS merged with WITHOUT A BOX to develop new digital services for filmmakers, festivals, and international sales and distribution. In January 2008 WITHOUT A BOX and FILM FINDERS merged with IMDB / AMAZON.COM. In June of 2009 Belsito, having finished his work there integrating Film Finders to IMDbPro, parted amicably with them and resumed his indie career.

Panelists Include:

Brittany Ballard - Brittany Ballard is an emerging filmmaker, holistically focused as a writer, director and producer of independent films under the little plow films banner. Brittany and Jamil Walker Smith founded little plow films to develop, write, direct, produce and star in film projects that are fueled by the belief that in today’s global world, it is the artists who are the true new leaders. LPF's first feature film, MAKE A MOVIE LIKE SPIKE, produced by Brittany/written and directed by Jamil, is featured in Cinequest's New Visions program this year. Currently, Brittany and Jamil are co-writing the screen adaptation of the acclaimed novel, Daughter’s Keeper, written by Ayelet Waldman, for which they hold the film/TV option. Prior to forming little plow films, Brittany experienced various acquisitions and programming roles across the industry, including Head of Acquisitions at Newmarket Films, where she was instrumental in the acquisitions of indie favorites including The Woodsman, Downfall, A Hole In My Heart, and Rock School. Following Newmarket Films, Brittany leveraged her extensive knowledge of the independent film landscape and its players, serving as an acquisitions and development consultant to various independent film distribution companies, including Regent Entertainment, Here! TV, and Skouras Films. Additionally, Brittany served as Programmer at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival for two years and as Producer and Director of Programming at the Urbanworld Film Festival in New York City for the past five years. Brittany’s social justice efforts extend to her volunteer work. She currently teaches Film Production and Media Literacy to at-risk youth at a Los Angeles charter high school through the Step Up Women’s Network. Her unique perspective and sensibility as a filmmaker developed through her education as a Black Studies and Comparative Literature double major at UC Santa Barbara. She also completed a minor in Italian Language, which led her to Rome, Italy to conduct research for her thesis on Representations of Race in Neo-Realist Cinema.

Jeff Colvin - Jeff Colvin is the Senior Vice President/Manager of Comerica Bank's entertainment division. Comerica is the leading financier of independent films and has financed over 600 films during the past 15 years. Based in Los Angeles, the group provides financing for the production and distribution of film and television product as well as lending to video game companies and professional sports franchisees. Recent Comerica financed films include the Twilight series, Unknown, The Mechanic, Sanctum and RED. Born in Los Angeles, Colvin graduated from Boston University with degree in Business Administration.

Justin Howard - Justin Howard, a 26 year old publicist/ who owns his own PR Agency in Los Angeles. Having spent 7 years as Talent Associate for Comic Con International I worked with a vast variety of A-list Talent ranging from Keanu Reeves, Hugh Jackman, to Brad Pit. While the West Coast Director for the Learning Annex, I designed and launched promo tours for Oprah's food advisor Dr.T, to 'The Sex and The City' launch parties both in Los Angeles and in Manhattan, New York. I had the pleasure of working with his Holiness The Dalai Lama to create a unique event for him in New York, New York. In 2010 I moved into the role of Producer, exchanging the relationships I had developed with Talent and Financiers to produce projects I felt really needed their day in the sun. I worked as a producer on the New Media Pilot "Flashing Lives' as seen Hulu. 'Flashing Lives' is best describe as the fashion & entertainment of Ugly Betty mixed wit the sex and scandal of Nip'Tuck set in Glamourous Hollywood. 'Flashing Lives' was produced through a join effort of it's creator Emmy Award Winning Producer Andy Dugan and Producer Scott G. Stone, of 'Kickin It Old Skool' fame. On the other side of the camera I portrayed Voltaire, a fashion designer in the 2010 Indie Film 'Mob Rules staring Lennie James, of the SciFi Series Jericho and directed by Keith Parmer. Recently I have partnered up Sam Alexander as my new producing partner to create movies that both inspire and move the audience - be they comedies, action adventure films or chick flicks. Currently I am involved as a producer with a project at Collin Avenue Productions, the production company behind 'Virgin Fly Girls' and 'Survival of the RIchest'. 'When life gives lemons, you should contact Sunkist for product placement and make a docudrama' ~Justin Howard, Producer

Dan Nelson - Golden Leaf Pictures.

Glen Reynolds - Glen Reynolds founded Circus Road Films in 2006 to provide strategic advisory services to filmmakers, with an emphasis on the sales of completed motion pictures. Circus Road attends all major film and television festivals and markets, including Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, Cannes, Toronto, Berlin, the AFM, MIP-TV, MIPCOM, Banff and NATPE. In its first five years, Circus Road has sold over 200 feature films to North American distributors. Circus Road most recently sold I Am Comic to premiere on Showtime. The film premiered at Slamdance and stars Sarah Silverman and Tim Allen. Another recent sale was Passenger Side to Strand Releasing. The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and stars Adam Scott and Robin Tunney. Other narrative features that benefitted from Circus Road’s services include Night Train (E1 Entertainment) which was executive produced by Mr. Reynolds and stars Danny Glover and Steve Zahn, Blood and Bone (Sony) with Michael Jai White, A Quiet Little Marriage (IFC Films), Home (Monterey Media) with Marcia Gay Harden, Special (Magnolia Pictures) which premiered at Sundance and stars Michael Rappaport, The Go-Getter (Peace Arch Entertainment) which premiered at Sundance and stars Zoe Deschannel, and August Evening (Maya Releasing) which won an Independent Spirit Award. Circus Road has also sold numerous documentaries including The Gits (Liberation/Ryko), The Jesus Guy (Cinevolve), Made in China (Documentary Channel), Small Voices (Cinema Libre), and Your Mommy Kills Animals (Halo8 Releasing). Finally, Circus Road jumped into television series sales with the purchase of MVP by ABC Television. Prior to founding Circus Road Films, Mr. Reynolds was President of Fabrication Films from 2004 to 2006. Fabrication acquired and produced over twenty films for domestic distribution and international sales. Mr. Reynolds was the Executive Producer for three titles released theatrically by Fabrication including Conversations with Other Women with Aaron Eckhart and Helena Bonham Carter. Mr. Reynolds also served as Head of Acquisition, Production & Business Affairs for Curb Entertainment, a worldwide film sales agency. During his tenure of eight years, Curb acquired and produced over 100 films including Oxygen with Adrian Brody; Kill Me Later with Selma Blair; Family Tree with Robert Forster; Drop Dead Sexy with Jason Lee; and Sunday, the Sundance Film Festival Jury Award winner in 1997. Mr. Reynolds holds a JD from the University of Texas at Austin, a BA in English from New York University and is a graduate of the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York.

Cinequest Film Festival 21 Presents