Interview with Jo Southwell, Henley Fringe & Film Festival

Bringing Theatre and Film to you. Drama. Comedy. Stand-Up. Music. New Writing. Film

http://www.henleyfringe.org/

Matthew Toffolo interviews Festival Director Jo Southwell:

Matthew: What is the goal of your film festival?

JO: TO PROMOTE INDEPENDENT FILMMAKING TO AUDIENCES. GIVING THE FILMMAKER A PLATFORM.

Matthew: How has the festival changed since its inception until your upcoming 2015 festival?

JO: YES IN 2015 WE WILL BE FOCUSING ON SHORT FILMS AS WE FOUND THAT FEATURE FILMS WERE MORE DIFFICULT TO JUDGE AND SCREEN

Matthew: How many films are you showcasing at your Film Festival?

JO: WE SHOWCASE 10 HOURS WORTH OF FILMS

Matthew: Can you give us a sneak peak of what to except for the 2015 Festival?

JO: ALREADY WE HAVE HAD SOME AWARD WINNING SUBMISSIONS, FILMS SCREENED AT CANNES AND SOME INTERESTING DYNAMIC DRAMAS

Matthew: Is there going to be an overall theme for the 2015 festival?

JO: THE MOST IMPORTANT ASPECT FOR OUR FESTIVAL IS THE STORY. WE EQUALLY SCORE TECHNICAL QUALITY, ACTING, CASTING AND ARTISTIC VISION BUT WE ARE INTERESTED IN A COMPELLING STORY IN ALL GENRES.

Matthew: Where do you see your festival in 5 years?

JO: WE WOULD LIKE TO SEE MORE ANIMATION, COMEDY AND THE ABILITY TO NOT ONLY SCREEN FILMS BUT WORK WITH INDUSTRY TO CREATE LINKS FOR THE FILM MAKERS

Matthew: What’s the current status of the Film Scene in your city?

JO: THERE ARE A LOT OF RESIDENT FILM MAKERS. ONE CINEMA BUT NOT A BIG FILM FEEL TO THE TOWN

Matthew: What film have you seen the most in your life?

JO: TOO MANY TO ANSWER – PROBABLY THE ORIGINAL STAR WARS TRILOGY AS I WROTE ABOUT MYTHOLOGY AND SCI FI FILM FOR MY DISSERTATION.

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Matthew Toffolo, Interviewer BIO

Filmmaker of over 20 short films and TV episodes, Matthew Toffolo is the current CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival. He had worked for the organization since its inception in 2007 serving as the Short Film Festival’s moderator during the Audience Feedback sessions.

Go to http://www.wildsound.ca and submit your film, script, or story to the festival.

Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com and watch recent and past winning writing festival readings.

Interview with Kagan Kerimoglu, Short Filmmaker (THE WHEEL OF TIME)

WILDsound Festival

It was absolutely great and exciting (seeing the FEEDBACK Video on my film). Thank you and the audience a lot. I also watched feedbacks of other works that screened. I need to admit that the audience in Toronto is much more film literate, and has a greater sense than most audiences that I have ever seen. The comments and reactions to the film was really nice. Although it was screened in many festivals and events in various countries, that video is the only real feedback that I got from an audience except in my country and except from people working for festivals. It was great too see that the film is still meaningful, fun to watch and has a real reflection in different countries. I also laughed a lot to one joke that the moderator Mathew watched the main actor as Number 96 or something in another picture J

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Michael Samstag, Festival Director, Film Score and the Scruffy City Film & Music Festival

Film Score and the 2015 Scruffy City Film & Music Festival will be held April 28 – May 3, 2015.

A celebration of film and music, The Scruffy City Film & Music Festival (formerly the Knoxville Film & Music Festival) http://www.knoxvillefilms.com/festival411/

Matthew Toffolo interviews festival director Michael Samstag:

Matthew: What is the goal of your film festival?

Michael: Our goal is to shine a bright light on the heart and soul of film—the songs and scores that really make films sing. Any film selected for the festival must have a stand out soundtrack or score, whether it’s a documentary or a narrative film.

The festival was created and is run by filmmakers and musicians so it’s our goal to showcase incredible films with great audiences. All of our screenings are in prime time or during the weekend to ensure the best audiences possible. We also work hard to show our visiting filmmakers, composers, and special guests what true Tennessee hospitality is all about, from accommodations, food and drinks, to our legendary TN Moonshine Gift Bags, we go the extra mile to ensure everyone has a great time.

Matthew: How has the festival changed since its inception until your upcoming 2015 festival?

Michael: Our festival is driven by change. We began as a simple 24 hour competition then evolved to a full blown film & music festival with 6-days of live music and incredible screenings. This year we’ve introduced two new competitions, our Music Composers Challenge that gives composers 5 trailers to score, and our Music Video Challenge, where filmmakers have six incredible tracks to choose from with which to create an incredible music video. The tracks have been submitted from national acts like the Black Lillies, The Features, and 10 Years, to name a few.

Next year we will be introducing a Trailer Challenge and the winning trailers will become the trailers for our Music Composers Challenge, and a Band Challenge, where the winning bands will have their tracks available for our Music Video Challenge.

Change or die, that should be our motto.

Matthew: How many films are you showcasing at your Film Festival?

Michael: Not enough. We don’t run multiple screens or screenings during the week days so we have a very limited amount of slots. Our Selection Committee is reviewing over 300 films of which approximately 5 features, and 35 shorts will be selected. We are so fortunate to have James McNally, from Shorts That Are Not Pants as our Director of Film Programming this year. He has done an amazing job recruiting films and overseeing the Selection Committee. Our final deadline is March 23rd, so we are in the midst of making really difficult choices.

Matthew: Can you give us a sneak peak of what to except for the 2015 Festival?

Michael: We have only officially selected a hand full of films so far, among them “The Tunes Behind the Toons”, an amazing documentary featuring a veritable who’s who of award-winning composers (among them Alan Menken, Randy Newman, Richard Sherman) and other experts share their insights into the role of music in adding character into animation over the decades. Our first official selection was the beautiful music video, “The Lion” about the troubled and redemptive family history of singer/songwriter Benjamin Scheuer told using a pride of cardboard lions, and their friends. We’ll be announcing more films soon.

For festival goers, this year we will be offering free student screenings and Movie and Massage nights where audience members can grab a free chair massage and cuddle up with a therapy dog while watching the films. And of course, we have incredible craft beers, great food, and the best location in downtown Knoxville in the thick of Market Square.

Matthew: What are you most excited about for the 2015 festival?

Michael: Thanks to Film Freeway, our festival is thriving so we’re hoping to bring in as many filmmakers as possible. Beyind the music and the screenings, my favorite moments are sitting around the bar, talking shop with filmmakers, musicians, film lovers, and whomever happens to be part of the conversation. The festival staff goes the extra mile to make sure everyone has a great time. Filmmakers are the new rock stars, and we like to hang out with rock stars too.

Matthew: Where do you see your festival in 5 years?

Michael: Based on the films being submitted this year, I think it’s clear that we will become a hot spot for great music docs, music biopics, music videos, incredible animation, and films that really celebrate their sound track or score.

Beyond that, I think crowd sourcing, crowd screenings, and social media will continue to change the way we think about film, music, and festivals in general. I can’t wait to see how companies like Film Freeway will continue to impact the festival community. Connecting audiences to artists will become easier than ever before.

Matthew: What’s the current status of the Film Scene in your city?

Michael: Knoxville is one of the largest producers of television in the United States so we have a very active group of filmmakers that range from hobbyists to seasoned full-time professionals. It’s also home of the University of Tennessee and Pellissippi State Community College so there’s a great mix of filmmakers, students, musicians and innovators. Knoxville is the original music city (before Nashville shrewdly out marketed us) and I think it will be incredible to see where Knoxville ends up in terms of media innovation.

In the mean time, it’s a great place to make film and music. We’ve got as much talent here as in Austin and a much prettier city.

Matthew: What advice would you have for emerging filmmakers and musicians?

Michael: Follow your heart, live with your parents. Find new ways to make ramen noodles taste delicious. Keep on, keeping on. You will find your audience one day and all the bullshit you had to shovel along the way will have been worthwhile.

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Matthew Toffolo, Interviewer BIO

Filmmaker of over 20 short films and TV episodes, Matthew Toffolo is the current CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival. He had worked for the organization since its inception in 2007 serving as the Short Film Festival’s moderator during the Audience Feedback sessions.

Go to http://www.wildsound.ca and submit your film, script, or story to the festival.

Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com and watch recent and past winning writing festival readings.

Deadline TODAY: FIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY FESTIVAL

WILDsound Festival

The communication, organization and feedback these guys offer are fantastic and scriptwriters of all disciplines and experience should be jumping at the service WILDsound provide. The best thing about it is they are as enthusiastic as you about your work. Thank you to everyone involved with WILDsound.

– Grant Reid, on this 1st Scene Screenplay experience (review)

Deadline TODAY: FIRST SCENE (first 10pgs) SCREENPLAY FESTIVAL Get your works showcased at 2015 festival events.
http://www.wildsound.ca/firstscenescreenplaycontest.html

– Submit the first stages of your film, get it performed at the festival, and get full feedback! At least 30 winners a month.

WATCH past 1st Scene Festival readings:

Watch February’s 1st Scene Screenplay Winning Readings:

Legrand, 1st Scene Screenplay Reading by Angelina Carkic

Hellcat, 1st Scene Screenplay Reading by Alan Hostetter:

The Curse Of Sam Hain – 1st Scene Script by Jacob F. Keller:

Sparks: 1st Scene Reading by Megan K. Bickel:

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Interview with Mark Moliterni, Award Winning Short Filmmaker (MY BUDDY)

WILDsound Festival

Watching the Toronto audience discuss My Buddy was a first for me, and admittedly, a little bizarre. I’ve never had my work discussed and analyzed by strangers in a public setting. It was exciting to see that many of the themes I wanted to explore were understood, appreciated, and debated over by the audience.

– Director Mark Moliterni, on the WILDsound experience (Review)

Mark’s film “MY BUDDY” was the awarded Best Film at the WILDsound February 2015 film festival.

    WATCH the Audience FEEDBACK Video from the Festival:

Matthew Toffolo interview with Mark Moliterni:

Matthew: What motivated you to make this film?

Mark: The night I saw the Wachowskis’ Cloud Atlas (at the Carlton Cinema, ironically enough), I left the theater feeling incredibly inspired and desperate to create something. I had heard the song ‘My Buddy’ by the Alvino Rey Orchestra many times and had it in my Rolodex of ideas…

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Interview with Leanna Bonamici, Creator/Executive Producer Shorts Showcase


Shorts Showcase features short films from around the world and provides exposure for filmmakers in 5.7 million homes via our PBS television show throughout Southern California; it reaches a global audience via our Online festival – and our Shorts Showcase Mobile App – which viewers may also VOTE for their favorites and share with friends.

When a short film goes through Festival, then what? That is where we come in. We always encourage filmmakers to go through their festival circuit because so many festivals (most) do not want films that have aired on TV or even YouTube. But once they have gone thru festival – we bring new life to them. We put them online with an actual film festival, we put them on our mobile app – both with global reach – and many get into our TV show on PBS – which airs in the living rooms (or wherever) of the people who work in Hollywood – and that’s pretty cool! We provide the most comprehensive exposure for the filmmaker that we believe is available today!

http://shortsshowcase.com/

Matthew Toffolo interviews Creator Leanna Bonamici:

Matthew: How did the birth of Shorts Showcase happen?

Leanna: I had been a fan of short films for a while – and while I was actually producing a feature,in my production studio,(Casablanca Studios) I began organizing this show about short films – featuring as many as I could. I launched the show in Sept of 2009 on Time Warner Cable. In Nov 2011 – we began airing on PBS Station, KVCR, throughout Southern California – and still do today.

Matthew: What is the ultimate goal of Shorts Showcase?

Leanna: National and International distribution (which is in the works at this time) 🙂

Matthew: Where do you see the future of short films going? Is there a market on television, Netflix etc.. for them?

Leanna: As the pioneer of putting short films on television, yes I absolutely believe there is a market and a huge one. Not only on television but definitely mobile – and that is precisely why we created the Shorts Showcase mobile app – which we launched about 18 months ago – and it is FREE 🙂

Matthew: How do you see Shorts Showcase changing in the next 5 years?

Leanna: We will expand our tv offerings – to one hour of programming instead of a half hour. Our mobile app is being used in new mobile and digital devices for additional exposure to millions. We will change with technology in how to play short films and distribute short form content – and with the viewing audience as well. Most videos on YouTube

Matthew: Do you have a favorite short film?

Leanna: Too many to list…… 🙂 “Change For a Dollar” is one in particular, that really struck a cord with me. (which won our 2012 Festival) And “10,000 Hours” which just won in our 2014 festival.

Matthew: What film have you seen the most in your life?

Leanna: Wizard of Oz, Casablanca (my studio was named after this) and It’s a Wonderful Life

Matthew: Can you give us a sneak peak of what’s to come in 2015 with Short Showcase?

Leanna: Nation Distribution of the show, many more short films for our app – and some really cool digital and mobile devices including our app in their devices…. Global awareness for filmmakers.

Matthew: What are the biggest obstacles you face when programming your short films?

Leanna: Fitting them in to the time frame we have for the TV show. There are only so many we can fit in. Plus we are on PBS so we need to be careful about subject matter. That is not necessarily an issue with our Online and Mobile festival – but it is with the TV show.

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Matthew Toffolo, Interviewer BIO

Filmmaker of over 20 short films and TV episodes, Matthew Toffolo is the current CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival. He had worked for the organization since its inception in 2007 serving as the Short Film Festival’s moderator during the Audience Feedback sessions.

Go to http://www.wildsound.ca and submit your film, script, or story to the festival.

Go to http://www.wildsoundfestival.com and watch recent and past winning writing festival readings.

Interview with Diane Adams, “On the Edge” Family Film Festival

The “On the Edge” Family Film Festival will stimulate the creative talent of aspiring and professional filmmakers and provide a venue to express their voice through the cinematic arts. We will inspire and challenge the local community by providing films that enlighten, entertain and educate.

http://ontheedgefilm.org/

Next festival is January 28, 2016

Matthew Toffolo interviews Director Diane Adams:

Matthew: How has the festival changed since its inception until your recent 2015 festival?

Diane: We have seen more submissions in the last year.

Matthew: How many films did you showcase at your Film Festival?

Diane: We showcased 11 films.

Matthew: In one word, how would you describe the success of your recent festival?

Diane: Growing

Matthew: Was there an overall theme for the 2015 festival?

Diane: Family Entertainment

Matthew: Where do you see your festival in 5 years?

Diane: Hopefully still around with some local submissions

Matthew: What’s the current status of the Film Scene in your city?

Diane: Almost non-existent

Matthew: What film have you seen the most in your life?

Diane: Much Ado about Nothing

Matthew: Are you ready for the 2016 film festival?

Diane: Yes

Interview with Filmmaker Richard Powell (FAMILIAR Short Film)

WILDsound Festival

The experience at WILDsound is always a great one! The feedback videos are a great tool to study and learn from and actually sitting in the audience during the screening gives alot of great perspective. Our upcoming short HEIR is Co-Produced by RED SNEAKERS MEDIA, a great Toronto Film team we had the pleasure of meeting at a Wild Sound event during the Festival run of our previous short WORM. I’ll always remember and credit WILDsound for that opportunity to meet new collaborators!

– Directer Richard Powell on the WILDsound experience (Review)

    Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video from the festival for FAMILIAR:

Matthew Toffolo interviews Director Richard Powell:

Matthew: Your short film played at our festival in 2013. How has it done since it screened? Has it played at more festivals? Distribution deal? Can be seen online?

Richard: FAMILIAR has played at over 50 Film Festivals world wide and continues…

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