Connecting indies to community – March 2010

How quickly 3 months have passed! I hope you all enjoyed your holiday season and have had a productive start for 2010!

For those of you interested in Asian Studies, or living in Philadelphia, I will be attending the Annual Meeting of the Association for Asian Studies on behalf of from March 25-28. I’m looking forward to it, they have such interesting discussions programmed!

Second personal bit of fun news is that I was recently the focus of a blog post concerning the film that I am now in post-production on, In the Family Way. I got called a superhero and she even went into all of my previous films. I am still speechless, at least speechless for me.

I will be participating in a conference call with the MFA Documentary program at the University of North Texas on March 25 for a discussion focused on helping film students understand the marketing and distribution landscape for their finished films.

Alice Elliott and Body & Soul: Diana & Kathy have the most news:

Body & Soul: Diana & Kathy is now part of the American Documentary Showcase, a program of contemporary documentaries offered to US Embassies for screening abroad. Funded by, and as a cooperative program with, the Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs of the US Department of State, the Showcase is designed to promote American documentaries and their filmmakers at international venues. For more information go to

Alice participated in a United Nations Television interview about disability rights being human rights for the series Global Connections. It has already started airing and continues to do so.

Alice going to Israel with film for their first international film festival about challenging the concept of disability. The Reframing Reality Film Festival is April 27-29.

Alice was a guest lecture the School of Visual Arts series Process and Style based on her experience with The Collector of Bedford Street.

Diana Braun just gave speeches on March 5 and 6 at both the St. Louis Arc and the Down Syndrome Association of St. Louis.

To keep up with Alice and Diana, visit

To wrap things up this time I share an article by fellow (awesome) filmmaker Randi Cecchine, which contemplates how funding can affect styles of filmmaking:

Thanks for your continued interest in independent film. If you wish me to delete you from this list, don’t hesitate to ask. Please also feel free to forward along to anyone you think might be interested.



Connecting indies to community – November 2009

Hello Indie Community and Fans!

I know brains are slowly shutting down for the holidays so here’s a selection of positive news as well as what to look forward to in the new year. I should note that I took the liberty to add some of you for the first time after conversations we had at conferences so if you wish to be removed, just tell me kindly and I’ll happily do so.

Larry Selman, of The Collector of Bedford Street, traveled to Los Angeles in October to receive the prestigious Caring Award from the Caring Institute, alongside fellow recipient Colin Powell! Larry was nominated for the award by the Kiwanis International, an organization who utilizes Larry’s story in their youth leadership training.

Body & Soul: Diana & Kathy screened for the University of Guam on November 12. It will also screening at Mumbai International Film Festival from Feb 3-9, 2010 in programming for women’s issues. It also won the Audience Award and the Second Place Jury Award at “The Way We Live” Festival in Germany!

I will be receiving a $500 “sponsorship” grant from the Virginia Film Office for the new short (fiction) video project that I am almost done shooting – In the Family Way. Last day of shooting will be in December before the holidays and I hope to show a rough cut early in the new year.

New Services!

Having attended multiple conferences on usage of media in education and employment training over the past few months, I am developing new tools that I would love to discuss.

1) A program that fits into a single class period (including time for questions) about the types of distribution that filmmakers-in-training should think about during production. Students exiting film school tend to focus on getting their finished product in a theater, or listed with Netflix, but this discussion focuses on the other ways that their media could be used and how to build an audience for any work.

2) A film series focused on a variety of disability issues for state agencies and non-profit/advocacy groups. Topics covered include independent living, self-advocacy, transitioning to employment.

3) And after years of only focusing on non-fiction content, I’m slowly veering into combining fiction content for classroom use. I will match current content I already work with to fictional work to provide a more well-rounded – perhaps provocative – sense of important subject matter.

More NYWIFT events coming up!

I’m co-producing a 3 part series in collaboration between NYWIFT and Marymount Manhattan College. The series will take place January 12, 19, and 26. It is free to attend. The series is called “Imagining Genre, Race, and Disability in Film & Television”.

I hope the holiday season treats you well and I hope you’ll respond about the usefulness – or not – of the ideas listed above. If you think anyone can use this information, please feel free to pass it on.