Sunday, January 21, 2007
Doc Panel with Fest Programmers
Panelists...Cara Mertes (Sundance Doc Film Programmer and Moderator), Phoebe Brush (Full Frame Fest), Sean Farnel (Hot Docs Film Fest), Patricia Finneran (AFI/Silverdocs), Tiziana Finzi (Locarno Film Fest), Maxyne Franklin (Brit Doc), Beth Janson (Tribeca Film Fest), Thom Powers (Toronto Int'l Film Fest).
This was a great panel for me, considering my focus has always been on narrative fests, not doc fests. I took lots of great notes about each fests deadlines, content focus and the programs that they offer for doc filmmakers.
After the panel, I was able to target certain fests that were still considering films for this year that matched my content.
I was able to pitch and then give a copy of "Sacred Sites", the Tibetan film I'm trying to sell and get out there, to Sean at Hotdocs in Toronto. How exciting. I was more than willing to send him a copy of this fest, but he wanted the film NOW. And I just happened to throw a copy in my bag before I left the house this morning. So, he's walking around with my film and business card in his bag and I'll follow up in a week.
I also met the programmer and head of Silverdocs/AFI. The focus of their fest this year is politics and religion. Perfect for my movie. I pitched it to them and will follow up after the fest as their deadline has not passed yet. Perhaps I can send it to them without paying if they are interested enough in my follow up pitch.
Panels are so incredible this way. Always take advantage of panels at festivals and conferences. Don't ask ego centric questions, just listen and absorb. Then pick a few people on the panel you wish to speak to. Get their cards and follow up with them.