RB's Stage 32 News, Notes, Discussions and Other Fun Stuff (December 2, 2016)

Posted by Richard "RB" Botto

Welcome to the weekend, everyone.

Another big week of news, vids, tips and all the Stage 32 happenings you can handle. I have some truly interesting and inspiring articles in both the ENTERTAINMENT AND INDUSTRY NEWS & TIPS sections. And, of course, awards season is under way and one Stage 32 member and producer is already receiving some incredible news (hint…read the 4th article under ENTERTAINMENT)

As always, I welcome your thoughts, musings and rantings in the Comments section. I also ask you to share this wealth of content on social media or email with creatives you believe might find the blog useful. Give to live.

Have a terrific and creative weekend.




November 30-day Write Club - The Final Stretch

Well, we made it. We’re in the final stretch of the 2016 November 30-Day Write Club. I’d like to take a minute to thank the incredible Beth Fox Heisenger. Beth has been our tireless leader these last 2 years, motivating, inspiring and encouraging the incredibly talented writers here on Stage 32. Click here to get the info on this challenge!

Blog Update: How Stage 32 Helped To Bring My Project To Life

Going over some old emails the other day, it dawned on me just how quickly time flies. Five years have gone by since Karim Lounes and I began working on a feature film called The Last Immortal. I had never set out to write or even collaborate on a screenplay. The creation of The Last Immortal was Karim’s baby, his idea. I was only helping out as a favor. I had just finished a grueling schedule for a novel I had published titled A Dance in Paradise, hoping that somewhere down the road, this masterpiece would make a few million, at which point I could then merrily retire into the sunset, like J.D. Salinger did in New Hampshire...To Continue Reading 'How Stage 32 Helped To Bring My Project To Life' Click Here

4 Fun Experiences for Filmmakers at the AT&T Developer Summit

If you think AT&T’s annual Developer Summit in Las Vegas (January 3- 4, 2017) is just for developers and business people, think again. With Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) capturing the attention of consumers everywhere, we are extending a special invitation to content creators to attend Summit. After all, part of the magic of AR/VR is the content. This year, we’ve planned a line-up of special events and contests specifically for filmmakers and enthusiasts. It’s an incredible opportunity for anyone interested in film to network with developers and creatives and learn more about how AR/VR is poised to transform the entertainment industry. Here are the top four reasons why you should attend Summit if creating content is your passion. Best of all, it's free to attend if you register before December 5th! Click here for the details!


Masters of Craft: The Indie Director's Toolkit: Maximize Your Resources, Creativity and Profits (12/3)

To kick off your directing career with Roger Ebert calling your film "One of the best films of the year" you can pretty much be assured you're on a path to success. We are proud to present to you the director who has done just that - Michael Polish. After his Sundance darling Twin Falls Idaho garnered Roger Ebert's critical acclaim he has gone on to direct over 10 feature films including:

  • The Astronaut Farmer, starring Billy Bob Thornton and Virginia Madsen
  • Northfork, starring Nick Nolte and James Woods
  • The Smell of Success, starring Billy Bob Thornton, Tea Leoni & Ed Helms
  • Hot Bot, starring Zack Pearlman and Danny Masterson
  • Stay Cool, starring Winona Ryder and Sean Astin (Nominated for best feature at Tribeca Film Festival)
  • Big Sur, an adaptation of the Jack Kerouac novel starring Kate Bosworth
  • For Lover’s Only starring Stana Katic (CBS’s hit show Castle)
  • 90 Minutes in Heaven, starring Hayden Christensen
  • Amnesiac, starring Wes Bentley
  • The upcoming Sharon Tate biopic adapted from Greg King’s book Sharon Tate and the Manson Murders

Michael will be teaching the 2nd installment of our Stage 32 Masters of Craft series - The Indie Filmmaker's Toolkit: Maximize Your Resources, Creativity and Profits. In this online event Michael will share with you how a professional director approaches a film from inception and carries it through to post-production including a discussion of available distribution options. The goal is to give you the agency to make your films without the necessity of the Hollywood studio system (though this information will be handy if that's your path as well). He will go in-depth about the director’s process from finding superior scripts and setting your priorities in pre-production to the challenges of running your set, leading your crew and balancing the demands of your producers. He’ll explain how to interact with everyone vital to your film’s success from producers and film executives to actors, cinematographers, and editors to get the best version of your film. Finally, Michael will share insider knowledge on effective methods to market and distribute your film that will give you the power to maximize your profits.

What You'll Learn:

  • It all starts with a killer script!
  • Estimating the budget for your film
    • How to find financing for your film. Where do you go?
  • Pre-production: Setting your priorities heading into pre-production.
  • Production: Running Your Set
    • How to make it through production successfully
    • Establishing trust between cast and crew
  • Post-production: Wrapping It All Up
Click here to register now!

How to Film in VR/360: From Script to Shooting(12/7)

In this Stage 32 Webinar, Zeke Thomas, an executive producer at Ego 360 (clients include: Legendary Pictures, Nerdist Industries, VidCon, Youtube, Outside TV, and Paramount Pictures) will provide an overview of best practices for shooting a 360 video and spherical capture from concept to execution. He will cover the importance of storytelling in immersive environments, how your location will inform your production workflow, and the best way for consumers to interact with your content.

Virtual Reality/spherical capture is a relatively new form of media that is being adopted by consumers at an incredible rate. If you're interested in throwing your hat in the ring, take advantage of Zeke's knowledge to learn about what works and what doesn't for immersive experiences.

What You'll Learn:

  • Overview: What is VR and How do we capture it
  • What is the difference between VR vs 360 spherical capture
  • The VR Landscape
  • Why should we a VR piece vs a regular framed piece?
  • What works vs what doesn't
  • Empathy vs agency
  • What makes good content
  • Film school rules = worthless in VR
  • The Importance of Locations
  • Production - How do I shoot my crazy idea
  • Post Production
  • An in-depth Q&A with Zeke Thomas!

To get a detailed list of things you will learn and to register for this amazing class, click here! 


Pitch Opportunities

Jessica Kardos - Assistant to Showrunner, CW's Supergirl - Saturday, December 3rd · 10:30 - 12:10 PM PST  (Specializes in 1 HR and 1/2 HR TV pilots)

Jonathan Shukat - Owner and Producer, ShowKat Productions - Saturday, December 3rd · 10:30 - 12:10 PM PST (Specializes in all genres, all formats (except animation, family, horror).

Elyse Pomerantz - Assistant to Managers, Good Fear Film + Management  - Saturday, December 3rd · 10:30 - 12:10 PM PST (Specializes in rom-com, thriller, and horror features & TV pilots.)

Mary Cybriwsky - Manager & Producer, Truth Magician - Sunday, December 4th · 2:00 - 3:40 PM PST (Specializes in drama and thriller features.)

Happy Writers Pitch Sessions

Stage 32 offers a unique way to pitch your feature or pilot screenplay directly to executives throughout the industry, including managers, agents, creative executives and founding partners who would otherwise not accept unsolicited material. You will pitch directly to the executive listed and receive feedback from them.

Stage 32 offers pitching live, face-to-face with the executives over Skype, and written submissions. 





Don’t Wait to Make Your Masterpiece 

In Austin, Building Community While Waiting for Festival Acceptance — or Rejection — Letters 

Lucasfilm Chief Kathleen Kennedy Says Studio Is Struggling to Find Female Directors With Proper Experience 

'My Life as a Zucchini': How a Swiss Stop-Motion Animated Film Became a Major Awards Contender 

Sundance Film Festival Unveils 2017 Competition, Next Lineups 

How 'Arrival's' "Cerebral" Script Made Its Long Journey to the Screen 

Box-Office Feasts and Turkeys: Thanksgiving Widens Hollywood's Divide 

‘Manchester by the Sea’ Tops National Board of Review 

New York Film Critics Circle: ‘La La Land’ Takes Best Film, ‘Manchester’ & ‘Moonlight’ Come Up Big 

Gotham Awards: ‘Moonlight’ Scores Best Feature & Screenplay – Winners List 

How the Gotham Awards Became the Iowa Caucus of Oscar Season 

From ‘La La Land’ to ‘Jackie,’ Celluloid Thrives in Cinematography Oscar Race 

The Hollywood Reporter’s Actor Roundtable 

A One-Camera Show: DP James Laxton on Moonlight

British Film Institute Unveils Five-Year, $620 Million Post-Brexit Plan 

British Film Institute to Sharpen Focus on Young People, Digital Media, Regions


‘Vertigo’ – A Look at Color in Film 

Actors on Actors: Taraji P. Henson and Ryan Reynolds 

Actors on Actors: Emma Stone and Molly Shannon


Secrets of Successful Screenwriting Teams: How to Avoid Bloodshed When Writing a Script With a Partner 

5 Casting Directors Sound off on What NOT to Do at an Audition 

111 Ways to Use Lights and Modifiers to Get Different Looks 

How to Take a Meeting Like an Old Hollywood Pro, Even as a First-Time Filmmaker 

8 Weekly Habits of Remarkably Happy People

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As always, we welcome thoughts and remarks on ANY of the content above in the Comments section below...


Writing & Producing Compelling Television in Today's Market
4 Fun Experiences for Filmmakers at the AT&T Developer Summit
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