Luke Daniels is the Executive in Charge of Production for Tunnel. In his career in entertainment, which has spanned nearly two decades, Luke has produced over 60 feature films (8 in 2019 alone), including the Cannes, Sundance, Tribeca and TIFF Official Selections. His produced film slate ranges from micro-budget (under $1M), to low budget ($1M-$5M), to mid budget ($15M-$20M). Full Bio »
It’s hard to fully encapsulate how massive of an undertaking it is to create a film. The amount of hours, money, people, and passion that go into every project can be staggering. And for independent productions that don’t have the stability or backing of a large, flush studio, all of these different elements fit together tenuously at best. With so many plates to spin, it takes the work of a capable producer to bring everything together and keep everything on track.
Murphy’s Law dictates whatever can go wrong will go wrong, and any independent filmmaker or producer will attest that this is indeed the case. No amount of planning or foresight can keep everything running seamlessly. Money might fall through, equipment might malfunction, actors might bail, hired talent might prove to be difficult to work with. It’s impossible to keep all chaos at bay when managing a project as massive and messy as an independent film. That said, a great producer, especially in the indie space, can put out fires, keep the chaos at bay, and keep that movie on track. It boils down to working smartly, being as prepared as possible, and being light on your feet. Some of this comes with time and experience, but there’s a lot a producers can do, even on their very first project, to better rise to the occasion and manage their film successfully.
Luke Daniels is the Executive in Charge of Production for Tunnel. In his career in entertainment, which has spanned nearly two decades, Luke has produced over 60 feature films (8 in 2019 alone), including the Cannes, Sundance, Tribeca and Toronto International Film Festival Official Selections. He has worked on films with directors like Kevin Smith and James Franco and talent like Riley Keough, Jean Claude Van Damme, Luke Wilson, Topher Grace and more. Through it all, he's learned countless tricks as an independent producer that can help keep your production on track, and he’s bringing his experience exclusively to the Stage 32 community.
Luke will go over the things he's learned through the years to help you with your own productions, from the beginning of pre-production, all the way through production. He’ll begin by giving you strategies on creative ways to creatively put financing together when starting out a project. He’ll then teach you the basic steps to take to put together a project smartly. Next Luke will then discuss how to hold key elements in place while prepping for a film and what you can do if you lose an actor or director. He will also give you tips on what to do if you lose a location before production starts. Luke will then focus on the producer’s role during production. He will show you how to manage high-level talent and go over ways to deal with difficult talent during the shoot. He will then delve into the producer-director relationship and how to respect their vision while still being able to collaborate creatively during the process. Luke will discuss what to do if you go over budget, especially if you’re not bonded, and will teach you how to navigate if you’re hit with unexpected fines.
Praise for Luke’s Webinar:
“I loved hearing Luke’s perspective and past experiences”
“So many great tips and lessons that I can bring with me on my next project”
“Luke was great! Really helpful”
“I liked how specific and practical Luke got with his advice. Thank you!”
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This is the 1st installment of the Stage 32 + Bondit Media Capital Masterclass featuring Matthew Helderman (CEO of Bondit Media Capital) and Robert Ogden Barnum (Co-Founder of Fortitude International and e2b Capital).
One of the unsung heroes of any production is the line producer. Whether you’re putting together your own crew or are looking to work your way up the production ranks, it’s crucial to understand the role of this senior position. When you envision how your shoot will operate, do you see an easy flow or chaos? You don’t want chaos, but setbacks are inevitable. So, if the director is directing, and each crew member is busy providing their specific skill, who jumps in to handle the various issues that arise and impact multiple departments? The Line Producer. The line producer handles logistical issues on both the creative and business sides of filmmaking, making them crucial when the director and other producers are zeroed in on the shoot day. This is the job for someone who thrives under pressure, can think and plan ahead for the schedule, and be present in what’s needed on set today. They’re responsible for or involved with: Hiring the crew Keeping everyone safe on set Generating the budget and ensuring the film comes in on budget Supervising daily operations And countless other micro and macro logistics When the line producer isn’t on their game, the entire production can feel it since many of their tasks involve multiple departments and the budget. In this Stage 32 exclusive webinar, you’ll learn what it takes to make it as a line producer or look for when hiring one. Showing you the ropes is Tatiana Kelly, a producer whose first film premiered at Sundance before being released by Lionsgate, and nabbing two Independent Spirit Awards nominations, as well as being an eight-time Best Feature festival-winner. Tatiana has worked with A-listers, including Oscar winners Jeremy Irons and Cuba Gooding Jr., and Oscar nominees Ethan Hawke, Bradley Cooper, Robert Festinger, and Terrance Howard. And, she is currently in production on her next feature, THE PEOPLE VS. VEGAS DAVE. With her vast industry experience, Tatiana will show you how to determine your line producer’s fee and credit, set the budget, what the first and most important decisions you’ll have to make are, different options for handling COVID protocols, and how to prep for a shoot vs. post-production. You’ll also learn what a Wrap Binder is, its crucial role, and how to put one together. Whether you’re looking to grow your production career or are building your production team, by the end of this webinar, you’ll know the ins and outs of line producing and how to use this position to your advantage.
Creating a realistic budget can make or break a film before it ever makes it into production. Where should you spend? Where can you cut? How do you stretch your dollar? In short, how can you assure you're creating the highest quality film for the lowest price? Listen, not everyone can afford a line producer. And even if you can, you want to make sure he or she is protecting your vision and your money! Understanding this aspect of the business and how a film can be put together is everything! Let's make this complex aspect of filmmaking easier, shall we? Michael Madaville (Taken, Taken 2, Taken 3 to name a very few) is one of the most respected line producers in the business. Michael has created budgets from some of the most successful indie darlings, mid-majors and studio films in the business. And now, exclusively for Stage 32, he will take you by the hand, help you problem solve just about every issue that may arise, and help you toward financial success no matter what your budget may be. Using examples from his decades in the business, Michael will walk you through examples of micro to major budget films and discuss how to reduce costs for crew, locations, materials and more and how to apply that information to get your schedule tight and your budget to where it needs to be. No more chasing funds or getting caught short during filming! Michael will show you how to get on the path to a smooth shoot well before yelling "Action!"
While our industry is changing rapidly in response to world events, so is the conversation around STORY. As you know, regardless of the setting or the protagonists, the attraction of the most highly regarded films lies in a commonality - how people think, empathize, and react. How will story evolve and adapt to the world as it changes? And how will you write these stories in an authentic way with themes that attract and are relatable to a global audience? This webinar will look at STORY as a cultural phenomenon and ourselves as narrative designers with a goal toward making us all better writers and filmmakers. When we look at the research and analysis of our industry, there is great disparagement in representation, gender parity, and cultural, ethnic and international voices. In other words, we’re telling an inauthentic story about our world. How do we change this? Should we care? The trends in what is being bought, distributed produced and screened by film festivals around the world, the streaming platforms and the international marketplace says YES! You can take a more active role in creating responsible and compelling content for the global audience. Heather Rae is a film and television producer and narrative change activist. As a former programmer for Sundance, she has alos produced such films as Academy Award nominated FROZEN RIVER Netflix Originals TALLULAH with Ellen Page and Allison Janney and Dude with Lucy Hale. She was named as one of Variety's top producers to watch and for six years ran the Native Program at the Sundance Institute and was a programmer for the Sundance Film Festival. She is currently in post-production on BULL starring MUDBOUND'S Rob Morgan. She has also produced and directed a number of documentaries including recent film PAULETTE, executive produced by Davis Guggenheim, that tells the story of Paulette Jordan, the first Native American to win a gubernatorial primary in the country’s history. As a speaker and social critic, Rae is working to deepen the dialogue of reconciliation and responsibility in the Americas for storytelling in film. Heather will begin by making a very compelling argument the global audience for film, TV and new media is not only growing, but is hungry for more content. She will dive into the disparagement in gender, cultural, ethnic and international representation and how we can create content that levels the playing field. Heather will then dive into a conversation centered around story and narrative design. Are we presenting a singular, authentic voice, or are we simply contributing to the collective narrative impact culture? The difference is extremely important and will help you recognize how to tell your story and not have it influenced by pre-existing material. From here, it's time to discuss how to create responsible and compelling stories for a global audience - so important in today's marketplace where regional buying has been replaced by regional stories for a worldwide audience. And finally, Heather will discuss how to challenge ourselves to make sure that we are finding the true story during the development process. For those who are looking to tell stories of the under-represented or people and worlds unseen, misunderstood or marginalized, Heather will show you how to make those stories universal and attractive to a global audience. Praise for Heather's Stage 32 Webinar: "Heather is amazing. Exactly what I needed!" -Sakura R. "Heather is so genuine. It’s exhilarating to know there are people in Hollywood who think and talk about ending neo-colonialism and white privilege in such an honest, loving-of-all, brave, humane way." -Sarah B. "Heather was engaging, relevant, and motivating concerning the topic." -Valerie O. "I love how much Stage 32 thinks outside the box with webinars and opportunities -- Heather is a fine example of that. She is refreshingly different in her approach, her experience and her advice. She is a kindred spirit, and one with whom I would love to connect. Thank you!" -Anna E.
Action sequences are no longer solely confined to big budget features. Movies and series of every size demand them. And while they can boost the status and popularity of a project, they are also complex and difficult to shoot and require special treatment and knowledge from the director. They are, in some way, mini silent movies, relying on image rather than dialogue to tell your story. To be a successful director today, whether you’re focused on film, television, or anything else, it’s important to have the necessary tools so you can tackle these demanding sequences Because every filmmaker, producer and crew members needs to know how action sequences are created, prepared and executed, Stage 32 brought in a bona fide expert to show you how it's done. Michael Nankin has been a working writer, director, producer, and showrunner for 40 years and has directed action-packed episodes of popular television shows like the Peabody award-winning BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, TAKEN, VAN HELSING, HELL ON WHEELS, CSI, and more. Michael started as a writer/director at Walt Disney Studios at age 22 and his first independent film, THE GATE, was the highest-grossing Canadian-produced film ever at the time of its release. His first series, LIFE GOES ON, was the first series that presented a continuing character with Down Syndrome as well as the first HIV-positive continuing character. Michael’s other directing credits include Showtime’s THE GOOD LORD BIRD, ALPHAS, TURN, DEFIANCE, and the upcoming Stephen King horror series CHAPELWAITE starring Adrien Brody. A Humanitas Prize and Leo Award winner, Michael is an incredibly successful and sought-after director, in part due to his ability to inject action and energy into the projects he takes on. Exclusively for Stage 32 in this on-demand webinar, Michael will lay out how exactly to lay out a fantastic action sequence for your own project. He’ll do this by first explaining how to find the story and character development within the scene and use this as a guide to forming your plan. He’ll then go in-depth on how exactly to prepare for your action scene before you even go on set, including collaborating with the other departments, storyboarding and shotlisting, and the critical wounds and kills meeting. Michael will then teach you how to actually direct the scene on set, detailing camerawork, working with the stunt team, and shooting for visual effects and more. Along the way, we will examine two specific action sequences from projects directed by Michael Nankin – one from his film RED FACTION: ORIGINS and another from an episode of the celebrated AMC series HELL ON WHEELS. Michael will walk through the choices he made in putting these scenes together.
Learn how to break into the Hollywood system from an international producer and distributor who has worked on over 300 films! More than ever Hollywood has their eyes on international talent, but how do international filmmakers break into Hollywood? While every filmmaker around the world dreams about working in Hollywood, very few have a realistic idea of how to break into the US system and get their project a greenlight from a major Hollywood player. Many young and first time filmmakers believe it is as simple as sending your script or short film to Netflix, Amazon, Paramount, or any one of the major studios or streamers and they will write you a multi million dollar check to make your project. But the truth is it is much more complex than that. Where the European market is ripe with government programs and organizations that provide funds and subsidies to filmmakers, that is rarely the case in the US. Rather, films in the US are usually funded by private money, oftentimes piecemeal from a handful of investors. While many foreign filmmakers believe that they must get their film to a major studio or streamer to have a US production, the reality is that there are countless ways to make your film in the US that will usually lead to a larger deal on your next project with one of the major distributors/streamers. So for all the foreign filmmakers trying to break into Hollywood, how do you actually get there? How do you get that US investor, producer, actor, or casting director to come on board your project to move the needle forward? What kind of story can you tell in the US that will get attention? What is the ladder within Hollywood (between creative execs, producers, and executives) and how do you navigate working in that system? Stage 32 is here to help you learn what steps to take to get your film made in the US and eventually get seen by Netflix, Amazon, Paramount, or another major studio or streamer. Teaching you all the ins and outs of US film production is Alexia Melocchi, a partner at Little Studio Films International - a multi-lingual boutique company that specializes in consulting, distribution, and production of content for both the US and international markets. Alexia has made a career out of successfully acting as a bridge between Hollywood and the global marketplace. She previously worked as a distributor and a sales agent, where she sold over 50 films to profit for clients and acquired more than 250 major studio and independent films, including LA LA LAND, NOW YOU SEE ME 2, PEPPERMINT and more. With a robust understanding of both the US and international film markets and a proclivity for working with up-and-coming foreign filmmakers WHO ARE WORKING SUCCESSFULLY WITH HOLLYWOOD, Alexia will teach you everything you need to know about US film production and empower you to get your movie made in Hollywood! You will walk away from this exclusive Stage 32 webinar with all the tools necessary to navigate the complex Hollywood system as a foreign filmmaker so you can become a working writer, director, and producer in Hollywood! PLUS! Alexia will provide you with an exclusive Guide to Hollywood for Foreign Filmmakers, with a checklist including how to access: Agents Managers Producers Production Companies Studios Streamers Financing Sources Praise For Alexia's Previous Stage 32 Teaching "Alexia explains it in terms that is understandable and clear, her experience and knowledge shines through." -Heidi "Alexia showed me how to make a plan to attack my career, not just hope for the right person to read script one day." -- Markus F. "As a non-American film director, I needed to figure out how to actually make a living doing this work in the US. Alexia helped me by showing me the way the business works and how I can live and work in it. Thank you very much." -- Alan G.