Max Leonida is an Italian director of over two dozen projects, as well as an editor and writer who has received critical acclaim. He signed his first official deal in 2006 with Sony Pictures International to work on an innovative and popular television series aimed at young filmmakers. Moving into film, his films have been screened and awarded at a range of festivals including the Sundance Film Festival, the Cannes Film Festival, the International Salerno Film Festival, the Columbia Gorge International Film Festival and the L.A. Short Films Festival. He started his career as writing, acting and directing theater plays all over Italy. After a time he moved on to pursue work as a TV commercial director for companies like Sony Pictures (AXN), L’Orèal, RAI, Akita, Mediaset, SKY (and many others not mentioned to restrain yawning…). He’s currently working on several projects as a writer and director (“Light Wounds”, “The Nemesis”, “Experiment 77” plus the original TV series “Bruna in Beverly Hills”). He has also directed, produced & edited popular film & TV series: "Snaparazzi" (Sony Pictures), “Pellegrini in Terra Santa” (RAI) and “Fai da Te Facile” (SKY) plus lots of commercials, music videos and documentaries. He’s produced the action feature film “RUN” (winner at MIFF and double winner at the 3D International Festival) and he edited the feature film “What Separates Us”, winner at the Machetanz Film Festival. Max lives in L.A. since October 2011: together with his family, his cats and his thirty music instruments he attained from his crazy around the world excursions… He is extremely passionate about his work and he uses the medium of film in the deepest sense to reach the viewer's feelings and emotions through their heart, then once inside startles their psyche by seizing their soul. Full Bio »
The post-production phase is the most critical one throughout the entire film production process… and editing, in particular, is a pivotal moment where as a filmmaker you should be able to understand that you are writing the final version and destiny of your movie.
Some of the greatest, most iconic filmmakers of all times (like Scorsese, Hitchcock, Kubrick, Tarantino, Coppola, Lynch, Fellini, Gilliam and many others) used to spend hours, days and sometimes months into the dark secrecy of the editing room, sitting next to their faithful editor, enjoying the guilty pleasure of reshaping – over and over again – a world of their own.
Editing is not just a simple matter of pace, rhythm, and mere image composition: editing pertains to the core of storytelling itself. Every professional filmmaker knows that a closeup placed in the right place, at the right moment, can definitely chance the course of a narrative process. Editing includes re-defining the story, reconstructing the characters, reshaping the very structure to the point of even changing and re-dubbing the dialogue in a totally different way from the original script… all for the sake of beauty.
In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, international director/editor, Max Leonida will use his years of experience to give you a more profound knowledge of the artistic nature of the editing process, together with a clear, up-to-date and technical expertise about the most important digital editing systems on the market. Max will use clips as case studies from some of his most recent films.
This webinar will give you all these necessary tools to truly understand your process when going in to edit your film.
“I love editing. I think I like it more than any other phase of filmmaking. If I wanted to be frivolous, I might say that everything that precedes editing is merely a way of producing film to edit.” -Stanley Kubrick
“Without question Max Leonida’s work has been met with audience approval, critical praise and media exposure – all of which serve to substantiate his amazing ability. He has truly emerged as one of the field’s most influential filmmakers." - Jamie Weissenborn, Senior Vice President Sony Picture Television)
The Philosophy And History Of Editing
Avid, Final Cut and Premiere Pro - the 3 Big Editing Systems
Tips On Working With Footage
Case Studies And Examples
Plus, Q&A with Max!
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“Without question Max Leonida’s work has been met with audience approval, critical praise and media exposure – all of which serve to substantiate his amazing ability. He has truly emerged as one of the field’s most influential filmmakers.”
(Jamie Weissenborn, Senior Vice President Sony Picture Television)
“Max Leonida is widely known throughout the industry for possessing an unprecedented record of achievement credited to his astounding professional acumen, expertise and talent. A testament to his extraordinary ability.”
(Chris Roe, Owner CR Management)
“The combination of Max Leonida’s originality and talent, as well as his considerable achievements, firmly establishes him as a leader in the industry.”
(Jonathan Sanger, Academy Award Winning Producer)
Learn the impact of film editing from international director/editor Max Leonida whose films have been screened and awarded at a range of festivals including the Sundance Film Festival, the Cannes Film Festival, the International Salerno Film Festival, the Columbia Gorge International Film Festival and the L.A. Short Films Festival, to name a few. “I love editing. I think I like it more than any other phase of filmmaking. If I wanted to be frivolous, I might say that everything that precedes editing is merely a way of producing film to edit.” (Stanley Kubrick) Some of the greatest, most iconic filmmakers of all times (like Scorsese, Hitchcock, Kubrick, Tarantino, Coppola, Lynch, Fellini, Gilliam and many others) used to spend hours, days and sometimes months into the dark secrecy of the editing room, sitting next to their faithful editor, enjoying the guilty pleasure of reshaping – over and over again – a world of their own. The post-production phase is the most critical one throughout the entire film production process… and editing, in particular, is a pivotal moment where as a filmmaker you should be able to understand that you are writing the final version and destiny of your movie. In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, international director/editor, Max Leonida will use his years of experience to give you a more profound knowledge of the artistic nature of the editing process, together with a clear, up-to-date and technical expertise about the most important digital editing systems on the market. Max's most recent films include Run (winner at 2013 MIFF and double winner at the 3D International Festival) and the feature film “What Separates Us”, Best Feature at the Machetanz Film Festival. Editing is not just a simple matter of pace, rhythm, and mere image composition: editing pertains to the core of storytelling itself. Every professional filmmaker knows that a closeup placed in the right place, at the right moment, can definitely chance the course of a narrative process. Editing includes re-defining the story, reconstructing the characters, reshaping the very structure to the point of even changing and re-dubbing the dialogue in a totally different way from the original script… all for the sake of beauty. And this webinar aims to give you these tools.
The audition room. Even thinking about it makes even the most seasoned actor cringe. Walking in, you never truly know what you're going to get, but what if you had an upper hand on knowing what to expect before you ever walk in the door? We're here to help you learn just that! In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, accomplished actors Uma Incrocci and Christian Pedersen are back by popular demand to walk you through what happens in every type of audition room: Film auditions TV auditions Theater auditions Voiceover auditions New media auditions Commercial auditions Self tape auditions They’ll share the tactics they use themselves on how to deal with nerves, how to ace the chit chat in the room, and how you can be a smart actor that casting directors will want to call in again and again! After attending over a hundred casting director workshops and classes, going on hundreds of auditions, casting their own projects, and booking work in every area of the business, Uma and Christian offer a unique insider perspective on booking the room, no matter what the format. Everything you learn in this webinar is essential for you to know and understand when trying to book a new role. "Uma and Christian are amazing: super smart, highly articulate, totally authentic and exceptionally charming and generous. As long as they're willing to create more fantastic webinars, I'll be attending them." - James B. "They are very charming, giving, fun, and always very sharing. I feel that I am very close to where they are at in their careers, so it is nice to know that we are all experiencing the same things, and they always give me some new info. Great webinar!!" - Jan H.
Television today has changed. There’s more of it, thanks to streaming services that make binge worthy television available anytime, anywhere. According to stats recently released by Netflix, shows like BRIDGERTON and THE WITCHER pulled in over 75 million views in 20201. That’s a lot of television. A lot of television means more writer’s rooms. And more writer’s rooms means more opportunity to get staffed. But to find representation and take a seat at the table, you need more than a killer personality. You need a solid portfolio brimming with strong writing samples. Showrunners are looking for a portfolio that demonstrates your ability to tell a story. There’s no time like the present to prep a portfolio with hot samples, cool writing, and even cooler storylines. Showrunners need examples from you to make decisions on who to bring in the room. As an unrepresented writer, you have to demonstrate to them that you’re the one. And to do this, a series of writing samples, known as a portfolio, is a surefire way to show off your ability. You need to convince showrunners to bring you on board. If your writing samples lack luster or you don’t know where your story is headed in future seasons, conversations with managers or showrunners could be short lived. You could miss out on opportunities because your script wasn’t up to par, or your original idea wasn’t original at all. Let's make sure that never happens. Spencer Robinson is a literary and talent manager at Art/Work Entertainment who's been in the industry for over twenty years. His clients have been in films with directors Quentin Tarantino, Steven Soderbergh, Clint Eastwood, Gore Verbinski and more. In the TV world, his clients have been regular cast members on shows for Netflix, The CW, Cinemax, CBS, NBC, FX, Starz, Nickelodeon, EPIX, and TBS, to name a few. His writing clients work in both features and television on broadcast, cable, and streaming platforms. He currently has a client writing on two Netflix series, and another client who just sold a show to Amazon. He also reps a writer who currently has a project at Aggregate Films, which has a deal at Netflix. Spencer will dive deep into the kinds of TV samples writer’s should have ready, as well as exactly what managers and showrunners are looking for as they read through them. He will talk about the kinds of scripts your portfolio needs so that you shine like the crazy diamond you are. Certain elements of your script should stand out. Take useful notes as Spencer talks about these elements and helps attendees better understand the importance of solid and saleable characters. And then sit back and take in the golden nuggets he delivers on what managers and showrunners look for in a writer. If you dream of being in a writer’s room, this webinar was made for you. Praise for Spencer's Previous Stage 32 Webinar "Spencer was awesome! Super informative and detail driven - providing great insights. Packed so much into a short amount of time which I'm super grateful for!" -Eric C. "Spencer Robinson has high energy and packs a ton of information in his lecture. Most importantly Spencer gives realistic advice while encouraging writers to move forward fully informed of the terrain." -Oweeda N. "Spencer opened my eyes to how the TV world works with broadcast and streaming. What a great crash course!" -Ricki L.
As an independent filmmaker or producer, you likely start working on a new endeavor for creative reasons—the chance to tell an amazing story, build worlds, create something of cultural value. Yet this is of course not the only element of filmmaking. Like it or not, your independent film is not just a creative endeavor; it’s also a business. You’re sourcing financing and bringing in investors, building a team, and creating a property that will (hopefully) ultimately make money. In this way you’re not just a making a piece of art; you’re also running a business. To operate successfully in the world of independent film and continue to make films that you’re proud of, you need to be able to think like an entrepreneur and understand the dynamics and the relation between financing, distribution and recoupment of film investments. The business side of films is often especially difficult for filmmakers and creative producers, but it's doable. In fact, there’s a bit of a sweet spot for independent films in the $1MM range and a viable path to profitability for films of this level. The key is to intimately understand how money—both hard money and soft money—flows in and out of the project. Getting a handle on this flow puts you in a powerful position, because not only can you make your current film profitable; but you will also create a business model that you can apply to your future projects, and eventually a portfolio of profitable assets (or films) that will serve as an effective and undeniable calling card as you continue to grow in the industry. This entrepreneurial approach might not be second nature to creatives, but it’s something you can learn and something that will aid you tremendously. David Zannoni is consultant for Fintage House, the world's most respected company for revenue and rights protection for industry professionals and companies. He serves as the company's representative for the Americas. David negotiates agreements for films and television series and is involved in business development and relationship management specifically in the US, Latin America and Europe. As an international film business specialist David is continuously present to make deals and speak at international film markets, festivals and conferences, including: the Cannes Film Festival, the European Film Market (EFM) in Berlin, the American Film Market (AFM), Ventana Sur, the Bogota Audiovisual Market (BAM), and the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and travels regularly to the United States, the Netherlands, Europe, and all over Latin America. David is intimately familiar with how independent films are financed and made profitable all over the world and will share what he knows exclusively with the Stage 32 community. David will focus on the US market and walk you through what you need to know to finance your independent film, $1MM or less, and leave profitable. He will begin by explaining what a $1MM or under budget looks like, whether it’s considered a small film or microbudget, and how it compares in the larger worldwide film market. He’ll delve into how to see your film as an asset and how to use this viewpoint to work with investors and provide profit. David will give you the tools to think like an entrepreneur and explain the relationship between financing, distribution, and recoupment of investment. David will then teach you how to take a business approach to a $1MM and under film project. He will discuss debt and equity financing and compare it to soft money, demonstrating both of their impacts on your recoupment. He’ll then go over how to finance your film through bank loans, tax credits, private lenders, equity investors, and family and friends. In doing so, he’ll demonstrate the differences between lenders and investors and demonstrate how to make—and keep—all of your investors happy. He’ll also go over ways to mitigate risks for yourself and your investors. Plus, David will show a case study of a real $1MM US film to illustrate how a film of this level can be profitable and exactly how the money flows through from beginning to end. He’ll show financing documents and spreadsheets to illustrate the financing structure, the role of the sales agent, and how he navigated the film’s distribution agreement. Through this detailed and practical demonstration, you will leave with strategies and a deep understanding of how to approach your own $1MM film as an entrepreneur and build a finance structure that will leave you and your investors profitable. Praise for David's Previous Stage 32 Webinars "David is incredible and lovely and clearly knows his stuff." - Cynthia P. "Eye-opening information. A no-brainer approach that wouldn't be so obvious to the uninitiated." - Gary O. "By far, the best class I've seen on the subject." Kirk K. "David is a fantastic teacher. And what a voice! I could listen to him all day. More importantly, I learned so very much!" - Isabella T.
Robert McKee returns to Stage 32 with The Secret to Writing Compelling Characters - a rare online teaching appearance exclusive to Stage 32! Since 1984, more than 100,000 students have taken McKee’s courses in various cities around the world and now, exclusively for the 3rd time on Stage 32, Robert McKee is back and better than ever with a Masters of Craft webinar teaching you The Secret to Writing Compelling Characters. McKee’s former students include over 60 Academy Award Winners, 200 Emmy Award Winners, 1,000 Emmy Award Nominees, 100 WGA (Writers Guild of America) Award Winners, 250 WGA Award Nominees, 50 DGA (Directors Guild of America) Award Winners, and 100 DGA Award Nominees. In this exclusive Stage 32 Masters of Craft webinar, Robert McKee teaches the principles of character creation and dimension, characterization and the secret to writing complex protagonists, providing you the tools needed to construct compelling characters that will fascinate your audience. Robert McKee, a Fulbright Scholar and member of the Hollywood Hall of Fame, is the most sought after writing lecturer around the globe. He has dedicated the last 35 years to educating and mentoring screenwriters, novelists, playwrights, poets, documentary makers, producers, and directors internationally. Those who have learned from McKee have called him “the Aristotle of our time” (Quincy Jones, Ed Saxon, Steve Pressfield to name a few) because of his insight into the substance, structure, style, and principles of the grand art of story. Peter Jackson (writer/director THE LORD OF THE RINGS, THEY SHALL NOT GROW OLD) lauds him as “The Guru of Gurus.” For the creatives at Pixar (TOY STORY, FINDING NEMO, UP, INSIDE OUT), McKee’s Story Seminar is a rite of passage.
More and more, storytellers are being asked to present more than just a script when going out to investors or production companies. Whether you’re pitching a limited series, a feature, or even a doc, executives and investors want to have a sense of what your project will be, beyond just words on a page. What will it look like? What will it feel like? Execs want a visual representation of what the project is—even if you aren’t the director. For this reason, understanding how to put together an attractive pitch deck will give you a distinct advantage as a director, as a writer, as a producer, or as any creative in TV and film. There are people out there who are incredibly skilled with programs like Photoshop or Lightroom and, for those people, creating a pitch deck that will help sell their show can be a snap. But for the average person, these apps are daunting at best and, at worst, completely confusing and overwhelming. However you don’t need to spend hours learning how to use high-end software, and you certainly don’t have to put down a bunch of money for a designer. You can create an amazing pitch deck with basic software and one or two simple apps on your phone and we're going to show you how. ABOUT YOUR STAGE 32 EDUCATOR Shaun O'Banion is the founder of production company Ravenwood and works as a post production project coordinator on some of the industry's leading films in recent years including JOJO RABBIT, TERMINATOR: DARK FATE, THE AFTERMATH and OPHELIA. O’Banion produced DAKOTA SKYE which became a cult hit and remained in the Top 100 Most Viewed on Netflix. He produced GIRLFRIEND, the first film in North America to star an actor with Down Syndrome in the lead role. The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival, sold to Strand Releasing and won O’Banion an IFP Gotham Award. He joined the Producers Guild of America and co-produced THE AUTOMATIC HATE which made its World Premiere at the SXSW Film Festival. The film was released theatrically by Film Movement. Through his career, Shaun has become well versed in positioning his projects for success and understanding the best ways to pitch and sell them, including creating knock-out pitch decks. He’s ready to share what he’s learned and empower even the most tech-illiterate members of the Stage 32 community. Shaun will teach you how to use basic software and apps to craft an attractive pitch deck on your own without having to hire a graphic designer. After teaching you what you need to know about designing a great pitch deck, Shaun will demonstrate it all by working with the registrants in creating a brand new pitch deck in real time, live and on-screen. He will specifically focus on creating with you a general image for the overall background, graphics for the title page, setting page, main character page, supporting character page, and episode page. Shaun will also provide registrants with a resource sheet outlining the tools and software he uses for his own pitch decks. After going through this exercise with Shaun, you’ll never need to hire a graphic designer again. Like what you heard from Shaun during this webcast? Send your script and speak to Shaun for an hour by clicking here. "Shaun O’Banion made creating a pitch deck seem downright easy and fun. Before today, I was absolutely dreading it as my skills with graphic design and editing are next to zero. Shaun was so generous with his time and stayed on for an entire extra hour to go over more and have the Q&A which was incredibly kind." -Margaret M. Please note that this webinar will focus on the graphic visual elements of an effective pitch deck. To learn more about the content and storytelling that goes into a pitch deck, we recommend checking out Ewan Dunbar’s TV Series Pitch Deck Webinar.