Michael Mandaville has worked for 25 years as a line producer, production manager and production supervisor. These films include “Taken”, “Taken 2” and “Taken 3” written and produced by Luc Besson, “Havoc” with Anne Hathaway, “The Kiss” with Terence Stamp and Billy Zane, (“American History X” (New Line Cinema) with Edward Norton and Edward Furlong, “Friends of Friends” with Bruce Davison and Sherilynn Fenn, “Blood and Wine” (Jack Nicholson, Director: Bob Rafelson), “Millenium’s Child” (Disney/Miramax) with William Windom and Karen Black, “Sensation” with Eric Roberts, Ed Begley Jr., Paul Le Mat and Ron Perlman. “Hail Caesar” with Anthony Michael Hall, Robert Downey, Jr. and Judd Nelson. “Pumpkin Head II” (MPCA) with Ami Dolenz and Steve Kanaly. Michael also produced “The Almighty Fred”, an independent film. He has directed commercials, shorts, a documentary and industrial films. He has also worked on “Manahi” an Arabic language comedy which was the first film shown in Saudi Arabia in 35 years. He recently directed two ultra low budget feature films – “Conviction: Murder in Four Parts” and “Into the Flames”. His web series “Beer Pong Coach” now has ten episodes. He wrote the thriller novel “Stealing Thunder” and the activist nonfiction book, “Citizen Soldier Handbook: 101 Ways For Every American To Fight Terrorism”. He has worked on numerous feature films in physical production, primarily as a Line Producer or Unit Production Manager in the Directors Guild of America. Mandaville has had 14 scripts optioned or hired to write. His “Stealing Thunder” series is an international thriller about an FBI agent stopping a legendary Russian spy to start World War III between China and the United States. His second novel, “A Cold Death” is in discussion for a TV Show in France. His third novel, “Journey” is almost finished for publication. Mandaville directed the short film, “The Big Bucks.” His short, “Winning the Race” was show at the Liberty Film Festival. The documentary “Guards of Honor” showed volunteer veterans at the Riverside National Cemetery. He received a B.A. in Philosophy from UC Santa Barbara and attended the B.A. Cinema program at Columbia College – Hollywood. He received his M.A. from USC in Professional Writing. Full Bio »
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!"
The “Filmmaking With a Calculator” Mentality
The VIDCON Mentality
Problem Solving Your Overall Project
Problem Solving Your Production Crew
Where Should You Shoot Your Film?
Budget & Schedule
Q&A with Michael
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Learn the essential skills to enter the lucrative career of line producing from an accomplished line producer with over 25 years experience producing blockbuster films. The job of a line producer certainly involves its fair share of number crunching and pre-planning, but it doesn’t end there. A large part of the job is to understand the ‘path of compromise’, which is especially necessary in the independent film and indie streaming worlds. The director will often have may have a vision or demands that exceed the resources and funding available, and it’s up to the line producer to find the middle line and retain the artistic vision without going outside of the project’s financial means. This is no easy task, and excelling in this area is what separates the great line producers from the rest. But how do you develop this skill? And how can you break into the field of line producing in the first place? For over 25 years, Michael Mandaville has worked as a line producer on countless projects, ranging from shorts and independent features to large blockbusters like the TAKEN, TAKEN 2 and TAKEN 3 starring Liam Neeson. His other producing credits include HAVOC with Anne Hathaway, THE KISS with Terence Stamp and Billy Zane and AMERICAN HISTORY X with Edward Norton. In addition to producing, Michael has directed commercials, shorts, a documentary and industrial films. He has also worked on MANAHI, an Arabic language comedy which was the first film shown in Saudi Arabia in 35 years. Michael’s long history in the world of line production makes him the perfect person to speak to this industry, and he’s keen to share what he knows with the Stage 32 community. Michael will walk you through the role of line producer, how to find opportunities and how to best to succeed in this position. He will begin by explaining the reason for the line producer position and how it differs from the role of unit production manager. He’ll go through common challenges of the line producer and how best to overcome, including mastering the “Line Producer Mindset”. Next Michael will explain what the career pathway looks like for aspiring producers and how you can find opportunities in the microbudget, independent and studio worlds. Michael will dive deep into the line producing process, going into scheduling, budgeting, and dealing with rates. Finally he’ll provide tips on how to find work as a line producer. Through Michael’s rundown, you’ll leave with a much clearer idea not only to how to find work as a line producer, but how to succeed and build a career for yourself once you do.
Learn directly from Franco Sama, 15-year expert of film financing and distribution with 25+ successful independent feature films to his name, including Guns, Girls and Gambling (Gary Oldman, Christian Slater and Dane Cook) and Petunia (Thora Birch, Brittany Snow and Academy Award winner Christine Lahti)! As a filmmaker you may find yourself at the mercy of distributors and the existing archaic, chaotic convoluted distribution system(s) that ultimately ends up costing the you profits and, more importantly, creative and financial control of your project. With many new options becoming available for your project to be seen, self-distribution is becoming an increasingly beneficial option. In this webinar we go over the self-distribution model of limited theatrical and limited platform release. We've brought in 15-year financing and producing expert Franco Sama to draw on his experience with over 25 successful indie films in which he has secured distribution. Franco will teach you step-by-step how to release your film in multiple theaters across multiple cities throughout the Unites States. Plus, he will take it a step further and show you exactly how to incorporate the release into your business plan as part of your development process so you can benefit your investors and increase your film’s international value. You will leave this webinar armed with knowledge and ready to self-distribute your film via limited theatrical or platform release.
Learn directly from Amanda Johnson-Zetterstrom (Short Term 12, Louder Than Bombs, It Follows, Friends With Kids)! Film festivals. They are one of the best ways to network, market your film, get feedback from judges and audiences, and most importantly, get your work seen. Even better, winning awards at festivals can help you gain major recognition and momentum as a filmmaker. But, if you haven’t submitted a film or attended a festival before, it can be a daunting task to try to get your film into a major festival such as Sundance or South by Southwest. What festival do you choose? How do you submit your film? What happens once you make it into the festival? How soon should you be booking accommodation? Questions like these often prohibit filmmakers from entering the ever-important film festivals. But fear not – we’re here to give you a breakdown of the process of getting your film into a major festival, what to expect once you’re there, and how to give yourself the best chance of making a good impression. In this Stage 32 Next Level Webinar, Amanda Johnson-Zetterstrom will guide you through the navigation of getting your film into a major festival. Amanda spent years heading up production and development at NYC production shingle Animal Kingdom. Having co-produced Destin Daniel Cretton’s film Short Term 12, which won both the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award at SXSW 2013, as well as shepherding over 7 films into major festivals, Amanda knows the ins and outs of what it takes to get into a major film festival and what to do once you’re there.
Payment plans available - contact firstname.lastname@example.org for details Only 4 Spots Remaining Complete your script through focused rewrites working one-on-one on Zoom with the former in-house story consultant for Blumhouse and IM Global Have you written a first draft of a horror script and now need to do proper and focused rewrites on it to make it viable for sale or production? Would working with a world-class professional horror script consultant and screenwriter make your good script into a great script that can change the trajectory of your career? Well this is your chance to attack your rewrites and finish off your killer horror screenplay. Over eight sessions in this exclusive Stage 32 lab, you'll work with horror master, Karina Wilson, to rewrite your script. This includes two one-on-one virtual meetings between you and Karina so that you're guaranteed direct feedback on your script's strengths and weaknesses and how to make it the very best that it can be. Karina has worked for over a decade with horror houses Blumhouse and IM Global, and on titles such as SKYLINE, 13 SINS, VIRAL, VAMPIRE ACADEMY, HORNS, and LORDS OF SALEM, among others. You'll learn how to execute the story notes you receive, how to understand the "note behind the note," and polish your script so that it's ready to submit to potential reps, competitions, producers and buyers. By the end of this lab, you will have reworked your initial screenplay draft and have a writing sample that you can send to managers, agents, and producers. Spots will be available first to those who have previously taken Karina's Level 2 Draft Writing Lab, with limited spots open to everyone else. Don't hesitate to snag your spot and perfect your horror feature working hand-in-glove with an industry horror expert today! Testimonials from Karina's previous Stage 32 Education: "She delivered on the topic and gave an informative lecture. I took many notes on how to immediately improve the horror script I'm writing now. That was my goal!" - Martha C. "I thought it was very informative and the speaker was well versed!" - Loretta C.
How do you best package and sell your projects in this ever changing industry? In this exclusive Stage 32 Webinar, we will teach your to push your projects and connect with industry executives to package and sell your projects from the development stage to distribution. Since joining Ramo Law in 2009, Tiffany Boyle has leveraged her business-oriented sales and packaging skills to bring hundreds of films and documentaries to fruition. Tiffany connects filmmakers with producers, co-producers, executive producers, co-finance partners, distributors, agencies and other industry representatives. Through her critical review of content and strategic use of Ramo Law resources, Tiffany creates successful content packaging that bridges the needs of both client and industry demands. In addition to all these skills, Tiffany served as a Co-Executive Producer and brought in financing for films SOMETHING ELSE (Tribeca 2019) and ARKANSAS starring Liam Hemsworth and Vince Vaughn. She led the sales and packaging for TRAGEDY GIRLS (SXSW 2017) and FREAKS (Toronto IFF 2018), she brought foreign financing to ASHES IN THE SNOW (Los Angeles FF 2018) starring Bel Powley, and she sold an autobiography to Hulu for development into a limited television series. Tiffany will provide you with the pertinent and actionable information you need to package a project in the current environment. She will begin by discussing the packaging and sales world before COVID-19, what is happening right now and what can be expected once we're in the clear. She will discuss packaging and selling of all budget levels and dive deep into the world of attachments including landing valuable producers, directors, actors, and even financiers. From there, Tiffany will tell you how to build your relationships to help enhance and accelerate your path to getting your project packaged and sold. She will discuss sales and the current state of the marketplace. And finally, Tiffany will even include some outside the box methods and resources toward packaging and selling your project outside the traditional model. "Let's do a deep dive into everything happening right now and what to expect down the road so you can take action. We will focus on who to approach first for attachments and how to build the project from there in order to make it the most sellable and attractive package it can be." - Tiffany Boyle
Only 10 spots available You’ve heard the phrase “the content gold rush” get bandied about these days, but as it relates to TV, it’s never been more true. Drama television is at its peak with such iconic shows like OZARK, KILLING EVE, BETTER CALL SAUL, THIS IS US, THE HANDMAID'S TALE, THE QUEEN'S GAMBIT, STRANGER THINGS, BLACK MIRROR, THE UNDOING and so much more. With the influx of networks and streaming platforms either moving into or expanding their original content libraries, the demand for dramatic TV ideas and pilots has never been greater. Thanks to streamers such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max and others, over 600 shows were greenlit last year and some industry experts are predicting we may see as many as 1,000 television shows greenlit per year by 2025. But not only is the quantity increasing, so is the quality, as companies are funneling an unprecedented amount of money, resources, marketing and talent into their shows. And the impact of COVID-19 is even having an impact that could benefit writers all over the world as many shows are planning to implement virtual writer’s rooms. In short, there has never been a better time to write for TV. Now it’s just a matter of breaking in. The opportunities are plentiful and the prospects have never been more exciting, but if you want to write dramatic television you need to prove that you have the chops, and to do that, you better come armed with a great pilot script sample. Something that shows that you have what it takes; something that shows that you understand the structure and craft that goes into a good teleplay; and something that shows off your own unique voice and sensibility. This is your calling card, your way in, the piece of material that will fire you off the launch pad. The intention of this lab is to help you create that piece of material that stands out, gets you the right meetings, and, ultimately, gets you representation, meetings with decision-makers, and/or a coveted seat in a writer’s room. 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 has taught numerous webinars, classes and writing labs for Stage 32 and remains one of our most popular and in demand educators. In this lab, he will be working directly with you in a class setting and also during one-on-one sessions with the goal of helping you write a fantastic, market-ready pilot. To do so, Spencer will guide you through picking a concept, creating engaging characters, perfecting your structure, constructing an outline and, finally, writing your pilot. If you already have a concept or even a completed pilot, Spencer will use the same tools to help you hone and sharpen your material. WHAT TO EXPECT By the end of this 8-week writing lab, you will have a completed drama television pilot script ready to be shown to reps, development execs and other executives and professionals. Sessions will vary between 2-hour group settings and personal one-on-one Skype meetings with Spencer. You will be held accountable to take the lessons from each week and move your work forward. Plus, to keep you motivated and inspired, you will have access to a private, dedicated Stage 32 Lounge where you can communicate with your fellow classmates throughout the writing process. To see the full writing lab schedule, see below under "What You Will Learn". PLEASE NOTE: This exclusive Stage 32 lab is limited to 10 writers and will be booked on a first come, first served basis. The opportunity to work this closely and for this long with an executive and an expert in the field is an incredibly unique and valuable opportunity. If you are interested, please do book quickly. Once the spots are gone, they’re gone for good. Payment plans are available - please contact Amanda at email@example.com for more information ***This lab is limited to 15 people*** This lab is designed for beginner and intermediate screenwriters looking to build a pilot from scratch or expand on an existing idea or polish an existing pilot.