Filmmakers Workshop, March 21, 2007: Trailers & Sample Reels

Filmmakers Workshop: Trailers & Sample Reels
March 21, 2007 – 6:30 pm
Bernard Toale Gallery
450 Harrison Avenue, Boston’s South End

This workshop is FREE, but you must RSVP to to attend.

One of the most challenging things about making a film today is raising money, particularly for development activities. Most funders want to see work samples before they will support media projects. So, the first part of the challenge for filmmakers becomes funding production for the sample reel even before their stories are clear. The next challenge is to determine what and how to present the material so that funders will respond with a check. There are so many things to consider: How long should it be? Show an entire cut scene or just samples of a variety of materials? Add music? What about graphics? Do they want a trailer or a rough cut?

At this month’s workshop, with the help of moderator Llew Smith (“Forgotten Genius”/Nova) of Vital Pictures, we present three filmmakers who are looking for input to refine their sample reel to raise money and to gain distribution for their documentary projects.

Far Out: Life On and After the Commune – Daniel Keller, Charles Light & Jen Gilbert
Using historical material, footage gathered over decades and frank contemporary interviews, Far Out: Life On and After the Commune will trace the story of several members of two sister communes founded in the summer of 1968, the Montague Farm in Montague , Massachusetts and Total Loss Farm in Guilford, Vermont. Co-Producers/Directors Daniel Keller and Charles Light are the founders of Green Mountain Post (GMP) Films ( They have been making films about social and political issues for over 30 years and were both connected with the Montague Farm. Co-Producer/Director Jen Gilbert is a first-time filmmaker who brings with her experience with several media projects as well as 10 years working in large-scale project management and fundraising.

Animas Perdidas – Monika Navarro
Animas Perdidas (Lost Souls) is the story of a young Latina filmmaker documenting the emotional journey of her uncle, a military vet deported to Mexico, and uncovering the secrets of her family’s past. Against the backdrop of increased attention to the U.S.-Mexican border, Animas Perdidas explores national identity and ties, the lives of immigrants, and what happens after deportees are sent to a homeland they don’t consider home. Producer/Director Monika Navarro is a Filmmaker-in-Residence at WGBH. This is her first documentary film, funded in part by an Emerging Artist’s Grant from the City of Ventura Cultural Council for the Humanities. Monika is a first-generation Mexican-American and was raised in Southern California.

Lorraine Hansberry Documentary Project – Tracy Heather Strain, Randy MacLowry
Lorraine Hansberry (1930-1965) is the author of the groundbreaking Broadway smash A Raisin in the Sun. This multiplatform media project includes the first feature-length biography about the trailblazing artist, activist and intellectual who became an international celebrity at 28 years old, and died just six years later during the run of her second Broadway play. Director/Producer Tracy Heather Strain and Editor/Producer Randy MacLowry are principals in Yellow Jersey Films, Inc. and The Film Posse, LLC.

March 21, 2007 Schedule
6:30 pm – 7:00 pm Refreshments & Networking
7:00 pm -7:15 pm Workshop Updates
7:15 pm – 9:00 pm Filmmaker Screenings & Discussion


3 responses to “Filmmakers Workshop, March 21, 2007: Trailers & Sample Reels

  1. Jeevika: South Asia Documentary Festival, which began in 2003, aims at capturing the livelihood challenges faced by the rural and urban poor and bringing it to the attention of current and future policy makers. Over the years, Jeevika has been successful in advocating for the cause of numerous entry-level entrepreneurs – rickshaw pullers, street vendors, prostitutes, child labour, farmers and forest-dwellers.

    The premier event of the festival to be held at the India Habitat Centre, New Delhi will be the awards ceremony from 20-23rd July 2007, which will culminate four days of screening for the top films. The last date for the submitting the entries is May 31, 2007

    In addition as part of the festival tour, the award-winning films will travel and be screened in premier schools and colleges in over 20 states in India and other organisations working on livelihood issues as well as in our South Asian neighbours.

    Over the years, Jeevika has become an increasingly popular and news-worthy event as well as an important catalyst for positive social change. The Film-makers whose films have been showcased in the past include Rakesh Sharma (of the Final Solution fame), Sanjay Barnela (Turf Wars) and Shohini Ghosh (Tales of the Night Fairies).

    For further details, please log on:

  2. Jeevika 2010: Asia Livelihood Documentary Festival. Call for Entry deadline: 30 June 2010
    Download Entry Form [PDF | DOC]

  3. My goal is to prepare my personal business since there aren’t any good jobs out there.

    Can someone provide any tips or websites as to how to apply for government grant money to start my own small business? I have already been looking on the web but almost every web site asks for money and I have been told by the unemployment office to stay away from the websites that request money for grant info because they’re rip-offs. I’d personally be truly thankful for any support.

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