Film Making


Tell people’s stories in a way that makes a difference.  Giving the audience the experience, an intense ride, feel what the experience would have been like, put them there.


  • preproduction – gathers reference materials, motion tests, layout drawings, model sketches, dialogue etc 
  • script – to tell a story either in words or the details of timings and colours 
  • storyboard – breaking the script into shots and sequences giving a visual and linear explanation.  Useful for planning camera angles, position of the characters, lighting, mood etc
  • concept art – showing the design elements including colour art, sets, prop, characters, textures, lighting
  • production – where the 3D scenes are created with modelling the characters, sets, props, assign textures, animation
  • post-production – is where the CG elements are brought together and assembled into the final form.  Includes Rendering, where the computer calculates how everything in the scene will look. Compositing where different elements are rendered in layers and then put back together giving extra control over colour, timing and other alterations.  Editing where all the elements are collected and edited together.  Sound with effects, music, dialogue


Documentary training, guidance, content and partnership.

Geoffrey Smith  –  Documentary director and coach

Geoffrey Smith is a double Emmy award winning director who was at the BBC in London for over 13 years. He has made over 25 films for all the major UK broadcasters, won over 40 International awards, was listed in the 2009 NY Times Best Films list for the “The English Surgeon”, and his last two feature documentaries have sold widely, had theatrical releases and screened at hundreds of film festivals across the world.  

Geoffrey has several feature documentaries in development and one in production, and is also in demand as a consultant and story editor on a wide range of projects.  In love with cinema from an early age, he is passionate about getting documentaries out into the wider community and for the last 5 years has curated and run the Castlemaine Documentary Film Festival in Australia.  


We asked 66 professionals across the field of documentary-focused journalism:

As documentary becomes an ever-larger feature of the media landscape, is journalism addressing documentary’s role in the informational environment for public life? And where are there weaknesses? What would help?

They told us that the burgeoning field of documentary has developed without internal standards and practices for accuracy, avoiding conflict of interest, representational fairness, or other ethical standards. It also has historically had little critical or investigative scrutiny from journalism, either from critics or reporters. This means the field of documentary lacks both the benefits of increased awareness and the accountability measures that journalism can provide.

Under Pressure: Project Delivery During COVID

The talented artists at UK-based Axis Studios are no strangers to the task, having worked on three previous trailers for the company behind Magic, Wizards of the Coast – but this time would be different. The usual 14-week turnaround – always tight, under the best of circumstances – came with an unusual twist this year, as the Coronavirus lockdown hit ten weeks into the project, forcing the team to make some radical adjustments in the late stages of development.


Carla 2020 is a three-day digital conference and bring together new visions for diversity & inclusion in the global film & TV industry.

Carla 2020 Library  WIFI

Carla 50 Ideas to Revolutionise the Film and TV Industry


Supporting media companies with your diversity and inclusion strategy.

Filmmaker Gary Yost on Using VR and 3ds Max to Tell Stories

The result of these efforts was Inside COVID19, at once a narrative-driven film about emergency physician Dr. Josiah Child’s attempt to prepare five different hospitals to combat the virus and then, after he contracts it himself, an immersive 3D-dive into the molecular drama unfolding inside Dr. Child’s body, animated in crisp 6720×6720 resolution by Andy Murdock using 3ds Max.

How an Aussie filmmaker directed a feature film … on Zoom

When the pandemic struck, at first Nadia Tass almost didn’t notice. But soon she would face an almost impossible challenge.  A year and a half ago the Australian film and theatre director had signed up to direct a documentary.

Find out what they’re looking for, how to get your pitch to resonate, and the Amazon Prime point of difference.

The first in a series of AACTA interviews with the key decision-makers at each of Australia’s major streaming service providers, Jason Burrows from Jungle Entertainment and our collaborators in this series, speak with Erika North (Amazon Prime Video Asia Pacific, Head of Originals) and Tyler Bern (Amazon Prime Video Asia Pacific, Head of Content). Find out what they’re looking for, how to get your idea to resonate, and what they have planned for the territory.

Lynette Wallworth’s ‘Awavena’ wins Emmy Award

Lynette Wallworth’s Awavena today won the International News and Documentary Emmy Award for Outstanding New Approaches to Documentary – her second Emmy following Collisions in 2017.


Why the Campanile Movie, 25 years on, is still so important

5 Steps to Craft a Creepy Coming of Age Comic

Merinda – Janse van Rensburg  –  Bachelor of 3D Art and Animation DCE

Teaching V-Ray: A mentor’s exploration of fine art and technology

Learn the Process of taking a 2D Concept to 3D Render

This is an extensive article written by Think Tank Training Centre student Diego Aguliar about his project named The Handmaiden. Diego goes into detail about the modelling in ZBrush, texturing in Mari and the groom process in X-Gen. We love the thought process that’s gone into creating this final render. An absolute must read, if you’re about to start a project.


Behind the Scenes: Heathrow ‘It’s a Wonderful Flight’

Working closely with Havas and directors dom&nic at Outsider, The Mill helped to create ‘It’s a Wonderful Flight’, the heartwarming sequel to last year’s festive spot for Heathrow Airport. This year we see the introduction of second and third generation bears, setting an even bigger challenge for our VFX artists to create over 29 iterations of the bears, each to an astounding photoreal finish. Learn more about the project:



A Samurai’s Son Makes Stop-Motion Magic With Music And Origami

A stop-motion samurai film — that’s the germ of an idea that grew into the sprawling fantasy film, Kubo and the Two Strings.  It’s a coming-of-age epic set in fantasy Japan about a young storyteller who makes magic with music and origami paper. The film stars Art Parkinson as Kubo, the Samurai’s son, as well as Charlize Theron, Ralph Fiennes, Rooney Mara, George Takei and Matthew McConaughey.


Thought-provoking keynotes, interviews and panels, presented virtually – 2020  |  All Cannes Un-Canned Sessions Now Available On Demand

Travel Doc Filmmaking Tips

Look for events that your audience can relate to and then show both how different and how similar they are.  The bride’s mother is ecstatic and the single young men do whatever it takes to attract a wife.

ADOBE  Listen to creative luminaries who share their career advice and their creative journeys.

Animal Logic Goes On the Hop for ‘Peter Rabbit’

Animal Logic was awarded the chance to design, build and animate the cast of creatures in the film ‘Peter Rabbit’, based on one of the best-known and most enduring children’s story books ever written, ‘The Tale of Peter Rabbit’. The creatures they created, and many props, were composited into the film’s live action photography in post production. Digital Media World talked to VFX supervisor Will Reichelt and animation supervisor Simon Pickard about the team’s work at Animal Logic.


Our mission is to build a community where we all thrive together by creating more win-win relationships! 

We host a Zoom webcast every Wednesday where we alternate between a formal crew talk webcast with a panel to discuss a specific topic and an informal chat meeting for a general discussion.

Zoom Link:

Wednesday 16:00 PST (Pacific Standard Time)

WIFT INTERNATIONAL  (Women in Film & Television) Newsletters

WIFTI  (Women in Film & Television International) WEBINARS







AACT  Australian Academy Cinema Television Arts

ANDY MARKEN  |  Archives












Lumina is a podcast about the future of creativity — how technology is changing the way we tell stories and the place they have in the world. Fenella Kernebone speaks to leaders from Australia and around the world to explore the unique opportunities for creative industries at this moment in time. Season 2 is about the business of storytelling — how to thrive as a creative in Australia’s evolving economy. The entire second series is available to stream now on Apple PodcastsGoogle Podcasts and Spotify.





OPENING SEQUENCES  some thoughts

  • to introduce and familiarise the viewer giving some kind of connection to the main film.
  • an overture to an opera, the start of a journey and sets the mood for the whole experience
  • a reflection of what the show will offer
  • capture the drama essence and reality
  • create a powerful visual that represents the landscape and feeling of the film
  • an enticing extension of the viewing experience
  • offer something more and be relevant
  • withstand repetition, have longevity
  • get the feel, atmosphere, mood of a film
  • be creative
  • short, to the point, have much to offer the audience and an entree to the main film
  • aesthetics and narrative of a sequence
  • an alternative way of portraying an idea
  • complement the movie and integrate not just a stand-alone piece before cutting into the movie
  • enticing extension of the viewing experience, offer more than what is in the film
  • keep the ‘mystery’ open

ACTION SAFE is the location that will be visible on all modern television sets and therefore limit critical screen images to this area.

TITLE SAFE is the area that will definitely appear on a screen and will not be too affected by distortions that can happen near the edges.

FLICKER is caused by high-contrast thin horizontal lines.  The problem is that the lines are only present on one scan line, they will be refreshed once every twenty-fifth of a second.  The larger the contrast range between the foreground and the background, the more obvious the flicker. Thus black serif fonts on a white background or vice versa will generally look appalling.

INTERLACE start at the top left corner on every second line, the uneven number finishing at the bottom right then starts the beam up in the top left again and draws all the even lines thus completing the whole picture in one 25th of a second.

BROADCAST COLOURS with fully saturated red, green or blue potentially causing distortions.  This includes peak whites and super blacks with balck at 16 and white peaks at 235.

RECTANGULAR PIXELS computers generated images have square pixels and video has rectangular pixels – 72dpi.

Carla 2020 Library

The first WIF network (Women in Film LA) was established in Los Angeles in the 70’s as a reaction to male dominance in the film industry. Today, there are around 50 WIFT and WIFT-partner chapters on six continents – all working for the same goal: gender balance in the industry.

How Do We Judge the Best?

Directing is 90% Casting

Or, casting is 90% of directing. The other 90% is actually directing. I know, that adds up to 180%, but no one said there’d be any math. I had a conversation with she who is my wife, (extra points if you get the reference) recently about this very thing. If you’ve seen Black Friday, you will see what led to this enlightening conversation.

David Gulpilil: Personal Stories (2021)

Near real-time: inside the making of ‘Comandante’, before it is even made

AACTA Member Spotlight: Fiona & Mike take us behind the scenes of their webseries, The Drop Off

The Rediscover of Editing in the French Cinema, 1930 – 1945

Create high-impact social videos.

The film community adapts amidst festival and premiere cancelations

3 ways to get more out of video review

From endorphins to indoor-phins: Fitness brands are using video to keep their communities moving

Use custom video templates to find the right story for your business.

The film community adapts amidst festival and premiere cancelations

Top 40 Most Amazing Natural Film Sets

Making a filmmaker: how 13 pros got their start

Star Wars: The Process Awakens

State of the industry: IF talks to local players about the challenges ahead

Making of Overwatch Animated Shorts

How to create an animated scene

‘Cinema Toast’: How Aubrey Plaza Directed Loretta Young for New Showtime Series

Director Gillian Armstrong on Film Making Challenges in Hollywood


Explore the world of improv filmmaking with pro Brandon Li

WITNESS: on the intersection of videos and human rights

Sydney’s vintage Red Rattler Train newly available for screen productions


The Mandalorian: a test bed for Virtual Production

Design, Develop, and Animate a Short Film in Three Months

Film Crew Positions: Ultimate Guide To Everyone On A Film Set

10 Useful Apps For Creating Videos, Audio, and Images

Mobile Journalism’s new focus: the cinematic


Sweet Tooth

Combining Moves by Maxon, Drones and C4D

Imagine yourself walking through a quiet Michigan town one evening. You’re near the local ski resort, but it’s the offseason so the slopes are quiet and empty. All of a sudden, you hear the buzz of hundreds of flying lights taking to the sky and, above you, a gigantic 300-foot face appears to be staring at you and singing.

Sound like a bizarre fever dream? Far from it. You’ve just caught a glimpse of the experimental rock band VWLS’ music video for the single, “High in Heaven.” Hobbes, a design and animation studio out of Detroit, partnered with Firefly Drone Shows to produce the video, which features 200 flying drones in the shape of a celestial head lip syncing the music of VWLS musicians Josh Epstein and Louie Louie.

The End of 2020 and the Beginning of 2021 in Production and Post – PVC Roundtable Discussion

We detailed how filmmakers should approach work in the midst of COVID-19 and what it means to stay safe on productions during the pandemic using equipment like PPE kits, but such insights are merely about the practical necessities and day-to-day realities for working professionals in production and post. We pulled together a roundtable discussion with the PVC Experts to get a sense of how such realities will factor into plans for 2021 and the media & entertainment industry as a whole.

Five Signs Your Story Is Ableist

If you write ableist stories, you are contributing to the systemic oppression of people with disabilities or diseases. Of course, you probably don’t mean to make their lives worse, but good intentions won’t erase the damage your story does. It’s up to all of us to review our work and make positive changes. You can start purging ableism from your work by looking for these widespread and damaging tropes.


The Inclusive Filmmaking Toolkit has been created to provide our screen and creative industries with an essential resource to help guide the sector to become more inclusive and disability-confident.

KINO MeetUp  |  Sydney

Have you got a short film you’re dying to show a bunch of supportive film lovers? Or do you want to check out the latest in indie filmmaking? That’s what Kino is about!  There are regularly people from amateur enthusiasts to seasoned professionals sharing their work.  It’s not about competition, its about collaboration. The end goal is to make something with the resources you have.  Got a Film to Screen?

Your Kids Make D2C Service Switching Difficult

We get really confused when industry experts say:

  • People are cutting their cord because of the high cost and “unwanted” content

  • Folks are jumping to streamers for the “original” content

  • Guys/gals are moving to OTT for the unique content

  • Gen Zs/millennials are going to switch services for their “old” favorites – The Office, Friends, Big Bang Theory

Get a Jump-Start on Your Business Plan With Louise Levison’s Book
“Filmmakers and Financing: Business Plans for Independents”

  1. Executive Summary
  2. The Company
  3. The Film
  4. The Market
  5. Distribution
  6. Investment & Budget
  7. Business Plan Details
  8. Risk Factor
  9. Exhibits


  • log line
  • series synopsis or series outline
  • series themes
  • breakdown of what a typical episode looks liek
  • character bois
  • descriptions of locations
  • unique featrues to the world
  • synopsis of at least 5 episodes
  • artwork
  • character designs
  • showcase the graphic style
  • script as a blueprint of a single episode for pitching and/or selling
  • pilot script

Tips for Creating a Sleek and Professional Film LOOKBOOK

When you’re pitching your next film or video project to investors and building a production team, a strong “lookbook” is key. Here’s what to include.

STRYNGS  Look Book

Visual images and inspiration from past films and directors

How To Create a PITCH DECK

The pitch deck is a presentation that entrepreneurs put together when seeking a round of financing from investors. On average pitch decks have no more than 19 slides.

Bringing Robots to Life. DNEG’s Westworld

ROOF Studio Crafts Poignant CG Short To Raise NTM Lung Disease Awareness

New York, NY — (January 14, 2021) — Animation studio ROOF Studio (ROOF) recently partnered with ad agency AREA 23 on a CG film called “Unbreakable” for biopharmaceutical company Insmed. The 2 ½+ minute piece aims to bring awareness about Nontuberculous Mycobacterial (NTM) lung disease, a condition which can be difficult to identify due to its similar symptoms with other lung conditions. The film was crafted to create a sense of urgency for doctors and specialists to recognize and diagnose NTM. 

Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable

Brewer’s Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, sometimes referred to simply as Brewer’s, is a reference work containing definitions and explanations of many famous phrases, allusions, and figures, whether historical or mythical.

Under the Influence with Terry O’Reilly

Under the Influence gives listeners a rare backstage pass into the hallways, boardrooms and recording studios of the ad industry. Join host and adman Terry O’Reilly for fascinating (and humorous) stories that connect the dots between pop culture, marketing and human nature.


Girl, Interpreted, a new web series by 2017/18 Talent Camp participants Grace Feng Fang Juan and Nikki Tran has just launched online and is available to stream worldwide.  Off the back of being picked up by streaming platforms Tencent Video and iQiyi for online distribution in China, the Melbourne-created series can now be viewed on YouTube and will have a special launch screening at the National Gallery of Victoria on 25 January.

Tips on Making an Animated Indie Film

Goody Wu is a Vancouver based CG artist. He grew up in Taiwan and moved to Canada with his family when he was a teenager. To pursue his passion for digital arts, he attended Emily Carr University of Art and Design from 2015. In 2019 he graduated with a Bachelor of Media Arts. Since then, he has been working as a Junior Modeler and Texture artist at ICON Creative Studio in Vancouver, BC.

He loves to draw inspiration from his cultural background and pop culture. Also being interested in grooming and lighting, Goody took on most of the 3D tasks in the making of this short film. He learned a lot of new skills in the process that he continues to build on with the help of online courses.

In this article, Goody gives us his tips on making an animated indie film with a team of artists.


Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse was a critical and box office success on its release last year, garnering critical praise and even an Oscar for its vivid, touching and inventive take on Spidey’s origin story. In this podcast, co-director Peter Ramsey tells his own tale of going from a humble, blue-collar upbringing in South Los Angeles to co-creating one of the best-animated movies of all time.

How to Create an Award Winning 3D Short Film using Pixar’s Renderman

Œil pour Œil (“ooy-poor-ooy” or “Eye for an Eye” in English) is an award winning student short film produced by students from ESMA in Nantes, France. In this article we learn how having a solid plan, before starting was key to the success of this production. Hugely entertaining, with a unique style, the students nailed the look and humour.

Screen Time for Gen Alphas, Gen Zs … Depends

Our behind gives out after even the best 108-minute movie; but give a kid a screen with Sesame Street or Mr. Rogers, and they’re good for the day.

More streaming services could change what we watch on TV and how we watch it.

When it comes to television, how much choice is too much? By year’s end, Australian consumers will have at least seven major subscription video services to choose from: Netflix, Stan, Amazon Prime, Hayu, Foxtel Now, 10 All Access, and Disney Plus. Apple’s highly anticipated Apple TV Plus platform will likely launch in Australia in late 2019.

The Shreditor’s Guide to Film and Video Pre-Production

Do you tackle your video production projects entirely on your own? Here’s everything you need to know about working as a “shreditor.”

MAKING MOVEIS:  Interviews

Satisfy Your Market, Not the Mass Market

Everyone comes around to a good thing … well, sorta’.  Steven Spielberg wasn’t bashful about the fact that Roma wasn’t worthy of an Oscar consideration because it was a TV movie, not a movie movie.

Us?  Never really figured out the difference – work is still just as tough/beautiful, creatives are just as creative, original work is still original work.  Streaming screeners to 30K+ Academy voters is a lot cheaper than knocking out DVDs, sending them out and still having them ripped off!   In fact, Hastings and crew should be considered for a special Oscar this year (or next).  They made the whole industry feel scared, happy,  rejuvenated, excited.

Producers warn proposed documentary funding regime will hit low budget works

Screen Producers Australia (SPA) has broadly welcomed Screen Australia’s proposed overhaul of documentary funding guidelines but fears low budget productions will suffer from scrapping the Producer Equity Program (PEP).  In its submission to the review SPA also asks for 15 per cent of development funding to be quarantined for producers, which is not likely to sit well with the Australian Independent Documentary group or the Australian Directors Guild, whose submissions were virtually identical.

Location Incentive Program funding is running out

The Hollywood studios and other international producers that were hoping to take advantage of the Federal Government’s $140 million Location Incentive Program over the next few years may well be disappointed.  The fund runs until June 30 2023 – but only $18 million remains to be allocated. The figure was revealed by Dr Stephen Arnott, First Assistant Secretary, Arts, at a Senate Estimates hearing in Canberra earlier this week.  Dr Arnott told Greens Senator Hanson-Young: “As of now, $122 million has been committed, so that leaves $18 million uncommitted.”

Ads Optional – AVOD Can Deliver Stuff You Really Want to See … Including Ads

“I know how hard it is to go out with someone new. I mean, there’s always that fear of… well… getting hurt. At least that’s how I feel inside.”  — Nick Marshall, “What Women Want,” Paramount, 2000  In our constantly connected world, good news/ideas travel fast.  But bad news/ideas travel even faster.

Now AI Can Predict If a Movie Is Going to Suck

As legendary screenwriter William Goldman once said about making a successful movie, “nobody knows nothing.” But a new AI bot is trying where humans have failed. The bot’s builders claims the program can determine a movie’s critical and financial success simply by reading a written description of the plot. The actual paper: Prediction of a Movie’s Success From Plot Summaries Using Deep Learning Models

In their rush to match Netflix, competitors like HBO, Hulu and Amazon are ordering a slew of content — ushering out the age of “prestige TV” and ushering in an age of anything goes.

Pixar Side-by-Side — “Finding Dory” Cuddle Party

On a mission to rescue her friends, absent-minded Dory concocts a plan that involves cuteness, cuddles, and a whale of a catapult. Watch how Dory and her sea-going friends put that plan into action in Pixar’s latest storyboard side-by-side for “Finding Dory”.

Fire, Blood & Destruction for Game Of Thrones’ Final Season

Game of Thrones has reached its long-awaited finale. Despite spanning just six episodes, the final season featured a massive shot count for the visual effects (VFX) team – who delivered fire-breathing dragons, fiendish wights, and the downfall of iconic cities. With six Emmy wins already under their belt for Outstanding Special Visual Effects, HBO might have saved the best for last in Game of Thrones.

Moviemaker Douglas Trumbull recalls role in CBS’ moon-landing coverage

NEW MARLBOROUGH — Fifty years ago, as earthlings engaged in cosmic rubbernecking to behold mankind’s historical first steps upon the moon, CBS was making a giant technological leap in live television coverage.  The network’s executives had turned to Douglas Trumbull, whose groundbreaking photographic effects in Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey” made him instantaneously famous the year before.

How Will the Movies (As We Know Them) Survive the Next 10 Years?

Big studios are gobbling each other up as smaller movies struggle and even name-brand titles tank at the box office. Netflix is revolutionizing the way people watch films, while major new streaming services from Apple, Disney, Warner Bros. and other deep-pocketed studios are coming soon. And every aspect of the movie industry — from the diversity of its storytellers to the spoils of Oscar season — is being called into question.

“This is the biggest shift in the content business in the history of Hollywood,” the producer Jason Blum recently told me. But what will it all look like when the dust settles? To find out, I convened a virtual think tank of key Hollywood figures, and their message to the movie industry was clear: Adapt or die.

24 major Hollywood figures peer into the future, including: Ava DuVernay (on audiences), Jason Blum (on producing), Octavia Spencer (on acting), Kumail Nanjiani (on comedy), Lena Waithe (on black filmmakers), J.J. Abrams (on blockbusters), Jon M. Chu (on diversity), Jessica Chastain (on dramas), Elizabeth Banks (on female filmmakers), Barry Jenkins (on the Oscars) and Joe and Anthony Russo (on two-hour narratives).

The Look of the Spider-Verse

See how the Oscar-winning film “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” stayed visually true to its comic-book roots.  Since 2012, it has seemed given that the Oscar for Best Animated Feature be awarded to either of the two industry heavyweights: Disney Animation or Pixar. However, this past Sunday, Sony Pictures Animation and Sony Pictures Imageworks made history together with their win for Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse, beating out Incredibles 2, Ralph Breaks the Internet, Isle of Dogs, and Mirai.

Show Us Your Shot: The Importance of On-Set Stills and BTS Video

As filmmakers, we’ve all heard that it is important to get BTS video and on-set shots. On my last shoot, I handed a digital camera to a PA and said, “Take behind-the-scenes-stills.” This did not work out well, because I ended up with about 900 stills, of which 97% were useless. It wasn’t the PA’s fault—after all, this is a highly developed craft, and he had no idea what to photograph. I also had no idea what to tell him, so between his making coffee runs, picking up and dropping off actors, and driving the cube truck, he did his best.

How to make better looking and sounding Skype and Zoom calls

So many broadcasters have been relying on incredibly crappy webcam video for content, ala SNL’s stay-at-home broadcasts, numerous news shows, and late-night shows. It’s no wonder that if the networks can’t do it right, your colleague on Zoom or Skype might be similarly challenged. Just because you can’t broadcast from a multi-million dollar studio doesn’t mean you should just forego quality from the outset. It’s possible to deliver good-looking video from home or – once we can start traveling – from a hotel room or conference room.

If you’ve been connected to me on any social media channel for a while, you’ll know that I’m never at home, not just from posts of my dying garden but also from my various visits to airport Starbucks across North America. After two years of travelling around the world with my trusty North Face rucksack and Smythson notebook (yeah, my notebooks are fancy, get over it), I’ve got a pretty good idea of what concerns almost every brand and keeps you up at night.

We’ve looked a lot over recent months at the burgeoning technologies being used in modern virtual production workflows.  However one of the techniques being used in parallel to these (albeit with a modern twist) harks back to over a century ago.  Foundry Trends caught up with Rob Bredow, Head of ILM, about his work using advanced projection techniques as VFX supervisor and co-producer on Solo: A Star Wars Story.


In 2014, we met at a coffee shop in Ithaca,NY in hopes of creating a production company dedicated to improving the world. As filmmakers, we saw how daunting of a goal this would be. We watched our friends and peers invest so much into creating the connections, finding the materials, and enlisting the experience it requires to launch a film project. We recognized the opportunity to build a community where filmmakers could help each other reach the world with their message.  This idea inspired us to establish FilmUp and simplify how people connect in the film community and access the tools that all filmmakers need. FilmUp is a place where filmmakers can come together and help each other create the things they love.

There’s a discipline that’s creating an audible buzz across multiple industries at the moment, that’s both the subject of serious whitepapers and excited YouTube comments: real-time production.

Yet with all the discussion – including from us at Foundry Trends – it can be difficult to work out what actually constitutes production in “real-time”, and what techniques being touted as revolutionary are currently achievable.

Warner Bros. Boosts The Next Generation Of Filmmakers

Warner Bros is giving a voice to burgeoning underrepresented filmmakers. The studio hosted a short film festival to cap off its Emerging Film Directors Workshop, where each member of the inaugural class showcased their work in front of industry professionals last Thursday on the WB lot in Burbank. The event was the culmination of a nine-month fellowship, in which participants where given a budget of $100K to make a short film through a process that mimics WB’s feature process from script to the final cut.

Learn The Challenges of Making A Short Film

Our inspiration comes from many different films and series as we wanted to be as open-minded as we could in order to create a whole, the developed universe for our short. There were, however, three major influences for our project, the first being the animated film Rango. Created by ILM, Rango has been our main reference for many aspects of our project, the most important being its style: it matched our overall vision perfectly.

13 Podcast Reccomondations For Filmmakers

Many of these are directly relevant to filmmaking, while others may not have a direct correlation, but can deliver valuable lessons that will positively impact a filmmaker’s artistic aspirations and/or career.

In our last article on real-time production, we discussed what a real-time “nirvana” could look like in the fields of pre-visualization, on-set production and post-production. While the future certainly looks exciting, reaching it will hinge on overcoming a succession of barriers.

The Challenge of Making Marwen’s Living Dolls

Welcome to Marwen, the 2018 film directed by Robert Zemeckis (Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Back to the Future, The Polar Express) captures elements of the true story of the soulful recovery of Mark Hogancamp. A man mauled by five strangers woke up in the hospital with no memory and limited dexterity, but he found healing of head, hands, and heart through the miniature town and its dolls that he crafted, based on several of the caring people in his real life.

Vinicius Favero: The Making of the ‘Kangrinboqe Warrior’

When we asked Vinicus Favero, July 2019 winner of our 3D Artist of the Month competition, to briefly walk us through the development process of his ‘Kangrinboqe Warrior’, we did not expect him to provide a fully-fletched making-of. We are all the more proud to present to you an exclusive and in-depth look at the final project of Vinicius’ mentorship program at Think Tank Training Center.

Filming Worlds Apart

ILM on “Kong Skull Island” (Part 1 of 2)  With larger than life creatures comes great responsibility

“We began work on “Kong: Skull Island” two years before the film was released. Director Jordan Vogt-Roberts was very clear about his vision and stressed the importance that Kong not feel derivative, particularly of the recent Peter Jackson version. Yet, we were dealing with an iconic monster.

Ultimately, we landed on a version of the 1933 Kong, where he’s no longer just a gorilla but more of his own species, this half-man, half-gorilla that walks upright and is between 100 and 200 feet tall – bigger than any previous vision.

The challenge, of course, would be to make this creature credible on screen, in real environments with live actors. Kong is such an important part of film history and we took this very seriously. There’s no way we’d be the VFX studio that took on recreating an iconic character and then didn’t deliver.”  
–Jeff White, VFX Supervisor, Industrial Light & Magic

Behind the Scenes: Electric Theatre Collective

Electric Theatre Collective was started in 2011 by Lee Pavey (Producer), James Sindle  (CG genius), Giles Cheetham (one of the industry’s leading VFX Supervisors/Flame Artists) and Dan Marum (the best CTO in the business and also a genius CG artist).  We are a young collective of artists and makers with a distinct point of view. We pride ourselves on our ideas, creative integrity and above all, our people.
Since our humble beginnings in 2011, we have become an industry leader, winning a reputation for our production flair, innovation and visionary style.  In September 2015 we expanded from London and opened our second studio in LA. Our collective is now growing to produce culturally relevant, genre-defying work that consistently sets the benchmark for advertising today.

FKD Studio: Giving life to Yarra One

The first step is to meet the project team – the architects and branding agency – to completely understand their vision and goals. FKD aims to align with this vision through our creative visualization by adding to the strength of the collective idea.

From Fisherman to Filmmaker: The Career of an Artist from the Scottish Highlands with David Hutchison,

In this entry, David shares with us how he went from filming whimsical, short animations in a cow barn with his parents to building up a successful career of writing and directing feature length films. David’s experience shows us that creating art truly takes practice, persistence and passion.

LESSON BUCKET:  Brett Lamb is a media educator and writer. He is co-author of Heinemann Media, a regular contributor to the magazine Screen Education and maintains the media education website Throughout his career, Brett has presented workshops and seminars on topics as diverse as comic books, film noir, superhero narratives, social networking, action movies, filmmaking, Final Cut Pro and VCE Media. He has worked for the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA), Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA), the Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL) and the Intellectual Property Awareness Foundation (IPAF). He currently works for East Doncaster Secondary College.

Titmouse & FOX’s Son of Zorn Step Out with mocha Pro

FOX’s Son of Zorn is a fresh take on the classic fish out of water story — if that story follows a Barbarian cartoon character (Zorn voiced by actor Jason Sudeikis) as he leaves his war torn home to reconnect with his human son in real world suburbia. The hybrid animation/live action comedy concept is one of the many projects the wonderful and wacky Titmouse works on out of their three studio locations in Los Angeles, New York, and Vancouver.

Who can resist the fluffy-yet-sticky magic of pancakes? Not the son of Azzael, that’s for sure!  Animation, visual fx, and interactive studio Post Asylum/Element X recently released an animated fan film from the Hellboy comic universe. The short was an adaptation of the popular “Pancakes” comic created by Mike Mignola.


In a medium often associated with plot-heavy fables, Bucsi is something of an outlier in the world of animation. In all three of her shorts, “Symphony No. 42” (2014), “LOVE” (2016) and “Solar Walk” (2018), Busci has thus far bucked the trend, eschewing traditional narratives in favor of a more impressionistic and less formal approach–an artistic choice that has brought her international acclaim for each film, including multiple selections at Berlinale and Sundance. “I’m driven by visuals and rhythm,” says Busci, “not by spoken words.”

FILMING on Mobile Phones

How to film an assessment

Making Videos with Your Phones

Tips for Recording Video on your Phone


The Activist Documentary


My notes from this very interesting OzDox event.

CHAIR:  Ruth Hessey from Total Environment Centre

Ruth Hessey‘s documentary film about the beauty of garbage, Waste Not, has been translated into 4 languages, and screened in over 30 countries. Her other documentary projects include The Mural (distributed by Ronin Films) and Under Threat, an animated short film about Australia’s threatened native species.

Ruth is also a high profile writer – (SMH, TimeOut Sydney, Vogue, Australian Art Review); radio broadcaster (ABC Radio National, 702, Green Velvet Eastside Radio); screenwriter, and novelist (half done!). Her contributions to anthologies include Bewitched & Bedevilled: Women Write the Gillard Years (Hardie Grant); Screwed: Stories of Love and Sex (Allen & Unwin); Interviews with Jane Campion (University of Illinois at Chicago); Dennis O’Rourke’s The Good Woman Of Bangkok (QLD University Press); Baz Luhrmann (University of Michigan).

Since 2009 Ruth has worked in environment advocacy, creating campaign videos, websites, and educational guides which have accumulated over 10,000 views online.

Ruth has also worked as a TV Host/presenter (World Movies); educator and history guide (Museum of Sydney); education consultant (Rooty Hill High School, Eden College); environment consultant (Fremantle Media); ABC radio film reviewer (ABC 702, Radio National); and copywriter (Film Australia, Village Roadshow, TM Publicity). She was named one of Sydney’s Most Influential, Inspiring, Creative People in 2012 by Sydney magazine. Ruth is also developing a 6 part mini series for television based on a new Australian novel with producer Tracey Mair.

A discussion about who makes the films, why they make them, why they have wandered into this particular area with people who have worked across the board in terms of production, direction, writing, putting things to gather with very different approaches.

An interesting area because it has its own particular challenges and the presses of an activists film are often quite different.  Their experiences working on documentaries from large broadcasters, small scale projects, with large community members, projects that already have a ground swell behind them, communities that have invested years and others where that is what they are attempting to create.

Why do we make films?

Do they work?

What is the whole point?

An Inconvenient Truth came along and this changed the landscape, changed how the media engaged in environmental stories,  where now there are regular environmental pieces of reporting in newspapers.

Films that fight back play a hug role in engaging audiences, leading to behaviour change and helping us all work together for a better world.

Introducing some lushness, some beauty into campaigning and overcoming the boring in campaigning for environmental issues.

Australia is now deforesting the fastest of any developing nation in the world and in the top 10 of deforesters, up there with the Amazon and Congo.

Karina Holden started her career as a conservation biologist before becoming a wildlife film maker 21 years ago. She now has a dynamic track record working in both the independent sector as Head of Production and Creative Producer, as well as within the national broadcaster as Science Commissioning Editor and Head of Factual for the ABC. Her first theatrical film, Blue, was directed and produced as part of Goodpitch initiative through Northern Pictures. The film screened at the United Nations before having its official debut at Vancouver International Film Festival where it won best Impact Film and later the Okeanos Foundation award for services to the Ocean. The crux of her creative work is to create change, truth tell and find unlikely heroes who challenge our perceptions.


Funding about the impact campaign around the film.  An impact film is there to create change, not only a story that you want to tell and create awareness, an opportunity to interact with communities, about the audience making commitments.

In the pre-production and conceptual phase:

  • what is your film about
  • what do you want to change
  • what do you want to make happen
  • what are you up against
  • how will you define success

Had the opportunity to expand the story, about behaviour change and giving the audience the opportunity to walk away with what is this about, what can I do.  Could provide this in the credit roll and on the web site. It is not only an economic conversation, an ecological conversation on how we are reliant on systems on the earth.

Hitchcock – The film is only as good as the villain you are up against.

We are complacent, human complainancy, ignorant, we consume and we are not looking at the consequences of this. We forgot to take notice of the ocean and thinking we are always going to have it in this state.

Al Gore’s film An Inconvenient Truth

Activism is about engaging communities, the opportunity to convene and these films are a great opportunity to create change.  It was a challenge to go into the cinema space, how to bring people to this space, gently, intimately, thinking about the experience of the audience, telling the story with respect, leading people into some dark places and not scaring them.Experience what is challenging in a gently and intimate way,

Clip – Baby Chick was shown, was very powerful and could not find online.

Coming out of the film, left feeling like you want to do something, coming out of the film.  What you are going to do, in a gentle way, not a problem that people have been dumped with and there are solutions that can make a difference.

The activation part of film making is critical, the call to action, how to engage people, individuals can make a difference and how people will be lead forward. The experience of watching the film has given  meaningful pay off for people.

Dr Gene Sherman

Ethical Fashion

A village in China is skinning live animals because it makes the leather softer, film makers could not get finance to make a film about this. It is about balance.

Nell Schofield is an actor turned activist whose passion is bringing the creative sectors and conservation movements together. With The Sunrise Project she produced and directed the films Guarding the Galilee and A Mighty Force about the movement to stop Adani’s massive Carmichael coal mine in Central Queensland. She also worked as Senior Project Manager with Solar Citizens, and helped spearhead the Land Water Future campaign in NSW as Sydney Coordinator with Lock the Gate Alliance. In 2007, Nell trained with Al Gore as one of his Climate Leaders and has worked in the Office of the Lord Mayor of Sydney on local government issues. She has also worked as a presenter with ABC TV, Showtime, CNN and Channel 9, and as a broadcaster with Radio National. As a teenager Nell famously starred in the cult classic Puberty Blues and, with fellow NIDA graduates created the self-devised work Strictly Ballroom. Nell currently works with the Historic Houses Association of Australia to preserve our nation’s built environment.

In 1991 the land come under a coal exploration licence, think you have found paradise and it is ripped out from under your feet.Went down the road of starting a local action group, putting in submissions, talking to MP and did not get anywhere. Then Lock the Gate came along, NSW – 80% under coal, gas and mining licences and then started making little films. Australia is the number one exporter of coal in the world.

Putting stories on facebook amplifies their voices, getting their stories can have a larger impact.

GUARDING THE GALILEE  was the first film Nell made for the Adani campaign.

It was a film that was not pre-scripted, went out on the road, had some contacts lined up and the film unfolded.People and communities did not choose to be on the front line, the campaign was a responsibility they took on.

A half hour film, supporting communities, given to the community for community screenings, including an expert, panel discussion afterwards.  A guide on how to have a screening, discussions, questions to talk about, how to form a group to empower the community with the tools to build the movement.The importance of these screening sand discussions.

Galilee Basin

Galilee Basin coal mines will go ahead without Adani, says Clive Palmer

How much courage it takes to go up against a big corporation.

Shark Island Productions

The second film A MIGHTY FORC

Having access to footage from many different organisations.

What are you going to do, what are you going to give people to do.Came up with the idea of human signs and was going to be the end of the film, people power.The film has book ends with the farmer on the tractor.


It’s only four degrees, it’s only four degrees

It’s only four degrees, it’s only four degrees

It’s only four degrees, it’s only four degrees

It’s only four degrees, it’s only four degrees

I wanna see this world, I wanna see it boil

I wanna see this world, I wanna see it boil

It’s only four degrees, it’s only four degrees

It’s only four degrees, it’s only four degrees

I wanna hear the dogs crying for water

I wanna see fish go belly-up in the sea

All those lemurs and all those tiny creatures

I wanna see them burn, it’s only four degrees

And all those rhinos and all those big mammals

I wanna see them lying, crying in the fields

I wanna see them burn, it’s only four degrees

I wanna see them burn, it’s only four degrees

I wanna see them burn, it’s only four degrees

I wanna burn them, I wanna burn them

I wanna burn them, I wanna burn them

I wanna burn the sky, I wanna burn the breeze

I wanna see the animals die in the trees

Oh let’s go, let’s go it’s only four degrees

Oh let’s go, let’s go it’s only four degrees

Oh let’s go, let’s go it’s only four degrees

Oh let’s go, let’s go it’s only four degrees

I wanna burn them, I wanna burn them

I wanna burn them,

Songwriters: Ross Matthew Birchard / Daniel Lopatin

4 Degrees lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., Warp Music Limited

Artist: Antony Hegarty     Album: Hopelessness    Released: 2016    Genre: Alternative/Indie

Mark Gould is a producer writer and director with over 40 years’ experience in Australian theatre, film and television. Mark has, in the last 2 years made over 120 short videos for the web in the fight to stem the tide of neo-liberal greed in Sydney. His documentaries have been commissioned internationally and nationally, by the BBC, ABC, SBS, Nat Geo, Arte, YLE, RBTF, RTE and others.


People’s Choice Award at Flagstaff Mountain Film Festival 2009. Award of Excellence at Accolade Mountain Film Festival. This film screened to over 2 million viewers on the BBC and has played at many other major festivals.  A WINNERS GUIDE TO THE NOBEL PRIZE 2006 was commissioned by ABC Science in 2006 and won the Golden Dragon Award for Best Science film at Beijing Film Festival and was nominated for a Eureka Prize.  A PIG, A CHICKEN AND A BAG OF RICE ABC 2005.  His landmark series MOULIN ROUGE GIRLS 2004 still holds the ABC ratings record for an ABCTV half hour series. It was nominated for a Logie and sold worldwide.

Mark is contributing to the work of Ryan Jasper as a mentor, EP and script editor.

The battle to save Sydney, the push to develop Sydney and make more money by squeezing more people into it, developing and developing at the cost of heritage suburbs and the tree canopy.Has worn many hats.

Miss Tibet and the Limbo of Exile:The Politics of a Tibetan Beauty Pageant.

Working on a small stage, Waverley Stage and the last 10 years run by pro development and amalgamation, forcing more people in and destroying the place.

The environment where he lived, Bondi basin was changing too fast and nothing could be done about it, the gross overdevelopment where planning powers were taken away from local communities and councils.

Went to a Save Bondi Pavilion from being privatised.Needed social media, put together some simple, short, vox-pop based films, one take making a montage of people speaking.In a car with a pollie.

People started sending in video from their phones, Vertical Video Syndrome (VVS).

Bondi Pavilion redevelopment to be dumped for cheaper, community-friendly upgrade

The campaign was becoming effective and started to build an interaction with an audience, facebook 6000 members and some of the videos started to take off and changed the fate of Waverley, the government of Waverley.

It is possible to define an area, target a few streets and that clip will be boosted to those streets and that area was won by 140 votes.Social media needs to get them in the first 10 sec, the attention is very important when making little videos.The battle grounds will be social media.

There are 150 protest groups in Sydney basin, totally and utterly done over by bad manipulative politicians and bad politics.Save Sydney Coalition

Ivan O’Mahoney received the 2016 Australian Directors Guild (ADG) Award, the Walkley Documentary Award, the Australian Academy of Cinema & Television (AACTA) Award and the Amnesty International Media Award for ABC’s domestic violence series ‘Hitting Home.’ He is also the recipient of the 2013 AACTA for Best Documentary Series and the 2012 ADG Award for Best Direction in a Documentary Series for his work on the SBS refugee series ‘Go Back To Where You Came From.’ Ivan has directed and produced films for HBO, BBC, ARTE, Channel 4, PBS & Discovery Channel. A former lawyer and UN peacekeeper in Bosnia, he holds degrees in international law (Leiden) and journalism (Columbia). Ivan’s other acclaimed projects include Baghdad High, about teenagers in Iraq (HBO); ‘How To Plan a Revolution,’ following democracy activists in Azerbaijan (BBC) and ‘Surviving Hunger,’ a film on famine in Ethiopia (CNN). His 4 Corners film ‘Code of Silence received’ the 2009 Sports Journalism Walkley. Screened at major festivals (Tribeca, Sheffield, Human Rights Watch), Ivan’s other gongs include the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, the Prix Europa, two Logies, two Rose d’Ors, the Japan Prize for Educational Media and a Golden Nymph. Ivan is a director and executive producer of Sydney and LA-based In Films, a film and television production company established in 2013. In Films is a partnership with producer Nial Fulton. The company received the prestigious 2015 Enterprise Grant from Screen Australia, the federal funding body for the television and film industry. Over the last three years In Films has produced and delivered “Hitting Home” (ABC, 2 x 60 documentary on domestic violence); “Matilda and Me,” (1 x 60 on Tim Minchin and the making of his smash hit musical); “The Outlaw Michael Howe” (1 x 60 period drama for ABC); “Borderland” (4 x 60 series on US illegal immigration for AJAM); “1999” (10 x 3 comedy for YouTube/Screen Australia); Caged (1 x 60 documentary on mixed martial arts for SBS); The Queen & Zak Grieve (a 6 x 10 vocast series for The Australian” and ‘Making Muriel (1 x 60 for ABC Arts on the making of Muriel’s Wedding the Musical). In Films has been nominated 2016 Breakout Production Business of the Year at the Screen Producers Australia Awards.

There is a difference between activist film makers who from the beginning set out to achieve a goal with a film with a very clear point of view and then there are films that are made with a more journalistic approach.The effort is people talking for themselves and can follow their stories and can tell of their plight as the film maker are not necessarily invested in the cause, want to tell the story as well as you can, because it has a place and needs to be told.The outcome is and not as dear to you as it is for the people on the ground who are fighting the fight.

Shit government stays in power if the opposition cannot unite.

6 x 12 minutes Online documentary series, The Australian stories.

The Queen & Zak Grieve ( 6 x 10 vocast series for The Australian)

The Queen & Zac Brieve

Make stories in a way that people will remember them.Crime Investigation. Digital side of newspapers, News Corp, Screen Australia, Foxtel and Create NSW came onboard and was broadcast by NITV with a coalition of broadcasts andpartners.

Unlike when film makers have a clear vision of the film, passion and topic they wanted to tackle they had the opposite problem.Opposite problem, the film was fully funded and was looking for a story, wanted to achieve something in the true crime sphere and a social justice component to it.Needed a really good story.

For funding agencies and broadcasters you need to show a fair level of excellence and they need to know you go somewhere you will get what what you has been promised them.

Make three of them:

  • the one you pitch
  • the one that you find in the field
  • the one you find in the edit

and they are never the same, have to convince it is going to be a good one and have some strong content.

Slowly a wealth of material started to build up, people start to say yes and people came forward.

‘I can’t go through with this’: How Zak Grieve backed out of a murder plot but got life anyway

Zak Grieve: Mercy plea lodged in murder case

The Queen & Zak Grieve: Dan Box probes conviction in new series

Have a licence to be noise.

The power of the campaign, enter for awards and other sales keeps the project in the public eye.


Are the films about preaching to the converted, is it successful in raising awareness?

Initial time was about movement building, in real time and space, building and supporting activists group, is there going to be an action.Can be effective with main stream media, keep an open mind when considering where to place stories and who to work with.Focus on catching interested people.The first audience can be the converted, they convert others and some of it sticks through social media, pick up and can shift the way people perceive issues.Can communicate detail, be engaging and show emotion in a way the print media cannot.

About finance?

Hard to get government funds and a broadcaster to put it on if it is anti-government.

The line between getting the message out and have the audience give up and we are all doomed?

As a film maker you are taking action, do not want to give up for the audience, engaged in the action of communication, creating awareness, change and giving the audience some tools.Making a change in someone’s life.Communities being activated.

Solutions journalism, stories that offer solutions are read more not about pointing the finger about where the pain is and point out the injustice, corruption and where are the examples where there has been success to write about it with it.

Point at better solutions and better ways of doing things to avoid these mistakes, to hold people to account.Levels of engagement of audiences will rise because they feel empowered.Do not need to wrap up with all is ok, it is all fine, do not worry – need to empower the audience and is now up to you to be actively engaged.Personally going to the very challenging places.Where there are very impassioned communities, carrying lots of emotions often for years. The resources people have are often their imagination.People speaking from the heart in short, one take recordings, needed to be efficient as volunteers were doing the video for the campaign.Changed public opinion with short grabs, presenting passion, opinion as effectively as possible, keep short and simple, use celebrity shamelessly, have the common touch at all times and go for it.Sometimes have a second wave when relaunched.

Attention span to make something that has meaningful content for the audience?

Watch social media with the sound off, consider subtitles.

The use of different platforms?

Need to be flexible with the content and find different ways to edit the content depending on the platform you can get it on.

Sixpart series online, web series, an hour version, 90 min version and on it goes.

Top 3 Filmmaker Tips from 2015 MetroScreen

As I am not sure how long the Metro Screen Web site will be accessible via the link above I have posted the whole article below.


In Metro Screen’s final month we asked a few of the talented people we funded and trained in 2015 to tell us the top three things they learned about this thing we call ‘filmmaking’.

Kevin Hudson is an American Film Maker and Digital Artist who is currently part of the team at Walt Disney Animation Studios. His work can be found in some of the studio’s recent biggest hits including Big Hero Six, Zootopia and Moana. Before making the leap into the world of Digital Effects, Kevin worked in traditional special effects on such films as Edward Scissorhands, Predator 2, and The Addams Family.

Chelsea Thistlewaite – Breaks Funded Filmmaker

Be generous with ideas. A few months before we started shooting there was a lot of interest in the story, and I thought that if I shared too much the magic would disappear or change in some way. Keeping ideas to yourself only diminishes them, and telling people, getting them excited and curious is storytelling again and again. Every time you start from scratch and tell someone what your film is about you are practising how to tell the story. It sounds incredibly obvious but I found it extremely useful. Ask questions, and give honest and specific answers.

Producing and creating are different things. During pre-production and something that definitely happens on low budget, skeleton crew films is that inevitably you’re going to be doing a lot of jobs at once. This is often totally fine, and necessary to do what needs to be done for the film, but I found that I had to carve my own space where I couldn’t think of logistics or planning. Focusing on character, atmosphere, theme, and story cannot exist in the same space as logistical thinking. It took a long time to learn that they each need to exist alone.

Be a good person. It sounds really simple but I’ve learned that whatever you do is not worth it if you are not a good person in the process. There is really no reason to be rude, arrogant or demanding in any capacity, especially when people are offering their time, services and skills for often no money. Empathy is incredibly important, and allowing your collaborators to approach the project with their own thoughts and expertise always elevates the work.

Still from Tether directed by Chelsea Thistlewaite and funded by Metro Screen.

Alana Hicks – Digital Content Producing Diploma Graduate

When I went through my notes from the past six months of the Digital Content Producing course, an idea that came up repeatedly was about knowing your audience. It was said in many different ways by our main tutor Kate, by our digital guru Stuart and by numerous guest speakers. Know. Your. Audience. You have to research your target market, whoever that might be. You have to understand how they interact with the technology on which your content is presented and you have to engage, develop and build that relationship. Why else are we telling stories, if not for the eyes and ears that we hope will see and hear them? Another big takeaway was about the ecosystem of the story world; multiple platforms require specifically tailored content, the message has to be relevant to the medium. The story of “why” and the platform of “how” exist symbiotically. Lastly, my main impression from this course (which was articulated so well by Emma Morris in one of our guest lectures) was simply, to “tell stories you are truly passionate about”. In this vain, I hope to utilise the skills I developed at Metro Screen to create compelling content for a shifting and evolving digital landscape.

Behind the scenes with Alana Hicks directing a scene from web series Fix it In Post, which she created with sketch comedy collective The Kvetch Set.

Will Goodfellow – Breaks Funded Filmmaker

Prep until you can’t prep no more. Preconceive every edit point, every prop, every performance cue. The more you know your project inside and out, the freer you’ll be to experiment when things are going well, and the greater your ability to troubleshoot when the wagon falls apart.

Surround yourself with a killer team. We had an all-star crew on The Spa and it was the best shooting experience I’ve ever had. All credit goes to our producer Lucy Gaffy who, while being the sweetest person in the world, also brought our production together like it was a high stakes military operation.

Letter dropping actually works. We had a location confirmed but I felt there could be a better one out there so I decided to make a last ditch effort and start letter dropping houses. It was excruciatingly tedious but we ended up with five or six homeowners agreeing to let us recce their homes. One of them happened to be the absolute perfect location. So if all else fails – letter drop.

Behind the scenes with director Will Goodfellow and lead actor Chris Haywood from The Spa funded by Metro Screen.

Emma Bjorndahl – Digital Content Producing Graduate

Resourcefulness – utilise the connections and the people around you, and work together to achieve something bigger than anything you could have done on your own. Networking is more than just “meet and greet” it is about building true, strong and lasting relationships. I have met some wonderful people through Metro Screen, that I intend to work with again on real world projects.

Be a lifelong learner – never stop learning and adding to your skills. Metro Screen has made me realise that this course is only the beginning. I need to continuously extend my skill set and challenge myself. The course has opened my eyes to the world of possibilities as a Digital Producer, especially at this time with the industry in its infancy and exciting possibilities ahead.

A tool is just a tool – it’s about the story and the connections to human beings. Tools and new whizzbang shiny technology are just another vehicle to tell a story. A good story or a good idea transcends the tools that we are using. I have learned through this course, that it is about the human connection, that the tool should not make us feel further from our humanity but draw us closer together. This has been a particularly inspirational realisation for me.

I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to take one of the last courses at Metro Screen. I thank all the people who made it happen and my amazing tutors. It is with great sadness that I will be saying adieu.

Image created during Emma Bjorndahl’s work as behind the scenes content and social media coordinator forAustralian film Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead (2015).

Rosie Lourde – Emerging Producers Placement Graduate

Flip a coin. People say “trust your instinct” but that’s not so easy when you’re surrounded by opinions. I was once told, if you can’t decide then flip a coin. Whichever side it lands on you’ll know what you really want either through disappointment or excitement, then take it from there. Whether it’s deciding on which project to pursue, who to collaborate with, or what to eat for breakfast, your instinct is the only way to know what’s right. Don’t underestimate how important this is, it’ll keep you motivated through hard times (and there’ll be a lot over a looooong time).

Don’t flip a coin – put your hand up for everything. It’s too easy to justify why you shouldn’t apply for this grant or that placement or this initiative but even if you don’t meet all the criteria, apply. At best, you’ll be given an incredible opportunity and need to decide if you can do it. At worst, you practice application writing skills, which are necessary to a career in this industry.

Look after your health. It’s no-one else’s job – if your health goes, so does your ability to work. Balance is necessary if you’re building a career.

Behind the scenes with Rosie Lourde on location for thenext season of webseries Starting From… Now! photo credit Ella Mackenzie Taylor

Daniel Collins – Practical Filmmaking Diploma Graduate

The three things I have learned or rather the three things I valued most are: teachers, students and knowledge.

I’m now on the other side of six months looking back and on the cusp of achieving a Diploma in Practical Filmmaking. I’m seeking a mentorship with an established director and also planning my five-year career goals in the film industry. Something I never would have believed possible six months ago and all of which I couldn’t have achieved if it hadn’t been for Metro Screen.

Metro Screen has given me the opportunity and confidence to discover my potential, helped me realise my dream for a career in the film industry and helped me gain comprehensive inside knowledge into the various roles a filmmaker undertakes in the production of a project. I’ve written, starred in and edited my own documentary. I have been the Director of Photography on a short drama and Camera Assistant on another, giving me practical experience in what the film production process is like.

All the knowledge I have gained, everything I have learned and unlearned about the film process, industry and everything that I have been fortunate enough to do while at Metro Screen, has only been possible because of the immense help from my teachers and the support of my fellow students.

All the practical and theoretical knowledge that has been graciously and generously passed on from the teachers and staff at Metro Screen has been invaluable and insightful. In putting these lessons into practice I have fallen and made mistakes constantly, and I would have stayed down and made the same mistakes again and again if it wasn’t for the patience and encouragement of my fellow students who helped me in my times of struggle without judgment or condescension.

Thank you Metro Screen. With the 34 years of history, experience, integrity, quality, generosity and reputation that you had when I first entered your doors, I can now say with pride and appreciation that I am a student of Metro Screen and it was an honour to be a part of your last intake.

Still from A Mathematical Equation For Human Intelligence directed by Daniel Collins during the Diploma of Practical Filmmaking.


Posted by Nunavut Tourismon Wednesday, 07 December 2016.  Blog Post Courtesty of Adventure Canada –  An interview with filmmaker-photographer Jason Van Bruggen

EFFLAM MERCIER turned his love of French comic books and video games into a successful career that is going from strength to strength.

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Red Giant | GO BAG



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