Join us as we gather virtually for a special series of workshops focused on the pre-production stage of film and media projects. Each two-hour, roundtable-style class will be held on a Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to noon. We are limiting each class to 20 people in order to maximize interaction with each presenter. Registration is $15 per class and is now open! Click here to register.
Developing Docs & Digitals
October 17, 2020
Presenter: Kevin Christoffersen, Development Executive
Back by popular demand, Kevin will recap his presentation from this past spring on “Creating an Investor-Ready Package,” where he talked about film financing and offered tips on preparing your investment presentations for narrative features. Kevin also will dive into the process of packaging documentary film as well as reality and digital series to get them noticed. Participants will have a chance to present their own project’s pitch package and receive professional feedback.
About the presenter:
Kevin Christoffersen has been working in just about every form of media for nearly three decades, producing content across four continents while living in five countries. He is an educator and development executive of the new platform, "Film Education & Development." In this role, his workshops and filmmaker consultations guide filmmakers through the feature-film development process from A to Z. Kevin sits on the advisory board of the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival and has recently co-written a feature-length screenplay. As a producer, he is coordinating a new venture, through a slate financing structure, that fosters co-production partnerships for multilateral feature films throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. Kevin splits his time between New York, Los Angeles and Vancouver, always on the lookout for new relationships in the film industry and new discoveries in its ever-changing landscape.
Working with Talent
October 24, 2020
- Joni Tackette, Owner, Joni Tackette Casting
- Maureen O’Brien, Executive Director, SAG-AFTRA Missouri Valley Local
In this session, Joni will explain how to conduct casting sessions to find local and national talent and offer a few tips on matching an actor’s abilities to the role you’re seeking. Maureen will discuss the benefits of hiring union performers and share an overview of the rates and guidelines for working with the SAG-AFTRA office, with some advice about performer contracts for feature and short films as well as digital series productions. The session also will summarize a recent report called “The Safe Way Forward,” which includes Covid-19 safety guidelines and was developed by SAG-AFTRA with DGA, IATSE and the Teamsters. Please come with lots of questions about working with talent.
About the presenters:
Casting Director Joni Tackette has more than 30 years of experience working in the motion & digital media industry. Her diverse casting experience includes Principal casting for hundreds of Commercial, Corporate Film, Digital, & Print projects. In addition, she’s worked on over twenty-five feature films providing Principal, Day Player, Extras, and Promotional Crowd Casting in St. Louis and on location throughout the US and Canada. She is a member of Casting Society of America - CSA, Past-President of the Missouri Motion Media Association, and is a ten year Board Member for Cinema St. Louis. Her website is Jonitackettecasting.net.
Maureen O’Brien is the executive director for the Missouri Valley local of the Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artist (SAG-AFTRA), where she oversees and manages member outreach and communications, contract enforcement, organizing initiatives and administration. She acts as the liaison between union members, their agents, paymasters and producers for commercials, corporate training videos, network TV, internet programs and film projects. Maureen also has extensive experience as both a director and a producer. Previously, she spent seven years as the casting coordinator for Talent Plus Inc., where she was responsible for producing auditions for local and national clients as well as promotional materials for artists represented by the agency. She currently serves on the board of the Missouri Motion Media Association.
Producing Like a Pro
November 7, 2020
Presenter: Nicolaas Bertelsen, Founder/Producer, CinemaWerks
The producer is one of the most important and misunderstood positions of any film or media production. In his session, we’ll dive into the creative, financial and physical logistics of producing a feature film. Nick will discuss ways to find or create a script to tell your story and then break down that script to guide decisions about locations, talent, crew and the overall budget. Participants will get a chance to use an actual script to practice making some of those decisions based on a budget. Nick will also discuss the physical production of a film, which includes setting up an on-site office and collaborating with key members of the crew.
About the presenter:
Nicolaas Bertelsen is the founder of CinemaWerks in Beverly Hills, where he develops and produces award-winning feature films. Recent projects include “Driveways,” which screened at the Berlin International Film Festival and the Tribeca Film Festival in 2019 and was nominated for a Film Independent Spirit Award. His other feature films include “Speed of Life,” “The Tomorrow Man” and “Rust Creek.” Nick is originally from Ames and earned a B.A. in Electronic Media Studios from Iowa State University in 1997 and an M.F.A. in Cinema/Television from the University of Southern California in 2011.