Downtown Film Festival judges say hand me the envelope please…And the winner is…

14 07 2012
Downtown Film Festival L.A.Announces 2012 Award Winners

Betty I Am” and “We Are Legion” Given Best Picture NodsAnthony Meindl for “Birds Of A Feather” and Caskey Ebeling for “Getting Up”

Honored as Best Directors

Melissa Leo and Joey Capone Take TOP Acting Awards

Heathen and  Thieves” Captures Audience Favorite Award

The downtown Film Festival grows in the number of films entered and people attending each year. This is the first fest since it was in hiatus for two years and was held at the Independent theater with a dynamite afterparty at Towne (9th & Flower).

The winners of the 2012 Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles were announced today (Friday, July 13th) in an awards presentation at The Hayworth Theater in Los Angeles.

Taking top honors were “Betty I Am” and We Are Legion” for Best Picture feature narrative and  feature documentary, respectively. “Betty I Am” by director Jose Renteria Jr.is a stylish black-and-white film shot on 16 mm that follows the story of two siblings brought together by the untimely death of their father. “We Are Legion,” directed by Brian Knappenberger, is an in-depth, behind-the-scenes look at the secret hacktivist movement Anonymous.

Best Director honors went to Anthony Meindl for his narrative feature “Birds Of  A Feather”and to Caskey Ebeling for her documentary feature “Getting Up: The Tempt One Story.” Meindl’s film is a new twist on the time-honored comedic movie genre where the action revolves around the mounting of a musical play. Ebeling’s film is  a poignant account of the comeback of well-known graffiti artist Tempt One who became ill with ALS, the debilitating neurological affliction also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

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All four films – “Betty I Am,” “We Are Legion,” “Birds Of A Feather” and “Getting Up” made their  Los Angeles premieres during the festival.

“These independently produced feature films reflect the extraordinary quality and diversity of content in today’s independent cinema. We’re very proud to have played a role in providing a showcase for them in the Film Capital of the World,” said Greg Ptacek, Festival Co-Director.

Sharing the Best Picture Short Film award were “Been Good To Know Yuh” by director Corey Brandenstein, an imaginative depiction of a chapter in the life of poet-songwriter and folk singer Woody Guthrie,  and “This Is A Story About Ted and Alice” by director Teressa Tunney, a battle of the opposite sexes with a decidedly different ending.

The Audience Favorite award was captured by “Heathens and Thieves,” a genre-bending action thriller with a  film noir plotline of intrigue and betrayal but set in the Old West.

Oscar winner Melissa Leo took the Best Actress award for her dark comic role as a woman on the dating circuit in “This Is A Story About Ted And Alice.” Joey Capone was named “Best Actor” for his role in “Carlos Spills The Beans,” playing a character who inherits the family restaurant with disastrously funny consequences.

A complete list of the film awards, as they were presented at tonight’s Closing Night ceremony, follows. Downtown Film Festoval L.A. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to spotlighting emerging film talent in the culturally diverse and historic downtown district of Los Angeles.

Downtown Film Festival L.A. 2012 Film Awards

Note: Titles in ALL CAPS indicate feature-length films. Titles in “quotes” indicate short films.

1. Best Director – Short Film

Lauren Lillie – “Paying for It”

2. Best Editing – Short Film

Nayeli Garci-Crespo & Santi Minasi – “Dissent”

3. Best Screenwriting – Short Film

Paul Grellong – “Tracer Gun”

4. Best Cinematography – Short Film

Joe Kocsis – “Legend of the Widower Colby Wallace”

5. Best Musical Score – Short Film

Paul Festa – “The Glitter Emergency”

6. Best Short Films – Honorable Mention

  •  “The Glitter Emergency” directed by Paul Festa
  • “Past Due” directed by Denise C. Plumb
  • “Paying for It” directed by Lauren Lillie
  • “Scenen (Act 1, Scene 1)” directed by Hans Montelius
  • “Substance Ovüse”directed by Burke Roberts

7. Best Short Films (tie)

  •     “Been Good To Know Yuh” directed by Corey Brandenstein
  •     “This Is A Story About Ted and Alice” directed by Teressa Tunney

8. Best Los Angeles Films (All Films)

“Botes al Amanecer” directed by Nikki V. Roberts

9. Best Editing – Feature

Nils Arrington & Thom Newell – JUST LIKE BEING THERE

10.  Best Screenwriting – Feature

Iris Almaraz & Gustavo Ramos – DELUSIONS OF GRANDEUR

11. Best Cinematography – Feature

Robert Murphy – CARLOS SPILLS THE BEANS

12.  Best Music/Score – Feature

Adam Blau – FUZZ TRACK CITY

13.  Best Performance by an Actor – Honorable Mention

  •     Michael Buffo – “Slapstick Porno”
  •     Robert Loggia – THE DIARY OF PRESTON PLUMMER
  •     Jimmy Simpson – “Tracer Gun”
  •     Rob Tepper – “Been Good to Know Yuh”

14. Best Performance by an Actor (All Roles/All Films)

Joey Capone – CARLOS SPILLS THE BEANS

15 . Best Performance by an Actress – Honorable Mention

  •     Anishika Fontae – “Gasp”
  •     Kelsey Ford – “Paying for It”
  •     Celeste Pechous – “Past Due”
  •     Matthew Simmons (playing Peg-Leg Ballerina) – “The Glitter Emergency”

16. Best Performance by an Actress (All Roles/All Films)

Melissa Leo – “This Is a Story About Ted and Alice”

17. Best Director – Feature Narrative

Anthony Meindl – BIRDS OF A FEATHER

18. Best Director – Feature Documentary

Caskey Ebeling – GETTING UP:  THE TEMPT ONE STORY

19. Audience Favorite Award (All Films)

HEATHENS AND THIEVES

Directed by Megan Peterson & John Douglas Sinclair

20. Best Picture – Documentary

WE ARE LEGION

Produced and Directed by Brian Knappenberger

21. Best Picture – Narrative

BETTY I AM

Produced by Joe Engelke, Israel Gomez

Directed by Jose Renteria Jr

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“I Am Neda” a Powerful Indie Film from Today’s Headlines

5 10 2011

 This year a powerful movie is the featured film of 14th Annual ARPA International Film Festival ‘ShortProgram

SYNOPSIS:

June 2009 marked another turning point for Iranians, when mass anti-government protests erupted across major cities in Iran, following the June 12 rigged Iranian presidential election against the disputed victory of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, which came to be known as the “Green Movement”.
These events provoked the Islamic Republic government to declare war on its own people and the world became a witness to some of the most horrific acts that were shown daily through major news outlets, twitter reports and even youtube. Many innocent Iranians were, imprisoned, tortured, raped and killed for standing up for their basic human rights in non-violent civil disobedience.
This story is centered on a courageous young woman who has since become the symbol and face of this movement
Voice of America Television Network Interviews Actress/Producer Nicole Kian about her movie “I Am Neda” on the red carpet.

Persepolis Pictures, United States of America. “I Am Neda” (http://www.IAmNeda.com/), Official Selection – 14th Annual ARPA International Film Festival ‘ShortProgram’(http://affma.org/).





More than a dozen movie premieres at the Downtown Film Festival in Los Angeles starts Wednesday ends on 9-11

8 09 2010

John Hawkes To Be Honored With The
Indie Trailblazer of the Year Award

Los Angeles, CA – Downtown Film Festival Los Angeles announced today that “Everything Will Happen Before You Die,” a hilarious romp through the underbelly of L.A.’s boho subculture, will be presented as the 2010 festival’s Centerpiece Gala premiere film, Saturday, Sept. 11th, 7:30 pm at the new 400-seat Civic Center F. Deaton Auditorium, at corner of 1st and Main St., across from City Hall in downtown L.A.

John Hawkes
(courtesy JHS Class of 1997)

The presentation marks the world premiere of the film directed by Dan Finkel and written by Finkel and Brian McGuire. The film stars McGuire and Bret Roberts. Bruce Dickson is the director of photography.

That evening during the Centerpiece program, actor John Hawkes will be honored with the festival’s Indie Trailblazer of the Year Award, for his body of work in 2010. In addition to appearing in “Everything Will Happen Before You Die,” Hawkes also appears in “On Holiday,” another feature screening premiering at the festival earlier that afternoon. Earlier this year, Hawkes received critical acclaim for his starring role in “Winter’s Bone,” which debuted at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival and went on to nationwide commercial release. Hawkes also has appeared in the feature releases “The Perfect Storm,” “Wristcutters: A Love Story” and “Me and You and Everyone We Know” as well as TV’s “Deadwood& quot; and “Lost.”

In “Everything Will Happen Before You Die,” Edgar (Brian McGuire) finally has got his shit together. After years of riding the party train, he has finally stepped off and is living the nerdy, hipster dream. He has his own on-line fabric company where he designs controversial T-shirts, and has a new beautiful Kenyan girlfriend whom he’s marrying at the end of the day (ok, for her immigration status). He’s right on track with his new life when an unexpected visitor from the past sets him on a new (old) course. Doran (Brett Roberts), a Russian expat who has his own private cabin on life’s party train, insists that he gives his best friend an all-day bachelor adventure. Next stop: chaos! Their friendship is tested as they must square off with a low-re nt Russian mobster and embark on a spiritual quest that brings them in contact with a motley crew of characters from L.A.’s self-professed bohemian underbelly.

“We’re delighted to be the launching platform for this film that so much captures the spirit of L.A.’s ‘alt subculture.’ Brian, Bret, Dan and the rest of their filmmaking team have proven that you don’t need a huge production budget to make a superior – and I’ll add, extremely funny – feature film,” said Greg Ptacek, DFFLA’s Festival Co-Director. “It’s also our honor to award John Hawkes with our Indie Trailblazer Award. John has had an amazing year, and his talent for completely transforming himself in roles, as evidenced in ‘Everything,’ never ceases to amaze me, and audiences everywhere.”

The 2010 Downtown Film Festival L.A. will be held Sept. 8-12 in venues throughout Los Angeles’ historic core. More than 100 feature-length and short films – narrative, documentary and experimental – will be presented along with filmmaker Q&As, panel discussions, cocktail parties, live music events and receptions. For more information, please visit us online at www.dffla.com.

PRESS CONTACT

Katie Littlejohn, publicist
Downtown Film Festival L.A.676-898-3587; katie@dffla.com

MAYO PR – “We don’t guarantee media, we just get it!”
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LAEDC Study Concludes Redbox’s $1 DVD New-Release Rentals Could Result in $1 Billion in Entertainment Industry Losses

21 02 2010

Ripple Effect of Lost Revenues in Southern California Could Cost More Than 9,280 Jobs and $1.5 Billion in Economic Output, Along With Reduced Contributions to Guild and Union Pension Plans

Los Angeles – The Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC) has unveiled a new economic study entitled “The Economic Implications of Low Cost DVD Rentals” which illustrates the negative impact that low cost, new-release DVD rentals could have on the Entertainment industry and the Southern California economy.

The LAEDC study, which utilizes the Redbox model of $1 DVD rentals available at the street date, shows the ripple effect of $1 billion in lost revenues to the domestic home video industry in the Southern California region – the entertainment capital of the world – would lead to an additional $500 million in reduced economic activity.  The loss of motion picture production in and around Los Angeles would result in the loss of more than 9,280 jobs with annual earnings of almost $395 million, according to the LAEDC’s study.

“The economics of the motion picture industry are based on exclusive release windows which allow price differentiation – that is – some earlier transactions take place at higher price points,” said Gregory Freeman, vice president of Consulting and Economic Policy for the LAEDC.  “Redbox, or any other distributor that weakens the release window model, could reduce overall industry revenues.  Lower revenues will likely lead to lower production activity, hurting the Southern California economy.”

Of the 9,280 jobs, more than half of the losses will occur in the Information Sector, the LAEDC found.  In addition to motion picture and sound recording industries, this sector includes publishing industries, radio and television broadcasting, telecommunications industries and Internet service providers.  Other industries impacted will be retail trade, accommodation and food services, health care and social assistance, professional, scientific and technical services, and manufacturing, among others.

For the full story and LAEDC Study link visit: http://tinyurl.com/yeqcw94





TV/Film Production, Hollywood, Tourism and International Trade Top industries to lead region in recover says new study

18 02 2010

Frank Mottek, KNX Business Hour moderates 2010-2011 LAEDC Economic Forecast at LA Marriott, downtown.

LAEDC Forecast Report Says U.S., California and Southern California face a measured economic recovery, with stronger growth in 2011

Entertainment, international trade and tourism cited as regional industry leaders, with an economic boost from major infrastructure projects and a modest rebound in residential real estate

Los Angeles A measured economic recovery is underway in the nation, the state and Southern California, according to the 2010-2011“Economic Forecast & Industry Outlook” report released today by the Kyser Center for Economic Research at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation (LAEDC).

George McQuade, Dr. Nancy Sidhu and Jack Kyser, LAEDC

In California, three sectors will see employment growth during 2010: information, private education and health services.  Like the national experience, unemployment rates in the state will remain high with the LAEDC forecasting a 12.3 percent average rate in 2010, easing down to 11.9 percent in 2011.

“We project that the U.S. economy will grow by 2.6 percent in 2010 and by 3.1 percent in 2011, after plunging by 2.4 percent during 2009,” said Nancy D. Sidhu, Ph.D., the LAEDC’s chief economist.  “However, unemployment rates in the U.S. will remain uncomfortably high, averaging 9.9 percent in 2010 and 9.4 percent in 2011.”

Sidhu observed that consumer spending holds one of the keys to the economic recovery, with inflation-adjusted gains of 1.9 percent in 2010 and 2.7 percent in 2011 forecast, after falling by 0.6 percent in 2009.

“California’s economy is also on the recovery track, but the state will still lose 121,800 jobs in 2010,” said Sidhu.  “However, this will be a huge improvement from the 668,200 jobs lost in 2009.”  California’s housing industry will see a modest recovery in 2010, according to Sidhu. For the full story and link to the forecast visit: http://tinyurl.com/yf85d5m

For images and media interviews call Aida Mayo or George Mc Quade, MAYO Communications, 818-340-5300 or Cell: 818-618-9229.





New York Times, TV Guide, Advertising Age and People Magazine Editors Share New Media Insights with LA Entertainment Publicists

22 11 2009
EPPS media workshop on NY Media at ICG Local 600 sponsored event

Twitter, Facebook and social networks have become mainstream for entertainment writers and editors, Entertainment Publicists Professional Society (EPPS) members learned recently(11-19-09) at a media workshop sponsored by the International Cinematographers (ICG) Union Local 600 in Hollywood.

West Coast Editor Michael Fleeman, People.com said, “Whether we like it or not, reporters are being dragged into new media, some kicking and screaming about it. You have to know how to do it, and you have to file under deadline.”

New York Times Reporter Edward Wyatt, Los Angeles said reporters are being asked to post their stories Online and twitter about it. “Sometimes I record audio interviews or TV interviews and post them on the site,” he said. Wyatt cautions PR Pros to not miss the forest for the trees.  “If you have a webisode that is attracting 50,000 eyes, and you want to tell me about it great, but it the television show associated with it attracts 16 million people a week, that’s the meat of the story.”

Wyatt covers the television business in LA. He joined the Times in New York in 1995 as a finance and investing reports and has covered education, the redesign of the World Trade Center site, the 2004 Democratic primaries, publishing business, as well as professional cycling and the Tour de France. He moved to LA in 2006 to cover Television.

New York Times Reporter Wyatt also said he’s looking for national stories, because the Times just doesn’t report on Manhattan stories. “When I came to LA I found we had not done a story on Two-and-a-Half Men, which is the biggest comedy on television and watched all over the country,” he said. “A lot of people in Manhattan don’t watch it, but people in Iowa, Kansas and elsewhere do. So if you bring stories with a national pace, we’re interested.”

.

Los Angeles Reporter Andrew Hampp for Advertising Age echoed other complaints of panelists on publicists’ followup calls on a pitch.

“Please don’t pitch me after you received a big NO from another editor above me,” he said. “We are still a work in progress, and started our website three years ago. We have separate website andmagazine editors and then we share editing staff. It’s about 99 percent original content on the website. There’s not much overlap between the magazine and website. The site is shorter, faster and more newsie, breasier and a younger user,” he said. Hampp said the print version deadline for  Ad Age magazine is Thursday or early Friday, and the AdAge.com has a daily and weekly newsletter so there is much to choose from through the week. He says deadlines are many at AdAge.com

Hampp’s pet peeves of PR Pros is that second followup phone call he receives after the press release has been received. “

Staff Editor Natalie Abrams, TVGuide.com said, “I think my biggest pet peeve is just the coordination on events,” said TVGuide.com’s Natalie Abrams. “ I’ll get three separate emails a network publicist, a studio publicist, a show publicist or a personal publicist for the actor, and it is all on the same thing, making it hard to decide who to respond to, so coordination on that end would be good,” she said.

TVGuide.com’s Abrams also  said they don’t have full time twitter people, but each writer or editor use new media to drive more traffic to TVGuide.com’s websites.

Abrams also agreed with Wyatt about lying, “if you don’t want it out there that your client is going to be killed off of a show, or that your show has been cancelled, we can embargoed it, just be honest with us.”

Natalie Abrams, staff editor, TV Guide.com is the west coast Staff editor at TVGuide.com, a one-stop entertainment and video content destination serving more than 20 million unique users per month. From television spoilers to insider scoops, Abrams breaks the latest in entertainment news. Since joining in September, 2009, she landed exclusive interviews with some of the hottest celebs including the cast of Glee, Lost, Grey’s Anatomy, 24 and 90210 among others.

Los Angeles Reporter Andrew Hampp for Advertising Age echoed other complaints of panelists on publicists’ followup calls on a pitch. “Please don’t pitch me after you received a big NO from another editor above me,” he said. “We are still a work in progress, and started our website three years ago. We have separate website and magazine editors and then we share editing staff. It’s about 99 percent original content on the website. There’s not much overlap between the magazine and website. The site is shorter, faster and more newsie, breazier and a younger user,” he said. Hampp said the print version deadline for  Ad Age magazine is Thursday or early Friday, and the AdAge.com has a daily and weekly newsletter so there is much to choose from through the week. He says deadlines are many at AdAge.com.

New York Times Wyatt told EPPS workshop that  his two pet peeves from entertainment publicist who pitch him include: “getting asked ‘who have you been talking to, which is none of your business when I am trying to just do a story”  and when publicist lies to their client, “because what will happen is one day I’ll meet your client at a cocktail party and they will say ‘why didn’t you talk to us to promote this new show of mine?’ This actually happened. I said, “Because I asked your publicist, and he said, “you couldn’t talk for X and Y reasons, and I was there on the set, and you walk right past me three or four times. Just don’t do that (lie).”

All panelist prefer email pitches, and most prefer early mornings, except for Edward Wyatt of the NY Times, because he deals with editors, who are three hours of ahead in the morning.

Wyatt@nytimes.com – 323-617-9034

Natalie. Abrams@tvguide.com – 323-856-4093

Michael_fleeman@peoplemag.com 310-268-7200

Ahampp@adage.com –  no phone number provided

Be sure to sign up for other media trend stories and behind the scenes stories (free) in entertainment publicity at the following sites Online:

MAYO PR

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LINKED-IN Entertainment Publicists Group

For entertainment Publicity for movies, TV and music
visit: www.MayoCommunications.com or
www.LAEntertainmentPublicity.com.

We welcome your comments, questions, suggestions and discussions. Thx.





Brian McKnight and Julio Iglesias, Jr., along with Emily Bear and Timothy Mitchum To Perform Live at First Annual Noble Awards in Beverly Hills Sunday

16 10 2009
Teri Hatcher (www.babble.com)
Teri Hatcher (babble.com)


Teri Hatcher, Norman Lear, Lionel Richie, Laila Ali, Nancy O’Dell
Joel Madden, Brett Ratner, Kenny Babyface Edmonds, Billy Bush and Annalynne McCord

have been confirmed on star-studded list of celebrity humanitarians attending the red carpet and Noble Awards event this Sunday, Oct. 18th at the Beverly Hilton, Beverly Hills.
Morgan Freeman is receiving a Lifetime Achievement Awardand is also confirmed.
Brian McKnight
is an American singer, songwriter, arranger, producer, and pop and R&B musician. He is a multi-instrumentalist who can play nine instruments: piano, guitar, bass guitar, drums, percussions, trombone, tuba, French horn and trumpet. Brian McKnight has earned himself a spot in contemporary music history. He has released 11 albums to date, 7 of them have gone platinum, with several going 2 and 3x platinum, and has sold over 20 Million albums worldwide. He just released a new album last month. Brian McKnight (Video)
8-year old Emily Bear – One of the youngest if not the world’s youngest composer, who played at the White House will perform live Sunday at Beverly Hilton during the two hour Noble Awards show.

Emily was the youngest solo performer in the history of the Ravinia Festival, has performed with many well known musicians, appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” five times and performed at the White House. See Events for more info and Galleries for photos and videos.
Julio Iglesias Jr. – Dejame volar


Julio Iglesias Jr. was born in Madrid, Spain to well-known singer, Julio Iglesias and Isabel Preysler. He moved to Miami, Florida at a very young age, a place he now considers home. Although he has spent his whole life surrounded by music, his own personal journey into the music industry didn’t begin until the late 90’s when he released his first album in English titled “Under My Eyes” with Epic Records. With the desire to go back to his roots and reestablish himself, the budding musician searched for new territory to conquer. Julio chose to sing in Spanish and the result is the mind-expanding Tercera Dimension.
The two-hour event, hosted by Access Hollywood’s very own Billy Bush, seeks to annually honor up to a dozen charities and celebrities who actively support them, elevating awareness of these organizations and the impact of their work.
Celebrities who will accept awards on behalf of the charities being honored include Laila Ali (Women’s Sports Foundation), Bush (Lollipop Theater Network), Kenny Edmonds (Stand Up to Cancer), Teri Hatcher (Childrens Hospital Los Angeles), Norman Lear (Playing for Change), Joel Madden (The Art of Elysium), Annalynne McCord (The Blind Project), Access Hollywood’s Nancy O’Dell (Best Buddies), Eva Longoria Parker (Padres Contra El Cancer) and Brett Ratner (DoSomething.org).
The Blind Project, The Lollipop Theater Network, Padres Contra El Cancer and Playing for Change will be honored along with six other previously announced charities.
During the ceremony, each will be presented with an award sculpture, designed by Antonio Banderas, with personal touches added by children who participated in The Art of Elysium workshop at the Shriner’s Hospital for Children. Brian McKnight and Julio Iglesias, Jr., along with Emily Bear and Timothy Mitchum will provide live musical performances throughout the evening.
“We are delighted to present these eleven distinguished charities and their celebrity supporters with the inaugural Noble Award,” said Janeen Mansour, creator and executive producer of the Noble Awards. “We hope this will inspire a revolution for giving not only in Hollywood, but globally.”
For more information, please visitwww.thenobleawards.org.