March 28, 2014
This week we are offering these jobs to our students:
Film Connection graduate Ian McCamant pitches his scripts to Hollywood!
Over the past few weeks, Film Connection alumnus Ian McCamant has been working with his new LA manager on sprucing up his scripts to pitch them to Hollywood.
Ian describes meeting his manager and what has been happening since. “I met him in Hollywood while I was out and about, and we exchanged business cards,” he says. “The next time we met up, I showed him my thesis film from college, and he liked it so much that he asked to see some of my scripts. He checked those out, and ever since he has been helping me tighten the scripts up to get ready to pitch to producers and some of the contacts I’ve made out here so far. My manager has really helped push me in the direction of other writing jobs and opportunities.”
Ian and his manager are currently streamlining the plot elements and filling in the grey areas of his script “The End of History.” They are gearing up for a second-round pitch of the script to producer Evan Atrowsky (Cabin Fever, Fanboys), as well as shopping the script in other places.
Recording Connection apprentice Jalyan Birl gets hired by his mentor studio!
“Things are going great!” says Jaylan. “I’m starting to work with the studio, making records for bands such as Walk off the Earth and The Flatliners.”
In addition to his new duties at Drive Studios, Jaylan has been working on his own music, and is currently mastering his own album at Drive Entertainment. He will be bringing more bands into the studio, as well.
Film apprentice Mike Dusenka works on behind-the-scenes documentary for Dolce Films!
Film apprentice Mike Dusenka is having a great time with mentors Daniel Lir and Bayou Bennett at Dolce Films in Los Angeles. After serving as lead editor for a music video Daniel recently shot, Mike is now working on a behind-the-scenes documentary for the video, with fellow film apprentice Youp Zondag acting as assistant editor for the project. In addition, Mike is working on editing another documentary, and is currently eyeing an in-house position as a digital editor for the Jon Lovitz Comedy Club in Universal City!
We reveal who our new best friend is in next week’s newsletter. If you’d like to guess, please sign up here. Guess right, and you could win a brand new Abelton Live or Pro Tools software package in the box! Entry must be received by 4/21/2014 - Good luck!
Film Review: 'Chef'
With Jon Favreau, Sofia Vergara, John Leguizamo, Scarlett Johansson, Dustin Hoffman, Oliver Platt, Bobby Cannavale, Amy Sedaris, Emjay Anthony, Robert Downey Jr.
by Britney Tobin
This film can be best described as a “feel good” flick best served with a full buffet (or a full stomach)! Make reservations beforehand because you WILL be hungry afterwards!
The audience is left to assume that Carl is separated from his wife, the mother of his child, due to his overwhelming work load as a chef at a popular restaurant, and that he must find an alternative to free himself from harsh critics, a horrible boss, and a weak kitchen environment for his own well-being and for the sake of his family. As with any artist, the biggest struggle for Carl is identifying and establishing a sense of autonomy.
As a film, Chef isn’t completely dependent on the creation or presentation of food or the work and life of a chef, but instead plays on all the senses, stepping back visually from completely immersing the audience in the art of gastronomy (a fair move, since the food is distracting enough as it is). One of the trendier aspects of the film is its inclusion of social media features (Twitter, Facebook, Vine, etc.) as related by Carl’s son, Percy. This brings in a great deal of comedy when Carl can’t understand how or why he is the butt of jokes on Twitter, highlighting the generational differences with his son. The father-son bond built between Carl and Percy is relatable and honest (minus the obvious real-life child labor laws).
Chef is a piece by Jon Favreau, for Jon Favreau, for families, and for anyone who likes food! (Who doesn’t?) Favreau’s performance as Carl Casper is family-friendly, rather than the stereotypical vulgar and explosive high-pressured chef character. Nevertheless, Favreau’s attempt to combine heartfelt drama with comedy is for the most part successful, even though, overall, there isn’t much antagonism throughout the film, leaving you craving just a bit more. Of course, the quick relief to that conundrum is to find a nearby food truck as you exit the theater.
Sam Levine, mentor at Flying Monkeys Entertainment, talks film producer strategies
He went on to say that the overarching goal of a producer in every situation is to always try to achieve a “win-win” for the group (the director, writers, producers, cast and crew). In order to do this, you must figure out what the mutual “win” is, whether it’s money, views, awards, or anything else--and if it’s more than one of those things, which is most important in ranking.
From a financial perspective, Sam says that as a general rule of thumb, producers should never cap out over 7% of the entire production. However, this balance can be achieved in many different ways, which is why being a producer is such a coveted yet difficult position in the entertainment industry. “Any director can produce a film. Not every producer can direct,” he says.
Finally, considering the increased role of the Internet in the film industry, Sam suggests that if you are going the Youtube route, you may want to consider incentives to getting more views with contests or giveaways. Sam himself is currently executive-producing a web series called “Peter and Wendy.”
Recording Connection mentors brag about their students…
"This past week I started learning about tracking songs. There was a lot on preparing for the meeting with the client(s) which is really important. Things like taking notes on the musicians and their instruments, positioning of mics before they arrive to the studio, being ready for unexpected changes, being open to different things but also keeping it organized. It helps in setting the studio up to know all the mics and which ones work best for which instruments, it makes it much quicker. I’m excited and ready to jump in with my ProTools arriving!"
- Jessica Sherman, Chicago, IL, Recording