Plotbot

I recently discovered an intriguing online tool called Plotbot that facilitates collaboration between many users on scripts and screenplays. Has anyone used this before? Would anyone like to try? It looks pretty well designed, so I think I’ll try it out and report back.

Some Good Advice

The UC Berkeley School of Journalism has some pretty awesome people. They even put together a Documentary Cookbook – which gives a brief history of their mission followed by some excellent advice on how to make, in effect, the Ikea of movies – looks really nice, but costs next to nothing.

If you read nothing else, read “Basic Approach” onward. My favorite bit of advice: “Avoid air travel. Is there no good film to be made within 100 miles of home?” That made me think. I live in a place chock full of history, conflict, tradition and rebellion. . . are there no good stories to be told about Cambridge?

There are plenty of narrative films that use Harvard as the romantic, leaf-scattered backdrop upon which any number of fantasies come into play (Elle Woods in Legally Blonde and the romance in Good Will Hunting come to mind). But there’s more to Cambridge than People-Who-Attend-Harvard and People-Who-Don’t. Maybe there’s a story in that.

National Film Challenge

Hot on the heels of the Insomnia Film Festival comes the National Film Challenge. A spin off from the 48 Hour Film Project in 2003, the National Film Challenge is similar in structure, but films are mailed in from anywhere in the country and screened online instead of in the local city.

Register by October 18th (spots may fill up earlier) for the competition weekend of October 19-22, 2007.

Also of note, the International Documentary Challenge is coming up in March ’08. Shoot a documentary from March 6-10, 2008 for the third annual iteration of this non-fiction filmmaking event. Finalists will be premiering at HotDocs in April.

But wait! There’s more:

A screening of the [2007] IDC films produced in the Washington DC area will take place on October 9, 2007 at the AFI Silver Theatre.

How’s that for filmfest goodness?

What’s a Best Boy again?

Skillset has a great list of Film Jobs with descriptions and suggestions for breaking into the roles. It’s very helpful in figuring out who all the different people are who contribute to making a film. It’s also very useful in determining what titles to give your friends and colleagues who did various miscellaneous things for your no-budget indie.