Monday, April 26, 2010

Action Packed Thursday!

There are several events going on this Thursday!
1. B & H will be doing an Arri Lighting Workshop in the TV studio on Thursday from 12pm to 1:30pm. Pizza will be served! All DF and VP students are welcome!
2. AENY (After Effects New York) will be holding it's monthly meeting on Thursday night from 6:45 - 9pm. Click HERE for details.
3. Screenwriters PEN Panel is happening on Thursday evening. Details in the post below.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Screenwriting Panel from the PEN World Voices Festival

*** $12 STUDENT TICKETS (Use code PW10 when ordering tickets) ***

PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature
Thursday, April 29 at 7 p.m.
Featuring Philippe Djian, Barry Gifford, Richard Price, Francine Prose and Jean-Philippe Toussaint
What is lost and what is gained in the translation of fiction to film? Join a distinguished panel of international writers to take a look at what happens when film directors get their hands on the books we love.

PHILIPPE DJIAN, whose 37:2 le matin (Betty Blue) was directed by Jean-Jacques Beineix; BARRY GIFFORD, whose Wild at Heart was directed by David Lynch and celebrates its 20th birthday this year; RICHARD PRICE, whose book’s Clockers was directed by Spike Lee; JEAN-PHILIPPE TOUSSAINT, whose work has been compared to the films of Jim Jarmusch. Author and former PEN American Center president FRANCINE PROSE directs the action. >>More Information

WHERE: Jack H. Skirball Center for the Performing Arts at NYU 566 LaGuardia Place (at Washington Square South)
TICKETS: $15/$12 PEN Members and current NYU ID holders (includes faculty and staff) or 212.352.3101, or in person at Skirball Center Shagan Box Office, 566 LaGuardia Place, Tuesday to Saturday 12 to 6 p.m.

Cosponsored by La Maison Francaise, NYU, Skirball Center for the Performing Arts at NYU, and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy

PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature: A week-long celebration of books and writing from around the globe, featuring 50+ events, 150 writers, and 40 countries. Don't miss this exciting cross-cultural literary exchange including conversations, panel discussions, readings, a translation slam, and an all-star Cabaret,. April 26-May 2, 2010.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

House Season Finalie Shot with Cannon 5D

Click HERE to hear the Phillip Bloom interview with House M.D. Director of Photography, Gale Tattersall. He was approached by the producer and director to get a shallow depth of field for the final episode. Tattersall's choice was the Cannon 5D. It's really interesting to hear the DP talk about working with the Cannon. The interview is an hour long. Listen and let us know what you think.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Department Meeting Spring Quarter

Hello All!
*This post is an echo of the e-mail you received last week.
Please try to come to the department meeting! Voice your opinion. We need student feedback! What is going right? What is going wrong? I will be available to answer questions, give advice, and listen to what you have to say.

Date: Wednesday April 21st
Time: 12:30 - 1:15pm
Location: Room 732

If you cannot make it, please keep in touch with any questions or issues via e-mail or phone. I'm always happy to help! Looking forward to seeing you there! Cheers, Eve.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Great Camera Shootout!

I've been hearing a lot of talk among students regarding camera options for their thesis. I would like to begin this conversation by introducing you to a fantastic series that was sent to me by filmmaker Jason Zapata. Camera rental house, Zacuto USA, has put together a web series titled "The Great Camera Shootout." Cinematographers compare a series of DSLR cameras with 35mm film. I would suggest anyone who has or wants to look into DSLRs should watch this series. Expert colorists, film developers, and cinematographers discuss the pros and cons of both formats. A definate must see! Click on the poster above or HERE to watch the episodes. When you are done, let us know what you think!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Pixels! UPDATE!

Since my background is in VFX, I tend to have a soft spot for films that are created using these techniques as a crucial part of the storytelling. Here is a film I think you will get a kick out of and enjoy. Start a conversation!
To see the original storyboards and an interview with the director, click HERE.
For an alternate soundtrack, click HERE. Thanks to Jared for that one!

Uploaded by onemoreprod. - Arts and animation videos.

Technical Difficulties :(

Hello guys! I have been having problems with the Broadcast Studio project post; therefore the post had to be removed. Keep checking back for more projects.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Michael Caine at the Directors Guild Theater

From the Museum of the Moving Image -
Sir Michael Caine, Icon:
A conversation with Michael Caine followed by a preview screening of Harry Brown
Wednesday, April 28, 7:30 p.m.
At the Directors Guild Theater, 110 W. 57th Street, Manhattan

Presented in association with BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts). Sir Michael Caine is one of the world's most acclaimed screen actors; along with Jack Nicholson, he is the only actor with Oscar nominations in every decade since the 1960s. Caine has played a wide range of characters, some aristocratic, some reflecting his working-class roots. Some of his best roles have been hard men. He was a brutal hitman in Get Carter (1970), a gold thief in The Italian Job (1969), and a British officer in his star-making role in Zulu (1964). In his latest film, Harry Brown, Caine plays a widowed veteran who seeks vengeance against a youth gang after his friend is murdered. Caine will discuss his tough-guy roles in a conversation with clips moderated by Chief Curator David Schwartz. The conversation will be followed by an exclusive preview screening of Harry Brown (2009, 97 mins. Directed by Daniel Barber. With Emily Mortimer.), which will open in theaters on April 30.

Tickets: $20 public/$12 Museum members/Free for sponsor-level and above.
Buy advance tickets online or by calling 718.784.4520. Members at the sponsor level and above should call to reserve tickets.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

New Building Security Policy!

Check under AINYC Links to find the new policy. The prior approval has been removed (no more one week wait!) and Dilys Shiao will be making the reservations. Please review it before scheduling your shoot.

Please e-mail Eve Okupniak for any questions or concerns.

Special thanks to all of the students who voiced their concerns and suggestions. All feedback is appreciated. Thanks!

Urbanworld Film Festival

Calling All Student Filmmakers!

In 2010, the Urbanworld Film Festival gears up for its best year yet! Mark your calendar for this New York City festival, taking place September 16-19, and don't miss the opportunity to submit your film for consideration. Visit for all event and film submission details. Life looks better from the red carpet!


Urbanworld Film Festival is the leading showcase for urban, ethnic, and multicultural cinema. Over the past 13 years, the festival has presented over 800 features, shorts and documentaries, with annual attendance reaching 20,000. Urbanworld is one of the world's largest competitive film festivals, whose mission is to redefine and enhance the roles of multicultural constituents in contemporary cinema.

The NYC based fest runs from September 16-19, 2010. PRIZES AWARDED TO FOLLOWING CATEGORIES: Narrative Feature, Narrative Short, Documentary Feature, Documentary Short, Best Director, and Screenplay.

Please visit us NOW at OR to submit your film or screenplay.


Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Design Currency: Great Economic Divide - Part 2

So, did you answer the questions in part 1?
Good. Now you are ready to begin contemplating an even larger question.
I just read an article today in the NY Times talking about the film, "Breaking Upwards". You can read the article HERE. And it got me thinking . . .
Creating an independent film like this one is exciting and extremely alarming. With the success of Paranormal Activity, studios are beginning to realize the potential of DIY (do-it-yourself) filmmaking. Both films have a price tag of $15K, which is super cheap considering $5M is still a low budget film. Understand that most of the crew and talent were practically unpaid.
What does that mean for you?
Let's say you enjoy working with a camera crew, or an electrical grip, or as a boom operator. There are unions for these jobs. But what if these unionized jobs begin disappearing? The union jobs are for projects with a certain budget associated with studios or production companies. What if those productions kept disappearing and all that was left were these DIY shoots?
There was a point in the film industry where the business model was that you worked bad hours at bad pay in order to get experience. Once you have enough contacts and made your share of favors, then you are ready to begin working for a living. That model is slowly disappearing. And we, as filmmakers and students, are letting it happen. Less and less we are seeing real funding for moderatley budgeted films ($10 - 30 M) because it is cheaper for distribution companies to cut a deal at Sundance or any other festival and make a killing in profits.
If you noticed, there is a trend in feature filmmaking. Expensive VFX, brand driven films are being produced over well written, character driven dramas. (I could go into the whole Avatar vs Hurt Locker rant, but we'll leave that for another post.) Who wants to pay a unionized, experienced crew when a bunch a 20 somethings are willing to work for free? So, that shoot that you quit your job over so you could help your friend of a friend for two weeks. That film is opening up in theaters next month and you still do not have a job.
Now, I'm not trying to be a downer. I think both of these case studies are terrific demonstrations of what a dedicated artist and business man can do with a limited amount of funds. Frankly, I believe some of the best filmmaking is done on a strict budget. Budget limitations require creative problem solving which often leads to better storytelling. Just look at what happened to the Matrix trilogy: the first one was done with a strict budget, fantastic film. When the Warchowski brothers received unlimited funding, they lost the focus of the story they were trying to tell.
My point is that you should be extremely considerate with what you do for free and don't forget the people who worked on your shoot. There is a similar dilema right now in the Visual Effects industy. Go to and check out the on-line town hall meetings. They are suffering from something similar. The youngest generation of artists are will to work for pratically nothing as long as they can say they worked on a feature film. This leads to a difficult cycle where the older the artist gets the less job opportunities are available. When you, as a person, begin to develop the responsibilities of being a parent, spouse, caretaker, etc, then you will need a steady income. This issue should be on your list of concerns now. It's only the rest of your career . . .

What are your thoughts? I am curious. The blog has just been updated to allow everyone to post, with google accounts or not. Please, share!
Cheers, Director Eve.