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The Mentoring Room - Ask the Working Pros

This is a Public Topic geared towards first-time filmmakers. Professional members of The D-Word will come by and answer your questions about documentary filmmaking.

Daniel McGuire
Wed 21 Jul 2010Link

I shot it, I own all the tapes, have all the releases.


Christopher Wong
Wed 21 Jul 2010Link

have you thought of offering your interview with Liyer for the eventual DVD release of EPL? probably would make a good DVD extra for them.


Daniel McGuire
Thu 22 Jul 2010Link

This is what I am talking about – a Time magazine story on the healer Ketut Liyer... http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2005158,00.html


selina marques
Wed 4 Aug 2010Link

Hi,

I am fairly new to filmmaking, though I have shot a couple of student documentaries. I am looking for enough equipment to make a complete and reasonably good quality film. Most likely documentary. I currently have H2 Zoom (which I am not very familar with). I also have an old Sony camera, Hi8 and a first generation macbook. I am looking to spend under $1000 if possible. I have been thinking that the best solution is to invest the money in a new camera. I have a number of questions:

1. Is mini-dv a good investment? Currently, in Canada stores are not carrying mini-dv formats for cameras under $1000. However, I am inclined towards mini-dv because of their cheap storage format. Should I purchase a second hand mini-dv camera, what make and model would be best?

1.b. What sound equipment would I need to purchase?

2. Is the Canon T2ii a good alternative investment. What would I need for good sound? Could I use my existing H2 zoom? Would this be sufficient?

3. Are there any options for under $500?

4. What is a reasonable budget?

Thank you in advance,

selina


Daniel McGuire
Wed 4 Aug 2010Link

In reply to Christopher Wong's post on Thu 22 Jul 2010 :

Sorry to take so long to respond, Chris. Yeah, It would be perfect for a dvd extra, I spend several hours trying to reach a human at Sony's DVD authoring division but was unsuccessful. If I could find out who was in charge of making those decisions, I think I could sell it.
10% commission for the email address or phone of the person at Sony who makes those decisions!
Cheers,
DAN


Seth Shire
Thu 5 Aug 2010Link

Hi Everyone,

I have some technical questions for a small project I want to edit using iMovie, and I wonder if I may ask your advice.

I need to get the footage, from the person who shot the project, onto my computer. The person shot to cards using what looked like a flip camera. She claimed it was hi-def. I'm happy to edit it in standard def. She has the footage on her computer and she also has the cards.

I'm thinking that the simplest way for me to get the footage is for her to transfer the footage from her computer either directly onto my iMac or to an external hard drive that I have. I'm also thinking that another option would be to use a Firewire cable to connect her camera to my iMac and transfer the footage that way directly from the cards. In either event I think I should get the cards from her for back up. Does anyone have an opinion as to the best method for me to get the footage? Thanks.

Seth

Edited Thu 5 Aug 2010 by Seth Shire

Judy Lieff
Tue 10 Aug 2010Link

Hello Everyone,

About a month ago I attended a seminar by a Publicist who said that in the current climate it is wise to try and get a publicist on board before entering the major festivals. He said that because there is such a huge deluge of submissions, it's helpful to either know one of the programmers or find a publicist who has programmer contacts.
Does anyone have any thoughts about this? I've been advised by ITVS folks to submit to festivals as early as possible – is it worth sending in a version that is not quite "tweaked" to it's best in order to make an early deadline? Or, is it better to wait till you have the best possible version and make it into the last possible deadline?

Thanks for your comments.

Best wishes,
Judy

Edited Tue 10 Aug 2010 by Judy Lieff

Christopher Wong
Tue 10 Aug 2010Link

while it is usually best to submit the best possible version, you also don't want to wait too long to get everything just right. top-tier festivals like Sundance only have one or two open spots left by their late deadline. probably the best thing to do is to submit the best version you have by the regular deadline.

regarding the use of a publicist, that is the dirty secret of film festivals. programmers don't like to admit it, but publicists play a very large role in getting their films to the top of the consideration pile. this is because film festivals are constantly in search of buzz, and that is exactly what publicists are good at doing. and once a publicist gets your film into one A-list festival, then all the other festivals will soon come-a-knockin'.


Doug Block
Wed 11 Aug 2010Link

Welcome aboard, Judy. If it's Sundance we're talking about, I'd submit your best version RIGHT NOW. You're at a huge advantage getting something to them earlier rather than later and I'm sure they'll see how great your film is even if it's not fully finished (full disclosure: I moderated a DocuClub work-in-progress screening of Judy's film, so I know firsthand).

By the way, the Mentoring Room is pretty much for non-members. As a full member, this kind of question should go in our Festivals topic.


Doug Block
Wed 11 Aug 2010Link

In reply to Seth Shire's post on Fri 6 Aug 2010 :

Likewise, Seth, the reason you might not be getting any replies is the technical folks generally don't hang around the Mentoring Room. As a member, you're better off posting in the Editing topic.


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