Media and Entertainment News and Events for Month of October 2011

It’s an event which is held twice annually – once in Colorado and again in Santa Barbara, California wine country. The Durango Songwriter’s Expo gives artists and songwriters the opportunity to network with music supervisors, record labels, music publishers, and have music critiqued in listening sessions, sit in on industry panels and perform musical creations during the evening showcases. At this year’s expo in Broomfield, October 6-8, each attendee gets three listening sessions, showcase or open mic opportunities, and full access to workshops and panels. The “Write With The Hitmaker” song contest will run again this year. Sticking with custom, registration is always limited to 200 attendees.

The Chicago International Film Festival, which will be staged October 6-20, is now in its 47th year. The Festival was started in 1964 by filmmaker and graphic artist Michael Kutza to provide an alternative to the commercial Hollywood movies that dominated the city’s theaters. The Festival opened in 1965 at the Carnegie Theater, where King Vidor, Bette Davis, and Stanley Kramer were honored for their contributions to American cinema. Since then, the Festival has grown to become an annual event. The Festival is dedicated to fostering better understanding between cultures and to making a positive contribution to the art form of the moving image.

The FREAK SHOW Horror Film Festival in Orlando is an international horror genre film festival and screenplay competition featuring entries in independent horror from around the world. Filmmakers compete for the “FREAKY Award” in nine different categories. The FREAK SHOW Horror Film Festival is part of SPOOKY EMPIRE’S Ultimate Horror Weekend. A Spooky Empire tradition, the Zombie Walk is the official Friday event that kicks off the weekend long convention, from October 7-9, with make-up artists on hand starting at 10 am to apply paint, make-up, prosthetics, and plenty of fake blood. The Screamin’ Ink Tattoo room will again operate this year during the festival. The Annual Costume Contest will be held October 9, with cash prizes awarded. Live bands will perform between 7 pm and 12 midnight every night of the Festival run.

New York City based Black and Latino Filmmaker’s Coalition, a career resource for filmmakers and actors, hosts a series of one-day workshops structured to challenge, empower and motivate. There will be two more sessions left in this month: the “Mastering On Camera Performances Workshop” on October 9, and “Making A Living As Actor Workshop” on October 16, which will close out the current workshop cycle. The workshop cycle which will start again is structured to guide individuals to perform complex scenes by demanding exercises in efforts to master five crucial disciplines: Rehearsal, Audition, Live Performance, Recorded Performance and Making a Living. BLFC also operates a: Film Assist Grant Program, an Independent Film Theater in Brooklyn, the BLFC Institute which hosts the classrooms and workshops. The website also lists upcoming castings and auditions.

Poetry in Film Festival, or PIFF 2011, is based primarily in Melbourne, but will conduct screenings in other districts of Australia as well. The festival is Australia wide, running October 9 through November 9, accepting entrants from every state and territory in the country, and around the world. Entrants in the festival are given a piece of modern poetry. From there they are free to interpret the poem in the form of a 4-7 min short film as they envision it. The best films will be screened at the PIFF Awards Night, where the awards ceremony will take place, with an after party to follow. The best films will also be shown as a part of the festival circuit in other locations, after the awards ceremony throughout Victoria and Australia.

Sports Video Group (SVG) will hold TranSPORT 2011 in New York on October 11, a sport industry event focused upon the needs of the sports professional whose job duties include transport and distribution of video and audio content via TV, the Internet, and other electronic distribution means. The half-day event that starts past noon will provide an overview of the most recent developments as industry experts and service providers discuss the current and future state of this market segment. The Sports Video Group was formed in 2006 to support the professional community that relies on video, audio, and broadband technologies to produce and distribute sports content. The day ends with a networking cocktail reception.

With its origins as a student festival, and its present focus on film music, the Ghent Film Festival occupies a certain niche among international festivals. Every year the festival organizes film music concerts giving composers of film scores a platform to present their works. Since 2001, the Ghent Film Festival has also organized the World Soundtrack Awards. Each year, the best soundtrack composers are honored and receiving recognition for their work. In addition to the screenings, the Ghent Film Festival also organizes film-related exhibitions. To celebrate the twentieth anniversary of U2’s classic album “Achtung Baby”, the Ghent Film Festival treats its guests to the European premiere of “From the Sky Down”, an in-depth documentary about the Irish super band. The 11th edition of the World Soundtrack Awards & Concert will be held October 22, at which Oscar winners Elliot Goldenthal, Howard Shore and Hans Zimmer will be the distinguished guests for the closing ceremony of the 38th Ghent Film Festival at the Kuipke in Ghent, October 11-22.

Americana is music that honors and is derived from the traditions of American roots music. In 2007, the Grammys added Americana to their Contemporary Folk Award. The Americana Music Festival & Conference goes up October 12-15 in Nashville. In a planned conference session, “Working the Festival Circuit: Making a Living Touring Festivals,” a panel will explore the positives and negatives of sharing a weekend with multiple acts and detail the business side of how to set up such a tour. Many other panels are slated. Evening showcases are held at five notable downtown music venues including historic Ryman Auditorium, home of the Americana Honors & Awards, Lower Broad honkytonks, and the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.

Dedicated to film education and exploration, the Bel-Air Film Festival offers its filmmakers access to a series of film panels, music performances, and networking opportunities with industry professionals when it launches October 12 to run through October 17. As a community centered event, screenings are held throughout the Bel-Air community as well as the greater Los Angeles area. Film screenings include Documentaries, Animation, Short Films, Student Film and Comedy. There will be opening and closing night galas, an education series of film panels, a special red carpet event night recognizing British film hosted by Brits in LA, special red carpet film and comedy night, screenings in private estates, music performances, and a good deal of networking taking place.

The Hamptons International Film Festival was founded to celebrate Independent film – long, short, fiction and documentary – and to introduce a varied spectrum of international films and filmmakers to its audiences. The Festival, which this year runs October 13-17 from East Hampton, is committed to exhibiting films that express fresh voices and differing global perspectives, with the hope that these programs enlighten audiences and provide invaluable exposure to the filmmakers. In addition to short films (for which they are an Academy-qualifying festival), documentaries and narratives, the Festival offers special events such as: a Breakthrough Performers program, which showcases up-and-coming acting talent (past participants include Rooney Mara, Emmy Rossum, Emily Blunt, and Blake Lively).

The 31st Annual Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF) in Honolulu, October 13-20, marks the festival’s 30th anniversary with presentations of contemporary Asian cinema, beach screenings, a sixth Student Showcase for filmmakers under 18. HIFF is focused on discovering features, documentaries and shorts from Asia made by Asians, films about the Pacific made by Pacific Islanders, and films made by Hawaiian filmmakers that present Hawaii in a culturally accurate way. Film selection places an emphasis on feature films, documentaries, short films, Hawaiian-themed films and music videos. One of the scheduled roundtables titled, “Search Party”, brings together composers, music supervisors and studio execs to discuss what goes into taking an idea into a full-fledged score. HIFF is an official partner with Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) for Oscar Night America, and is the sister festival of Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) and Shanghai Media and Entertainment Group (SMEG).

The Ninth Annual Giants of Broadcasting Awards Ceremony and Luncheon in New York City on October 14, honors those individuals who have played a pivotal role in creating and advancing the electronic arts. This year’s honorees include Brian Williams, Christiane Amanpour, C-SPAN’s Brian Lamb, Fred Pierce, BMI’s Frances Preston, John Dille – the architect behind CBS Sunday Morning (Charles Osgood, Rand Morrison, Charles Kuralt and Robert “Shad” Northshield), posthumously Gunsmoke’s James Arness, Dawson B. “Tack” Nail. Bill Baker will serve as Master of Ceremonies. The luncheon is the Library of American Broadcasting’s largest fundraising event, providing the resources to maintain an extensive broadcasting archive and collection of oral histories. A preceding cocktail reception begins at 11:30 am and the awards ceremony begins at noon.

The two day Sexy International Paris Film Festival, opening October 14, looks to discover, promote and screen the best films from around the world that explore the themes of “Sexy” – sexuality, sex and the erotic – from a filmmaker’s cultural, personal, life and/or cinematographic perspective. The Paris based festival aims to enlighten, educate, create discussion and debate, as well as allow audience interaction in relation to various projects within SIPFF. Festival goals are to discover, promote and screen the best films from around the world. Though international in scope emphasis will be placed on Francophone content with a competition programme to determine the best Francophone short and international short film of the festival. The Festival has announced it will premiere for the first time in France the Berlinale International Film Festival’s German Perspective 2010 Closing night Film, “Bedways” by RP Kahl who will be in attendance.

CMJ Film Festival presents a cross section of major studio premieres alongside independent productions from emerging filmmakers. Held annually in New York City, this year from October 18-22, the festival’s goal is to present an audience of 18-34 year old, media and culturally savvy, globally-minded tastemakers with sophisticated film programming and opportunities for direct engagement with filmmakers and film industry. A partial list of some panels planned for the festival include: A&R Philosophy, Alternative Film Marketing and Distribution, Connecting Bands with Fans: Mobile Social Discovery, Producing Killer Videos on a YouTube Budget. CMJ Events produces the CMJ Music Marathon in addition to live events and tours across the USA. Parent company, CMJ Network connects music fans and music industry professionals with new music through interactive media, live events and print, and offers a digital music discovery service, information resources and community to new music fans, professionals and artists.

Toronto After Dark Film Festival is a showcases of new horror, sci-fi, fantasy, action, animation and cult cinema. Last year’s festival was attended by 9,000 film fans and over 100 members of press and industry. The initial lineup includes a number of unique genre movies including the Opening Gala Film, Monster Brawl, a horror action comedy about an outrageous sporting event that sees fan favorites dueling it out to see who is the greatest monster of all. Audiences and fans will also be delighted to hear that horror industry stalwart Troma Entertainment’s Father’s Day, a cult exploitation film about a group of misfits trying to hunt down a twisted serial killer, will hold its World Premiere at the festival which will be running October 20-27 in Toronto.

Every year the Celluloid Screams: Sheffield Horror Film Festival showcases contemporary and classic horror cinema, from new horror features and genre discoveries to short films from the “fearmakers” of the future. Founded in 2009, the festival has premiered such notable films as: Paranormal Activity, Neighbor, I Sell The Dead, Subconscious, Grace and The Revenant (just to name but a few), and has an ongoing commitment to showcase emerging genre talent. Celluloid Screams has negotiated a special festival rate that includes breakfast at their recommended hotel, Jurys Inn Sheffield, during the festival run from October 21-23.

Hollywood Reporter and Billboard join forces to deliver a two-day seminar on the role of music in film and television, taking place in Hollywood, October 24 and 25. Now in its tenth year, this Conference offers attendees an opportunity to learn from, network with, and get the ear of attending music supervisors, composers, directors, music editors, songwriters and producers active in the business. Topic areas slated for exploration include: Songwriters and Musicians Working in Film & TV, Music Supervisors Provide Real Time Critiques, Composers Dissect How a Score Evolves, Writing for Teens, ‘Tweens and Tots, Roundtables, Speed Networking, more.There will be a Closing Network Happy Hour on the Pool Terrace, then following will be the Official Closing Night Party at The Highlands Hollywood.

The Annual Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame October 26 New York City ceremony is regarded as an industry event honoring the pioneers, innovators and stars of the electronic arts. The evening’s formal dinner ceremonies will be hosted by Piers Morgan of CNN, and Nancy O’Dell of Entertainment Tonight. Event organizer and producer NewBay Media’s market brands are directed toward five vertical markets – Pro Audio, Broadcast and Video, Musical Instruments, AV / Consumer Electronics and K-12 Education. NewBay publishes and produces over 40 publications and show dailies, 50 websites, 30 daily and weekly E-Newsletters, 3 expos and over 50 custom publishing efforts annually.

At an October 27 Media and Entertainment Investing Conference in Miami’s Coral Gables district, panels for the day include: Early-Stage Media Investing and how to meet investors, pitch them, and what it really takes to get them to write you a check, and Growing Your Media Entertainment Business: Protecting and Selling Your Intellectual Property. The conference, sponsored by The Launch Pad at the University of Miami, will appeal to Media and Entertainment entrepreneurs raising capital, as well as Media Investors (VCs, Angels & Corporate). Additionally, all companies can attend the Pitching Workshop Breakfast from 8-10 am, as well as the Networking Lunch, and Cocktail Party.

The above events are only a sample of what is fully listed. Complete details are on the “Media, Entertainment and Performing Arts Industry News and Events” page which now has a language translation button to convert page contents into most widely used languages. In a look ahead into November event dates, there is the anticipated American Film Market set oceanside in Santa Monica, the 12th Annual Latin Grammy Awards in Las Vegas, Billboard Touring Conference in New York, the Government Video Expo in Washington, DC, and AFI Fest in Hollywood, to give a small sample of the upcoming events in the month ahead. Also to alert viewers, a site revamp and redesign of The Actor’s Checklist is close at hand, with new interactive features, tools and resources to aid members, so please stay tuned.