AFM, the anticipated, annual film event that’s not quite festival, not quite conference, but mostly business opportunity – the business of independent motion picture production and distribution – set oceanside against Santa Monica beach. Generally, 8,000 plus industry professionals arrive in Santa Monica for deal-making, screenings, seminars, networking and parties. Participants come from over 70 countries and include acquisition and development executives, agents, attorneys, directors, distributors, festival directors, financiers, film commissioners, producers, writers, the international press and all those who provide services to the motion picture industry. Separate from the conference schedule, the AFM Industry Conversations are interactive and informative discussions led by Hollywood thought leaders, decision makers, trendsetters and experts, and are free to anyone with an AFM Badge. AFM is produced by the Independent Film and Television Alliance®, the global trade association of the independent motion picture and television industry and the voice and advocate for the Independents worldwide.
The American Film Market (AFM) is the market partner of AFI FEST. The association between the two events connects art and commerce (more on AFI in the next story below). AFM badges will allow access to many AFI events, including all public screenings. AFI FEST badges will allow access to the AFM screenings. AFI FEST filmmakers, whose films are part of the festival, will have full access to AFM (and to be able to promote their film to the AFM participant distributors. Shuttle buses will move participants between Santa Monica and Hollywood. At #AFM2016 which runs through November 9, World Premieres screenings will include: sci-fi thriller ‘What Happened To Monday,’ with Noomi Rapace, Glenn Close, and Willem Dafoe; animated musical ‘Charming 3D,’ with voices by Demi Lovato, Ashley Tisdale, and Avril Lavigne; animated feature ‘Ballerina,’ with voices by Elle Fanning and Dane DeHaan; ‘Swing State,’ with Taryn Manning, Billy Zane, Sean Astin, Angela Kinsey.
The recently added conference section this year will include major topic areas in this order: November 3 China Conference, presented by China Beijing Film Delegation and Beijing Weying Technology Co., Ltd.; the November 4 Finance Conference I: The Future of Global Film Finance; the November 5 Pitch Conference, presented by I AM FILM; the November 6 Finance Conference II: Funding Films Today, presented by Mexico City Film Commission; the November 7 Production Conference, presented by .film; the November 8 Distribution Conference, which will cover major topic areas Working with Sales Agents and The Future of Video On Demand. And beyond conferences are AFM Roundtables, exploring specialized topics including, Hong Kong: The Next Generation of Project Management for Production in Asia. The Passion of the Film: From Inspiration to Release, Distributing and Monetizing Feature Documentaries, and other varied subjects.
Organizer of the 12-day Denver Film Festival (#DFF39), Denver Film Society, develops opportunities for diverse audiences to discover film through creative, thought-provoking experiences. The Denver Film Society’s vision is to cultivate community and transform lives through film. On festival opening night, The Reel Social Club (RSC) is the Denver Film Society’s young professionals’ group, aimed at fostering the next generation of cinema lovers, and its RSC Night at the Denver Film Festival a screening of Folk Hero & Funny Guy, followed by a Q&A with the filmmakers, then switching to the RSC Party at The Bottling Hall at Great Divide Brewing Co., which includes complimentary food and drink. ‘La La Land,’ written and directed by Academy Award nominee Damien Chazelle (‘Whiplash’) is an original musical set in modern-day Los Angeles, where aspiring actress Mia (Emma Stone) and Sebastian (Ryan Gosling), a dedicated jazz musician, struggle to make ends meet. #DFF39 Centerpiece film is ‘Lion,’ based on a true story and starring Dev Patel (‘Slumdog Millionaire’), Nicole Kidman and Rooney Mara.
Here are some of the special event activities that will add to the festival calendar of Denver Film Festival. Culinary Cinema, is held in partnership with Colorado Restaurant Association, this series serves up not only food-focused films but receptions, Q&As and other attendant events that reflect the topics onscreen. Reel Social Club Party, begins with a screening of ‘Folk Hero & Funny Guy,’ followed by a Q&A with the filmmakers and the presentation of the RSC Indie Voice Award to co-star Alex Karpovsky. The evening continues with the RSC Party which includes complimentary food and drink. DFS Creative Conversations presents food-focused films, receptions, Q&As and other attendant events planned in conjunction with the Colorado Restaurant Association.
Other Denver Film Festival special events to look forward to will happen through the AnneX, serving as a hub of Festival activities highlighting the intersection of film, art, performance and technology. It will be open daily, offering panel discussions, one-on-one conversations, digital product displays, a relaxing public lounge and a virtual reality experience. In film screening, ‘SeriesFest: American Epic,’ Executive Produced by Robert Redford, T Bone Burnett and Jack White, the filmmakers recreate the realism of America’s first recording studios inside an historic 1930s studio in the heart of Old Hollywood. The SeriesFest event will call upon some of today’s renowned musicians to apply their creativity against the system that recorded their musical predecessors. Elton John, Willie Nelson, Alabama Shakes, Merle Haggard, Jack White, Nas, are some of the artists called in to take part. The November 13 Awards Brunch, unveils this year’s award winners and closes #DFF39.
The Billboard Touring Conference and Awards (#TouringConf) in Beverly Hills is dedicated to the live music industry. It’s programming seeks to informs, educate and provide a forum for promoters, producers, agents, managers, venues, sponsors, marketers, production professionals, merchandisers, digital music executives, ticketing companies, and all touring-related businesses about the industry’s emerging opportunities and pressing challenges. Ray Waddell, Executive Director of Content and Programming for Live Entertainment, Billboard, will issue the Welcome Remarks at the outset of the conference. The opening panel, “We Don’t Have a Scalping Problem, We Have a Pricing Problem … ” will include Michele Bernstein, WME; John Megan, Concerts West; Jared Paul, Faculty Productions; Bob Roux, Live Nation; Barry Rudin, Barry’s Tickets; Jared Smith, Ticketmaster, in discussion moderated by Ray Waddell, Billboard. Beyonce, Bruce Springsteen and his E Street Band, and Coldplay lead the finalists for the 2016 Billboard Touring Awards.
The Billboard Touring Awards honors the artists, executives, companies and venues behind the top tours and events of the year. The awards are based primarily on box office data reported to Billboard Boxscore between October 1, 2015, and September 30, 2016. Finalists for the Top Draw, acts selling the most tickets in the period, are also the same bands that scored high marks for top touring bands: Beyonce for Formation tour, Bruce Springsteen and E Street Band for the River tour, Coldplay for Head Full of Dreams tour. Finalists for Breakthrough, which goes to an act cracking the elite tours for the first time, are Adele, The Weeknd, and Twenty One Pilots. Scooter Braun, founder of SB Projects, will receive the Humanitarian Award, which recognizes the philanthropic efforts of a touring industry professional.
Here is a comprehensive listing of the categories for which Billboard will hand out awards for: Top Draw, Top Tour, Top Package, Breakthrough, Top Comedy Tour, Top Boxscore, Top Festival, Top Arena, Top Venue (under 10,000 seats), Top Venue (under 5,000 seats), Top Club, Top Amphitheater, Top Manager, Top Agency, Top Promoter, Top Independent Promoter (U.S.), Top Independent Promoter (International), Concert Marketing and Promotion Award, Golden Circle Award, Humanitarian, Legend of Live. The awards ceremonies happen on each day of the the two-day conference that starts November 9. A Pre-Awards Cocktail Reception precedes the awards ceremony on both days. The conference ends with the closing night cocktail reception.
Taking place over four days the inaugural Kaleidoscope Festival of Illumination (#KSCOPE16) will stage a transformation of the Joondalup City Centre into an interactive and illuminated ‘City of the Future,’ through a multidisciplinary cultural program featuring 3D architectural transformations (live buildings), projection performance, virtual reality, augmented reality, workshops, and interactive and immersive curated spaces. The event’s programming is structured along the lines of light, music and food. Opening November 10, and with something for all ages, spectators can expect a cultural experience paired with local music and festival food trucks. The free festival encourages people to come early and partake in the setup food and drink offerings with family and friends, and watch as the sun goes down and the light show begins.
Key projects include Lifebox, a projection mapping and dance stage hosting ‘Pallas,’ a performance piece commissioned by the festival, representing the growth and survival of a species, and the driving forces of life. Another installation, Portal, provides an immersive entry way into the festival using layers of scrim with multidimensional projection that appear to project back into infinity. Another new work, The ‘Reverse Dream Time Architectural Projection,’ will be set up to transform the façade of the Joondalup Library with animation that represents the deep time connection that the local Indigenous people have to the country, and takes it towards the future in a ‘reverse dreamtime story’ that looks back on this time. A new found approach to dream time story telling.
‘Mechatron’ offers Kaleidoscope goers a next-level virtual reality experience, designed so one even feels physical movements and bumps through a virtual adventure. D.A.V.E. (a robotic augmented reality character from the future) can appear on a mobile phone at multiple touchpoints throughout the festival, with tales from the future and opportunities for picture selfies with him. Drawing upon Perth’s and Australia’s audio and visual artists talent pool, Kaleidoscope will delve into collaborative partnerships featuring the works of performing creatives such as dance director/choreographer Chrissie Parrot, musician and filmmaker Sam Price (Naik), mixed technology specialist Gareth Lockett and traditional cultural educator and consummate community leader, Dennis Simmons, all forming a joint creative front to illuminate Joondalup City Centre for the festival’s inaugural year.
AFI FEST (#AFIFEST) in Hollywood, is the American Film Institute’s annual celebration of international cinema from modern masters and emerging filmmakers. It coordinates to some degree with AFM in Santa Monica and features nightly red-carpet galas, special screenings, conversations and tributes over its eight-day run. AFI FEST screenings are free to the public. This year, with dates that begin just after the close of AFM in Santa Monica – rather than the usual overlapping calendars – AFI Fest’s opening night gala will be the World Premiere of ‘Rules Don’t Apply,’ (Warren Beatty, Director) on, November 10.
In its Special Screenings section AFI will screen the World Premiere of the CG-animated film ‘Moana’ (Ron Clements and John Musker, Directors), in addition to, documentary feature, ‘Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher And Debbie Reynolds’ (Fisher Stevens and Alexis Bloom, Directors), ‘Lion’ (Garth Davis, Director), ‘Paterson’ (Jim Jarmusch, Director), ‘Toni Erdmann’ (Maren Ade, Director), ‘Miss Sloane (John Madden, Director) and ‘The Comedian’ (Taylor Hackford, Director). In addition, The Hollywood Reporter will be presenting the third annual Indie Contenders Roundtable, moderated by Hollywood Reporter columnist and blogger Scott Feinberg.
AFI Fest will honor French actress, Isabelle Huppert, with a Tribute on November 13, followed by a Centerpiece Gala screening of ‘Elle’ (Paul Verhoeven, Director). ‘Jackie’ (portrait of the former First Lady) (Pablo Larraín, Director) will screen as a Centerpiece Gala on November 14, and ‘La La Land’ (Damien Chazelle, Director) will screen as a Centerpiece Gala on November 15. Annette Bening will be honored with a Tribute on November 16, followed by a Centerpiece Gala screening of ’20th Century Women’ (Mike Mills, Director).
AFI is an American institution that has chartered itself to preserve the history of the motion picture, to honor the artists and their work and to educate the next generation of storytellers. It preserves the legacy of America’s film heritage for future generations through the AFI Archive, comprised of rare footage from across the history of the moving image and the AFI Catalog of Feature Films, an authoritative record of American films from 1893 to the present. American Film Institute offers film enthusiasts a variety of events throughout the year, including AFI Fest presented along with longstanding partner, Audi.
AFI FEST offers free individual tickets to screenings and events as a gift to the community. In 2016, free tickets to AFI FEST will be available from November 1. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences recognizes AFI FEST as a qualifying festival for the Short Films category of the annual Academy Awards. AFI FEST holds the FIAPF accreditation (FIAPF.org), assuring a high standard of quality and reliability for the international film community. Film submissions to AFM Fest are considered beginning in March and details on how to submit will be available at that time. Please contact [email protected] with questions.
Since its launch in 1988 International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) has been dedicated to the exhibition and promotion of international documentary professionals in Amsterdam for eleven days of films running through November 27, interactive documentaries, industry events, panel discussions and more. Festival screenings are categorized among World Premieres, International Premieres, European Premieres, Films pitched at IDFA Forum, Films supported by IDFA Bertha Fund, Films developed by IDFAcademy workshops. The festival will offer Industry Sessions, where topics such as educational rights, video-on-demand and outreach strategies are discussed. There will be talks covering trends and developments on topics such as editing and interactive media. The festival will introduce a new series of talks putting three filmmakers in the limelight with an hour-long conversation about his or her work. And various experts will share their knowledge with a small group of participants in a one-hour session guided by a moderator and titled Meet the Experts. The Experts are on hand for one-on-one consultancies at the Industry Office.
Certain documentary experts will be on hand for daily walk-in consultancies where they will answer general questions concerning future prospects of the film (concept), and advise on possible co-production partners, documentary funding, fundraising through crowdfunding and other matters. Resources of the IDFA include the Bertha Fund (formerly known as the Jan Vrijman Fund) supporting documentary filmmakers in developing countries. Its goal is to stimulate local film cultures and to turn the creative documentary into a global film art. It is supported by the Bertha Foundation, Creative Europe Media and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. And the IDFA Forum is an international co-production and co-financing market for new documentaries and serving as a meeting place for independent documentary producers and filmmakers, financiers and stakeholders. Similarly, IDFA Crossmedia Forum considers non-linear new media projects with an emphasis on interactivity.
Broadcast, Film and Music Africa (#BFMA8) is an Africa-oriented business and technology event based in Nairobi, with emphasis on broadcast, film and music sectors, to serve the creative content and electronic media industry through an educational and marketing agenda, with a goal to empower attendees with the knowledge and business contacts needed to build on the future of Africa’s electronic media resources. For the two-day conference that opens November 23, there will be a range of conference sessions, training workshops, panel discussions and industry development forums. The conference is aimed at senior and middle managers of: television, film and music production companies, broadcasters, animators and animation production companies, cellular and fixed telephone operators looking at convergence opportunities, Industry associations, and other relevant industries.
The BFMA conference agenda will tackle business models from technological innovation: improving services, driving down costs and extending coverage, the Impact of Social media: developing multi-media platforms, the Impact of Convergence: IP-TV and Smart TV Media for Social and Political Development. It will also raise important issues on international formats in Africa Animation: a new frontier for African electronic media innovation, sports broadcasting, co-production opportunities and content partnerships, developing TV programs that African audiences want to watch, cross-continent distribution, and many other topics.
The BFMA Expo will include the following specialized features: national pavilions for a range of countries, including South Africa, Uganda, Tanzania, Nigeria, animation pavilion, local Kenyan film-makers pavilion. International developers of creative content in the digital media sector are welcomed and expected to contribute content for the event. Aside from conference discussions on industry issues, #BFMA8 will offer filmmakers a launch pad to preview/premiere their film projects, music, original animations, games and other content to an audience of international delegates and broadcasters. The conference is beamed worldwide via live streaming.
Profiles for the expected show floor exhibitors include radio and TV equipment, audio and video studios equipment, terrestrial, cable and satellite TV, multimedia for broadcasting, computer graphics, audio and video telecommunications, audio and video on the Internet, video projection, equipment for sound rooms: professional sound, show lighting, equipment rental, audiovisual interactiveness, Conditional Access Systems, audiovisual operators, Media Asset Management.
The above events are only a sample of what is fully listed. Complete details are on the “Calendar of Global Media and Showbiz Industry Social Networking Events” page. If you like this report and other content found on The Actor’s Checklist, please consider liking the Facebook page at this link. As the next month is December moving us closer to the holiday period, the calendar thins out a bit. But here are some global calendar events for the month that should hold your interest. “Sight, Sound & Story: The Art of Cinematography” Production Event will be held in New York City, the 2016 Government Video Expo takes place in Washington, D.C., Bahamas International Film Festival launches in Nassau, the hands on, training oriented 3D Academy running in conjunction with the International 3D Conference and Festival comes to Liege, the BMI Maui Songwriters Festival will be in Maui, Billboard Women In Music Awards and Luncheon will come to New York City, Pacific Conference on Social/Mass Media and Communication is set for Palm Springs, Cineasia Hong Kong is to be held in Hong Kong.