Posts by Blandine Ruffo

SPARK 2018: Winners Announced!

Congratulations to 5 terrific short film projects supported by the Spark Film Initiative!

(list in alphabetical order)

“Arrears” produced by Madelon te Lintum (ind.), written and directed by Wilf Watson.

a humorous story about a man struggling in a mad world. A world where oxygen is a commodity and corporate interests unethically rule over human rights. A world where losing one’s job to artificial intelligence is the norm. And a world where forgetting to pay bills on time can be fatal.

“Rite of Passage”, produced by Tiffany Manzie (global headquarters), directed by Andreas Heikaus, written by Grace King.

Three Australian teenagers hear a ghost story about their hometown. They decide to test their courage and try to summon the spirit of the ghost. Not knowing what they have done, they tease each other to their doom.

“Spectrum”, produced by Gaia Osborne (Undergrowth Productions), directed by Tim Parish, written by Phil Denson and Tim Parish.

A young autistic child is implanted with a SPECTRUM app called ‘Gadget’ to aid a normal life. Flash forward 10 years -Ari & Gadget discover the world is run by machines mining DNA. Together they find a solution. Ari learns that emotional bonds make humanity more complex than machines.

“Sunset”, Written and produced by Jane Hampson (ind.), directed by (TBC).

On her 89th birthday, INGRID, a frail, wheelchair-bound woman suffering Alzheimer’s is left alone on a beach by her carer, who sneaks off to meet her boyfriend. A passing musician — heartbroken and homeless — tries to steal a piece of INGRID’S birthday cake, but something about her vulnerability reflects his own state.

“You do you”, produced by Joseph Baronio, directed by Lexie Gregory and Thomas Midena, written by Lexie Gregory.

Mickey’s having a tough time being herself. She’s fed up with her annoying brother, had it with a condescending boy at school, and all the men who just push her around are plain rude. Instead of just daydreaming about the perfect comeback, Mickey’s overactive imagination gets the better of her.

Want to join a crew? audition for a role? Shadow one of the main crew members to get some experience, or help in your very unique way? Then join the Spark Film Initiative – Crews Hub to express your interest to the teams!

DIFF Code of Conduct for Spark Filmmakers

DIFF Code of Conduct For Spark Participants

1.   With Members of the public

Keep in mind at all time that the nature of a shooting may attract the curiosity of members of the public. Crew and cast must act professionally and courteously at all time to ensure any association made with DIFF doesn’t impact it negatively.

Respect social media etiquette when promoting the production on social media.

Respect public spaces by avoiding littering and blocking public access without notice.

2.   With External Stakeholders:

Notify entities who may be affected by the production (neighborhoods, shops, etc)

Comply with commitments taken by the production (verbal or written)

Try and keep written records of all agreements made for the production (at least emails)

Be courteous and professional at all time with production stakeholders when undertaking production activities.

When on set, take extra care to not damage premises and leave the place cleaner than you found it.

3.   With the cast and crew

Respect the role of each crew member;

Have all crew members agreements in written records;

Pay your crew and cast

Feed your crew and cast

The producer must not receive any remuneration unless all accounts are already settled (including crew wages, transport and meals).

Treat every crew member with respect and make every effort to keep an enjoyable atmosphere on set. Endeavour to work as a team.

4.   With DIFF and its sponsors

Do not make any commitment or statement on behalf of DIFF and its sponsors;

Respect deadlines and respond promptly to emails;

Be truthful and transparent in all communications and statements regarding the production;

Whether it be in behavior or speech do not deteriorate the reputation of DIFF nor its sponsors.

Support Capricornia in Style!

We’re running a crowdfunding campaign to help with supporting filmmakers to attend the ceremony. Amazing rewards on offer!

Thank you on the big screen + social media,

Red Carpet experiences with photoshoot

VIP access to Ceremony and After Party

and much more!

visit our Pozible Campaign today

Production Workshop with Wilf Watson

FREE and OPEN TO ALL
Tuesday 8 May from 6 pm
Mayfair Gallery

7 Harriet Pl, Darwin.

 

What is Production really all about?

In this final Spark workshop, participants will learn about hands-on tools and methods to get started with the production of a low-budget short film. You have a kick-arse script, a director and a producer, very well. So what’s next? Where do you start? Multi-faceted content producer Wilf Watson will talk you through simple steps, handing out handy templates, dishing out juicy cautionary tales, and figuring out the answers to your most twisted questions.

Although this workshop is free and open to all, It will be a good opportunity for Spark applicants to get ideas on how to refine their project’s applications.

About the presenter:

Wilf Watson started his career in video production back in 2004 as a camera operator at the Darwin Turf Club. He studied interactive multimedia at Charles Darwin University in 2007 and since then has worked in a wide range of multimedia production roles for the NT Government, local private studios and 7News. He has worked on several award winning short films, one of which aired to thousands of people as a Tropfest Sydney finalist in 2012. In 2014 he founded Phenomec, a company focused on virtual reality technologies and innovative multimedia which has gone on to win several awards. In 2016 he became an emerging contemporary new media artist, debuting a virtual reality experience set in southern Thailand at the Digital Departure Exhibition in Caloundra, QLD. In 2018 he completed an undergraduate degree in International Business from the University of the Sunshine Coast that has taken him overseas to Germany and the Czech Republic. Wilf Watson is currently based in Darwin and is keen to share his experiences and support local film makers.

Development & Pitching Workshop with Bridget May

Bridget May

Bridget recently worked at Screen Territory form early 2015 to March 2018, where between 2016 – 2017 she ran the Northern Territory film agency for a year. Bridget has moved into the producing side of the screen industry and is expanding her capabilities in that area. She has built up her knowledge and skills by working as an attachment on several projects. She has worked as a Production Management and Post-Production Supervisor with Brindle Films, over their slate of projects.  This includes running writer’s workshops for two upcoming drama series. Bridget has over 20 years as a dynamic manager with extensive experience within the public and private sector. She is also known for significant strategic and governance work and is a confident strategist capable of developing innovative plans and activities designed to facilitate competitive growth.

The Workshop

Bridget will take you through the different stages of development from the initial concept to post production and deliverables.  She will go through the reality of how complex any story is and how long it actually takes to write before you even think about producing it (you can’t smash a story out in a weekend, it always shows).  There is no one size fits all with screen so how do you do it?

This is followed with Bridget giving some tips and tricks for pitching your project with a hand pitching workshop to help people hone their skill.  Remember, pitching is used more than just for a project and no matter where you are, you can always learn something new.

Here is a rough break down:
  • The different stages of development for screen, from initial concept to post production and deliverables
  • The complex reality of developing a story (no standard recipe, but there are certain things to aim for) and how many years it takes – yes, years!
  • Use the programs that work – don’t fudge it in word
  • Pitching: Why is it important and how to do it easily, now you do it!

To register your interest in pitching your story, email Blandine: initiative@diff.net.au

Director’s Masterclass with Garin Nugroho

Tuesday 17 April, from 6:00 pm

Come along to this free event and learn from multi-award-winning Indonesian filmmaker Garin Nugroho. Garin will spend some time discussing his work as a director, through specific examples, going through his methods, processes, and challenges. He’ll then engage in discussions with Darwin emerging film-makers, and film buffs.

Biography: Garin was born in Jogjakarta, graduated from the faculty of film at Jakarta Institute of Arts and faculty of law at Indonesia University. Garin is considered as a pioneer for the new generation of the 90’s. His films have made their way to various films festivals, such a Cannes, Venice, Berlin and won numerous awards. Garin began his film career as a critic and documentary maker. His works explore the fabric of social issues, culture and politics of Indonesia.

His prolific contribution to world cinema and art goes beyond his feature credits, with other works such as music videos, theater, art installation, book of cultural communications, news articles, and even established two film festivals: JAFF (Jogja Netpac Asian film festival) and LA Indie movie.

Garin is one of the most important Southeast Asian filmmakers of our time, having negotiated the complexities of his nation through the language of film. He is the recipient of the President Habibie culture award, the French honorary decoration of Chevalier de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and the Stella D’atelerie Cavalerie award from the Italian government (Stella D’Italia Cavaliere).

Capturing  the love for his country and Javanese culture, Garin’s films possess an undeniable poetic and reflective quality that resonates strongly with audiences, gaining critical attention at home and international festivals.

His latest works, Satan Java (black and white silent movie with Gamelan live orchestra) and A woman From Java (one-shot film, 90 minutes) and dramaturgy in Rianto’s choreographed work called “Medium” have been traveling on a world tour since 2016.

Writer Power!

SPARK development phase is now well underway, and we received 17 awesome Darwin-made original scripts! Congrats to the writers for submitting your work!

If you’re interested in those stories, and in joining a Spark project as a crew member, actor etc, come to Mayfair Gallery tonight Thu 5 Apr for the monthly NT Filmmakers Network meetup starting at 6pm.

Hitchcock /Truffaut Trailer

Do you love films about films? Then how would you like a film about 2 filmmakers talking about films? What if they are two of the best filmmakers in the history of Cinema? “Hitchcock/Truffaut” is available on the main VoD outlets… The book is also an absolute reference for filmmakers and film buffs alike.

“In 1962 Hitchcock and Truffaut locked themselves away in Hollywood for a week to excavate the secrets behind the mise-en-scène in cinema. Based on the original recordings of this meeting—used to produce the mythical book Hitchcock/Truffaut—this film illustrates the greatest cinema lesson of all time and plummets us into the world of the creator of Psycho, The Birds, and Vertigo. Hitchcock’s incredibly modern art is elucidated and explained by today’s leading filmmakers: Martin Scorsese, David Fincher, Arnaud Desplechin, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Wes Anderson, James Gray, Olivier Assayas, Richard Linklater, Peter Bogdanovich and Paul Schrader.”

Partner Focus: the NT Filmmakers Network

SPARK is back! – and this year again, we’ll be partnering up with the NT Filmmakers Network, starting with our Launch on Thu 1 March being hosted at Mayfair Gallery, at the monthly NTFN meetup. Penelope Paton is the founder of this little institution in Darwin (and expanding across the NT). Institution is employed figuratively here, as Penny likes to stress, the community aspect of the group is very important. She sat with us yesterday to answer a few questions about her vision for the NTFN, and how you might want to join the group more than you think!

Hi Penny! Could you tell us a in a nutshell what the NT Filmmakers Network is all about?

The NT Filmmakers Network is a group that helps create connections and opportunities in the NT Film Industry. A regular monthly meetup in Darwin is scheduled the first Thursday of every month, with membership being completely free. The group is slowly growing with over 250 members. People can keep up to date with meetups via our Facebook page.

Can you give us some examples of projects (besides Spark!) that benefited from the existence of the NTFN?

There have been quite a few projects that have benefited from attending the NT Filmmakers Networking sessions. I know local talents such as young, award-winning Nathaniel Kelly and Thomas Midena have attended the group and made new connections in the industry. We also helped to promote their latest feature film We’re Family Now, which was screened at BCC a couple of weeks ago. Additionally, a recently government funded web-series called Fort Dundas – directed by Markus Tumuls – used the networking sessions as an opportunity to meet others that were interested in filmmaking from all different film departments – like cinematography or music production. We like to embrace a multi-disciplinary approach to the filmmakers network, inviting people interested in acting as well as the more technical sides of film making.

Do you need to be making films to join the group? How can being part of the group be interesting for anyone in the region?

You don’t have to be making films to join the group. Some peeps, just don’t know where to start. The NT Filmmakers Network is free to join and current members come in all ages and walks of life. But you do have to be interested in making films, whether that’s short films, web-series, documentaries and more. Being part of the group means that you can share and access casting calls, questions about cameras and film tech, screening announcements, meetups and crewing calls.

What do people typically post on the facebook page?

Members usually post about new funding opportunities, training opportunities, screenings, crewing vacancies, equipment and a lot more.

What do people talk about at your monthly meetups?

Most individuals talk about what gear they have, share their work, talk about the films they’d like to make or are watching. Part of being a filmmaker is also enjoying watching films, so there is a lot of conversations about the films that inspire us. People of all levels of experience attend the meeting, some professional and others at an amateur level. Some people that have attended, have made films that have got into national and international festivals. Some people are just figuring out how to make their first film. It’s a very diverse crowd.

Concretely, what are the first steps to start getting involved in the film-making community in the region?

a, Join the NT Filmmakers Network Facebook group and start asking questions from your fellow filmmakers; b, attend one of our regular meetups; c, Rope some friends and family into making a film, if this is your first attempt; d, contact any of the NT Filmmakers Network Facebook group admins as a starting point to finding others interested in your type of film project. Also, get to know your local film office and what grants it offers, ours in the Northern Territory is called Screen Territory. Film making requires the ability to collaborate with people with different interests and skills. It’s really hard to make a film by yourself, in saying that it’s not impossible. People are able to make feature films with their iPhone on a near-to-nothing budget these days!

How do you see the NTFN evolve in the next few years?

I would like to see it become a thorough resource for filmmakers to find crew, which could take  the form of a crew recruiting company showcasing local talent in the Northern Territory. However, we are still a small network with only over 250 members. Additionally, the community aspect is also very important to me, which means there needs to be space for the NT Filmmakers Network to be free and accessible for all people in the Northern Territory. At the moment the NT Filmmakers Network is not-for-profit and looks to help build the film community alongside organisations already operating in the Northern Territory such as Screen Territory of course, but also the Darwin Film Society (Deckchair Cinema, Flix in the Wet, DIFF), and more. I am currently looking for individuals living in Alice Springs to help bring the network to this area and help build film opportunities in remote locations in the Northern Territory. Additionally, I am also looking for an individual who’s passionate about acting to further develop the NT Actors Network allowing filmmakers to connect with local actors in the Northern Territory. I would like to see more networking events that connect people across artistic disciplines, whether its acting, dance, illustration, painting, graffiti art, the list goes on.

Thanks for your time Penny! One last question: are you planning on submitting a project to Spark this year?

Definitely! I will be submitting a script to the Spark Initiative this year. Its a great opportunity to get funding and work with local filmmakers.