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ISSUE FOUR

LOUISIANA FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE

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LOUISIANA FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE

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CONTENTS

VOLUME NINE

ISSUE FOUR

Key hair and makeup artist Robert Broussard preps Shanna Forrestall for a Southern Fried Homicide shoot.

EXECUTIVE EDITOR Andrew Vogel andrew@louisianafilmandvideo.com EDITOR-AT-LARGE Shanna Forrestall ASSOCIATE EDITOR Katie Sauro contact@louisianafilmandvideo.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS W. H. Bourne, Lolita Burrell, Ejay Colvin, Annie Gaia, Dawn Landrum, Abigail Levner SALES MANAGER Katie Higgins

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SALES Eric Iles PRODUCTION MANAGER John Rusnak DESIGNERS

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LETTER FROM THE EDITOR

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JOHN SCHNEIDER’S SMOTHERED FILMS IN BATON ROUGE AREA

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LOUISIANA FILMS SHINE AT LOS ANGELES FILM FESTIVAL

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HIGHLIGHTING BATON ROUGE: AN INTERVIEW WITH LIZA KELSO AND CHRIS STELLY

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LSU OFFERS SUPERMIKE-II TO VISUAL EFFECTS COMPANIES

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THE FILM INDUSTRY EXPO: A SNEAK PEEK AT THE FIFTH ANNUAL EVENT

TALENT SPOTLIGHT 32 DEAR AGENT 36 OPEN RANGE MANAGEMENT 38 TALENT AGENCY OPENS NEW ORLEANS OFFICE 39 TALENT PROFILES 42 LOUISIANA’S GOT TALENT 43 TALENT AGENCIES LIST 45 CASTING DIRECTORS/AGENCIES LIST

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LIFF ANNOUNCES 2014 FESTIVAL DATES, MAY 8-11

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STAR POWER WEBSTER PARISH HAS IT ALL

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FACES OF CREATIVE INFUSION: HOW LOUISIANA’S HOT FILM CLIMATE GOT THESE PROFESSIONALS TO RELOCATE

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THE “EASE” OF LOUISIANA AT LOCATIONS EXPO

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BUSINESS PROFILES

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WHY SOUTHERN FRIED HOMICIDE IS SERVING UP SOMETHING SPECIAL

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PRODUCERS GUILD PROMOTES MEMBERSHIP AND MENTORSHIP

Dawn Carlson, Beth Harrison, Christina Poisal WEBMASTER Eric Pederson OFFICE MANAGER Audra Higgins INFORMATION SERVICES MANAGER Lois Sanborn

Louisiana Film & Video Publications A DIVISION OF MEDIA INDEX PUBLISHING GROUP P.O. Box 50036

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ON THE COVER: Setting up an underwater stunt on the set of Smothered. Pictured at left (standing on deck) are writer/director John Schneider and cinematographer Tom Callaway. Stunt coordinator Jeff Galpin is in the water with one of the stunt doubles and one of the film's lead actors, horror icon Don Shanks. PHOTO CREDIT: TALON TARTAR

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LETTER FROM THE EDITOR

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espite the draining force of Louisiana summer heat, things seem to be ticking along better than ever. This issue highlights the Baton Rouge area, which has been particularly busy with what Liza Kelso, director of the Baton Rouge Film Commission, has aptly named the “summer of the indies.” I was fortunate to spend some time on the set of Smothered in Livingston, Louisiana, getting to know director John Schneider and speaking with many of the stars, including locals Shanna Forrestall and Dane Rhodes. They were a close-knit group with fascinating stories to tell that wouldn’t have had the same effect without some well-practiced humor. NOVAC has had an extremely busy summer with back-to-back workshops, and they have embraced the heat with ‘Third Thursday’ pool parties and mixers. I find myself mentioning NOVAC more and more these days as they continue to rapidly grow and

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expand their outreach. My personal highlight of the last couple months was the 48 Hour Film Festival in New Orleans. This was my second year participating and my first year forming a team. Our team was primarily made up of actors, so, needless to say, it was a learning experience for us on most behind-the-camera aspects of the production. But what was so amazing to me was the amount of focus and creative energy our team collectively poured into a small project in such a short amount of time. That was a reward in itself. The fact that we actually have something to show for it that we can be proud of, thankfully, makes it all the more worthwhile. After seeing so many great films at the premiere, and some not so great, and hearing the stories of the filmmakers, it was apparent just how much blood, sweat and tears went into this project as a whole. To me, there aren’t many things more inspiring than people dedicating their heart and soul to a project that they aren’t getting paid for. Being a part of it was a great reminder that I’m in the right industry. Stay tuned for pictures and awards from the event in our next issue. All the best, Andrew Vogel Executive Editor

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JOHN SCHNEIDER’S SMOTHERED FILMS IN BATON ROUGE AREA

R.A. Mihailoff and Kane Hodder prepare for a scene on location at the 13th Gate in Baton Rouge. STORY BY ANDREW VOGEL

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mothered is a reverse of the classic horror model,” says the iconic actor/writer/director John Schneider. “It’s not a bunch of beautiful college students who go out and get killed by the mean man in the mask. It’s a bunch of mean men in masks, and a girl, who go out and systematically get slaughtered by the beautiful college co-ed. It’s the classic slasher model on its back. There’s a lot of humor in that; weird humor. Stuff you don’t want to laugh at.”

Written and directed by Schneider (“Bo Duke” on The Dukes of Hazzard, “Jonathan Kent” on Smallville) and produced by Doug Blake (The Sessions), Smothered takes a unique spin on horror films by having several legendary horror characters simply play themselves. “These are the real guys. These are the actors playing themselves, for the most part, and that’s an element no one has explored

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before,” says Schneider. He continues, “It’s as obvious as the Frisbee or the sticky note. But it’s completely new and unique at the same time. People who have been in the horror business for 40 years are saying ‘Wow, why hasn’t anyone done this before?’” Smothered follows a group of horror icons who want nothing more than to escape the monotony at a Baton Rouge horror conven-

tion. Kane Hodder (Jason X, Hatchet) leads a group of convention friends into an ominous and isolated RV park where they are hired to haunt the place. Other members of the cast include R.A. Mihailoff (Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3), Bill Moseley (The Devil’s Rejects, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2), Don Shanks (Halloween 5, Ride with the Devil), Malcolm Danare (Christine, Godzilla), local actress Shanna Forrestall (Olympus Has Fallen, The Last Exorcism) as “Trixie,” and local actor Dane Rhodes as “Randy Pepper.” Schneider explains his inspiration for such

a unique idea. “I do trade shows because of Dukes [of Hazzard] and Smallville. I wind up in car shows and horror and pop culture shows,” he says. “I had a notion one night. What if a bunch of serial killers went camping and got killed by the big-chested blonde? Then I asked: But why in the world would a bunch of serial killers go camping together? Well, I did a horror and pop culture show in Germany at the end of March. It was the first time I had done the show. I killed the show because Smallville and Dukes were huge in Germany. So I had a great show, but all my friends had a terrible show, like ‘Jason’ and ‘Freddy’ and all these guys. And as I was sitting at the bar, I thought, ‘This is why all these guys would get together and go camping. Because I bet if I offered them a thousand dollars to blow off this convention and go haunt an RV park, they would do it.’ And Smothered was born.” Although better known for his acting, Schneider is no stranger to writing and directing. “I wrote and directed the last episode of Dukes,” says Schneider, “which was my first jump into film directing. Directing has seemed like the natural progression for me. I started in theater, where I would sometimes act, direct or write. But directing is a wonderful way to express yourself. Everything from what picture should be on the wall to what should people wear. Being a part of a story [as an actor] is great, but this is better because, look, I came in with a 6, and everyone here made it a 15. And I get the credit for it.” Humanity in death is a common element in the film, but one that is often overlooked in most horror films. The audience’s ability to relate to it stems from the real feelings of real people. “Horror fans are more sophisticated than people give them credit for,” explains actor Kane Hodder, who has played “Jason Voorhees” in several of the Friday the 13th films. “They appreciate those touching moments between characters, and I think between John and all of us we have included those elements, which makes it much more enjoyable.” Co-star Malcolm Danare adds, “There’s a humanity to all the death scenes in this movie. Normally you really want the villain to die, but right before any of the deaths in this movie, you find yourself asking ‘why did they have to die?’ even though you understand the reason. There’s a humanity to each death, which is beautiful. And that’s one of the things I’ve been incredibly impressed with in John’s directing.” Schneider and many of the actors also understand the catch-22 of being remembered as an icon while also wanting to be remembered as more. As an example, Schneider speaks about the dilemma of “Randy Pepper” (played by Dane Rhodes), who everyone

Kane Hodder, Malcolm Danare, Gigi Perkins (dog), Shanna Forrestall, Don Shanks, Dane Rhodes and Bill Moseley in Smothered.

thought was Rowdy Roddy Piper. “This is a guy who everybody thinks is Rowdy Roddy Piper, who is actually a Shakespearean actor, who did one slasher movie, and now that’s all anyone wants to talk about,” says Schneider. “So it’s very true to life.” Describing his personal relationship to the story, Schneider continues, “It’s like me with Dukes. I love Dukes, but man, it was such a long time ago, and I’ve been involved in so many projects since. So I know the double-edged sword of being famous for one thing. And that’s what all of these guys are going through. I think when these actors read the script, they were really able to relate to it.” Because of the nature of the actors’ relationships to each other, the film cuts to the core of real issues. Says Schneider, “In real life, Kane was burned a long time ago very badly. The bad girl in this, the beautiful blonde, at one point says to him, ‘You’re not going to shoot me. You’re covered in gasoline. If you pull that trigger, you’re going to burn up… again. Won’t that be fun, Kane?’ So it’s very personal and very serious. Kane’s fan base will know exactly what she is referring to and will hate her for it.” Lead actor Hodder talks about the chemistry on set, saying, “We all have chemistry that is built in. We didn’t have to develop it because we all knew each other. That’s why I helped cast this thing. We all work well together and weren’t insecure about taking or giving advice to one another. On most sets you wouldn’t give another actor advice, but we’ve known each other for so long that we can do that, and it really brings the scenes to another level.” Not without some unfortunate irony, Hodder and co-star Bill Moseley describe the loss of a friend who helped develop the idea for Smothered, Richard Brooker, an English stuntman best known for his role as “Jason” in Friday the

John R Schneider, director, and David Dwiggins, 1st AD.

13th Part III. “Richard helped bang out the idea with John at a conference back in March. He died on April 8, which happens to be John’s birthday and my birthday. Very ironic,” says Hodder. “His birthday present was this idea that he and John banged around together,” follows up a solemn Moseley. From the idea phase to the final day on set, Smothered set new bars in the film industry. “A lot of times in Hollywood it takes years to develop a script and it can be very hard to get a movie made,” says Moseley. “But this was based on an event in March. After one conversation with Richard Brooker, John banged out the script. And here we are at the beginning of July, and we are almost done shooting.” Hodder adds, “From start to finish, the process never happens that quick.” Due to the amount of heart and soul put into the film, Schneider, as well as the cast and crew, are very optimistic about the final product. When asked his hopes for the future of Smothered, Schneider replied, “My hope for this film is that it makes Saw wonder what happened.” LFV Stay up to date with Smothered www.facebook.com/smotheredthemovie.

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HIGHLIGHTING BATON ROUGE AN INTERVIEW WITH LIZA KELSO AND CHRIS STELLY

hile we have a thriving motion picture industry, Louisiana is also at the epicenter of growth for all things entertainment and digital media. We are the only state that has a comprehensive suite of incentives specifically targeting the technology and entertainment areas.” – Chris

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Stelly, Executive Director, Louisiana Entertainment What productions have recently come through Baton Rouge? “We started off the year with Sony Entertainment’s Bonnie and Clyde mini-series, which filmed in Baton Rouge and several parishes around,” says Liza Kelso, recently appointed by Mayor Holden as director of the Baton Rouge Film Commission. “We had Maze Runner in March, a $30-million-plus feature. Gold Circle in combination with Universal Pictures stayed with us a second time for Search Party after their stay in 2011 for Pitch Perfect. And often the summers are slow, but this has been the summer of the indies. We are filming two small films: Student Bodies and also Facebook Detectives, with Active Entertainment. And principal photography for Left Behind, starring Nicolas Cage, began on August 8.” As for the rest of the state? “My office represents the entire state,” says Stelly, “so we’ve had quite a few productions throughout the state that have recently wrapped and/or are currently in production: Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (New Orleans); True Detectives (New Orleans); American Heist (New Orleans); American Horror Story – season 3 (New Orleans); The Occult (New Orleans); Hot Tub Time Machine 2 (New Orleans); The Town that Dreaded Sundown (Shreveport). Stay tuned. We have several big projects on the horizon. For example, the next Pirates of the Caribbean will be filming in New Orleans in early 2014.” What sets Baton Rouge apart from the competition? Service-Oriented “Baton Rouge is fortunate right now because we are in a position at the film commission to be very service-oriented,” says Kelso. “We still scout out locations for directors and producers. We still break down scripts for them. We are lucky to be at that point in our market because we still can. Accommo10

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dation and service is one of the things Mayor Holden is very big on. That’s one of the major reasons filmmakers and production companies come back time and time again. It’s difficult for bigger markets to provide that service because they have too many productions going on, and although that is a nice problem to have, it’s a joy to be able to service these productions to the point that they become a part of the Baton Rouge family. “Mayor Holden started the film commission in 2005 (became official in 2007) and has always been a big believer in making these productions a part of the Baton Rouge family. Because of this philosophy, we continue to see retention with production giants like Universal Pictures and Fox.” Location “We’re not put in a corner when it comes to locations. We have so many different looks,” says Kelso. “The Exxon plant came in the 1960s and ‘70s and created a middle class explosion. We get tons of calls for middle class

excellence, as well as a stable tax credit program, diverse locations, deep and skilled workforce, unlimited infrastructure and a unique joie de vivre, have all played a vital role to our success. A success that continues to grow each year.” Technology The Baton Rouge Film Commission works very hard to connect vendors to productions. They have created a free app called By Baton Rouge to assist films in every aspect of production. Says Kelso, “Productions can download this app and look at all the vendors who are interested in doing business with the productions and can even get discounts from select vendors. That’s huge. They can also find crew and locations all from their phone.” In addition to the new app, the Commission has worked diligently to create a userfriendly Web site. Kelso continues, “The Film Baton Rouge Web site has become a true tool for the community. You can go there to see how to get into casting, how to pitch your script, how to get your house listed as a location. We are trying to get everyone involved in the film industry so everyone has a piece of ownership on it.” Want to know more? Visit www.filmbatonrouge.com for updates on the Baton Rouge film industry. Contact Liza Kelso and the Baton Rouge Film

“It’s a joy to be able to service these productions to the point that they become a part of the Baton Rouge family.” - Liza Kelso America ‘70s architecture, and Baton Rouge can nail it because of the architecture that was created as a result of that Exxon plant. And we still have the old Acadiana look, the plantations, and the moss over the swamps. So we are very versatile when it comes to locations.” Adds Stelly, “Louisiana, in general, has become one of the most dependable and sought-after locations in the motion picture production industry. Our commitment to

Commission via e-mail at film@visitbatonrouge.com or by phone at 225-382-3563. Visit www.louisianaentertainment.gov for information on all programs including Digital Media, Live Performance (production and infrastructure) and Sound Recording. Chris Stelly can be reached via e-mail at chris.stelly@la.gov or by phone at 225-3425403. LFV

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LSU OFFERS SUPERMIKE-II TO VISUAL EFFECTS COMPANIES ouisiana State University now offers a render farm capability to visual effects companies using LSU’s SuperMike-II high performance computing system.

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Operational since February 2013, SuperMike-II represents the third generation of supercomputers deployed at LSU. Built by Dell, Inc., the $2.6-million system features a total of 440 compute nodes (servers), each of which has 2 Intel Sandy Bridge 8-core processors running at 2.6GHz. Its theoretical peak performance capability is 212 TeraFlops, or 212 thousandbillion floating point operations per second. Until recently, SuperMike-II has been mainly used to enable a broad range of research at LSU, from the development of computational frameworks and advanced computational execution models, to computational modeling in coastal studies, fluid dynamics, biology,

SuperMike - II - an up-close look.

chemistry, oceanography, astrophysics, materials, and petroleum engineering. SuperMike-II has brought two novel capabilities to LSU’s researchers: graphical processing unit (GPU) accelerators and large-memory symmetric multiprocessing. “LSU is committed to using our supercomputing capabilities and technologies not only for cutting-edge research and education, but also to foster economic development in Louisiana,” said Joel Tohline, director of LSU Center for Computation & Technology.

“This is why we invite visual effects companies to use SuperMike-II’s render farm capabilities.” LFV For more information, visit www.cct.lsu.edu.

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THE FILM INDUSTRY EXPO A SNEAK PEEK AT THE FIFTH ANNUAL EVENT

Melissa Wiseman, manager of Entertainment Partners and EP Financial Solutions. STORY BY LOLITA BURRELL COO, THE FILM INDUSTRY EXPO

s New Orleans continues its reign in the top 10 places to be a moviemaker, it also maintains its status as home base for the largest and longest running film industry conference in the Gulf South, the Film Industry Expo (The Expo). Now going into its milestone fifth year, The Expo will be held on September 7 in the 10,000-square-foot conference center at the Sheraton, across from the French Quarter.

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“The Expo offers real opportunities for real talent who are serious about moving forward in their careers. It’s grown exponentially and organically each year to meet the market demand and film industry shift from being concentrated in Los Angeles and New York to a growing regional presence,” said founder and CEO Shanda Quintal. Premiering this year is an expanded, free and open-to-the-public trade show featuring technology and services that independent filmmakers and actors need to advance their careers. Attendees can register to attend panels

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and presentations offered in three tracks: Aspiring Actor and Child Actor, Actor Track Two (intermediate to advanced actors), and Filmmaker. The Expo’s momentum and reputation continues to attract the attention of film industry leaders. This year, The Expo welcomes Sharon Bialy, casting director for top-rated shows Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead; Pam Dixon, past president of the Casting Society of America and casting director for the blockbusters Green Lantern and The Mask of Zorro; Laray Mayfield, cast-

Lolita Burrell, COO, Film Industry Expo and Shanda Quintal, CEO & founder, Film Industry Expo.

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Shanda Quintal with Actors Access team.

Jason Hewitt, producer & CEO, Films in Motion.

ing director for Academy Award-winning films The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and The Social Network; and Rhavynn Drummer, casting director for For Better or Worse and other acclaimed Tyler Perry Studio productions, who will be holding auditions at the event. Beth Sepko, casting director for Friday Night Lights and the new Dallas, who made her Expo premiere last year, returns as a panelist and will hold auditions, as well. Tracy “Twinkie” Byrd, casting director for Sparkle and Fruitvale Station, is holding a general audition as well as casting for the role of Gymnastics Olympian, Gabby Douglas. Also new to The Expo, Fern Orenstein, CBS VP, Casting, and Tiffany SmithAnoa’i, CBS VP, Diversity and Communications, present The Actor’s Workshop, an intensive experience designed to help actors land roles. And Diego Martinez, president of Nu Image/Millennium, joins the Film Finance Forum. The event features film executives and casting directors who are invested in the regional film community and return each year to share their knowledge and support. The Expo welcomes back Michael Arata, producer, Odd Thomas, The Courier; Liz Coulon, casting director, The Iceman, 21 Jump Street; Lisa Marie Dupree, casting director, Blood Out, Break Out Kings; Steven Esteb, WGA screenwriter and teacher, Favorite Son, Dirty Politics; Ryan Glorioso, casting director, Now You See Me, Straight A’s; Henry Griffin, WGA screenwriter, director, and University of New Orleans professor; Jason Hewitt, producer and CEO, Films In Motion; Anne Massey, casting director, Final Witness, True Blood; and Eric Thompson, Esq., whose clients include New Regency Productions, Fox Searchlight Productions, Lionsgate Films, et. al., Three Stooges, The Internship, Water for Elephants. “Agents 101: Headshot and Resume Review” and “Casting Critiques” form staple 16

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programming for beginning actors, and are slated again for this year’s Expo. “Casting from A-Z” delves into Extra work, use of MyCastingFile.com, and what actors need to know to transition from background to speaking roles. Talent agents on the panel “Branding Yourself ” discuss how to distinguish yourself as an actor. “Casting a Wide Net” explores how regional casting is leveling the playing field for actors. Expo sponsor Breakdown Services will demonstrate how beginning and advanced actors can use Actors Access and EcoCast to best position themselves for virtual auditioning by top casting directors and talent agents. The Acting Studio presents four coaches using unique techniques to teach acting and character development: Laura Cayouette, author of the acclaimed book Know Small Parts; Jerry Katz, teacher of the renowned Chubbuck technique; Lance Nichols, coach and actor for Emmy-nominated Treme and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button; and Dr. Tina Thomas, a TED Talk speaker, back by popular demand to present “Applying the Science of Personality to Improve Your Art.” Independent filmmakers will learn strategies for creating an online buzz for their projects from social media strategist and Idea Village Entrepreneur Week 2013 presenter Megan Hargroder. Melissa Wiseman, manager of Entertainment Partners and EP Financial Solutions, presents “Budgeting for Your Project,” including an introduction to the company’s premier software, Movie Magic Budgeting. “Film Finance Forum” and “Making the Pitch” are back by popular demand to address the filmmaker’s primary

concerns: how to attract investors and finance a project. Getting a project distributed is also another challenge for many filmmakers. Online as well as traditional distribution tactics will be covered in “Securing Distribution.” And Breakdown Services’ CEO and founder Gary Marsh presents “Casting Your Script,” about streamlining the audition process using the film industry’s premier online casting portal, Actors Access and EcoCast, the virtual audition system. Whether engaged in a workshop or audition, captivated by a star-studded panel discussion, or enjoying a demonstration of the latest equipment and career-enhancing tools, participants will gain valuable insight and networking opportunities that are the hallmark of The Expo. Actors and independent filmmakers seeking the resources, information and opportunities that their California and New York counterparts have can find it at the Film Industry Expo. LFV

Lolita Burrell, Chief Operating Officer, joined forces with Shanda Quintal in the expansion and production of the 2012 and 2013 Expos and oversees business development. In recent years, she was honored as a “Woman of the Year” by New Orleans CityBusiness magazine for spearheading the “New Orleans Does Business Right! Corporate Governance and Ethics Conference.” Lolita is also an artist and was named one of “New Orleans Jazz Divas” by Offbeat magazine in 1999. She graduated from Tulane University’s A.B. Freeman School of Business, and is a licensed CPA with 15+ years of internal auditing experience. She is an alumna and board member of the New Orleans Regional Leadership Institute, and founder of Kids for Community, Inc.

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LIFF ANNOUNCES 2014 FESTIVAL DATES, MAY 8-11 he exciting launch of the Louisiana International Film Festival (LIFF) brought cumulative crowds of over 4,000 film enthusiasts screening over 60 films from around the world with live performances by Merry Clayton, Jon Batiste & Stay Human Band and Henry Gray along with an industry expo, workshops and filmmaker forums in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, this past April 18-21, 2013.

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The 2014 festival is set to offer another promising lineup of never-before-screened films by local, national and international filmmakers, as well as engage the public in a variety of workshops and panel discussions. LIFF Executive Director, Chesley Heymsfield, is encouraged by the incredible support the new film festival has received and plans to

Louisiana’s budding film industry with mentorship and education, while at the same time nurturing the state’s international reputation as a place of—and showcase for—artistic creativity.” For more information about 2014 membership packages, sponsorship opportunities and upcoming events for LIFF, visit www.lifilmfest.org.

“Starting a cultural institution is an enormous undertaking. You made an auspicious beginning. We were pleasantly surprised that there was such a booming film industry there, a good base for your festival.” – Bob Adelman, Photographer & Author continue the momentum in 2014. “We founded the Louisiana International Film Festival & Mentorship Program to act as a conduit for our state’s ample and untapped creativity. LIFF is more than a film festival; it is a bridge between the local people who dream of becoming filmmakers and those veteran artists who know that mentorship can help to promote social change through direct access to opportunity. LIFF exists to promote

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FACES OF CREATIVE INFUSION HOW LOUISIANA’S HOT FILM CLIMATE GOT THESE PROFESSIONALS TO RELOCATE

hile the amazing growth of the indigenous entertainment community and the professional training of local residents should be justly celebrated, it’s the influx of transplants that determines whether Louisiana shall succeed in fulfilling its promise as “Hollywood South.” In the last few years, many people in the movie industry have been traveling to Louisiana. However, the long-term prospect of Louisiana becoming an entertainment capital remains uncertain. Other places have realized the fiscal value of becoming “the next Hollywood,” including Atlanta, Toronto, and even a formidable late-comer: Los Angeles.

W

In this race for limited resources, individual men and women making Louisiana their home, as well as their office, carries significance. That phenomenon of individual career choices happens every day and out of purview, but they add up over time. Meet some of the people in entertainment who have chosen to move to (as well as work in) Louisiana: LILY FILSON Lily Filson moved to New Orleans full-time just last summer on the heels of a film career in Italy and New York. The daughter of American parents who met in Fellini’s Rome in the late ‘60s, she passed much of her life in Europe: Venice, then Paris, later Florence. New Orleans, however, was always her family’s American home. She sums up her professional and personal relationship to the city thusly: “I grew up convinced that any real opportunity lay on the outside, but the biggest revelation and transformation in recent years has been that the best creative resources and milieu to be in for film were right here.” The proof is in the results. In her first year of living in New Orleans full-time, Filson wrote, directed and produced her first short, Audubon Dark, which is included this summer in the New Orleans Contemporary Arts

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Annie Gaia

Center’s exhibition “A Woman’s Work,” put on by the Louisiana chapter of Women in Film and Television. The short is a tribute to the aesthetic beauty of Uptown, as well as a dark twist on the “Beverly Hills” of Hollywood South’s social geography. A testament to the passion of the local creative community, Filson shot the entire short in one day on a zero-dollar budget. “New Orleans is really wonderfully, creatively reciprocal,” she says. “With Audubon Dark, I made a deal that I would do the modeling work for a music video without pay if the videographer would shoot and edit this short script I had written. The people I cast in the roles were mostly actors I had met from working on-set of several Hollywood South productions. I knew Kristal Shannon, who did the makeup and special effects for the short, from modeling at shows like Alegria! Fashion Week New Orleans, and a series of RAW Artists showcases that featured her work. Jason Matherne handled the sound (and the very real gun) because he had cast me in his independent horror feature the summer before. Seeing what a small group of talented DIY filmmakers could accomplish was an inspiring eye-opener about this city’s potential for me.” Until August 2012, Filson lived between

Photo Credit: Jason Raymond Lily Filson

New Orleans, Italy and New York and built her resume with modeling and acting work in all three markets. She had a role in the Giovanni Veronesi movie Un Giorno di Più, which she followed with on- and off-camera PR work for the Style Star Lounge at the Venice Film Festival. In her spare time, she took her first steps in artistic direction at the helm of photo shoots for her jewelry line, LVF Design, which was shown on the runway of

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the inaugural New Orleans Fashion Week. After Hurricane Isaac, Filson thought to stay in New Orleans full-time as her creative direction evolved from photo shoots to short films. “I think Italy and New York were amazing places not just to work, but to keep your eyes open and learn. However, New Orleans has been where I’ve been able to successfully stage my own work, something that usually is the result of a long career in the bigger markets,” she says. “I’m incredibly grateful to this unique time and place.” Filson is currently developing an animated short inspired by Louisiana’s wildlife and cultural heritage, entitled Why the Alligators Laugh, with the fiscal sponsorship of the New Orleans Video Access Center (NOVAC). Lily Filson can be contacted through her agent, Angela Ware with Heyman Talent. Follow her on Twitter @LVF_Films. JASON RAYMOND Prior to coming to Louisiana, newcomer Jason Raymond had considered moving to Atlanta or North Carolina. He credits one entity for making New Orleans his home. “Basically it was NOVAC, particularly a two-day class on using Final Cut Pro 7 taught by Christopher Brown,” he recalls. “My mom had been planning on retiring here, and she wanted me to move down, too. I wasn’t real excited about it. After seeing how dedicated NOVAC was to helping the film community, Jason Raymond

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I thought, ‘Okay, these people are exactly who I was looking for.’” Raymond’s family has lived in New Orleans for 200 years, and he lived there briefly in the 1980s. However, the vibrancy of the New Orleans film scene surprised him. “I just didn’t realize how much work was going on here,” he says. “Suddenly there are all these people working on movies or Web series. Through NOVAC you meet dedicated pros who have moved the heavens to get films made and marketed.” Years of working as an information professional for New York law firms and the State of Wyoming showed him that the worlds of text and visual arts were rapidly merging. He started working on Web sites in 2008, then began seriously studying photography while living in St. Paul, Minnesota. The lure of making movies for the Internet drew him to the Peck School of Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 2012. Though he’s only been here a few months, Raymond is already picking up different types of work in small projects, including two days as a production assistant with The XFactor. Right now his big project is a podcast drama, Merely Famous, about a young singer fresh out of rehab. He also spends time on his blog, “Raymond on Film & Photography.” In his opinion, the writer, the filmmaker, the computer programmer, the Web designer, and the artist are all dissolving into a Web-based expression-dominated profession. To assist that revolution, Raymond has developed different Web pages under the umbrella of Raymond Creativity. Back in 2011, he created “Feathered Game,” a Web site on bird hunting. He also has a neo-gothic Web site, “Ghost Stories 2 Ghastly 2 Read,” with a second one, “Nosferat Americana,” coming out in a few months. Raymond feels that we are just beginning to learn how to incorporate video into the digital landscape. In addition to his own work, Raymond assists other filmmakers with research, building Web sites, and other production assistance. Holding a Master’s degree, his research skills came from his time as a librarian, mainly for high-profile lawyers. Years of problem-solving for governments and law firms have given him a varied background and years of experience working under pressure, which translates readily into filmmaking. “I’ve always liked helping people achieve their goals,” he observes, “and to be able to help fellow artists is really meaningful.” To find out more about the services offered by Jason Raymond, visit Raymond Creativity at www.raymondcreativity.com. “Raymond on Film & Photography” can be accessed directly at raymondonfilm.wordpress.com.

ANNIE GAIA Annie Gaia got her start in her hometown of Memphis, where she wrote, produced and acted in several award-winning shorts. Her film Spirit Guide won the “Live! From Memphis” Jury award and was featured in the Indie Memphis Film Festival. Gaia also had roles in Woke Up Ugly and EAT, which both won acclamation on the film festival circuit. A shift in the universe led her to Los Angeles. Instead of flying back home after vacation, she extended her visit for four years. “It was my all-time dream to work in Hollywood,” says Gaia. “Once I understood the competition in Los Angeles, I realized I was going to have to make choices in my career path. Writing is my passion and I found I was other people’s characters instead of creating my own. New Orleans is very close to the guiding light that I carried in Memphis.” Gaia has found that the existing community here in “Hollywood South” has played a major role in her transition from L.A. After repeated visits to an actress friend living Uptown, it was last Thanksgiving that she stayed. Within a month, Gaia found an agent and landed a featured part in Fox’s Devil’s Due. Devil’s Due even flew her out first-class to Dominican Republic to shoot her scenes. “I kept thinking, ‘How am I so lucky?’, but in all honesty, I’ve been training my whole life for opportunities like these, and New Orleans is sprinkled with them,” she says. In order to advance her work as a filmmaker, Gaia regularly attends classes and events at NOVAC. She plans to use a NOVAC grant writing course to make a documentary about a non-profit arts center’s after-school enrichment program that benefits inner city students. She’s also taking improv classes at The New Movement Theatre, as well as teaching private vocal and children’s workshops. When not working, she’s an activist for Hope Stone New Orleans. Gaia’s feature The Jitter Box, a film noir taking place in her neighbor’s 19th century home, will start filming in August with Director Samantha Smith. Along with her writing partner, Milena Martinovik, the two are creating a series based on art and love in the Big Easy. It hasn’t taken Gaia long to find her place in the New Orleans entertainment scene. “Instead of ‘Big Fish/Small Pond’ in Memphis vs. L.A.’s ‘Small Fish/Huge Pond,’ I am now ‘The Right-Sized Fish in the Right-Sized Pond’ in NOLA,” she says. “My happiness has excelled. My career, in turn, has excelled, too.” Find out more about this young artist at www.anniegaia.com. She is represented by Heyman Talent. LFV

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WHY SOUTHERN FRIED HOMICIDE IS SERVING UP SOMETHING SPECIAL

On location with Southern Fried Homicide at Madewood Plantation.

T

hese days there is a slew of crime-related shows on any given night, on a variety of networks around the world, but Investigation Discovery’s Southern Fried Homicide stands out among the rest. On the night of June 5, 2013, the show’s premiere helped to post the network’s largest viewing audience numbers ever in the history of the popular network. And Southern Fried Homicide continues to boast a weekly audience of 750,000 to 1 million viewers.

Investigation Discovery (ID), part of Discovery Communications, is the leading mysteryand-suspense network on television and is often described as America’s favorite “guilty pleasure.” From harrowing crimes and salacious scandals to the in-depth investigations 24

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and heart-breaking mysteries that result, ID looks to challenge their audience’s everyday understanding of culture, society and the human condition, and delivers high quality programming to 83.5 million U.S. households. Southern Fried Homicide puts a unique

twist on the classic crime mystery by focusing solely on murders committed in the South, and takes viewers on a roundabout, but always interesting, path to solving them. Season one included three separate cases based in the state of Louisiana. The show host, Louisiana native and New Orleans-based actress Shanna Forrestall, provides the setup, commentary and wrapup with a strong and sassy personality, providing an engaging respite to the show’s often dark content. “We were looking for an authentic Southern narrator and location. Shanna was a standout, and her home state of Louisiana offered the perfect setting, so rich in charac-

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Local producer Tania Castellanos and director Chip Nusbaum.

Against a backdrop of Southern hospitality, etiquette, and traditional values, evil creeps in like vines on a timehonored plantation. Southern Fried Homicide reveals that ugliness lurks behind Southern beauty when cracks in moral society give way to cold-blooded murder. To find out more, including episode schedules, visit the show’s official site at investigation.discovery.com/tvshows/southern-fried-homicide. Follow Shanna Forrestall at @shannafromla or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/shannafromlouisiana.

Shanna Forrestall, host of SFH.

ter,” said Chris Nusbaum, executive producer for Sirens Media. “It has been such a pleasure to work with her.” The show is produced by Sirens Media with Valerie Haselton as executive producer and Diana Sperrazza as executive producer with Investigation Discovery. Local New Orleans-based producer Tania Castellanos helped the director Chip Nusbaum choose the lovely Madewood Plantation in Napoleonville, Louisiana, as the show’s primary location. Castellanos also helped secure a local crew, which included several members of Women in Film Louisiana (Liz Dunnebacke, associate producer, and Helen Krieger, key PA). New episodes of Southern Fried Homicide air every Wednesday night at 9pm Central on Investigation Discovery, with repeats of previous episodes airing throughout the week. LFV

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LOUISIANA FILMS SHINE AT LOS ANGELES FILM FESTIVAL STORY BY W. H. BOURNE FESTIVAL PHOTO BY ODIN LINDBLOM PRODUCTION PHOTOS COURTESY OF IFC FILMS

A

in’t Them Bodies Saints,

Rooney Mara and Casey Affleck speak about shooting in Louisiana at the Los Angeles Film Festival

starring Casey Affleck and Rooney Mara, made its California premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival recently. Shot in northern Louisiana as well as parts of Texas, the film has been touring the festival circuit. Members of the cast and crew were on hand at the festival for the film’s screening. Writer/director David Lowery took center stage, fielding most of the questions about the project.

Rooney Mara does a great Southern accent in Ain’t Them Bodies Saints.

Rooney Mara and Casey Affleck in trouble with the law in Ain’t Them Bodies Saints.

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“I didn’t write the script with anyone in mind,” said Lowery, “which is both a good and bad thing. When we had the opportunity to start casting, I was especially excited about folks who I felt could disappear into the texture of the film, who wouldn’t feel too modern. Rooney, Ben (Foster) and Casey were all my first choices, simple as that.” When asked about signing onto the project, Affleck said, “They told me Rooney had signed on, so I decided to do it.” Mara jumped in, “Well, that’s weird because they told me you had signed onto the project, so that’s why I decided to do it.”

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The story line of Ain’t Them Bodies Saints revolves around an impassioned young outlaw couple on an extended crime spree who are finally apprehended by lawmen after a shootout in the Texas hills. Although Ruth (played by Mara) wounds a local officer, Bob (played by Affleck) takes the blame. But four years later, Bob escapes from prison and sets out to find Ruth and their daughter, born during his incarceration. Ben Foster plays the local Sheriff, Patrick Wheeler, who falls for Ruth. “My favorite scene in the film is when Ben Foster’s character steps inside and spills his guts to Rooney Mara,” said Lowery. “It’s a very personal moment, and the performances and music and lighting just all come together just so. I could watch that scene all day. As for my favorite scene to shoot—that’s a tough call. It’s hard not to say the very last one we shot, which was a shot of Ben walking through a door, just because it was the last one and there was such a sense of ebullient accomplishment to it. But every scene had its own trials and tribulations, as well as moments of pure joy. Action scenes were fun in a very mechanical way—I’ve never made a clock, but I’d liken it to that. Everything has to be precise and perfect, and each shot needs to build off the one that came before it and lead into whatever comes next. It was a lot of fun. On the other hand, the dialogue scenes (some of which were very

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Rooney Mara and Casey Affleck show off their dramatic chops in Ain’t Them Bodies Saints.

long) were thrilling because, once we had the cameras ready to roll, we got to sit back and watch actors do their thing. Whenever the camera and the actors and the words they were saying all fell into perfect formation, I was as happy as a director could be.” “It was a great atmosphere,” said Affleck. “Everyone felt like they were free to try something new, even if it wasn’t scripted or they just thought of it or even if it might be a mistake, and were able to do so knowing that they wouldn’t be judged. But the need almost never arose because the script was so good that

when a scene arose, what was in the script just felt like the natural thing to do. David was really great in that he let us bring what we wanted to the performances, while still keeping it all in context with his vision of the film.” Frances Bodomo’s Boneshaker also played at Los Angeles Film Festival. Shot in Louisiana, the short film stars Academy Award nominated actress Quvenzhané Wallis (Beasts of the Southern Wild). While neither Bodomo nor Wallis were able to attend the festival, the film was well received by audiences. LFV

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TALENT SPOTLIGHT

DEAR AGENT COMPILED BY DAWN LANDRUM LANDRUM ARTS LA

DEAR AGENT I auditioned for a lead role in a movie and when my agent called me to book me, the production offered me a day player role and there are only four lines. I am trying to pattern my career for bigger roles. Should I turn this down? ~LEADING LADY DEAR LEADING LADY If you are unsure whether you brought a good enough performance, it’s a good idea to talk to your agent and ask them if the lesser role is a result of your performance. Not booking a specific role often means the larger role ended up going to a “name” actor or movie star. Sometimes it’s a political reason. In those cases, the role you wanted is no longer available. In my opinion you should never turn down a good role if you are not getting multiple offers for several projects at once that warrant your making a choice. It’s important to keep positive momentum going. CDs and productions like it when you are constantly working. If the casting director and production liked you so much that they wanted to fit you in another role, you should take that as a compliment and accept the role with gratitude. Trust me, they know your talent and ability. It’s often worth taking that lesser role to show them you are a team player. They WILL remember you for future projects. Always assess this decision with your agent on a case by case basis. There is no “one” good answer here. It all depends on the size of the project, the role, the casting director, the production, and type of project. ~AGENT DEAR AGENT My best friend and roommate ALWAYS gets auditions and callbacks and I hardly ever even get a pre-read audition. We have different agents. Do you think this is my fault or should I get a new agent? ~ACTOR NEEDS ANSWER DEAR ACTOR NEEDS ANSWER It’s not good to compare your career to your friend’s career. You have your own

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A FORUM WHERE ANYONE CAN ASK QUESTIONS FROM TOP AGENTS AND GET RESPONSES WHILE REMAINING COMPLETELY ANONYMOUS.

look, your own style, your own ability, and YOU chose your agent. It’s your job to make sure that you and your agent are in communication; that he/she has all of the tools necessary in which to properly promote and pitch you; that you have a great reputation in the acting community as being someone casting directors want to call in; that you are dependable; that you are professionally consistent; that you not only are a good actor but are also great at auditions; and that all of your career planets are in alignment. Take control of your own career and stop looking at everyone else’s. ~AGENT DEAR AGENT I was dating a fellow actor and we broke up. Now I hear that he is dating a casting director’s assistant. Ever since we broke up I rarely get called in to audition by that casting director. Do you think I should say something to that casting director? I feel that my ex and his new girl may be sabotaging my career. ~ NERVOUS NELLY DEAR NERVOUS NELLY It’s difficult when love and professions collide. However, in my experience, if you are a strong enough actor, no gossip is going to stop a CD from calling you in. Stay cool and be someone who is good and strong and confident enough that no one will sway on the side of rumor. ~AGENT DEAR AGENT I was on the set of a very popular show and was injured. I didn’t tell anyone because I was afraid to make waves and I don’t want them to hesitate to book me again. Now I’m starting to have problems physically. What should I do? ~IN PAIN AND PARANOID DEAR IN PAIN AND PARANOID I’m so sorry to hear you were injured. Honestly, you should have informed the proper authorities on set immediately and filled out an accident report. The proper actions to take really depend upon the circumstances and the extent of the injury. You should have contacted your agent to inform him/her of what happened. It’s not “making waves” in following proce-

dure and protocol. It’s being professional. Accidents happen. How you handle the situation determines how professional you appear. I also own a production company and I would much rather know immediately if someone is injured on my set rather than hear about it later. Waiting till later to report an injury could cause production to be suspicious and it’s much harder for them to validate the authenticity. Wishing you well! ~AGENT DEAR AGENT My daughter is a great little actress and I’m doing my best to be a good mom “manager.” How can I get an agent? When is it time? ~MOMAGER DEAR MOMAGER It’s best to pursue an agent after your child is fully trained and ready for auditions. There are some “starter agencies” who help develop new actors, whereas others only take highly experienced actors. My advice is to do your homework. Find out which agents develop child actors. Check out their reputation, resume, how long they’ve been in business, their talent roster and what bookings they are getting for child actors. Request interviews… don’t just ask the agents to represent your child. Have an interview and take your child. Find out which one has the best fit with you and your child. Trust your child’s instincts, as they are often true. Your child and you should be very comfortable with the agent. You and your agent will have to be in communication a LOT. So make sure you select one you will be happy with. Don’t simultaneously submit to multiple agents. Find your top three choices and set up meetings. After the meetings, then make your decision based on all of the above. Good luck! ~AGENT DEAR AGENT I have an agent whom I really like and she has helped to develop me and now I’m a really good actor. She gets me auditions every week and because the agency reps me coast to coast, I’m auditioning a lot! I’ve been wanting to

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TALENT SPOTLIGHT branch out into other stronger markets like Atlanta, for example, because my friends just moved there. My agent is fine with me getting an Atlanta agent but I’m not sure I want to juggle several agents. After all, she’s been getting me Atlanta auditions just fine. Well, an Atlanta agent just told me they want me to sign with them and my friends just signed with them. But they will make me leave all of my other agents if I do. My friends are really pressuring me to follow in their footsteps. I love my current agent but I have to think of my career first. What do I do? ~TORN DEAR TORN I think you know the right thing to do here. Your current agent sounds lovely! You obviously have a great relationship with her so why would you risk starting over with a new agent whom you have only just met? If she’s getting you auditions in Atlanta, then it makes no real sense to get an Atlanta agent. Relationships and reputation is very important in this business. Any agent who would take you after learning you dropped a wonderful agent due to peer pressure would not be an agent I’d advise you to be with. No one likes a “user” and no agent is in this to be a stepping stone. ~AGENT DEAR AGENT I moved to NOLA from California and got a local agent. They are great and one of the top agents in the state. However, I have a quote that I always got in California and this Louisiana agent doesn’t seem to honor that quote. Advice? ~CALIFORNIANNOYED DEAR CALIFORNIANNOYED Like I advise a zillion times, this is a conversation you should be having with your agent. In being an agent and also having several California actors, it’s best that the agent make the CD aware at each submission when the actor only books over scale. I had a similar experience with an actor recently. He moved to Louisiana and expected to instantly make his quote with each booking. I was honest and up front that getting a quote in the Southeast is not as common as it is in California. CDs here are very clear on which roles will be “offer only,” above scale, and which are 34

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scale only. All of the roles he wanted to audition for were scale only. He got perturbed when he’d book and they only offered scale when he KNEW when he auditioned what the offer was. Productions come to Louisiana to save money. Most have their stars attached before they even post the regional breakdown. Talk to your agent and ask him to let the CDs know of your quote BEFORE you audition. But be ready… it’s going to limit how often you get called in if you won’t work for scale. It’s presumptuous to expect your agent or the CD or production to alter rates to fit you. Don’t come to Louisiana and expect it to be California. If you are in the Southeast, darling, you should expect to eat Louisiana gumbo! ~AGENT

DEAR AGENT I just moved to town and got a bunch of head shots and resumes together and spent three days trying to deliver them to casting directors so I could personally meet everyone. My manager told me to take them in person as opposed to mailing them so the CD could see me in person. A couple of the CDs seemed miffed when I showed up. I’m now worried that I should not have just stopped by. What do you think? ~CD CURIOSITY DEAR CD CURIOSITY I know all of the CDs in Louisiana pretty well. They are all very kind and very professional but they lead very busy, productive days. Anything that takes them away from their already busy schedule is unwelcome. These pros work very hard and see hundreds and hundreds of actors a week. For an actor to just leisurely stop in and to expect an audience with the CD is not professional. Your manager should have contacted the CD in advance to get you a time and date to stop in. If you did not need a meeting with the CD, you should have mailed the head shot and resume. Most don’t mind your dropping the head shot and resume in their outside drop box or leaving with the receptionist. But again, you have a manager and that manager should have informed you so you were not put in an uncomfortable position. ~AGENT

DEAR AGENT There is a top Louisiana agent I have been trying to get to sign me for years. (wink wink) The agency has very strict procedures for

submission and I have followed them several times. Why am I never getting anywhere? ~HARRIED AND HOPELESS DEAR HARRIED AND HOPELESS Speaking for myself and our agency, I will give it to you straight. Our agency is boutique, meaning we choose to represent a very specific number of actors and do not plan to increase that number. The only way someone gets in is when a spot opens up. When a spot opens up, we go to our waiting list to find an actor who fits the description and ability of the talent we need to replace. If you don’t fit a need and you are spinning your wheels with that agent, I’d advise you to move on to your second choice. Most agents really appreciate professional persistence. However, we cannot possibly take everyone. There are thousands and thousands of actors wanting great representation. The best agents are hardest to get into. Every week we have a maxed out New Talent Division e-mail count of 500+ actors trying to get in. As impressive as that is to be so wanted, we know that most will be disappointed because we are not going to take them. To increase your chances at being THE actor they cannot refuse, make sure your ability is amazing, natural, and real. Make sure you have solid references and referrals and a very impressive performance reel to send them. If they are an agency that only takes established actors and you are still developing, DO NOT approach them until you are established. Never EXPECT an agent to take you. They do not owe you anything so please don’t act like they do. Don’t get angry when you are not accepted; instead be more determined to make yourself greater so they won’t ever want to turn you down. Be respectful and professional and you will find an agent who is a good fit. ~AGENT If you would like to ask a question, e-mail DearAgent@LALATalent.com (LALATalent.com stands for LA=Louisiana to LA=Los Angeles). If you are an agent who would like to be on our panel to respond to the questions we receive, please also e-mail and put AGENT in the subject line. This is a volunteer effort and no compensation is received for questions or replies. We reserve the right to pick and choose which questions and responses are posted. Opinions and responses are agent professional opinion-based, are not necessarily the opinion of this publication, and are intended to be used for entertainment purposes only.

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TALENT SPOTLIGHT

OPEN RANGE MANAGEMENT

I

f you ask Brenda Netzberger, a native of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, what the primary focus of the agency is, she will always answer the same: “Relationships.” And she’s spent years investing into them. “To me, the most important focus of the agency and what makes us and keeps us successful is relationships… with the talent and with the clients,” she says. Netzberger, who’s been actively involved in the industry for over 25 years, was the director/agent of Dolly Dean Network/Model and Talent Management in Baton Rouge for 12 years before taking over the company, relocating and changing the name in January 2000. She is now the sole owner and agent of Open Range Management. In her many years in the industry, her core belief has always remained the same: “I am nothing without my talent.” That defining phrase weaves itself through the goals and strategies of Open Range Management. The agency represents actors, stunt performers and models that are committed to being the best. “I love being a talent agent, the challenge

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A few of Open Range Management’s success stories: actors Wayne Pere and Shanna Forrestall.

“I’ve lived and worked in L.A. for nearly 25 years and I have gone through my share of agents and managers, but none of them can hold a candle to Brenda. She’s extremely committed and passionate about her work and she takes a personal interest in her talent. Not only is she completely in my corner as far as ‘the business’ is concerned, but I also consider her a dear friend who is always there for me.” – Wayne Pere of finding just the right actor for the right role, and the reward of seeing my talent work,” says Netzberger. “I have many success stories throughout my career. I enjoy developing and launching local people.” Netzberger also believes in setting and keeping high standards. Choosing the best talent, developing relationships with them, and assisting with their personal and career devel-

“When I first began acting professionally in 2004, I signed with Open Range Management and I’ve been a part of the team ever since. Brenda’s commitment to helping her talent develop and find work has helped me to become what I am today—a professional actress working FULL TIME in film and television. I am extremely grateful for an agent who continually invests into me and my career!” – Shanna Forrestall opment as they grow, are all part of her focus on reaching the goal. Her commitment to her talent wins them over, but her integrity and professionalism keeps them long-term. “I believe in getting to know my talent personally, and I love representing talent that are as dedicated and as passionate as I am about the industry,” she says. “I have definitely found that in the ones I represent. I am proud to know that they trust me, and are loyal to me, so that we can work together as a team to accomplish our mutual goals.” To make the business work, she also concentrates on satisfying the needs of the client. Agencies only make money when the talent works, so the agency always strives to offer the client strong options to meet their specific needs. “Being a talent agent is part of who I am. It never is boring, every day is a challenge and I love to be challenged,” says Netzberger. “I am so happy to be working in an industry that brings new things my way every day. To love what you do is the ultimate way to live your life… and I am lucky to have found my niche!” LFV For more information, contact Brenda Netzberger at 225-216-2424 or openrange@bellsouth.net.

L&R SECURITY SERVICES, INC. 3930 OLD GENTILLY ROAD NEW ORLEANS, LA 70126

PHONE: (504) 943-3191 F AX: (504) 944-1142 TOLL FREE: (800) 324-4672

CERTIFICATIONS SDVOSB HUB ZONE GSA CONTRACT GSA-07F-5683R

Set Security Ushers Roving Supervisors Body Guards ATM Escort

Preview Screenings Uniformed Guards Site Managers Ticket Takers Armed & Unarmed Event Logistics Consulting Services

CLIENTS & PARTNERS NOBLE INC SECURITY HUNGRY RABBIT JUMPS LLC GERARD SELLERS FEDERAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY US ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION VETERANS AFFAIRS SCORE TRANSPORTATION SAFETY ADMINISTRATION

L&R IS LICENSED IN THE FOLLOWING STATES LOUISIANA CALIFORNIA COLORADO MISSISSIPPI ARIZONA ALABAMA MISSOURI TEXAS NEW MEXICO ARKANSAS TENNESSEE FLORIDA VIRGINIA MARYLAND WASHINGTON, D.C. WE CAN OBTAIN LICENSING IN ALL 50 STATES. TO LEARN MORE CALL (504) 943-3191.

WWW.LRSECURITY.COM L&R SECURITY SERVICES, INC.

3930 Old Gentilly Rd | New Orleans, LA 70126 phone: (504) 943-3191 | fax: (504) 942-1142 | email: info@lrsecurity.com

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TALENT SPOTLIGHT

TALENT AGENCY OPENS NEW ORLEANS OFFICE

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n September of 1983, Rebecca Shrager opened the doors of People Store in Atlanta, Georgia. She recognized her uncanny ability to match the right face to the right project while working as a stylist and production coordinator in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Realizing the need in the Atlanta market for a more diverse range of talent, Shrager utilized her background from the Atlanta College of Art, and went out into the community to photograph interesting faces. She then contacted local theater companies, and discovered an untapped source of talent not yet integrated into the world of film and advertising. Over the past 30 years, People Store has grown into one of the most successful and wellrespected agencies in the country. In 2002, The Talent Group and Hot Shot Kids, co-owned by film and TV agent Brenda Pauley, joined forces with People Store, creating a multi-million-dollar agency representing the most talented and seasoned adult and child actors and actresses in the region. Today, People Store remains at the forefront of the industry, opening the boundaries between the Southeast, Los Angeles and New York.

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People Store and Hot Shot Kids houses eight agents including Rebecca Shrager, owner, Brenda Pauley, head of the Film and TV department in Atlanta, along with Savannah Strachan Victoria Temple and Michael Lynch. Savannah Strachan is the New Orleans agent. Rick Estimond is the company’s commercial and industrial agent; Karen Donahue handles voice over and print; and Lavon Lacey covers live events and more recently reality television and the theatrical department. They are supported by Jessy Alfonso as office manager and Lesley Galaida and Beth Tebbe in the accounting department. In May of 2012, People Store expanded the company’s reach and opportunities for clients by opening a New Orleans branch run by Savannah Strachan, a native New Orleanian. Strachan pursued a degree in fine arts but never let film get too far out of her scope. Working as a PA in New York City during and after college, she gained insight into the inner workings of the business.

After living abroad for a year, she returned to New Orleans in 2009 and fell in with the world of casting. She cut her teeth on shows like Treme and Memphis Beat, and films such as Parker, Colombiana and The Host with RPM Casting, LLC. She has now flipped the coin and left the casting department to join the People Store representing actors to the casting directors she previously assisted. Some of People Store’s recent success stories include bookings in The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Steve McQueen’s Twelve Years a Slave, The Weinstein Company’s Random, Tom Hanks’ Parkland, and Iron Man 3, to name a few in film. Hit TV shows Nashville, Revolution, Teen Wolf, The Walking Dead, and new show Under the Dome also showcase People Store talent weekly. People Store is the first company in the Southeast to open a physical branch outside of its home market. This forward thinking and commitment to innovation and relationship-building is what makes the company the institution that it is. The company is thrilled to be celebrating its 30th anniversary this year and looks forward to future successes and growth of the company, as well as the film industry in the region. LFV

TALENT SPOTLIGHT

TALENT

AGENCY PROFILES LF&VM HIGHLIGHTS A SELECTION OF LOUISIANA TALENT AGENCIES MAKING THEIR MARK IN THE BAYOU STATE.

Jean Manino, JCM’s Animal Talent 504-838-8605 www.jcmdogtraining.com After high school, I enrolled in the University of New Orleans and majored in Drama/Communications. It was there that I was introduced to theater and television production. After finishing school I became involved with dogs and dog training. With the assistance of a brilliant obedience instructor, I realized early on that this was going to be a lifelong passion. I started training dogs and competing in obedience trials in 1979. Naturally gifted, I had an unspoken communication with my canine counterparts. I was fascinated by the way dogs learned and were able to understand what was being asked of them. I got my start in the entertainment industry when an ad appeared in the local newspaper seeking a dog to play the role of Sandy in the live stage production of Annie. Despite the many dozens who auditioned, we were chosen. This opportunity opened the door to many years of stage, screen, and television. Thirty-plus years later, I still love what I do and wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Terry McNeal, Del Corral & Associates 504-324-3782 www.delcorralmodel.com Del Corral & Associates offers a wide variety of services for those who are actively involved in the entertainment world. As one of the oldest agencies in the state, it was created during the birth of the entertainment boom in Louisiana and since then has continued to flourish. We represent a wide variety of talent who have many areas of expertise. Del Corral also has several types of workshops throughout the year to help all actors, from the experienced actor to the new beginner. These include acting, voiceover and even “stuntman.” Our 2,500-sqft facility located at 4400 S. Carrolton Ave includes a conference room, large rehearsal space, kitchen, and a green screen room. It is an ideal location for casting and the green screen room has been used for several productions. Call us today for your entertainment needs!

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TALENT SPOTLIGHT

Liz Atherton, The Atherton Group (TAG) Talent Agency 504-708-2700 • www.tagtalent.com

Rebecca Hale, Hale Talent, LLC 504-858-9038 www.haletalentagency.com Hale Talent, LLC books actors/actresses/musicians of all ages, both union and non-union, for commercials, films, television, videos, voice-overs, print work, and conventions. A new division of Hale Talent, LLC is Hale Music Talent, which financed the new jazz CD The Very Thought of You by singer Nancy Fisher (www.nancyfishermusic.com). Actors from Hale Talent, LLC have booked roles in Treme, Black and White, American Horror Story, Bonnie and Clyde, Pitch Perfect, and Jiffy Lube (print), among others. Dr. Rebecca Hale (owner/agent) has a Ph.D. in Educational Theatre from New York University and has owned her agency for 19 years.

The Atherton Group (TAG) Talent Agency represents professional, award-winning actors and voiceover artists, as well as the most impressive rising stars in the business. Founded in 1992, The Atherton Group has enjoyed a standing on IMDB as one of the top boutique agencies in the nation – a reputation that TAG works hard to earn and keep. The Atherton Group opened operations in New Orleans in the summer of 2009. Since then, TAG actors have enjoyed working all over the state, including recent principal and leading roles in Olympus Has Fallen, Treme, The Loft, Redneck Gators, American Horror Story and White Rabbit. Agent Jorge Elizondo, who heads up the Louisiana division for TAG, is proud to be part of the ever-growing Southern film industry and looks forward to more and more work for actors and crew, alike! It is the belief at The Atherton Group that with success comes responsibility, and that giving back is not only a civic duty, but a privilege. Inasmuch, TAG regularly makes contributions in time and resources to charities that support humans, animal welfare, and community.

ANIMAL TALENT

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TALENT SPOTLIGHT

LALA Dawn Landrum, Landrum Arts LA Talent Agency 318-742-6554 • www.landrumarts.com Landrum Arts LA Talent Agency is a full-service agency that takes pride in providing actors to fill lead and strong supporting roles in feature films and television. Landrum chose to base their home-office directly in the center of the United States, so they can successfully represent talent from coast to coast. Home base is located in Shreveport, Louisiana, with satellite offices around the country. “We made our home office in a northern location so when hurricanes hit the southern region our agency stays up and running,” says Dawn Landrum. “We never have

to evacuate or lose business and are always open to assist productions and casting directors 24/7.” Landrum prefers to operate as a boutique agency, keeping their clientele numbers to a minimum. “It’s important that we agents know everything about the talent we represent. So we keep our roster large enough to stay competitive, but small enough to personally know each actor, their stats, abilities and where they are at all times.” To inquire about Landrum talent for your production contact Dawn or George Landrum at 323-208-3484 (CA), 214-233-1373 (TX), or 318-742-6554 (LA). Or e-mail Agent@LandrumTalent.com. Actors wishing to apply for representation please do NOT phone, instead please e-mail NewTalentDivision@LALATalent.com and include head shot, body shot (clothed), resume, reel, references. Please put the name of who referred you in the subject line.

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TALENT SPOTLIGHT

ESCALANTE LUNDY Escalante Lundy was born and raised in New Orleans. In 2005 he was introduced to theater and film producing because of project management experience while working for the California Department of Transportation in Sacramento. Because of a no-show of another actor, Escalante was thrust into the performance world. While in collaboration with Falkon Kwest Productions, he was involved in several stage productions in Los Angeles and Las Vegas before moving back to New Orleans after Katrina to assist family. He decided to stay awhile and try the local acting scene. In 2007 Escalante began studying at the Anthony Bean Community Theater and made his New Orleans stage acting debut as the “Papaya Man”. After several other theater productions, the film world was next. He was signed by Brenda Netzberger of Open Range Management in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He began studying with Valeka Grey, Lance Nichols and others before becoming a fixture at Jerry Katz Acting Joint. Over the past 6 years Escalante has been involved in over 20 film/theatre projects, most notably the HBO television show Treme, national commercial for Pampers with Drew Brees, the lead in feature film The Sickle, and one of his most recent bookings as “Big Fred” in Quentin Tarantino’s Django Unchained. Escalante is currently slated for a couple of upcoming film projects: he will play “Hubbard” in Burn and a jazz musician in the remake of classic Body Heat. He will also play “Lenny Lyle” in Mouthpiece, a biographical film that documents the seedy underworld of prostitution in 1970s Atlanta’s dangerous sub-culture. He has currently booked a role in the Nicolas Cage movie Left Behind, directed by Vic Armstrong. Escalante feels that acting has not only been exciting as a profession, but has been key to human emotional development. He looks forward to continue working making acting a full time career. Atlanta Model and Talent-Georgia Open Range Management-Louisiana 3098 Piedmont Rd. #102 2910 Fairway Dr Atlanta, GA 30305 Baton Rouge, LA 70809 404-261-9627 225-216-2424

SEAN P. BRAUD Sean Paul Braud (BRO) was born into a family of mainly non-athletic people who were more than mildly confused with the perpetual ball of motion in their midst. He excelled at every sport he attempted but it was diving that combined his kinesthetic awareness with his need to jump off of high surfaces. He was a high school state champion and heavily recruited before he was chosen by the University of Pittsburgh where he was a 4 time All Big East Accolade recipient and a 3 time Big East Team Champion. In ‘01 he decided that high diving was not challenging enough and took 12th place in the Red Bull Cliff Diving Championships in Athens, Greece. This earned him a world ranking of 16th. In ’08, he placed 4th in the world, competing off the famous cliffs of Acapulco. Lest it be thought he was only a mindless jock, in ‘03 he graduated Cum Laude with a MA in Public Relations. Sean is currently living his childhood dream of being a professional stuntman and has been quoted as saying that every day on set as a stuntman is living in a dream that has come true. In his free time he studies Krav Maga which allows him to enjoy his second love, martial arts. spbraud23@gmail.com

CAROL ANN SCRUGGS Carol Ann was born in Vicksburg, Mississippi, with most of her years spent in the Jackson, Mississippi, area. After raising a family she made the decision to pursue her acting aspirations. She commuted to New Orleans for over 2 years and re-located to New Orleans in October 2012 to focus on her acting career. Her background includes being a Registered Nurse with a Master’s degree in Healthcare Administration. Carol Ann is a serious trained film and television actress who has ongoing studies with an Ivana Chubbuck certified instructor at Jerry Katz Acting Joint in New Orleans. Additionally she has studied with Lance Nichols, Jim Gleason, Paul Webber, Tom Todoroff and many others. She has worked on many feature films, shorts and commercials. These include Moon Pie, Lavanda, Net Effect, Can’t Let Go, Blue Cross and many more. Del Corral & Associates 504-324-3782 / 601-842-7899 carolannscruggs@gmail.com 42

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Louisiana TALENT AGENCIES

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S SP POK EA ES KE PE RS OP LE / LIV M E EVE USC PERF NT IANS OR TAL /S MA EN PEC NCE T IAL / H M AI WA AKER ST RD UP YLI RO AR ST BE TI S/ ST STS YL / IST SP S TA OR LE TS NT /S TU NT

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Acclaim Talent New Orleans, LA 504-330-8632 www.acclaimtalent.com Actors Choice Talent Agency Denham Springs, LA 225-408-9857 www.actorschoicetalent.com Amazing Animal Productions, Inc. Covington, LA 310-990-3538 www.amazinganimalproductions.com The Atherton Group (TAG) Talent Agency Georgetown, TX 504-708-2700 www.tagtalent.com Bobbi Colorado & The Wild Bunch Slidell, LA 228-324-3774 Carl Mack Presents New Orleans, LA 504-949-4009 www.carlmack.com Clear Talent Group South New Orleans, LA 504-834-8290 www.cleartalentgroup.com Del Corral & Associates Model & Talent Agency New Orleans, LA 504-324-3782• www.delcorralmodel.com fameagency New Orleans, LA 800-458-9112 www.fameagency.com Fruition Talent & Media Inc. New Orleans, LA 504-316-1184 Hale Talent Metairie, LA 504-858-9038 www.haletalentagency.com Heyman Talent New Orleans, LA 504-264-2840 www.heymantalent.com Images Model & Talent Agency Lafayette, LA 337-406-2219 Impact MTA New Orleans, LA 504-533-8759 www.impactmta.com J Pervis Talent Agency Baton Rouge, LA & Atlanta, GA 225-329-7775 www.jpervistalent.com JCM’s Animal Talent Covington, LA 504-838-8605 www.jcmdogtraining.com Jessica O’Day Agency, LLC New Orleans, LA 512-905-2116 www.odayagency.com Keiani Model Management New Orleans, LA 504-784-0897 www.keimanagement.com Landrum Arts LA Talent Agency Shreveport, LA 318-742-6554 www.landrumarts.com Louisiana Talent Agency New Orleans, LA 504-324-4288 www.louisianatalentagency.com Metro Models and Talent New Orleans, LA 504-324-1990 www.metromt.net Michael Turney Agency Shreveport, LA 318-221-2628 www.michaelturneyagency.com MotherShip Entertainment New Orleans, LA 504-488-3865 www.mothershipentertainment.com Moxie Agency, LLC New Orleans, LA 504-345-9591 www.moxie-agency.com New Orleans Model & Talent New Orleans, LA 504-525-0100 ISSUE FOUR 2013

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Louisiana TALENT AGENCIES

NOVA: The New Orleans Voice Agency New Orleans, LA 504-355-9673 www.neworleansvoiceagency.com Open Range Management, Inc. Baton Rouge, LA 225-216-2424 www.openrangemanagement.com Paper Doll Promotions, Inc. New Orleans, LA 504-581-4444 www.paperdollpromotions.com Pastorini-Bosby Talent Agency, Inc. Houston, TX 713-266-4488 www.pbtalent.com People Store New Orleans, LA & Atlanta, GA 504-324-2812 www.peoplestore.net Proclaim Talent Agency New Orleans, LA 504-849-9020 www.proclaimtalent.com Stage 2000, Inc. Baton Rouge, LA 225-216-9195 www.stage2000.net Talent Connexion, LLC New Orleans, LA 504-296-3705 talentconnexion.wix.com/talentconnexion Top Dog Talent Agency Covington, LA 318-550-6000 www.topdogtalentagency.com

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S SP POK EA ES KE PE RS OP LE / LIV M E EVE USC PERF NT IANS OR TAL /S MA EN PEC NCE T IAL / HA M I WA AKER ST RD UP YLI RO AR ST BE TI S/ ST STS YL / IST S S TA POR LE TS NT /S TU NT

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Company City, State Phone Web site

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Louisiana CASTING DIRECTORS/AGENCIES L P IVE MUERF O S TA PECSICIARMA LE IAL NS NC NT E / E / VE NT

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TYPES OF TALENT CAST

Anne Massey Casting Metairie, LA 888-810-9060 www.annemasseycasting.com Batherson Casting New Orleans, LA 504-782-8483 www.bathersoncasting.com Caballero Casting Baton Rouge & New Orleans, LA 225-610-1650 www.caballerocasting.com Coulon Casting, Inc. New Orleans, LA 504-569-0683 www.couloncasting.com Double A Casting New Orleans, LA & Wilmington, NC 551-208-9915 www.doubleacasting.com Fincannon & Associates Metairie, LA 504-832-1222 www.fincannoncasting.com Glorioso Casting, LLC New Orleans, LA 504-410-7097 www.gloriosocasting.com

Hollywood South Casting Database, LLC New Orleans, LA 504-252-0570 www.hollywoodsouthcasting.com James Bearb Casting New Orleans, LA 504-905-2641 www.jamesbearbcasting.com LaTanya Potts Casting/Entertainment Shreveport, LA & Los Angeles, CA 318-550-3976 www.latanyapottscasting.com Legacy Casting Shreveport, LA & Dallas, TX 318-734-1088 www.legacycasting.com RPM Casting, LLC New Orleans, LA 504-224-2278 www.rpmcasting.com The Casting Office, Inc. Jefferson, LA 504-812-5552

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STAR POWER

TALKING FITNESS AND FILM WITH CELEBRITY TRAINER AARON WILLIAMSON

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wayne “The Rock” Johnson, Josh Brolin, Jamie Foxx and Zac Efron are just a handful of the A-list actors who have had their bodies and minds transformed by celebrity trainer Aaron Williamson. Williamson was born on August 9, 1979 and raised in Daytona Beach, Florida. After graduating from high school, he joined the Marine Corps, which is when his life drastically changed. Out of high school he traveled the world as a Marine Corps infantryman, participating in several large-scale training evolutions. In 2000, Williamson was screened and selected for the Marine Corps World Famous Body Bearers, where he spent nearly four years conducting funerals out of Arlington National Cemetery, and again, he traveled the world assisting in joint service events. In 2003, Williamson was screened and selected to become personal security for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), General Peter Pace. Here he spent the remainder of his Marine Corps career before he ended his active service in 2005. “There have been times in my life where fitness has been the only thing I’ve had to turn to; it’s literally been the only thing to keep me sane,” says Williamson. “When I was in Baghdad, Iraq, I’ll never forget the relentless rocket attacks we endured every day. As crazy as it may seem, I’d wake up at 3am, eat my quick meal, throw my body armor on and literally run to the gym, occasionally jumping in a bunker along the way just to get my training in. Yeah, I’m sure people will say I’m nuts, but getting in there was my outlet. I’d go crazy without it.” As Williamson was departing from the Marine Corps, he was offered contract work in Iraq assisting in the biometric operations mission; he stayed in Iraq contributing to the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) for four years. In 2009, Williamson took a leap of faith and made the decision to return to the United States to New Orleans. Throughout his Marine Corps and contract career, his passion has been bodybuilding, health and fitness. No matter what job Williamson held or where he was in the world, everyone knew him for this passion. Now that Williamson is back in the United States, he is pursuing his passion in health and fitness in hopes of making a difference in other people’s lives and to show some amazing physiques on the big screen! Williamson came to New Orleans from Iraq in the summer of 2009 for a Marine Corps contract position that just didn’t work out as expected. After some trials and tribulations, Williamson was able to move into fitness full-time. “I linked up with Zac Efron, who was filming The Lucky One, and Actor Josh Brolin and Aaron Williamson.

Aaron Williamson with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

became one of the technical advisors for that film,” says Williamson. “After The Lucky One, I was contacted by Treme director/producer Anthony Hemingway, who wanted to get back into the gym and get his nutrition program back on point. We worked for the whole season and then things started picking up for me that summer when I trained the cast for GI Joe: Retaliation.” Williamson now owns and operates Aaron Williamson Fitness, where he trains local film industry personnel and other clients who live in Louisiana, and provides online training and nutrition programs. Throughout the film industry, he is becoming known for transforming physiques for characters in record-breaking times—some transformations never before done in film history. “There are a lot of unique challenges in my profession,” says Williamson. “The hours change quickly and often. I’ve been in the gym training clients at 2am before, so in this business you have to be ready to work at any hour. Another challenge is motivating an actor who has been on set all day filming; the chance of them wanting to train is usually pretty slim. Occasionally, I’ll take the gym to the actor, too, meaning if they’re out in the middle of nowhere filming, I pack my truck with what I need, meet them on set and get to work. A good fitness pro can change on a dime and adjust without thinking twice about it.” Williamson leaves us with these words of wisdom. “For anyone out there who is on the fence right now pondering the thought of taking on the fitness challenge, I recommend you do it. I understand there’s a ton of controversial info circulating that makes people overwhelmed when trying to figure out where to start, but that’s where people like me can come into play. As with most everything in life, if you really want something, then you’ll make the time to go after it.” LFV For more information on Aaron Williamson, check out www.aaronwilliamson.net.

CELEBRITY CLIENTS Aaron Williamson has trained many actors throughout his career. Here are quotes from a few of them, as recalled by Williamson: • “Knows his s*** and a solid cat. Hit him up when you’re ready to rumble. He’d love to help transform you.” – Dwayne Johnson • “I can’t tell you how much this time and experience training with you has meant to me. We did it!” – Josh Brolin • “That was some of the hardest training I’ve ever done. You’ve got a gift for working your magic in the gym. I’m gonna pass out now!” – Jamie Foxx

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I.A.T.S.E. LOCAL 4 78

Motion Picture Studio Mechanics of Louisiana & Southern Mississippi Louisiana motion picture tax incentives aren’t news. They’re a success story. IATSE Local 478 now has 1,100 members and we’re still growing. These dedicated men and women work in various crafts in the art department, construction, crafts services, electric, first aid, greens, grip, locations, paint, props, set dressing, sound, special effects, video assist and wardrobe. We have one of the strongest and longest lasting incentives systems around which means these professionals have worked on hundreds of movies over more than ten years. They bring experience to your production. They raise the bar and lower your bottom line. If you’re looking for your next crew, look no more.

432 N. ANTHONY STREET SUITE 305 • NEW ORLEANS, LA 70119 OFFICE (504) 486-2192 • FAX (504) 483-9961 • iatse478.org

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WEBSTER PARISH HAS IT ALL STORY BY EJAY COLVIN GUEST COLUMNIST

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ooray for Hollywood—and Hollywood South! Hello, my name is Ejay Colvin and I live in the wonderful city of Minden, the parish of Webster, here in Northwest Louisiana. We are 24 miles straight east of Shreveport/Bossier on Interstate 20. Yeah, we are in the zone! I’m an occasional location scout, working for fun and my community, more than for money. It all began with a hurricane called Katrina and The Guardian being forced north to film. I was hooked, and this very day as I’m telling you about my lovely city, a production company is filming part of their story here in my town. Comedy Central called me a Rural Specialist, perhaps because they needed me to

find 200 chickens for their project, and I did. Allow me to elaborate on why you should consider exploring our diverse area for your production. Whether large or small, a studio or independent, you can definitely stretch your budget here. Our heritage is Caddoan Indian, German and Scots/Irish. If you need an Indian village, a 200-year-old colony or Highland cattle, a

Come stay, play and make your movie magic happen here in Minden and the surrounding area of Webster Parish.

scary, dilapidated house deep in the woods, a haunted, turn-of-the-century old mansion, or a desert with a standing city of Sodom or Gomorrah, you can find it here. And of course we have lakes, streams, bayous and swamps. How about a military facility, a completely refurbished old-time movie theater in perfect operating condition, the largest open-air arena and amphitheater in the state? We also have at least seven summer encampments and cabins. Add to that housing, motels, restaurants, two production office locations and church groups that movie cater. With the support of our Lieutenant Governor Jay Dardenne, our State Senator Robert Adley, Arlena Acree of the Shreveport Film Office, and those great Louisiana film credits, how can you lose? Real success is grabbing every opportunity. Come stay, play and make your movie magic happen here in Minden and the surrounding area of Webster Parish. Discover our Lagniappe (A Little Something Extra)! LFV For more information, call Ejay Colvin at 318-518-4176.

OUT IN FRONT

From concept to completion...

Contact Attorneys: Tom Clark Baton Rouge 225.378.3246 tom.clark@arlaw.com

The Adams and Reese Entertainment and New Media team covers the legal arena within the entertainment, film, music, and book industries including intellectual property, technology, and new media. From concept to completion, we are advocates for our clients in contract preparation and negotiations as well as in purchasing, selling, licensing, protecting, and enforcing intellectual properties.

Meg Alsfeld Kaul New Orleans 504.585.0426 meg.kaul@arlaw.com

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LOUISIANA FILM & VIDEO MAGAZINE

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ISSUE THREE

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THE “EASE” OF LOUISIANA AT LOCATIONS EXPO

Bossier City Film Liaison Pam Glorioso helps a prospective client at Locations Expo.

STORY BY W. H. BOURNE PHOTOS BY ODIN LINDBLOM

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he Incentives Office at Ease hosted its annual tax incentives seminar recently. Clint Mock, Louisiana CPA, and Chris Stelly, executive entertainment director of the Louisiana Department of Economic Development, were on hand to explain the program changes after the recent fiscal session. “Louisiana’s program is exactly the same and hasn’t changed, but there have been a few tweaks to the program. The main thing that came out of the session was the 60 day processing time on the initial cert side and 120 days on the final cert side. You can definitely plan your film and your budget around those processing time frames. While we’ve been running well beneath those processing times, now it’s codified so producers and investors have a firm time frame. The bill also creates a tax credit registry within the (Louisiana) Department of Revenue. So immediately, as of July 1, we no longer have to accept any

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notices of transfer at our office, so the process now is a lot smoother. They’ve narrowed down the time frame to transfer the tax credit to 10 days to create transparency. The goal was to eliminate any opportunity for an unscrupulous producer to double sell the tax credits... (The bill) created a central database so a taxpayer or end user can go to the (Louisiana) Department of Revenue’s Web site and say, ‘Are there any tax credits left for this project? Have they been issued? Have any been transferred?’ It’s more of a protective measure for the end user of the tax credits and that’s a good thing.” Ease was also doing demos of their software at the conference, including their popular budgeting software that lets producers compare incentives from various states and countries. The software lets you tag portions of the budget to give an in-depth comparison. At first glance, many incentive programs seem similar but most are not as generous as Louisiana’s when it comes to covering above the line in-state spend. After personally testing the software myself, I can easily say it’s an

Chris Stelly, executive director of Louisiana Economic Development, speaks at the Ease tax incentive seminar.

invaluable tool for producers. After the Ease Conference, Stelly traveled across town for the opening of AFCI’s annual Locations Expo, where he was joined by others from Louisiana to promote Hollywood South. Film commissioners from ShreveportBossier, Lafayette, New Orleans and Baton Rouge joined representatives from around the world as they advertised their locations and tax incentives to prospective producers and location scouts. LFV

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AQUATIC SPECIALTIES, INC. n Summer 2012, Aquatic Specialties, Inc. leased a 150-gallon aquarium to be used on set in the Spike Lee movie Oldboy, filming in New Orleans. The set was a prominent restaurant. The aquarium was set up to allow filming through it, in the center of the room. The T5 lamps used to illuminate the fish were color-matched for filming purposes and the life-support system was both hidden as well as muffled for noise-free operation. Stocked with larger, freshwater tropical fish, it was maintained for several days before filming began. Our fish-

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A 150-gallon aquarium on the set of Oldboy, courtesy of Aquatic Specialties.

wrangler was on hand during filming to provide support to the film crew. This installation was upstairs and it took several people to heave it up a narrow stairway. Other movies in which we have set up aquariums include: Failure to Launch, The Skeleton Key, The Butler, Green Lantern and Black and White. www.aquaticspecialties.com

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AMERICAN LUXURY LIMOUSINES

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stablished in 1997, American Luxury Limousines has a combined staff experience of 100+ years of excellence in ground transportation. Customer service has always been and continues to be our first priority. Our chauffeurs attend an intense training class consisting of approximately 20 hours instructed by our General Manager. In addition, they complete a driving course in the vehicles, under the tutelage of our senior chauffeurs. Our chauffeurs are the hardest working local drivers and several are licensed by the city of New Orleans as Tour Guides. We offer a large variety of vehicles, ranging from Sedans to 28-passenger minibuses and everything in between. All vehicles are owned by American Luxury and housed in our Mid City location. We have our own Certified Master Mechanic on staff and all vehicles are maintained to the highest standards. We are very aware of the importance of being prompt, whether catching a flight at Louis Armstrong International Airport or arriving at your destination. Our policy is to show up early, not “on time”, so you are able to depart at the scheduled time. We are staffed at the office 24/7/365 for our customer’s convenience and peace of mind. We have the capability to track commercial flights, so you do not have to be concerned about transportation if your plane is delayed. We enjoy working with all our clientele. From corporate to weddings or film industry to medical, our current passenger is always the most important one. With continued hope in the recovery and re-growth of New Orleans, we are committed to servicing our great city. www.americanluxury.com

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PRODUCERS GUILD PROMOTES MEMBERSHIP AND MENTORSHIP STORY BY W. H. BOURNE PHOTOS BY ODIN LINDBLOM

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J. Abrams, Jerry Bruckheimer, Mark Burnett, Roland Emmerich, Jon Favreau— the guest speakers at this year’s Produced By Conference were some of the biggest names in the business. The event was sponsored by the Producers Guild of America (PGA) and was held on Fox’s studio lot in Los Angeles. The conference focuses on mentorship, with established producers sharing advice from the trenches. Excerpts from this year’s conference will be posted soon to the PGA’s YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/producersguild. This year, the PGA was also focusing on membership, and for the first time, held its annual membership meeting open to the public at the Produced By Conference. The big topic of discussion at the meeting was the push for ratification of the “p.g.a.” mark by the major studios. The purpose of the mark is to indicate which producers did the majority of

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the work on a feature film. At press time, Paramount, Disney, Warner Bros., Universal, Fox and Sony had all agreed to adopt the mark and the certification process for its use. Vance Van Petten, national executive director of the PGA, explained, “The federally registered ‘p.g.a.’ mark is based on the industry-standard Producers Code of Credits, used frequently by studios and filmmakers, which guides the Guild’s awards process in vetting a film’s producers. It’s the ideal tool to ensure that producers receive onscreen verification of their work.” The membership meeting was interesting, as the various location chapters of the PGA gave their annual reports. After the meeting, I asked Van Petten why there isn’t a PGA chapter in Louisiana, particularly since we’re the third largest hub of production in the U.S. “If guild members want to gather and meet down in Louisiana, we’ll certainly create a chapter,” said Van Petten. “They just need to contact us and let us know. In general, we

Clockwise from top: (l to r) Producers Mark Gordon, Jon Favreau, and Roland Emmerich; Jerry Bruckheimer; J.J. Abrams.

encourage anyone who meets our qualifications to join the Producers Guild, and we would love to have more producers from Louisiana.” LFV For more information on membership in the Producers Guild of America, go to www.producersguild.org.

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SCREENWRITING COURSES COMING TO NOVAC STORY BY ANNIE GAIA GUEST COLUMNIST

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s a screenwriter, I’m always looking for courses on how to sharpen my writing tool. Luckily, NOVAC is guiding us writers to learn and communicate our visions into successful productions or to sell it to the bigwigs in screenwriting. As a teaser for their upcoming screenwriting course, the fourth and final installment of NOVAC’s free (yes, free!) screenwriting series, in collaboration with New Orleans Public Library, invited writers and actors alike to “listen to how the pros did it.” I missed the first three installments, but don’t worry, NOVAC made the final one easy to receive some notes. During the table read, NOVAC director of programs Ashley Charbonnet and fellow actors, such as the marvelous Michael Martin, sat down and read three different successful screenplays. The actors played various roles in scenes from Casablanca, The Princess Bride, and Midnight Cowboy. You could hear the difference in tone of each of the three pieces, as Charbonnet read the stage’s most important part—stage directions. I could visually see the scene with the words being read at the table and decide which style worked for me, a whole “aha, that’s how

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that scene was written—what a subtle way of making a flashback work so well.” Reading historical scripts at home is educational, but having it read aloud at the table was even better. “I hope it garnered an interest in the community, in that NOVAC teaching more screenwriting classes (offers) an opportunity to do a free screening in conjunction with the libraries in different parts of the city, so we are excited about that partnership,” Charbonnet explained. “We really want to take it to the next level, more workshopping scripts that our filmmakers are bringing to the table, both features and shorts. The table read went really well; it seemed a lot of people enjoyed it, so we’ll probably do that again. It’s possible that we will be doing more teaser classes at NOVAC, as well.” Yes! More workshops for the writing artist, just what I could use in this city. Abigail Levner, membership and development coordinator for NOVAC, attended the recent workshop. “We would love to do more. There is an abundance of writing talent in New Orleans; I think these skills are essential to work in film,” she said. “Sigourney Hoffman is a great screenwriter; he wrote Love Lies. He’s going to be at NOVAC

A teaser screenwriting class at NOVAC featured a table read of famous scripts.

soon for the BlueCat Screenplay Competition. We are hoping people will come to that. We are working to develop a more formal screenwriting series at NOVAC, such as Web Weekend, a micro-conference in partnership with the film festival. We are bringing in some really cool people and we are really excited about that.” I’m stoked, too. I can’t wait for the BlueCat Screenplay Competition and to watch the filmmaking community grow. If you, too, are looking for more information, check out NOVAC’s Web site (www.novacvideo.org) to find out more about how you can be involved in bettering your skills. LFV

ISSUE THREE

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ABIS PRODUCTIONS TO PRODUCE PAPA GROWS FUNK DOCUMENTARY

Papa Grows Funk’s final concert at the Maple Leaf. “If I see someone [at a PGF concert] standing still I want to light their hair on fire,” said Quint Davis. SAM RADUTZKY STORY BY ABIGAIL LEVNER GUEST COLUMNIST

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very filmmaker has a story to tell, but not always the funding or support to get that story told. When Papa Grows Funk, a New Orleans music staple for over 13 years, announced their hiatus from performing, Josh Freund and Sam Radutzky decided to take action by telling the story of the “greatest music scene on earth through the lens of one of its greatest bands,” according to Radutzky. But they needed $25,000 and the band’s consent to tell that story properly. Freund and Radutzky, who create music videos for clients like Flow Tribe and Jon Cleary as ABIS Productions, conceived the idea for a Papa Grows Funk documentary soon after the band announced their hiatus in January. “We are huge fans and felt it would be great to do a 15- to 20-minute video about them,” said Freund. “We originally conceived the project as something very small.” That month, they pitched the idea to Papa Grows Funk frontman John “Papa” Gros at an impromptu business meeting in the Maple Leaf Bar bathroom (it was the only quiet place in the venue). Gros and the band were immediately on board, connecting Freund and Radutzky to press at WWOZ and interviews with highprofile figures like musicians Allen Toussaint and George Porter, Jr., music journalist John Swenson, New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival producer Quint Davis, and Howling Wolf owner Howie Kaplan, among others. What started as a short video quickly grew into a full-

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length Papa Grows Funkumentary. “The fact that the band backed the project from day one gave us incredible access to all these figures that we wouldn’t have been able to talk to otherwise,” said Freund. Radutzky noted, “You’ll learn about every member, get inside their head, see how they tick.” With the band’s support secured, ABIS turned their attention to funding. “We want to do this right,” said Freund. “It’s a great story, a local story, but it relates to music fans all over the world. And we absolutely need funding for that.” This June, ABIS launched a $25,000 fundraising campaign on IndieGoGo, the online crowdsourcing platform popular with independent filmmakers needing access to mass online audiences and funding for projects that otherwise might never reach completion. In 2012, Angry Video Game Nerd: The Movie raised $325,327 of its $75,000 fundraising goal, becoming one of the most success-

ful indie films in IndieGoGo history. While a variety of fundraising platforms exist—Kickstarter being a major competitor—ABIS chose IndieGoGo specifically for its donor rewards system, which incentivizes potential donors with redeemable prizes. For a month, ABIS collected reward packages from local businesses, music venues and band members eager to support a Papa Grows Funkumentary. The result was an enticing prize inventory consisting of guitarist June Yamagishi’s wah-wah pedal, Marc Pero’s bass, a saxophone class with Jason Mingledorff, cooking lessons with John Gros, gift certificates to local businesses, and tickets to music venues across the country. In July, the film surpassed its fundraising goal by over $3,000. The budget will largely support professional post-production work, including animated sequences of local artist Frenchy’s “live action” concert paintings. Gesturing to independent music docs Searching for Sugarman and Twenty Feet from Stardom, which landed distribution deals after going the festival circuit, Freund noted, “I don’t know what’s going to happen yet, but we’re going to make something very captivating. And we have the network to get it in front of someone who’s going to want to, and be able to, take it to the next level.��� Now in the editing stages, ABIS expects to release the film in January 2014, in time for the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. LFV

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NOVAC ATTACKS! STORY BY ANNIE GAIA GUEST COLUMNIST

ow are you gonna meet the right people in the industry? Well, a great way to start is to get your foot out your door and get your feet wet in the scene. Literally, that’s what went down at the most recent Get Wet Thursday, hosted by NOVAC.

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Anybody and everybody could come and network by the pool at the famous Country Club in the Marigny. There were naked people, which isn’t what we were all used to compared to Get Wet Thursday hosted at Indulge last month. But hey, it’s New Orleans. In Star Wars attire for free entry to nonmembers, or in the clothing-optional Country Club attire, all had a blast poolside. “We got members, non-members, new members talking about projects, people who like movies, people who are just here anyways for fun; it’s fantastic and a lot of mixing and mingling going on,” Ashley Charbonnet, NOVAC director of programs, explained over sangrias. Her favoriteStar Wars character is Yoda, “because he knows what he’s talking about.” I’m pretty sure everyone will be talking about the new connections they’ve made from this networking event. First-time NOVAC attendee and actress Monique Pyle from Brooklyn has been in the Hollywood South scene for a year now. “Down here, right now, there’s a really good vibe going on and a lot of creative minds and people doing new projects. I think NOVAC bringing those people together just really helps to open those doors to people,” she said. Pyle’s favorite Star Wars character is Han Solo, “because he was the first crush I ever had.” (Sigh… Good choice.) Why would you choose to attend a NOVAC party like this? Personally, I’ve found a director for my feature script, and I’ve borrowed gear to produce my own work. Trying to meet other NOVAC members can be difficult without attending these events. If you’re two months new to New Orleans, like director Samantha Smith, it’s a good call to get on board new projects. She’s found three to put on her resume during the splashing event. “I’ve gone from knowing zero filmmakers to

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All photos taken from last month’s Get Wet event at Indulge. Clockwise from top left: Jordan Koppens (music promoter) & guest, Jordan Joseph (dj/producer) & Alex Gluston (doc filmmaker), Vanessa Pranee Mansey (actress).

passing out 50 business cards,” said Smith. When asked about her favorite Star Wars character, she honestly told me she’s never seen any of the movies. (Sound cue, “The Imperial March.”) “How in the world do I get in? How do I meet the local peeps like you, Annie?” Duh, become a member and use the Force! This was the final Get Wet pool party of the summer. I know, I bummed, too. But trust me, there will be more chances to explore the beautiful filmmaking community through NOVAC’s membership. Along with video equipment rental, they also offer seminars for grant writing, cinematography courses, and will host more out-of-this-world meet and greets. “I know some networking events have nega-

tive connotations to them—people who aren’t actually interested in making films but interested in becoming famous. These people are really interested in the community, in the industry, in New Orleans, and come to these things continuously,” Abigail Levner, NOVAC membership and development coordinator, said to me. “And who’s your favorite Star Wars character?” I asked this lovely host. “Can it just be the whole band from the Cantina?” she responded. “They look so awfully fake playing in the back!” Awesome choice. Thank you, Abigail, Ashley, and NOVAC executive director Darcy McKinnon for a totally fun networking event. It was a “light saber.” LFV

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LOUISIANA FILM & VIDEO’S HOTEL DIRECTORY Best Western PLUS Landmark Hotel Metairie 800-277-7575 2601 Severn Ave Metairie, LA 70002 www.nolahotels.com

ooking for a place to stay with your cast and crew? Look no further. Here are LF&VM’s top recommendations:

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Clarion Grand Boutique Hotel 800-976-1755 2001 St. Charles Ave New Orleans, LA 70130 www.nolahotels.com

Astor Crowne Plaza Hotel 504-962-0500 739 Canal Street at Bourbon New Orleans, Louisiana 70130 www.astorneworleans.com

Best Western PLUS Landmark Hotel French Quarter 800-535-7862 920 N Rampart St New Orleans, LA 70116 www.nolahotels.com Radisson Hotel Baton Rouge 225-236-4000 2445 S Acadian Thruway Baton Rouge, LA 70808 www.upscalestay.com

Royal Sonesta Hotel 800-766-3782 300 Bourbon St New Orleans, LA 70130 www.sonesta.com

Wyndham Riverfront Hotel 504-524-8200 701 Convention Center Blvd New Orleans, LA 70130 www.wyndhamriverfront.com

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