Monday, April 27, 2009

Posting and Promoting your Indie Film on

To be clear, it has been my sincere intention to help create an independent film production presence at I am an independent filmmaker myself and after completing my second feature film, LOOP, I set off to promote it, only to find out that during the twenty years that have passed since my first feature film – REDNECK ZOMBIES -- the independent film scene has changed immensely and is now in the midst of a paradigm shift, which is changing and affecting all media. I was lost for a while, but after finding that there were others like me (but much younger and smarter) at places like the Truly Free Film blog -- I dove in.

Now I am tempted to break off on a tangent here, but I will stay on point.

I was able to sell the idea of the Indie Film Channel to the good people at Current TV and became the curator for the page. is the website of Current TV.

(From Wikipedia) Current TV is an Emmy award-winning independent media company led by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and businessman Joel Hyatt.

Current has both a Cable/Satellite Channel as well as a very active website, which covers everything from news to video games. The community is one of the best around, being intelligent, engaging and opinionated.

My Indie Film Channel is the progeny of the Current Movies Channel which is proudly sponsored by the, and features The Rotten Tomatoes Show featuring hosts Brett Erlich and Ellen Fox.

OK enough background...

I am looking for two types of people:

  1. Independent Filmmakers who want to promote their projects.

  2. The Independent Film Lover who wants stay in touch with the latest and greatest and add their voice to ongoing conversation regarding Indie Film.

What is the best way to do this?

Go to and register as a user - it is free. This allows you complete access to the entire site and you can post and comment on items in ANY category. But independent filmmakers should post movies and articles telling all things cool and hip about your Indie Film.

Do you have a Trailer? Post it.
Is there an interesting article about your movie? Post it.
Did your Indie Film get a good review? Post it.

You can also post your trailer/short at Current which displays your work at a very high quality. Here are two pieces of mine that I have uploaded to current, FREEDOM PLAZA and FIGHTER. One is a short, the other a documentary promo. Please note the comments and the number of views. You DO NOT have to upload your video (or use any video at all) you may embed from another service such as YouTube or, or you may upload a production still.

Once you promotion is up you may edit the main content info (For instance to add new screenings and awards and information) and link to it. Of course you can also add links to your project's web page and you can then use it as a target page to link from elsewhere, such as Twitter. You can also make connections with other users on the site.

You may also add additional links in the post's reply section which allows you above average graphics tools. Since Current's interface is ideal for (and in fact set up for) aggregating information, you can easily aggregate your project's entire web presence there. Everything is editable and of course you could easily delete your entire profile if need be.

If your project gets a lot of interest, it will be featured in the top four of the Indie Page.

I am interested in seeing anything independently produced, shorts, music video, documentary, experimental and features. (I love no-budget and 'Homebrew') I would also love to see video and stories on Indie Filmmaking -- "War Stories" and "How To's." I also want to hear about other net based Indie Film communities and the latest poop on video gear. You must read the Current Community Guidelines and The Terms of Use and agree to them when you register.

When posting a project, you have an option to add tags. Make sure to use Indie Film as a tag so it will show up on my channel. Other tags should include movies, genre, and any other thing appropriate. I will work hard to promote your project individually and the channel as a whole.

If you are an Indie Movie Fan, you can just browse without registering, or you can register to comment on posts and create connections with filmmakers and other users. I really want Indie Movie Fans to register and comment. If you truly love Indie Film, you can support it in a big way at Current while seeing and communicating with the filmmakers themselves.

The main objective is to have fun, promote your project, support others and keep independent film going. There are emerging voices that need to be heard.

At this point, Current TV does not show narrative films or music video on their cable network channel. Maybe that will change...

I want to make absolutely clear that I am not an employee of current. I do not get paid per "click" or registration. I am not in line for employment at Current. I am doing this on a volunteer basis. I suggested this channel to Current and they have been kind enough to present me with the opportunity to give Independent Film another outlet.

Please follow this blog. If you have any questions, email me [periclesmd7[at]gmaildotcom] , post them here in the comments or contact me on TWITTER. My Twitter User is loopmovie
Current has just added added nine other great channels to their website. They have a blog on all of them HERE.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Gorilla Wrestling

One of my favorite expressions is: "It is hard to [Insert
Situation] - with a 400 pound gorilla in the room."

The gorilla in question is of course an undisclosed issue or problem, something that no one talks about, wants to talk about or even face, but is nevertheless a psychic, formidable presence that crowds you rationally, emotionally, and physically as you try and go about your day normally.

The Gorilla's weight is scalable. It is never below 300 pounds, and it usually tops out at 800 pounds depending on the severity of the "backgrounded" issue. It is an abnormal presence, but not imaginary, and represents pressures that exceeds imagination and realizes a hidden fear that was once distant and really incomprehensible.

It sits there, stands there really, and you hear the sound of it's breathing that occasionally disappears into the "room tone" of your job... your life... but comes back to you in a moment of broken concentration or an attempt at repose.

I've got two of them, a 400 pounder and an 800 pounder. I cannot beat them up or chase them away. It is estimated that an average gorilla is ten times stronger than the strongest man. If I fight them they will tear me to shreds, so I wrestle with them carefully by staying engaged with whatever tasks are at hand-- keeping distance because I know, as every good wrestler knows that in order to wrestle well, I need to control position, or at least maintain position.

When wrestling a gorilla, one needs to work for a draw.

It's the best you can hope for.

Hopefully, they will go away just like they arrived, suddenly and without warning.
Image from Flikr Courtesy of shuttershrink Used With Permission (Special Thanks)
My Independent Filmmaking Blog is the Directors Journal at the LOOP website.
- Pericles

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Inaugural Doggerel

It is really strange how a moment in time can be both so punishing and so refreshing. My little blog here, Pericles Shrugged, is meant to be cine-centric, concentrating on the ongoing story of promoting my feature, LOOP and any other filmmaking antics. However being who I am I realize that I will branch out with all of the zeal of attention deficit disorder into everything from Politics to water skiing squirrels.

So (Hee, hee) bear with me.

I have a an interesting job working in international broadcast news exclusively for Arab clients based in Washington DC. My wife, Lisa, also works in the business and was the go to person in her news agency for all things Inaugural in our nation's capitol.

Sounds cool right?

It is, but there are diverse circumstance that work behind the scenes that conspire against the blue collar "boots on the ground" news media to create a morphing dystopia of stress, anxiety, fear and depression during what appears to be and in fact was a history making celebration of a new era.

So my friends, without malice, let me take you backstage to the soft underbelly of the great and secret show...

In the days leading up to the Inauguration, there was a cyclone of work. Former President Bush's last press conference had to be covered, President Obama choosing his security team, economic team and his cabinet. All the while a stream of think tank wonks streamed in and out of the office discussing the the 800 pound gorilla in the room - Gaza. I was pulling every frame of that conflict from news feeds in case an edit would need the some of that horrid b-roll. The dichotomy was breathtaking as I also received video of extravagant celebratory preps for the Inauguration while I simultaneously compiled footage to highlight the last eight years of the Bush legacy. All of this with the news that we would likely work from the morning of the 19Th straight through until the late evening of the 20TH. There was no other way. It was that big. About a dozen of us, men and women would be sleeping on cots at the office overnight as would many of our colleagues across the city. The hotels were all booked up in the area and they were asking for three day minimums at triple the price.

We were all perplexed about the sleepover because we were all adults. Discussions and jokes regarding, farting, snoring, talking, night terrors and sleepwalking brought knitted brows and furtive glances instead of laughter.

We were also concerned about the cold. That week we experienced near zero temperatures and as the forecast fluctuated so did our outlook.

The day before the event we set up our equipment at the west front lawn location of the Capitol. I was part of a crew that included Cici, a talented and experienced photojournalist who also helped me finish my feature LOOP and also shot my short Freedom Plaza, along with a Lebanese correspondent named Rana, who was named one of the 50 most beautiful people on Capitol Hill by The, which is Capitol Hill's own newspaper published in Washington, D.C. It is written for and about the U.S. Congress.

I became fortunate at the last minute as my wife was able to secure a room for the 19Th in Alexandria, Virginia through her company. I was due to be on site at 4am on the 20TH, however the metro trains would shut down at 2am and resume at 4. So I ventured into the carnival-like streets of DC, getting to the hotel in Virginia at 9pm, showering, hitting the sack at 10pm, waking at midnight, dressing in many layers and returning to the office by 1am. The return was a bit surreal as the streets were still full with excited Obama supporters. Some were dressed in gowns and tuxedos as they returned from parties in Crystal City and Union Station.

It was very cold.

When I returned to the office, a note was taped to the door from Cici for me saying that we should be out the door and walking to our zone for a security sweep by 3am. I was already full of Geek-level caffeine and expected something like this. I stepped into the office to a chorus of snores, hisses, snorts and mumbles and laid on an empty cot behind a desk. Somewhere I could here someone's Blackberry ringing in a constant stream of emails every ten seconds.

I stared at the ceiling and thought about everything I was neglecting. I had been working to promote LOOP and following the TrulyFreeFilm blog that is working to create more opportunity for independent filmmakers, but by the time I got home in the past week, I was too exhausted to go online. I was way behind on my emails and return phone calls, neglecting my friend Rick, who was calling me from the Sundance Art House Convergence, Andy, who was calling me about LOOP and the Redneck Zombies 2oth Anniversary Edition (Release date January 27) Christine, a director whose zombie movie Fistful of Brains, I had a featured role in and a whole bunch of people concerned that I was beaten senseless and penniless in London after my Yahoo account was hacked and emails asking for help and money was sent to everyone in my address book (Up to the C's) before I could stop it. There was also Faith, Jeremy, Erin, Michael... baby pictures sent for me to view remained unseen. Guilt prevailed. All week I kept tagging my emails mentioning the Inauguration, worrying that it would be seen as a sort of "name dropping." But the truth was, I had a lot of plates spinning online and I knew the Inaugural would put me "underground" for a while and I didn't want to appear inhospitable or inattentive. My job always keeps me in trouble with my Netiquette.

Everything seemed to be happening at once. Does this ever happen to you?

My thoughts were broken up when my boss's alarm went off at 2:30am. I saw him stagger out the door and suddenly from the edit room Cici appeared bundled up and ready to walk in the cold to Capitol Hill. At 3:15am we were standing in a line of about 100 or so other news media, we passed through security at about 3:45 and we were at the camera position turning everything on and letting things heat up.

I think it was 18 degrees but it felt colder. The space for each camera position was small. About 2 feet wide by 3 feet long. Correspondents would be standing shoulder to shoulder barely out of each others frame as they did their liveshots. We realized that only two people could really fit up there and the plan was to switch off and give each other breaks... little did we know...

Rana showed up at 4 and fortunately we were able wait
in a friend's trailer until we went live. It was agreed that Cici would take the first shift and then I would relieve her. We left the trailer and I waited below as they went up to the camera position for a 5am liveshot. The camera platform was built high and sturdy into the air about 2 or 3 stories with scaffolding.

Once the festivities began, the reality of the situation became clear. The camera platform with their tiny spaces became so packed that everyone was trapped. As I waited below, freezing in the loose knit fabric of the platform's cage, it became apparent after the first two hours was that this was to be my position for the most incredible positive event in my lifetime. I had my back-up still camera, a point and shoot Olympus, but my mini Hi-Def Sony video camera with a built in still camera and 16x zoom was stuck upstairs with the scrum of media. (Images from the platform on "I-day" were taken by Cici)

Here I was trapped in a diaphanous cube with a few other hapless techs watching frantic organizers rush up and down the stairs, ears glued to cell phones or frozen thumbs tapping terrified tweets into their handheld devices. All of them raising their voices at one point or another. Friendly VIPs wearing the equivalent of three grizzly bears were constantly being ushered through the area, all under the watchful eye of a single Secret Service agent, who I mentally nicknamed Dexter. I was not wearing my glasses to keep them from being damaged and everything was slightly de-focused. I had about two sets of double A batteries to feed my underpowered 3x zoom Olympus which seemed to be dying every time I turned it on. I tried calling and texting Cici with no luck. I found out later that she and Rana could barely move and the few stills she was able to take between live shots were with great difficulty. I was pretty bluesy by the frigid five hour mark as the pomp and circumstance blared from the event. All around me chaos reined as I alternated sitting down and standing up trying to keep warm and stay out of the way of the area's parade of progress. One of the more excitable people in the area was woman I named "Snowball," because of the giant fluffy round balls on her Inaugural hat. She leaned toward me from soft focus to crystal clarity and yelled this...

Snowball: Have you seen John Smith? (I can't remember what name she actually said.)

Me: I don't know. I don't know John Smith.

Snowball: He works for the Senate Gallery!

Me: Sorry!

Snowball: Have you seen Denzel Washington come through here?!

Me: I can tell you with absolute certainty that I have not seen Denzel Washington!

Snowball's disappointed frantic face then receded into the diffusion of confusion that had become my Inaugural domain. But by this time I was becoming fond of my little abstract oasis. People who know me will tell you that I appreciate the absurd. I often find it inspiring and I moved myself closer to the netting as noon approached and the President I voted for was about to be sworn in.

President Bush and Vice President Cheney were announced and a wave of boos worked toward the front blending into the "Na na hey hey goodbye" chant. My colleagues at the net looked at each other in mock disgust and then broke out into laughter. I kept a poker face as the little devil on my shoulder sarcastically whispered into my ear as I ran the images of the previous week's edit in my minds eye.

The swearing in was performed with speed and no precision and then my President began to speak. I tried to snap some quickies which looked awful on the little camera screen because of the netting, but I began to be taken by his words.
I immediately realized that we no longer had to put up with esoteric meanings of such tightly scripted lines such as "the soft bigotry of low expectations," and the many paths that such a statement can travel. I was listening to a man who spoke about things that were deeply important to me, using a forum that before now was no more than a platform for platitudes and not for the declaration of righteous ideas and policy.

"To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history..."

Again the images from the week coursed through my mind. Iraq, torture, excuses, Gitmo and the lack of accountability. The remnants of the past worked through the haze of the cold and I began to warm to the feeling that perhaps change would become a reality with my new President and that perhaps we can repair our country's relationship with the rest of the world. The weight of the shame I felt trying to manage the hubris of last eight years began to slide away. I am a sincere believer in President Obama, but I am also a certified skeptic. But at this moment, this particularly sweet moment, I felt a part of something and a sincere love and hope for the future. I realize that I may be disappointed, but for a change I would just enjoy myself.

"... but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist."

Wow... In his inauguration speech... words I needed to hear... I felt emotional and I got a bit misty, actually frosty in this case.
And I looked out at the sea of humanity braving the elements seeming to lean forward as our President spoke. It was an incredible sight that reminded me of the reflecting pool scene in Forrest Gump except there were no digital effects.

This was real, historic and important.

I felt proud.
And no one was going to ever take this away.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Freedom Plaza Gets A Screening - A 'Truly Free Film' Story

In my first blog, The LOOP Reality here at Pericles Shrugged I lightly touched on my burnout of promoting my feature length independent movie LOOP. Since LOOP was completed at the very end of 2007, I have been working hard to promote it. It's been a tough go. When I started promoting LOOP, I was already exhausted from making it. It almost seemed that I was spending more money just to get the chance have a festival consider the movie than I did to actually make it. As this year came to an end I put LOOP on the back burner as my job became more demanding and precious and other real world issues began to consume my time. But still, it's all I though about.

But then after discovering and following the Truly Free Film blog and watching the speech that inspired the creation of the blog, and especially after watching and listening to the three parts of the DIY Dinner NYC video, I began to think about my approach. My promotion had been split down the middle. I'm 50% old skool and 50% techno-geek (and I am almost 50 years old). I knew about the potential of viral video and the exposure it could bring, but I was not going in that direction. Furthermore, I learned that I didn't necessarily need to for my video to be all "LOOPcentric" to promote LOOP. New ideas began to form and I began to think of the body of work I have accumulated over the years. I decided to post Freedom Plaza on the net for all to see and I wrote a short blog about it.

I was feeling a bit tentative about it for some reason, but also excited by the experiment of it all. Would it matter?

In October LOOP screened at the 1st annual Flyway Film Festival in Pepin, Wisconsin. The festival director and curator of films at the Lake Pepin Art and Design Center, Rick Vaicius who is on my email blast list and after alerting me to the fact that my blast had a bad link in it wrote this after viewing Freedom Plaza:

How can I get this saved to my hard drive. I'd like to show this to our audience on Saturday prior to our screening of David Modgilani's film "Crawford".

OK. It's lucky. The timing was right. But... wow. Freedom Plaza is a short kinetic movie that is based on a true personal encounter of mine. People respond to it well, but it has been hard to get it seen. But after one day - 3 days ago from this post - Freedom Plaza will be screened before a buzzworthy independent documentary that I want to see.

This is GREAT!

So I started the mental gymnastics of DVD burning and shipping and Fedex and...

But wait a minute.

He asked about downloading.

I knew that there are ways to download Flash movies, but there would be a substantial quality loss and then it occurred to me. I use a file transfer system to collaborate, trade artwork and Electronic Press Kits over the internet. It is called Yousendit. For free anyone can send up to 100 mbs, but I bought a low cost subscription at $9.95 a month which allowed me a 2gb file size. I checked the file size of the uncompressed DV of Freedom Plaza. At four and half minutes Freedom Plaza was 1gb!

I wrote back to Rick and asked to give it a try. He was game. That evening, using YouSendIt, I began to "push" Freedom Plaza from my computer to the YousendIt server. I think the entire movie and a promotional still took about three hours from my consumer DSL connection. After the file fully uploaded, the service sent a message to Rick, since I specified him as the primary recipient, telling him that the file was ready for download. Rick, who lives in an idyllic but somewhat remote part of Wisconsin (which has an admittedly slow internet connection) downloaded the clip in six hours.

The next day Rick sent:

Hey Peri-FP just finished downloading.
It plays fine and looks and sounds great! Thanks! I'll let you know how it is received this weekend. - Rick


So this Saturday at 8pm CST, Freedom Plaza will screen at the Lake Pepin Art and Design Center before the acclaimed documentary "Crawford," and, I'll get feedback!


Also, unless I delete it, Freedom Plaza will stay at that link for 14 day or 500 downloads. Would you like to download it to check it out and see the quality for yourself? Give loopmovie a tweet on Twitter and I will send you the link.

So, I just have to give more props to Truly Free Film. It has certainly re-energized me and the information and resources there have already produced results.

I have barely scratched the surface.

Simultaneously, Rick on his own had posted some kind words about LOOP in the Flyway Film Festival Facebook Group. I was working on a blog about that, but then this happened. I will post what he had to say shortly.

Take care, have hope.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Freedom Plaza

Based on a true story. While strolling down a Washington DC street toward Freedom Plaza, an Iraqi news correspondent confides a shocking secret to her colleague, an American news cameraman.

Freedom Plaza was an Official Selection in the 2007 Palm Springs International Festival of Shorts.
I made this 5 minute short after becoming acquainted with an Iraqi news reporter in Washington DC over the period of about a year. After this conversation I immediately sat down and wrote it all down as the words and emotions were fresh. This is almost the exact dialog we had while walking down the street together that afternoon.

I was just trying to capture that moment in time, the concept that even though it was so relevant it was only one of a thousand conversations on a Washington DC street, coming out of nowhere into earshot and then disappearing, like it never happened with noone the wiser. Also, the redundant question about the leg was much worse in reality.

What I really learned is that even though I pay strict attention to current events and I feel that I am on top of those events, they always kept their distance. The harsh truth and reality of war was right next to me, my friend, and I didn't know. This delicate, petite woman was tougher and stronger than I ever could be.

I was inspired to post the short after reading blog entries at Truly Free Film.

Monday, December 8, 2008

The LOOP Reality

(FYI: Despite the above date of December 8, 2008. This blog was posted January 2nd, 2009. December 8th is when I started it...)

In the year 2000, after being a filmmaker for over 15 years, I retired from filmmaking. I had worked in a lot of genres - features, television, documentaries, music videos -- but I am best remembered for the feature film REDNECK ZOMBIES. In 1985, with my partner Ed Bishop producing, I directed Redneck Zombies which was picked up for distribution by Troma. Troma, incidentally, will be releasing the 20th Anniversary Edition DVD on January 27th, 2009.

REDNECK ZOMBIES was unique back then as we had the bright idea to shoot the feature on video. Not on the mobile friendly DV cameras of today, but with the two-piece workhorse of news gathering in the eighties - 3/4" video.

This is the tape recorder we used, it is the BVU-15o U-Matic. The BV-150 was connected to this mechanical beast by a camera cable. It weighed 20 pounds or so, and was the size of a small carry-on piece of luggage.

I could not find an image of the exact camera (Sony M3) but it was something like this Ikegami, it was about 30 pounds.

So as we trundled around in backwoods garb with a red pick-up truck full of prop radioactive green moonshine, pork chitterlings, and 260 pounds of video equipment, the locals of the Delmarva Peninsula thought we were insane. They would laugh at our shenanigans and talk about us at the barber shop and bowling alley. However, in a month of Sundays, REDNECK ZOMBIES was completed and has gone on to infamy as a micro-icon of American pop culture.
REDNECK ZOMBIES was even a question in the 1980s version of "Trivial Pursuit." The card read:

Q: What movie's tagline was "Tobacco Chewing, Gut Chomping, Cannibal Kinfolk from Hell"?


But believe it or not, this is not a blog about REDNECK ZOMBIES. This is about my new "homebrew" no-budget feature - LOOP.

Sort of...

It's really about the new paradigm of independent filmmaking and how it is possible that an old dog (Me) will learn new tricks. LOOP is a movie that I want people to see, but it is different. It has it's own rules, it's own reality. The LOOP reality is a mindbender and tough on an audience. It's been very hard for film festival organizers to program.

After spinning my wheels for a while, I have found sanctuary and information in a community which I believe will turn into a movement in independent film: Truly Free Film. I will do my best to be concise but this first post has a lot of moving parts and I have a tendency to stray. I will do my best to tie it all up at the end. I promise.

As I said, I retired, or at least I thought I retired from filmmaking in 2000 after taking an editing job in broadcast news at the Washington DC Bureau of a major news service. When my job was eliminated in 2002, I began working as a contractor, still in news, editing packages for international consumption.

It was the process of news that I could never wrap my mind around. It was both troubling and fascinating. First there was the shaping of the raw news that flowed from the "Big Pipe," condensing it and sending out into smaller pipes to outlets that shaped it some more to meet the needs of their "target audience." Despite the fact that many of the story packages ended up editorialized and cherry picked at their final destination, they influenced many people. Needless to say, Marshall McLuhan's phrase, "The medium is the message" became crystal clear as I watched a story's progression each day.

I wasn't able to shut off my brain like many of my colleagues. Instead, I began to collect images that stored themselves in a dark place, and from that dark place came the idea of LOOP. It was my Redneck Zombies experience that made me think I could perhaps pull off another no-budget feature.

LOOP was made from pocket change by my wife Lisa and I. It took us three years and it is a homebrew for sure, but it ended up being the movie I wanted to make. It definitely seems to have some kind of impact. When an audience sees it, it creates a commotion. People ask about my well being, if the movie is a "cry for help," or if I had thoughts of suicide. Many tell me it makes them think, some have told me it scared them. People seem to like it, but I never know. However one thing is for sure: LOOP disturbs some people. It disturbs them like an Italian cannibal flick, but LOOP has no blood, no gore, scant violence -- just plenty of angst.
I think it's the angst.

I think there has been a lot of social and political angst as of late and "the LOOP reality" captures that mood. It's no romantic comedy.

Another filmmaker took me aside after a screening and she looked at me earnestly, straight into my eyes, and said, " I loved it. You know while I was watching, I actually felt crazy, I mean, really, like I was crazy."

I liked that - A LOT. But, as I said, it's not an ideal movie for most festival programmers.

To be completely honest, and my wife wants to kill me every time I say this, I don't care about selling it. When I finished it though, I wanted it to be seen.

Would I like to make some money from it? Of course. But I didn't make LOOP to cash in -- that would be foolish because it's a deeply personal movie and was never geared to be "commercial." I made LOOP, warts and all, because I HAD to make it.

Since then, I have been working the festival circuit and have received plenty of rejection. I am not entirely surprised since LOOP is a difficult movie to program, but the few festivals that have accepted it gave it awards. LOOP won "Best Visual Effects" at IndieFest/FAIF, "Best Narrative Feature" at the Great Lakes Independent Film Festival, and a special jury prize at the Flyway Film Festival. But LOOP has had a hard time finding an audience and it's been discouraging. I have done my best to market it, getting quality artwork done by talented friends, getting a website, setting up a MySpace, but I've had a hard time bringing everything together.

But now there is Hope. Ted Hope, in fact. When I finished LOOP I began looking for old friends and colleagues to send it to, in what was a grass roots effort to promote the finished film. I met Ted Hope while working on a television series called MONSTERS, where he was the first assistant director. This was in back in the "old skool" NYC Indie days of the late 80s and early 90s. Ted was already a force in independent film when I met him. He was just one of those guys -- he had the "shine" as Stephen King would put it. I just knew he was going to be a great success, and he is. You can read Ted's wiki here.

So, in October of 2007, I started to search on the internet for Ted, and I actually couldn't find him. I found his work, his legacy, his legend, but no contact information. I was finally able to locate him through listings at the 2008 Cannes Marché du Film and through the good graces of his colleague Anne Carey, and sent him a message.

Although it was tough finding Ted, at the end of 2007, this has changed drastically. Ted Hope, a few months ago, saw the need for a revolution. An independent filmmaking revolution, and being the visionary he is, he has fired the first shot. He has started a blog - TRULY FREE FILM which he updates frequently with links and information on how independent filmmakers can work together to get their movies seen, discussed, and promoted. There is information about finding a distributor, or distributing yourself. TRULY FREE FILM is dedicated to bring filmmakers together to create a new infrastructure which will support the new distribution opportunities afforded by the always emerging technology of Web 2.0.

But there are no free lunches. For truly independent film to survive, there has to be work -- hard work -- and there has to be a movement. Finishing your film is the beginning of the process and if you decide to follow the blog and check out the links at TRULY FREE FILM you will see opportunities for screenings, financing, and joining a community dedicated to adapting emerging technologies to keep the art of the indie alive.

Even though it has taken me nearly three weeks to finish this blog, TRULY FREE FILM has energized me.

I have a LOOP website, YouTube site, MySpace site, Twitter, this blog, and probably something I am forgetting. But I could never quite find a way to stitch these disparate promotional vehicles together. Now, TRULY FREE FILM has turned me on to new concepts and promotional strategies.

Are you aware of the Art House Convergence in Salt Lake City, where indie venues are looking to organize and find ways to get independent films -- perhaps your film -- in front of an audience? Are you familiar with Brave New Theaters? The Workbook Project? Hammer to Nail? Indie a Go-Go? I wasn't either.

If you are an indie filmmaker, film lover, or a venue looking to showcase the independent spirit of filmmaking, click right over to the TRULY FREE FILM blog right now and subscribe as a follower. You can't afford not to.

If you subscribe here, you will see the path LOOP takes as it dives into the future.

See ya in the movies! ; )