2013 Big Island Film Festival Day 2 – “Meet the Stars: Aloha Hollywood”

Last week at the Fairmont Orchid over on the Kohala Coast, the 2013 Big Island Film Festival took place.

The South Tower at the Fairmont Orchid

The South Tower at the Fairmont Orchid

On the second day of the festival the morning began with a “Filmmaker Orientation and Talk Story” held with Big Island Film Commissioner John Mason and Big Island Film Festival Director and Founder Leo Sears.

Filmmakers talk to to John Mason and Leo Sears

Filmmakers talk to to John Mason and Leo Sears

Sears and Mason talked about how the Big Island was an ideal place to make movies and how the festival was run amongst other things.  After the orientation and talk story, the daytime films that were scheduled were shown.

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Films shown were “Coffee, God & Gasoline” “Caterpillar’s Kimono” “Hangdog” “Last Call” “Shoot the Moon” “Stigma” and “If I Were a Bell”.

One of the many waterfalls at the Fairmont

One of the many waterfalls at the Fairmont

I went back to my room and relaxed for a bit before the evening events began.  They added a day to the festival this year and with that came a new event.

A chocolate film reel

A chocolate film reel

At 5:00 in one of the Fairmont’s Ballrooms, the public was invited to meet and take pictures with celebrities and filmmakers on hand at an event dubbed “Meet the Stars:  Aloha Hollywood”.

The Paparazzi!

The Paparazzi!

Some of the celebrities that were on hand were Brad Turell from Paradigm Agency, Kate McKinnon from Saturday Night Live and Hollywood Story Consultant Jennifer Grisanti among others.

Brad Turell, Kate McKinnon and Jennifer Grisanti

Brad Turell, Kate McKinnon and Jennifer Grisanti

Screenwriter Ron Osborn (Night Court, The West Wing, Duckman, Meet Joe Black, etc.) and Vincent Kartheiser (Mad Men, Little Big League, Iron Will, Indian in the Cupboard, etc) were also was on hand to take pictures and talk to the general  public.

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Veteran Screenwriter Ron Osborn, Vincent Kartheiser and Jennifer Grisanti.

And of course there was food and wine provided by Kenwood Vineyards.

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Fried Ahi Panko Rolls

Lobster Rolls

Lobster Rolls

Dessert Bar

Dessert Bar

After the event, folks headed to either the Shops at Mauna Lani for free family films that included “The Invention” and “Upside Down, or folks headed to the Plantation Estate for the Festival films where folks watched “Home”, “A Perfect Day” and “The Land of Eb”.

The "hidden" hot tub

The “hidden” hot tub

I myself ended up taking a late night soak in the Fairmont’s “Hidden” hot tub.

Hollywood Screenwriter Ron Osborn to Teach Big Island Film Festival Workshops

Veteran screenwriter Ron Osborn shares his tried and true techniques and insider tips to create winning screenplays, in Big Island Film Festival workshops, Saturday, May 25, 2013.  Two screenwriting workshops, “What’s So Funny?” and “Ripped from the Newspapers,” will be held at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i Promenade Ballroom.  Limited space is available at $50 per session, with advance registration required (www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com).

Ron Osborn

Ron Osborn

Ron Osborn’s wonderful words have been making us smile for over 35 years in favorite TV comedies like “Mork & Mindy,” “Night Court” and “Moonlighting” and feature films like “Duckman.”  His “What’s So Funny?” class, from 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon explores the fine line that separates comedy from drama, along with today’s current comedy market, and how to approach just about any subject from a comedic standpoint.  “What’s So Funny?” promises to be an entertaining and energizing way to kick off the day with Ron Osborn.

In the afternoon, from 1 to 3:30 p.m., “Ripped from the Newspapers” is all about the art of adaptation.  With the mastery that created award-winning dramas like “West Wing,” Osborn shares his approach to finding inspiration in existing news stories or events, classic stories or previously filmed stories, and then making them your own. Using proven strategies that earned him Emmy, Humanitas and Writer’s Guild Award nominations, Osborn will provide valuable insight and perspective to screenwriters at any level.

Osborn has over 35 years of experience in the film industry and presently teaches for Dreamworks.  He also has a consulting website, NoBSscreenwriting.com, where he welcomes questions from writers.  His spec feature “Visitation” has been optioned, and he has just adapted the supernatural novel “The Elementals” for The Orphanage Animation Studios.  He also currently has three features being sent out by his reps, plus an hour-long pilot and a half-hour show that was developed with John Cleese.

The Big Island “Talk Story” Film Festival is a celebration of independent narrative films and filmmaking, taking place May 23-27, 2013.  A total of 54 free Family Films (up to PG13) and ‘Festival Films’ (up to R) are screened in three different venues during the five-day festival, which also includes celebrity receptions and salutes, social and networking events and “Best of the Fest” event with concert by HAPA and silent auction to benefit Fisher House at Tripler Army Medical Center. 

Tickets are available for individual events, or a variety of passes.  New this year, designed with food and wine lovers in mind, the “Reception Pass” admits attendance at four ultra-delicious celebrity soirees, including the invitation-only Mayor’s Welcome Reception on Thursday.  With VIP hors d’oeuvres luxuriously catered by The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i chefs, and a different upscale menu every night, the Reception Pass is a good value and great opportunity to mingle with the filmmakers and stars, enjoy stellar cuisine and savor fine wines by Kenwood Vineyards.

Big Island Film Festival’s major sponsors include The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i, The Shops at Mauna Lani and Hawaii Tourism Authority/Hawai‘i County CPEP.  For complete schedule information and tickets, visit www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com or call (808) 883-0394.

2013 Big Island Film Festival Coming in May

Acclaimed as one of MovieMaker Magazine’s “20 Can’t-Miss Festivals,” the Big Island Film Festival (BIFF) 2013 will take place May 23-27 at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i and The Shops at Mauna Lani.  A celebration of narrative filmmaking, BIFF 2013 includes film screenings, social events, screenwriting workshop and a closing night “Best of the Fest” with a top Hawaiian music concert and movies chosen by the audience from Festival entries.

Photo by Kirk Aeder

Photo by Kirk Aeder

“There are hundreds of film festivals around the country,” said Executive Director Leo Sears, “but how many offer the audience a resort setting like The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i?  Their Plantation Estate is this incredibly beautiful lū‘au area by the tennis garden.  They set up a 20-foot screen and superb sound system, gourmet food stations, a beer and wine bar—all out there under the stars, surrounded by palm trees.  It’s just a magnificent way to spend Memorial Day Weekend.”

The majority of BIFF events take place at various locations within The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i, including daytime film screenings in the air-conditioned amphitheatre, filmmaker workshops, celebrity receptions and salutes, as well as “festival films” (up to R) and Best of the Fest, at Plantation Estate.  Family films (up to PG-13) are shown at The Shops at Mauna Lani Center Stage, where admission is free.

“We’re not quite ready to announce the celebrities for this year yet,” said Sears.  Generally, one filmmaker and one actor are invited to attend BIFF, where attendees can meet and interact with them at receptions and salutes in their honor, and other social occasions.  “But I can tell you that we’re getting a lot of interest from stars who’ve heard about the Festival and want to experience the Big Island.”

Kristina Anapau in front of the Fairmont Orchid at Mauna Lani

True Blood’s “Maurella” Kristina Anapau was awarded a Golden Honu in 2011

Past years celebrity honorees have included Hawai‘i actresses Eloise Mumford (The River), Kristina Anapau (“Black Swan”, “True Blood”) and Sarah Wayne Callies (“The Walking Dead”), Tom Berenger, Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa, D.B. Sweeney, John Saxon and filmmakers Ron Osborn, Rick Stevenson, David Winning and Scott Stewart.  And, such noted Hawaiian musicians as Makana, Brother Noland, John Cruz, Henry Kapono and Kohala have graced the stage.

Eloise Mumford was honored in 2012

Eloise Mumford was honored in 2012

BIFF 2013’s “Golden Honu” Awards will be presented to the Best Feature and Best Short in Family, Student, Animated, Foreign, Hawaii and Audience Choice categories at a special Awards Brunch to honor the filmmakers and their works on Monday, May 27.  Numerous alumni films have won awards at prestigious film festivals around the world, and achieved commercial success in the industry.  One of BIFF’s alumni short films, “The Buzkashi Boys” is a current Oscar nominee, and another, “The Sea is All I Know” starring Academy Award-winner Melissa Leo, was a nominee last year.

The Big Island “Talk Story” Film Festival is a celebration of narrative filmmaking.  Sponsors include The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i, The Shops at Mauna Lani, County of Hawai‘i, Dept. of R&D: CPEP Grant/Hawai‘i Tourism Authority, Redeeming Light International, Inc. and others. For detailed information visit www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com, find them on Facebook, or 808-883-0394.

Big Island Film Festival Announces Screenwriting, Pitching Workshops During May Festival

Media Release:

Professional filmmakers know great movies start with great stories, and to get from idea to big screen requires great skill in the art of “pitching.”  This year,
Big Island Film Festival is proud to present a new workshop “Inside Pitch” by Larger Than Life Productions’ Naketha Mattocks in addition to popular Ron Osborn’s screenwriting workshop “It’s Alive: Breathing Life into Your Characters.”  Workshops take place Saturday, May 14 at The Shops at Mauna Lani, at a cost of only $50 each.

Motion picture industry veteran Naketha Mattocks has given and received more than a few movie pitches during her career.  Her experience with Larger Than Life Productions includes Oscar-nominated projects like “Hunger Games,” “Seabiscuit” and “Pleasantville.”  With Paramount, she oversaw the development and production of “Charlotte’s Web” and “Coach Carter,” and she has worked with Baltimore/Spring Creek Pictures and Oscar winning director Barry Levinson (“Wag the Dog,” “Rainman”) and Emmy Winning producer Paula Weinstein (“Blood Diamond,” “Perfect Storm”).  In the “Inside Pitch” workshop, Mattocks offers invaluable insights from a seasoned professional viewpoint.

Ron Osborn

Screenwriter Ron Osborn returns to BIFF 2011 by popular demand, to share his successful perspectives on the art of character-building.  Osborn’s memorable characters have been making TV audiences laugh (and cry) for over 35 years in comedies like “Mork & Mindy,” “Night Court,” “Moonlighting” and “Duckman” as well as the award-winning drama “West Wing” and feature films like “Meet Joe Black.”  Osborn, who teaches screenwriting for Dreamworks, won BIFF’s first Golden Honu Award for Screenwriting in 2009.

“Let’s face it, we have a ton of talent on this island and in Hawai’i,” said Executive Director Leo Sears, “But how often do you get the chance to meet people like Ron Osborn or Naketha Mattocks?  These are the kind of industry professionals who can help take your idea, your script, possibly your career, to the next level—right here in our own backyard at Mauna Lani Resort.  We couldn’t be more pleased that Naketha has chosen to join Ron and share insights with participants during Big Island Film Festival.”

Both programs take place Saturday, May 14 at The Shops at Mauna Lani (exact location TBD).
•    “Inside Pitch” by Naketha Mattocks, 9:00-11:30 a.m.
•    “It’s Alive: Breathing Life into Your Characters” by Ron Osborn, 12:30-3:00 p.m.
The cost is $50 each with advance registration required.  Early registration is suggested as space is limited and participants will be accepted on a first-come first-served basis.  Workshop registration forms are available at www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com

The Big Island “Talk Story” Film Festival is a celebration of narrative filmmaking, happening May 11-15 at Mauna Lani Resort.  Events include free family films under the stars at The Shops at Mauna Lani, daytime movies and nightly double features at The Fairmont Orchid, Hawai‘i (self-parking validated), stellar social events, networking opportunities, celebrity receptions, awards and a closing night “Best of the Fest” with a top Hawaiian music concert and audience-voted Best Feature and Best Short from BIFF 2011.

For more information visit www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com or call 808-883-0394.  (Follow on Twitter and Facebook).

Links: www.ShopsatMaunaLani.com
www.Fairmont.com/Orchid
www.BigIslandFilmFestival.com

Big Island Film Festival Presents: Writing Screenplays That Sell

Big Island Film Festival is sponsoring a two day screenwriting seminar “Writing Screenplays That Sell” at the Ala Moana Hotel on November 7 & 8 from 9 AM to 4 PM.  Presenting will be 30 year veteran screenwriter Ron Osborn (see bio below).  A no host mixer will be held Friday evening.  Details will be given to participants at later time.  Cost of “Writing Screenplays That Sell” is $250 and deadline for registration and payment is November 1…. or if all spots are full.  Registration forms are available at BigIslandFilmFestival.com, which can be emailed to info@bigislandfilmf estival.com or faxed to 808-883-0254.  For further information you can call 808-883-0394.

Those wanting to stay at the Ala Moana Hotel can get special rates of $99 (plus appl. taxes) by contacting Kim at 808-944-4332 or kim.oshiro@alamoanahotel.com and telling her your part of “Writng Screenplays That Sell”.

Writing Screenplays That Sell

A from-the-ground- up approach to writing scripts that sell that is attuned to the present-day needs of the market, using direct input from actual studio and agency script readers, as well as from agents, taught by a working screenwriter with 30 years’ experience.  This is this not theoretical, this is not general, this is specific to crafting scripts for the business as it currently stands.  This will cover structure, character, theme, dialogue, etc., from the insider’s standpoint of today’s market:  what currently sells, what to avoid, tips from studio and agency readers to make your script stand out from the thousands that are submitted every year… and more.

Ron Osborn

Ron Osborn

BIO OF RON OSBORN

A writer/producer with partner Jeff Reno, Ron started out in half-hour sitcom for shows such as Night Court and Mork and Mindy, then went to hour-long comedy for three seasons on Moonlighting where he was nominated for 4 Emmys, a Humanitas, and a Writers Guild Award.  Other hour-long shows include Cupid and The West Wing, where he was nominated for his second Writers Guild Award.  He has done numerous feature rewrites, including The Flintstones, and feature originals such as Meet Joe Black.  His spec solo feature Visitation has been optioned and he has just adapted the supernatural novel The Elementals for The Orphanage.   His favorite job in 27 years of writing was as co-creator, head writer and executive producer on 70 episodes of the animated show Duckman, starring Jason Alexander, which was nominated for 2 Emmys and 3 Cable Ace awards.  Ron also teaches screenwriting for Dreamworks.  At the 2009 Big Island Film Festival, Ron was given the

Golden Honu Award for Screenwriting (the very first) for his screenwriting career.

Don’t get shut out of this very special screenwriting seminar.