With today’s technologies, low budget no longer means low-quality for independent filmmakers. On January 17, 2014 Adobe will present a special panel discussion at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival where filmmakers will discuss their work, their workflows and why they believe that awe-inspiring storytelling and high production value are possible, on modest, or even micro budgets.
The panel will feature Jim Mickle, Kyle Alvarez, and HaZ Dulull. Director Jim Mickle has been earning critical acclaim for his gothic horror film We Are What We Are, which screened at Sundance in 2013 before seeing theatrical release. Writer and director Kyle Alvarez premiered his second feature at Sundance 2013. C.O.G. was released in theaters in September. Visual effects artist and director Hasraf ‘HaZ’ Dulull earned acclaim with his sci-fi short Project Kronos and now has a Hollywood feature film project in development.
We spoke with all three filmmakers about Adobe and the Sundance Film Festival, and asked them what advice they have for aspiring filmmakers today.
Why are you joining the Adobe panel at Sundance?
Kyle Alvarez: What I’ve been most impressed with as I’ve gotten to know the people at Adobe is how much they care about their customers. They want to educate, to create a community around their users. I think it’s so incredible that Adobe participates in, and supports, Sundance.
HaZ Dulull: It’s important for Adobe to take part in events like Sundance. By developing affordable, industry-standard tools that empower people to realize their visions, Adobe is already supporting many filmmakers.
Jim Mickle: I love Sundance. It seems like a great match for Adobe to be here to celebrate the films of this year and interact with the filmmakers of tomorrow.
How are the Adobe video tools helping independent filmmakers?
Mickle: The Creative Cloud applications are leveling the playing field for filmmakers by making postproduction tools more accessible for independent filmmakers.
Alvarez: I think that the use of Premiere Pro in the independent film world is going to start growing more and more each year and so for Adobe to be at the core of Sundance, the center of indie filmmaking in this country, is vital. It’s so great for filmmakers and editors to be finding out they have a really strong option out there in the Creative Cloud products.
What advice do you have for aspiring filmmakers today?
Mickle: Just do it! Don't wait for an opportunity to be handed to you. Take whatever tools you have and whatever talent you're surrounded by and make your movie.
Alvarez: Find your own voice. What kind of filmmaker do you want to be? What kinds of stories do you want to tell? So many people jump into making a film before asking themselves these basic questions. Figuring out the core of what you want to communicate as a filmmaker is the first and most important step. Staying true to that instinct will keep you grounded.
HaZ: And yet many aspiring filmmakers get trapped in the thought of waiting to write the perfect screenplay before picking up a camera and shooting stuff. Even shooting test shots with your phone is a good way to get started. It will inspire your writing and make the process real for you.
When I did my first short film, I just shot loads of photo angles I liked and then put them into my editing program and slapped some music on. When I pressed play… it really gave me that butterflies feeling inside. It’s that small cinema magic that you can create yourself that propels you to discover the stories waiting inside you to be told.
Register for free live webcast panel discussion from Sundance:
Engaging Story, Brilliant Visuals, Low Budget – the changing face of independent film
Friday, January 17, 2014 at 2:00 PM PT