Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Iowa Scriptwriters Alliance Workshops 2010 – Workshop #2

Mark your calendars for August 28th!!!

The Iowa Scriptwriters Alliance's August workshop is #2 of three installments for 2010 and will again focus on screenwriting. Take heart all you playwrights! Workshop #3 is in the works for October. Some big plans are being made for this workshop devoted entirely to the art of writing for the theater!

Workshop #2 will feature our special guest, Bruce Elgin! 

Bruce has been active in the independent film community for over ten years. He has an MFA in screenwriting and has written nearly twenty feature length screenplays. In addition to producing, he has directed two features and over the years has worked in nearly every position on a movie set.

Here's what will be covered in the workshop:

  • Screenwriting Basics
  • Character and Structure
  • Character Psychology
  • Heroes and Villains
  • Marketing

Attendees are encouraged to send Bruce the first two pages of any screenplay they are working on. Bruce will take a look at your script and provide feedback during the workshop regarding character introductions. Please send your first two pages in a PDF file to

Here's what else you need to know:

Cost: For ISA members - FREE
IMPA members - $20.00
Non-ISA members - $25.00 - BUT HERE'S THE BEST PART: Pay the cost of admission and receive a FREE ISA membership! This will entitle you to FREE or discounted rates to all ISA events in the coming year!

Location: Des Moines Central Library
                 1000 Grand Avenue
                 Des Moines

Time: 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
We'll break for lunch around 1:00 PM. There are several eating establishments nearby.

Coffee, water and light refreshments will be provided by the ISA.

How to reserve your spot: ISA members should RSVP by e-mail to Terry Daily at .

All others make checks payable to Iowa Scriptwriters Alliance and mail to:

Andrew McDowell - ISA Treasurer
5241 Dakota Drive
West Des Moines, IA 50265

Be sure to include a note with your name, home address, and e-mail address - Note on your check "ISA Workshop #2"

E-mail Terry Daily, ISA Vice President,  with any questions:

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

KCCI: Iowa Film Industry Still In Limbo

Last night, Kent Newman, IMPA Board President, appeared in KCCI's story. "Iowa Film Industry Still In Limbo."  Click here to view the story.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Don't miss "The Merry Wives of Windsor" at Salisbury House in Des Moines !

"The Merry Wives of Windsor" opened Thursday night with plenty of merriment  (including wine at intermission :)  and continues Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night with John Earl Robinson as Sir John Falstaff and Iowa Motion Picture Association Board Member Jay Villwock as Robert Shallow.  The Sunday matinee is at 2 PM.   This is Shakespeare as he meant it to be enjoyed !

FRI JULY 16    7:30PM
SAT JULY 17   7:30PM
SUN JULY 18  2:00PM
SUN JULY 18  7:30PM

Salisbury House, 4025 Tonawanda Drive, off Grand Avenue

Click here for more information.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Interested in Rotoscoping Training and Work?

Grasshorse Studios at 111 North Locust in Winfield, Iowa is looking for potential persons who have experience in or who are willing and wanting to learn rotoscoping.

Rotoscoping is an animation technique in which live-action film movement is traced over frame by frame for use in animated films. The term rotoscoping refers to the technique of manually creating a combination of two or more images into a single, final image on a live-action plate so it may be composited over another background. Think Star Wars or Lord of the Rings.

Those interested will be provided training by a Grasshorse rotoscope workshop where the individual will learn the technique, practice the process, and wrap up the class by creating a final roto-test demo to be  added to a rotoscope reel. The reel will then be sent to various outside companies in the hopeful pursuit of attracting jobs. Therefore, persons who are found qualified to fit roto positions must be local as this would not be a freelance position.

If the rotoscope demo reel is successful and brings in work, those deemed qualified from the workshop will be offered in-house working positions as needed. Again this is a local-only position and cannot be done out of house.

Email if interested.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Iowa Independent Film Frestival - Clear Lake to Host Hollywood

The 4th annual IOWA INDEPENDENT FILM FESTIVAL is garnering a much bigger following from major movie makers, this year. The unique cinema, business and social gathering will take place in Clear Lake, Iowa, this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Arts Center in its two screening venues and The Hub youth center movie room, both in downtown near the lakefront.

Showcasing new feature length films, socially impacting documentaries, edgy short subjects and a few regional student productions this year's festival is bringing in big names and legendary people who rarely appear at film events. Over 30 provocative, inspirational and challenging productions will be offered for viewing, as submitted from all over the U.S. and Europe. Many of the attending actors and directors will be on hand after the screenings of their movies for discussion sessions. Also, industry lawyer and agent Kevin Mills will speak on financing movies and other film business issues.

There will be a gala awards ceremony held at the Arts Center on Saturday night, along with other opportunities for the public to network with movie makers during the festive weekend. The hours for screenings and other sessions will run on Friday (the 16th) from 1pm to 8pm, Saturday (the 17th) from 11am to 9pm, and Sunday (the 18th) from 1pm to 5pm.

Tickets to the screenings can be ordered on-line, purchased in advance at the Clear Lake Arts Center or simply picked up at the Arts Center on the days of the festival. They are $25 for a weekend pass, which also gets you into the awards ceremony. The day pass is $10 and individual screenings will cost $5.

For further details on specific times and movie scheduling go to

Friday, July 9, 2010


GHOST PLAYER to screen in Hollywood. The film festival will be July 10 and 11 and will celebrate sports and competition. The movie will be showing at the Mary Pickford Theater around 3pm on that Sunday.


Hardacre Film Festival 2010: Independent Film Returns to Iowa’s Longest-Running Festival

Stuck elevators, foul balls and the world’s largest lava lamp are among the filmed subjects of this year’s Hardacre Film Festival. Iowa’s longest-running film festival, celebrating its 13th year, will be held Friday and Saturday, August 6 and 7, at the historic Hardacre Theater in Tipton.

“We’re really excited about this year’s lineup—a terrific variety of subjects and filmmakers to present them,” said Will Valet, festival director. “Many of our films have shown at the world’s most prestigious film festivals, while others are premiering at the Hardacre. It’s a world-class festival that gives movie lovers in our region a great opportunity to experience them and meet the people who made them.”

The 2010 festival will feature dozens of feature-length and short films from all over the world, including two feature-length narrative films, six documentaries, seven animated films and more than a dozen short live-action films.

Among this year’s highlights:


    • American Grindhouse—This documentary (from Iowa-raised director Elijah Drenner) covers the history of the American exploitation film. The movie examines this often-overlooked category of U.S. “shock” cinema in an informative and amusing way.

    • Ballhawks—This documentary tells the story of Cubs fans who chase baseballs—and dreams—outside the ivy-covered walls of Wrigley Field. Filmed in 2004, when Wrigley announced plans to expand the bleachers and change “ballhawking” forever.

    • Between Floors—This funny, claustrophobic and arresting film examines the human condition through five stuck elevators and the people trapped inside them. Each elevator forces its occupants to confront their isolation, themselves and each other in varied and unexpected ways.

    • Cleanflix—This documentary explores the companies that make R-rated films “clean” for families and religious groups and the unhappy film directors whose work is going under the knife.

    • My Vietnam, Your Iraq—This heartbreaking and inspiring documentary tells the stories of Vietnam veterans and their children who have served in each generation’s war. This looks at the pride, challenges, fears, prejudices and emotions they have gone through during and after deployment.

    • World’s Largest—Shot partially in Iowa, this documentary captures the changing landscape of small-town America. Desperate for tourism, hundreds of small towns claim the “world's largest” objects, from 15-foot fiberglass strawberries to 40-foot concrete pheasants. This film visits 58 such sites and profiles one Washington town’s four-year struggle to build the world’s largest lava lamp.


    • The Cow Who Wanted to Be a Hamburger—In this animated film from animation legend Bill Plympton, a bovine is mesmerized by a marketing billboard and chases the goal of being the best hamburger he can be.

    • Heartland Transport—This short documentary, shot partially in Iowa City, concerns 17 gay and lesbian couples who define marriage equality as they take a chartered bus from St. Louis to Iowa City to be legally married.

    • Mind the Gap—In this hilarious short from Canada, a beautiful young woman sits next to a sweet elderly man on a train. The ride is anything but boring in this sweet comedy about first and last im pressions.

    • Patient—In this short, a man and a woman meet at a coffee shop for the first time. As if on an awkward date, they exchange timid pleasantries. But as their conversation unfolds, the horrifying truth behind their meeting is revealed.

    • Plastic Bag—This timely short film by hot indie filmmaker Ramin Bahrani (Man Push Cart, Goodbye Solo) traces the existential journey of a plastic bag (voiced by legendary filmmaker Werner Herzog) searching for its lost maker, the woman who took it home from the store and eventually discarded it.

    • Trophy Wife—This short film (from Marion, Iowa) concerns a husband who struggles with failure and rejection in his hobby and in his marriage. When everything finally falls apart, Frank finds a way to resolve his taxidermy hobby and come to terms with his wife.

The complete list of films and a schedule for the 2010 festival will be released online at in early July.

Filmmakers are regularly in attendance, present their films, and take questions from audience members following screenings. The festival takes place during Tipton’s Ridiculous Days sidewalk sale event.

The Hardacre will give out awards including Best Feature Film, Best Documentary, Best Short Film, Best Student Film, Best Animated Film, Best Experimental Film and the Audience Award, which is voted on by audience members during the festival. Award winners will be announced in July.

Admission to any of the Hardacre’s three programs—Opening Night, Saturday Day or Closing Night—is $8 each. An all-festival pass can be purchased for $20. Films on Friday beg in at 6 p.m. On Saturday, screenings will run all day; from 9 a.m. through 11 p.m.

For a full schedule or more information about the Hardacre Film Festival, go to


Shot in July of 2009, “A Million Spokes” is a feature-length documentary filmed during the largest and oldest bicycle touring event in the world. An annual bicycle ride, RAGBRAI® takes place in Iowa over seven days in July where thousands of bicyclists descend on the state to partake in an adventure that is singular in its ability to attract some of the most unique people you will ever encounter. Some come for the challenge, some come for speed, some come just to party and drink through the ride and others derive very specific meanings for the ride.  This special screening in Sioux City prior to the 2010 RAGBRAI® will mark the first time this film will be viewed by the public.

The film's director, Varda Hardy, producers, Ken Gorrell and Talia Rodriguez-Shakur will join many of the characters audiences meet in the film to screen the project in its first public viewing. In addition, there will be a number of surprise guests in attendance – celebrities, film executives and film critics to be announced at a later date.

The film will be screened at the Riviera 4 Theater, 714 4th Street, Sioux City, IA 51101.  Tickets for the 5 pm Friday, July 23 special screening are $25.00 per person.  Admission includes a free medium bag of popcorn and medium drink.  A raffle will also be held.  Admission to all other show times is $10.00 per person.  Additional show times include:

Friday:  7:00 pm, 9:00 pm, 11:00 pm

Saturday: 11:00 am, 1:00 pm, 3:00 pm, 5:00 pm, 7:00 pm, 9:00 pm, 11:00 pm

Visit to reserve your ticket online.

Record number of filmmakers sign-up for the 48 Hour Film Project

Forty-seven filmmaking teams have registered for the sixth year of the Des Moines 48 Hour Film Project and the chance to win the Best of City prize of $1000 cash! Only one team slot remains available and once initial registration is complete, filmmakers will be put on the waiting list in case any unexpected slots open.

Register today at - all filmmaker positions are first come, first serve and, as you can see, they go fast. "This is the year we've been preparing for," states 48HFP Producer Sam Tuomi. "We are thrilled at the turnout and expect this year's 48 Hour Film Project to be filled to capacity with talent from all over Iowa."

Des Moines 48HFP is making it easier for actors, crew, and filmmakers to come together by hosting a Casting Social at 7pm on July 19 at the Lotus Moments Events Center (2134 E Grand Ave - DSM). Well-known Casting Director Kimberly Busbee of AriesWorks Entertainment will present a free Workshop for Actors during the Social. The session will cover a variety of techniques for actors with limited experience acting for the camera. It will also focus on helping filmmakers get the best results from new talent. Make sure and bring copies of your headshot or contact information on paper to be given out to the film team representatives.

The Des Moines 48HFP kicks-off July 23 with filmmakers receiving their required elements - genre, character, prop, line of dialogue. Filmmakers have just 48 hours to produce a short film in the hopes to win the "Best of City" award along with its $1000 cash prize. That award also qualifies the filmmakers to compete for "The Best 48 Hour Film" in the International 48 Hour Film Project scheduled for early 2011. Over the past five years, Des Moines has been well represented at the International 48 Hour Film Project, including winning the international grand prize in 2005.

All films produced in Iowa July 23-25 will be shown during public screenings at the Fleur Cinema and Cafe on July 28 and 29. Besides the $1000 cash prize, filmmakers have an opportunity to win other awards and prizes valued at over $1000, as well. Tickets for the public screenings are available at or at the Fleur Cinema box office on the day of show.

July 19, 2010 @ 7pm
Casting Social - Lotus Moments Event Center (2134 E Grand Ave - DSM).
*  Includes Free Workshop for Actors with Kimberly Busbee.

July 23-25, 2010
Des Moines 48HFP competition weekend
* July 23 - Kick-off Des Moines Art Center for filmmakers only
* July 25 - Completed films must be dropped off by 7:30 pm
* July 28 and 29 - Public screenings of all completed 2010 Des Moines 48HFP entries and vote for your favorite Fleur Cinema and Cafe (4545 Fleur Dr - DSM)  Tickets are available at or at the Fleur Cinema box office on the day of show.

August 12, 2010
Best of City Celebration (open to the public)
* Includes screenings of the top 12 judged films from the 2010 Des Moines 48HFP entries at Fleur Cinema Cafe (4545 Fleur Dr - DSM)
* Special After Party at the Des Moines Social Club (1408 Locust St - DSM)