Panel 3: SATURDAY OCTOBER 22, 2016 – 3pm – 5:30pm
Independent Pitching Panel and Pitch Fest: Learn what you need to know to sell your film or idea
Venue: London West Hollywood 1020 N. San Vicente Blvd., West Hollywood 90069 (screening room)
We explore the avenues available for independent filmmakers to get their films made through the pitching process. We will have a panel of expert managers, producers, writers, and development executives who will give pointers and reveal the process of pitching in Hollywood. We will have a Q&A with the expert panelists and then you will get a chance to pitch your idea or script in front of our panel – and get direct feedback on your idea, style, and presentation. Don’t want to pitch? Just come sit, listen, and learn. Q&A to follow.
Marlene Sharp – Moderator
Marlene Sharp is a creative and business-savvy entertainment multi-hyphenate who hails from New Orleans and works in Burbank, CA. At present, she is gainfully employed as Producer, TV Series, at Sega of America. As a freelance journalist, Marlene’s musings have appeared in “Variety,” “The New Orleans Advocate,” “The Baton Rouge Advocate,” “Manifest College Magazine,” “New Orleans Gambit,” and regularly in a 7-year run as LA Animation Examiner for the dearly departed Examiner.com. She continues to analyze content on the big screen, on the small screen, and under the microscope. Please read her latest pieces at www.geekified.net.
Dr. Beverly J. Graf
Dr. Beverly J. Graf lives and works in Los Angeles wearing three hats as writer, adjunct professor and story consultant.
She teaches film studies at UCLA, UCLA Extension and Pepperdine University. Before teaching and working as a writer and story consultant, Beverly sat on the other side of the desk, working for many years as Vice President of Development and Associate Producer for director Gregory Hoblit at Abilene Pictures. During her tenure at Abilene they produced five movies: Primal Fear, Fallen, Frequency, Hart’s War, Fracture, and Untraceable. They also shot a few t.v. pilots including one for a futuristic police show titled NYPD 2069, and Wanted and sold two more t.v. pilots to CBS and Paramount respectively. Abilene is also known for television megahits NYPD Blues and L.A. Law.
Last summer marked the publication of her first short story, Shikata Ga Nai, in the Sisters-in-Crime anthology, Last Exit to Murder. She is currently at work on a rewrite of her first sci-fi mystery novel featuring the same detectives. Beverly has also done one script doctor rewrite for Buena Vista, and optioned another story.
On the academic side her article: Arya, Katniss & Merida: Empowering Girls Through the Amazonian Archetype was published this fall in Classical Myth on Screen, edited by Monica Cyrino and Meredith Safran. (Palgrave/Macmillan 2015). She has worked all manner of jobs in the film industry including costume assistant, story analyst, subtitle translator, line producer, and corporate vice president for German director Percy Adlon. Her Ph.D. and M.A., both in Classics, are from Princeton University. My B.A. is from Dartmouth College.
David Kohner Zuckerman
David Kohner Zuckerman is a Hollywood Producer whose feature, “The Fourth Noble Truth,” was released earlier this year, while his “Strictly Sexual” is the #1 most watched movie of all-time on Hulu. David’s other producing credits include “All I Want for Christmas” (Hallmark), “Chump Change” (Miramax) & “Caught in the Act” (Lifetime). Before heading DKZ Films, David ran Development for Silver Lion Films, where he worked on “Man on Fire” & “Crocodile Dundee in L.A.” David’s also a licensed psychotherapist, and the owner of the popular website for writers, Virtual Pitch Fest.
The Barnes Sisters: Sheila & Mary Ann
The Barnes sisters were raised by their dad in a tavern in Southern Illinois, a region famous for two things – the world’s biggest lump of coal and its supermax prison. With their dating pool limited to convicts and having zero talent for coal mining, the sisters packed up their stories and headed to California.
They began their career writing for Richard Jeni’s sit-com PLATYPUS MAN, then sold their comedy feature AS YOU WISH to Bill Mechanic’s Pandemonium. Passionate about features and television, the sisters were Staff Writers on ABC’s LAST MAN STANDING, then landed feature assignment WIDOWS’ WORKSHOP. They’ve served as script doctors on indie thriller ABBEY GRACE and on EVERMOOR, the Disney Channel Worldwide’s first live-action series which premiered in 160 countries last fall. The Barnes sisters’ drafts got both projects greenlit. Most recently, they’ve been adapting the popular Italian show Alex & Company for the Disney Channel Worldwide. In addition to winning coveted fellowships including ABC/Disney Native American, and Fox, where their sci-fi pilot was optioned, Sheila and Mary Ann were selected by the prestigious Humanitas New Voices Program. The Barnes sisters live together with their husbands and brother, all in the same house near the Hollywood sign. Yes, it’s weird. They’ve written a comedy pilot about it. The sisters are repped by David McIlvain at Brillstein Entertainment Partners and Brad Rosenfeld at Abrams Artists Agency.
Richard Fischoff is a veteran industry executive and producer, known for films such as Kramer vs. Kramer, Beauty & the Briefcase and Freeheld.
His executive stints include: Vice-president of Stanley Jaffe Productions. A vice- president of production at Paramount, president of Jaffe-Lansing Productions, President of Carson Films , Senior Vice President Tri-star Pictures, and Co- President Sandollar Films.
Working at Warner Brothers was David Warden’s first job, as an intern assigned to numerous departments including production, finance and story. He found he liked the story department best and this ultimately led to getting into William Morris where he was eventually made a literary agent. In 1991, he formed his own company with two partners where he sold among other scripts Batman 1 and 2, Sleepless in Seattle, Enemy of the State and Deja Vu and Journey II The Mysterious Island. He expanded into TV and has sold writers to Fringe, X Files and Hallmark. Clients are currently working on everything from sophisticated horror, to political exposes to high adventure centering on treasure hunters. David enjoys working with his clients on developing stories and ideas.
His main interest remains what can be described as a compelling story that has high entertainment and emotional value.He believes the first will get the audience in the seats and the second will bring them back for repeat viewsings. The spec screenplay market has tightened considerably since the five million dollar sale of Deja Vu, but he believes that a compelling enough story will always find a home. The essential element of success, besides story, is that the writer understands the reality and capriciousness of the market and the need to give the buyer’s something that can help make them a “hero” A major factor in the writer’s favor is the ever widening markets created by new technology, for there will always be a place for a good storyteller..