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Menthol on Vimeo on Demand

Now that Menthol was finally released online last week, let’s check in with the release status and watch the 3rd part of our interview series with the makers of the film. This post will complete my 6-part series on releasing the film with a $0 marketing budget. With direct distribution I’ve learned that what appears to be the end of a long road usually leads to be the beginning of a new one, but for this post I’ve selected some big takeaways and put them together in a Direct-Distribution Lesson Roundup. Read on. More »

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Menthol Release on August 4th

Menthol is finally done playing film festivals and we’re in the clear to release online. It’s been a long road getting to this point, navigating various distribution strategies and seeing what we can implement with a $0 marketing spend. Menthol will finally enjoy its online release today, August 4th through Vimeo on Demand and Reelhouse. To whet your appetite for the film, here’s the next installment in the Behind the Story interview series and some words on what we’ve learned. More »

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Jack Plotnik at Outfest 2014To follow-up from last week’s 2014 Outfest kickoff, the festival has released a few more interviews from their Meet the Filmmakers series. Outfest asked me to conduct some interviews with some of this year’s filmmakers, allowing a glimpse into the minds of some really interesting directors working today. Including interviews with Marina Rice Bader, Jack Plotnick and Desiree Akhavan, and a compilation video of all their advice for other independent filmmakers. More »

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Outfest 2014Getting your film seen on a big screen seems harder and harder to do, but it’s clear that film festivals still play a major role in the preservation of the theatrical experience. The Los Angeles-based Outfest is one of the most prestigious LGBT film festivals in the world, and to celebrate their 32nd year they are trying something new: a series of interviews with the filmmakers talking about their stories and some of the challenges of making them come to life. More »

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Matt Mason and Evan Husney Talk The Future of Film DistributionBitTorrent has long been a pioneer and a strong voice in the conversation about digital distribution, and now they’re bringing us a video interview series called BitTorrent Sessions. Off the heels of a successful Bundles collaboration (over 3.5 million downloads) with Drafthouse Films for The Act of Killing, BitTorrent’s Matt Mason sat down with Evan Husney (the then creative director of Drafthouse Films, now with Vice) to talk about the current state of film distribution and where we’re headed. More »

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Screen Shot 2014-05-27 at 8.11.15 PM

Our festival run is almost complete and we’re preparing for our imminent online launch. Direct distribution is a moving target, and we’re constantly shifting our release strategy and making adaptations we feel are necessary. Our latest adaptation is going to be making the film available on more than one platform when we release. For this post I’ve also put together the first of three videos from hours of interview footage on the cast & crew’s experience of making Menthol. Click through to keep following along and to watch the video. More »

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Heaven Adores You a film about Elliott Smith

Elliott Smith is one of the most prolific and authentic figures in the contemporary singer/songwriter era and is synonymous with intimate, honest folk music. His songs are cinematic in the sense that they are character studies, “little pictures made of words” that capture a certain person, time or place. Many documentaries have tried to have been made over the years, but Nickolas Rossi has succeeded in making the first feature-length Elliott documentary with permission to use his music. Read on for our interview with the director Nickolas Rossi on constructing a portrait of Elliott’s life and work. More »

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Curtains by Tyler T Williams

Budgets are rapidly coming down for music videos, but some directors still manage to execute their visions on a budget. Tyler T. Williams is perhaps one of the best at this, always putting together interesting images with great music. With his latest video for “Curtains!?” by Timber Timbre, Tyler displays a growing confidence in storytelling and a welcome throwback to the film noir grunge of the 40s and 50s. Hit the jump to watch the new video and for our interview with the director. More »

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Menthol at 18th Sofia International Film Fest

The process of releasing and distributing my first film has been a challenge, and as we enter the last month or so of pre-release work I will be sharing more a long the way. In the previous two posts in this series I talked about cutting a trailer and shared philosophical ramblings after our world premiere. In this post, I’m gonna talk about our international premiere experience, putting on our own screenings and preparing for the next steps before release. Hit the jump to read more. More »

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Panel 2 at the 15th Annual IFTA Production ConferenceWith a keynote speech from producer-of-the-moment Cassian Elwes (Ain’t Them Body Saints, Dallas Buyer’s Club) and a selection of some of the most successful individuals from producing, financing, sales, marketing and distribution, the sold-out 15th annual IFTA (Independent Film & Television Alliance) production conference was held in Los Angeles on April 25th. No Film School was invited to attend the conference to help extend the conversation to all the independent filmmakers who couldn’t fit in the room, so click through to read some major takeaways from the event. More »

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FV SpectraHD 4 1280-720 EVFF&V has been steadily cranking out quality lighting products, and at NAB 2014 they introduced their first EVF. Containing features that you’ll find in higher-end EVFs/monitors, the new 4.3″ SpectraHD 4 is going to come in at a bit lower price than some other options. They’ve also got a larger 7″ monitor with slightly less resolution, which should work well as an inexpensive additional monitor on the camera. Finally, they are introducing new lights with far higher CRI ratings — which means better color reproduction. Check out the interview below: More »

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VaricamWe’ve seen plenty of impressive cameras be unveiled at NAB in the last week from Blackmagic, Sony, JVC, and even AJA. Although we’ve known about Panasonic’s first 4K VariCam for a while, we were able to chat with Steve Cooperman about the modular camera, as well as take a closer look at its features, which include a Super 35mm CMOS sensor, 14+ stops of dynamic range, PL mount, and internal 4K up to 120fps. We’re also told by Cooperman that, with all components included, the camera will be sold for under $60K. More »

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Full SailYes, we’re called No Film School, and yes, we get the irony of sharing information about a film school, but we caught up with Jacob Abercrombie and Alex Boyum at Full Sail University’s “mobile experience” truck at NAB, which travels around giving hands-on demos to potential film school students. Check out what they have to say about the kind of education you can expect to receive at FSU, which offers Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees both online and on their campus in Winter Park, Florida. More »

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SmallHDSmallHD has made a pretty significant upgrade to their already visually superb 7″ DP7 field monitor, and David Bredbury gives us a quick demo at the SmallHD booth at NAB. The new features in the DP7 include the ability to load and export custom 3D LUTs, as well as editing and grading footage in real-time. Continue on to see the DP7 in action, as well as all pricing and availability information. More »

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RedRockRedrock Micro is probably best known for their award-winning One Man Crew, a motorized parabolic motion system, as well as their remote focus system microRemote. We stopped off at their booth at NAB, where Redrock’s Brian Valente not only gave us a demonstration of the new features of these two products, but of their new 3-piece, vintage style rig for the Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera, the Retroflex, which allows for handheld operation. More »

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Panasonic-GH4-4K-Front-No-Lens-616x407There have been lots of new cameras at this year’s NAB, but one that a lot of us have been curious about is the next iteration from Panasonic’s GH line of mirrorless cameras. With internal 4K recording and an optional interface unit that adds SDI-Out for sending higher bit-rate 4K to an external recorder, the Panasonic GH4 is here. Hit the jump to watch our interview with Panasonic from the floor of NAB 2014: More »

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Atomos talks to No Film School at NAB 2014Hot on the heels of the February announcement of the award-winning Ninja Blade, Atomos have announced two new products that cover the budgetary gamut of external recording needs. Click through to watch Joe Marine’s interview with Atomos Business Development Manager Will Thompson at NAB to discuss functionality, pricing and availability: More »

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Ryan Connolly and Olivia Speranza talk to No Film School about the My Rode Reel ContestRøde’s latest promotional effort brings together top companies from every corner of the film industry to offer $70,000 in prizes to encourage filmmakers to get creative. By submitting a short film of up to 5 minutes in length with a supplemental behind-the-scenes video showing the use of a Røde microphone you can win cameras, gear and software from Adobe, Blackmagic, Miller, Kessler, and many others. No Film School’s Joe Marine caught up with Ryan Connolly and Olivia Speranza at NAB to talk about how it works, why they are excited to be involved and important deadlines for the contest. Watch the video after the jump and learn everything you need to know. More »

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No Film School at the Tiffen : Steadicam Booth NAB 2014Camera stabilizers of all types and weight capacities are becoming more accessible for everyone, and this year the company that started it all are offering competitively priced solutions for independent filmmakers and GoPro enthusiasts. Click through to watch our interview Tiffen at Steadicam’s 2014 NAB booth: More »

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Robert Rozak shows No Film School the new Little Darling at NAB 2014Robert Rozak is an audio hero, always sharing great information about audio production as well as creating quality products with which to execute that knowledge. This year he’s revealing the Little DARling (Distributed Audio Recorder), a convenient pocket-sized recorder designed for wired lavs, enabling quality audio capture for live events and guerrilla filmmaking. Hit the jump to watch the interview from the NAB floor. More »