Wes Llewellyn has been a filmmaker in the motion picture industry for over 30 years on hundreds of productions in various positions including Chief Lighting Technician, Director of Photography, Writer, Producer and Director. For the past five seasons, he has been directing the dramatic reenactments on the popular Christian talk show, “Sid Roth’s It’s Supernatural.” He has numerous awards for his work: an astonishing Three Best Films awards from the 168 Hour Film Festival (CrossWalk 2003, A Good Day 2007, Up in the Air 2009) “Clip” an action comedy has won Best Film at the Faith-n-Film Summit and 15 Minutes of Fame Festival and was also an official selection for the Sidewalk Film Festival. His film, “FBI Guys” won Best Drama at the Independent Television Festival and Best Mini-Film at the Barebones Festival. “The Gift of Jabez” which he directed for Phil Cooke Pictures was honored as Best Documentary by the Aegeus, Crystal Commentator, and Telly Awards.
His two full-length feature films, “The Moment After” and “The Moment After 2: The Awakening” are in distribution with Sony Home DVD. He is currently in development of a “ripped from the headlines” teen-texting drama called “Send” and will be starting a Kickstarter campaign to secure funding.
This list is great. I've never heard of this book, but I'm going to buy it and if it is as good as the list I know what I'm buying for my friends for Christmas. My wife and I have been in the indie film business for over thirty years, sixty years combined and this list is the so many of the things that we have been trying to tell young film makers for years. Great article.
I was working as chief lighting tech for Peter Baxter on a film he produced when you guys were getting Slamdance off the ground.
I moved from LA to Atlanta six years ago, for personal reasons, not for the industry moving here. I don't know how many films were shot in LA, but there were far more than 15 shot in Georgia last year. There were about half a dozen big budget films shot in my neighborhood alone, not to mention all the small budgets and episodics that are always shooting. According to the Georgia film commission there were over 50 major episodic and feature films shot here and like I said, that does not include small independents. I love LA and miss it, I lived there for 21 years but I have had dozens of friends who have moved or are moving from LA because there is no work there. I don't know who is putting out the numbers in the article but they are not correct, at the very least they are misrepresented.
The name of this website is "No Film School". You pay money to go to school and, as they said in the pod cast, you have interns with $100,000 in student loans. Why? This is one of the few industries where you don't need a degree to work in it, you just need to know what you are doing. Yes, yes I would have my son or daughter work in an unpaid position for a company as long as they are learning and growing. An unpaid internship is cheep in comparison to tuition. I have a friend who had an internship on a sitcom where one of his jobs was to make sure there was enough breakfast cereal for the writers. He noticed that the favorite cereal by far was Lucky Charms, so when the head writer came in and found an empty box my friend just smiled, opened a cabinet and produced a fresh box of the magically delicious treat. It was his hard work and attention to detail that earned him a Jr. writing position and later a head writer position and later a producer position on some big network shows. If he never had the opening opportunity with an unpaid position then he might never have had the opportunity to be a producer. He is not the son of a big Hollywood producer, he is the son of a farmer from Iowa. I just feel if you take away the opportunity for us common folk to work their way into the industry then all you are going to find in the industry are the privileged. The internships are NOT going to turn into paid positions, they are just going to go away. The networks will just make the writers get their own cereal.
I'm not going to disagree that the intern / PA positions have been abused in the past, of course they have. In some ways that's part of the job. In many ways the jobs are the "wax on, wax off" torture test to see who has what it takes to make it in a very, very highly competitive business. I'm not saying that the abuse is always appropriate, but sometimes it's testing.
We have a small production company and a couple of years ago we took on an intern. We busted his butt, we loved him but we worked him hard. After seeing his grit we hired him for a year in a paid position where he gained a foothold in this business and went on to work for much bigger productions than ours. If all positions become only paid potions or at least higher paid potions then I'm only going to hire more experienced people or not hire at all. Worst of all, most employers are only going to hire inexperienced workers who help them politically, like the son or daughter or nephew of someone they want to curry favors with. I disagree that this move will "level the playing field", in fact I think it will have the opposite effect. I think that this is a step backwards to the days where the people that got the job were part of the "Lucky Sperm Donor Club" and familial ties was what opened doors for most of the new film business recruits.
I met my wife on a filmset 21 years ago. We still work on projects together and she is still the love of my life. I wish that for you.
This is not the sight for articles like this. This is a sight for film making not political opinions. What gives you the right to use a platform like this to push your political opinions on every one else.