Thursday, April 24, 2008

For Hazel
the online martini shot* of independent film
the 24 April 2008 edition
Newsletter Subtitle
This week
What's New
Upcoming Courses
LAST CHANCE: Festival Submissions
What's On RDTV
The Canadian Connection
What's new this week at Raindance?

Martinis, Mozart & Movies. Read on...

Not a member yet? Click to join
Raindance Logo
What was Kubrick Thinking?

Did Stanley Kubrick really make his cast and crew listen to classical music all day long while filming 2001?

And did he really shoot footage 200 times the length of the final film?

Ask Kelvin Pike, he'll know.

The Raindance Kodak Masterclass takes place at BAFTA on Saturday 10 May, 2-4pm. Tickets cost £10.

Veteran cameraman Kelvin Pike, whose work includes 2001:A SPACE ODYSSEY, THE SHINING, STAR WARS:THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, DR STRANGELOVE and HEAVEN'S GATE, will give us a behind the scenes look at what it was like working on some of the most iconic films of the 20th Century.

Click HERE to book a place or ring 020 7287 3833.
stanley Low Budget Shooting Tip:
Make the Video Store your Film School

Godard, Truffaut and the rest of the French New Wave were the first filmmakers to study and deconstruct previous films as inspiration for their own work. Since then, indie auteurs from Kubrick to Tarantino have used the work of their peers as building blocks towards success.

With the home video market as advanced and as cheap as it currently is, you have no excuse not to do the same! Research the classics, rent them from your local video store, your local library, or on the internet, and start watching. Even the most advanced filmmaker can still learn from the masters, so, get working!

Learn about the best 10 Sites to Watch Movies HERE

film crew One Night Stand

Come along to Raindance's annual Open Evening, 8 May 2008, where you will meet the filmmakers and screenwriters who teach some of your favourite Raindance courses. Ask them all the gritty questions about what they do, and how they broke into the film industry, and their most embarassing moment on set.

Oh, and it's FREE.
For more information, click HERE
Book your place today by emailing

ALSO: New this year, check out The Short Film Project if you want to get some hands on experience with producing, shooting, and screening your film in just 4 days!
last chanceLAST CHANCE!

This is your last chance to reach the early submission deadline for the 16th Raindance Film Festival. The first stage of deadlines closes on Thursday 1st May (Just one week from today!) so here's your final chance to get your film in early and to save on submission fees.

Not quite there yet? That's okay! The final deadline is 6th June with a Withoutabox-only extended deadline of 20th June.

For details on submissions, click HERE
Our Ears are Ringing...

Some familiar faces are chatting about Raindance.

Click HERE to see what they're saying.

Through the Film Festival and the Awards, Raindance continues to inspire and encourage. A natural force in independent filmmaking and long may it "rain".

-Alan Rickman
Actor/ Harry Potter/ Truly, Madly, Deeply/ Dogma

Coming Soon...

Sleep Dealer featuring a Q&A with Director Alex Rivera Friday 25 April 2008.

Set in the near future in a militarised world marked by closed borders, virtual labour and a global digital network that joins minds and experiences, three strangers risk their lives to connect with each other and break barriers of technology. Sleep Dealer, the feature debut by renowned digital media artist Alex Rivera, is a highly imaginative and boldly futuristic sci-fi thriller.

RSVP ESSENTIAL: This is a private event - If you would like to request tickets please e-mail, with your name, telephone number and the number of tickets you require.

FREE for Raindance Members

TIME: Doors open at 12:00pm and the event will end around 4:30pm.
VENUE: Everyman Cinema Club, 5 Holly Bush Vale, Hampstead, London, NW3 6TX Buses: 46, 268, N5 / Underground: Hampstead, Northern Line (Edgware Branch)

Click HERE for more information.
digmi RDTV
This week on, get shorty with some great mini-movies.

Jarl Olson's jazzy one and a half minute story Omar, the Short is bigger than Omar himself- a comedic tale of the ups and downs of Karma is now available for viewing on

Help Flint hunt and bobble for the missing chord in the mesmerizing animated tale, Digmi-The Search for the Missing Chord

Got more time?

Making of A Film Idol, a full length-feature where "A first-time producer wanted to cast his 'fully funded' British gangster film with wannabes. It was a match made in hell". You can also check out this film on Bablegum along with The Morning Guy a great short to make you feel better about your mornings.

Special for Raindance Members

Are you off to Cannes this coming May? Are you a Raindance Member?

If you answered "Oui!" to both those questions, we have some exciting news for you. On the first Saturday of Cannes Film Festival, 17 May 2008, Raindance's very own Elliot Grove will be conducting a walking tour of Cannes Market. And you're invited.

To register or simply get more information, shoot us an email at

To become a Raindance Member for just £50.00, click HERE

If you are not attending Cannes but want to take the tour anyway, not to worry! Take the virtual Cannes Tour courtesy of Tiscali HERE

Raindance alum Christopher Nolan (Memento, Batman Begins) encountered controversy this week as he geared up for the release of his latest summer Blockbuster, The Dark Knight. It has been reported that the film, which stars the recently deceased Heath Ledger as the Joker, contains a scene in which the late actor rises from a body bag after faking his death. After test audiences responded with shock, the studio reportedly put pressure on Nolan to remove the scene from the film's final cut.

However, the director has stood his ground, refusing to edit Ledger's performance.

The Dark Knight is currently set for a UK release on the 25th of July.

In England, I'm a horror movie director. In Germany, I'm a filmmaker. In the US, I'm a bum.

- John Carpenter

First Feature The Canadian Connection

If your indie comedy isn't getting the sales you'd hoped, Richard Symons of Spirit Level films suggests ...try Canada.

Indy comedy THE JOLLY BOYS LAST STAND starring (a then) unknown Andy Serkis, Milo Twomey and Sacha Baron Cohen made no headway on the UK festival scene until Canadian ex-pat and head of the Raindance Eliot Grove tuned in to it's off beat humour and gave it an airing at Raindance 1999.

Six months later the BRITPICS festival in Toronto heard about the Raindance screening and booked Jolly Boys for a 6pm Tuesday night screening. Despite the film's zero profile in Canada, 600 film fans packed the hip Bloor Cinema to see what the fuss was about. Still no territory sale.

Just when the producers had almost given up selling the film, acquisition scouts from new Canadian distributor PEACE ARCH contacted Britpics' programmer Oliver Groom to suggest any films that had screened well at the fest. Groom described how Jolly Boys had gone down a storm and the label picked it up for Canada and The US.

In the meantime, producer Chris Payne would still love to hear from anyone in the UK...

Raindance has a whole bunch of events next week in Toronto.
Find out by clicking here.
dracula Turn 2 Minutes into £5,000!

"The horror, the horror!" What better way to celebrate the arrival of sunny spring than with guts and gore from London's bloodiest short film competition, Zone Horror's "CUT!"

Enter your two-minute horror flick, get it screened by "kitsch-cult legend Lloyd Kaufman, local horror hero Alan Jones and Joe Lynch" and win the chance for a not-so-horrific cash prize.

Of course, submissions are due on Friday the 13th of June 2008.
For more information and videos of last year's winners click HERE
martini *martini shot

The last shot of the day's shoot... because the next "shot" is in a Martini glass.

Yours etc
Raindance Logo
Joe Pearshouse and the Raindance team
Elliot Grove
Suzanne Ballantyne
Will Pearce
Jesse Vile
James Merchant
Kelly Reilly
Marco Esquivel
Dan Schoenbrun
Molly Schulman

In Memory Of Hazel Court

Thinking of a film course?

Get the Raindance Course Catalogue

Forward to a friend
Help spread the Raindance word by clicking on the Forward email button below.


Divorce cost him an arm and a leg, so how much dough
has Sir Paul McCartney got left? Find out with The
Sunday Times Rich List, the final word on who's richer
than who in Britain today.

"If I take a dog for a walk, apparently I'm
fucking my dog!" - Gerard Butler
_ __ ___ _ __ | |__ (_) |_ ___| |__
| '_ \ / _ \| '_ \| '_ \| | __/ __| '_ \
| |_) | (_) | |_) | |_) | | || (__| | | |
| .__/ \___/| .__/|_.__/|_|\__\___|_| |_|
|_| |_| 23.04.08 ISSUE 394
Free every week: to subscribe/unsubscribe
go to

* Tall Tiger tales
* Where's Maddie?
* Charts: Estelle is number one

>> His God materials <<
Wedding day bliss for Pullman

Philip Pullman may be one of our foremost
atheists but his son got married at the weekend
in a Catholic church with full mass, a choir
and a soloist who sang Ave Maria. Pullman even
gave a reading from Corinthians ending "God
is love", to one or two raised eyebrows. He
didn't, however, take communion.

A writes: “When I worked at HMV in the early 90s Mike
Nolan was browsing through the cassette section. I
walked up to him and asked if he needed any help or
was just making his mind up? He didn’t smile. At all.”

>> Where's Maddie <<
The joys of community journalism

The current trend in news journalism is to
let the viewers do the work. But the rise of
photos and videos from amateur mobile phone
cameramen is not without peril, thank God.
One 24 hour news network didn't spot that
someone was sending them in photos of the
London Olympic torch procession and photo-
shopping images of Maddie McCann into the
crowd. Oops.

For everyone who entered our Playstation Buzz!
league. Winner: SDG (14537). Runners up: Eric
Burdon, Dropoft, Alans Your Man. If you didn't win,
you can buy the Buzz! pop quiz game here:

>> Big Questions <<
The blind items leading the blind

Which late night TV show presenter pairing
are all smiles on screen but once the cameras
stop rolling the mutual hatred is bubbling up.
The longer-haired presenter is jealous at the
attention the other is getting. And the other
can hardly hide his contempt for what he
(somewhat correctly) considers the other's
lack of talent.

Which Pirates of the Caribbean star is still
talked of in hushed tones by Bahamian locals,
where II and III were filmed, thanks to his
super-human habit of drinking three bottles
of very fine red wine every day?

“Gossip keeps people’s behaviour in check because
they want to look good to others and don’t want to
be thought badly of”, according to scientists.”

>> The Ken and Eric show <<
Finding Cantona in Salford today

Ken Loach is making a biopic of Eric Cantona's
time at Man Utd, provisionally titled Finding
Eric. The director hasn't lost his “man of the
people” credentials. Rather than staying in
the posh Lowry Hotel he's in a big standard
3 star place, refusing the services of a
chauffeur and spending his 35 quid a day
per diem in Pret a Manger on food for his
staff. He and the Cantona family have been
travelling around by tram or minicab.

Sam Neil spotted buying lunch at Villandry's new
sandwich bar. He ordered chicken with garlic mayo.

>> Happy meal <<
Madonna and Guy still friendly, shock

Madonna and Guy dined at Cecconi's last week.
People on the next table report the famous
pair spent the evening chatting happily with
each other.

Our spy escaped to the restrooms to call a
friend. She didn't see that Madonna had also
gone to the bathroom, and as she stood by
the basins excitedly whispering down the phone
Mrs Richie came out of the cubicle and
walked straight past her (without washing
hands) back to her seat. Cue an uncomfortable
rest of meal.

Meg Ryan has been in London with her adopted daughter
Daisy, who is “cute enough to sell on to Madonna”.
Meg's forehead doesn't move much but she's ditched
the Daffy Duck lip implants.

>> Klaxon alert <<
Jools Holland guests beware

BBC Entertainment has a new joke. Q: What's the
definition of a bad party? A: Two many Klaxons,
not enough beer. The band for some reason went
all to the filming of Jools Holland's show and
sat in the audience drinking just about all of
the free booze set aside for the “talent”.
And Pixie Geldof, taking after her sister,
started to snog the fat Klaxon whenever the
camera was on them.

Princessnasty writes: “I flew back from Barbados this
week next to L'wren Scott, Mick Jagger's girlfriend.
She's freakishly tall with surgery scars behind her
ears. Mick's gone down a gear from Jerry Hall.”

>> Conspiracy theory corner <<
What to worry about after Diana

There's a weird new theory that Sonny Bono
didn't die in an accident, he was assassinated.
Some FBI agent reckon drug and gun runners
killed him on the ski slopes, through a staged
ski accident. One investigator said that he sent
Bono evidence that top US government officials
were linked to arms and weapons dealers. Less
than a month later, Bono was dead.

Nigella Lawson shopping in DKNY Selfridges. She had
bird shit on her arse.

>> Talent vortex <<
Dirty bomb required

Where's al-Qaeda when you need it? This press
notice hit our inbox:

2008 NBC universal All-American summer press day”
What: press event
Where: The Langham, Huntington Hotel & Spa
(formerly the Ritz Carlton)
When: Friday, May 2, 2008
Who: Simon Cowell, David Hasselhoff, Piers
Morgan, Jerry Springer, Hulk Hogan...

Karen from Will & Grace (Megan Mullally) was the
original choice to play Tom Cruise's hooker
friend in Risky Business.

>> Pigs in space <<
Moon landings almost go Loony Tunes

celtiagirl writes:
“A lovely old chap at the BBC who'd been in
charge of covering the first moon landing once
told me that if the NASA mission had gone
wrong, the only tape they had lined up to cut
to was a Warner Bros Porky Pig cartoon.
That's all folks.”

Popbitch's favourite licensing co-ordinate: Royal
Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead's David Barwise

>> The prisoners of Abkhazia <<
Post-conflict traumatised monkeys

The world's leading centre in Medical Primatology
is in the Georgian breakaway republic of
Abkhazia. Sadly, this post-Soviet, post-
conflict Research Institute of Experimental
Pathology is now little more than a run-down
zoo, housing 286 inbred, traumatised monkeys.
The institute was started by an eminent Soviet
biologist, Ilya Ivanov. In its heyday it
provided the monkeys that went up into space.

Ivanov pioneered the science of artificial
insemination to create inter-species hybrids,
like the Zeedonk (zebra/donkey). He was
really attempting to create a human-ape hybrid.
In the 1920s Ivanov inseminated two female
chimps with human sperm. It didn't work. He
moved to Guinea to get human females pregnant
by chimp sperm, but was stopped by the French
authorities. He started the Institute in Georgia
to carry on his work but eventually fell out of
favour, and died in a prison camp.

More on the monkeys:

Memphis, Tennessee is USA's most obese city.

>> Tall tiger tales <<
Siegfried and Roy revealed

Siegfried and Roy's secrets finally look set
to be revealed. A new book about the tiger
loving twosome claims:

* Siegfried and Roy enjoyed foursomes with
Liberace and his boy-toy Scott Thorson
* Siegfried was so scared of the animals
he'd never even hold their leashes.
* Their tricks are done with body doubles
and concealed panels.
* Roy died for a while during surgery
after being bitten by Montecore the tiger.
* Shirley MacLaine is one of many of
their friends who believes Roy did
die and that Siegfried parades around a
hired lookalike.
* the animals had to be zapped with electric
prods to perform.

FYI: The Secret Life of Siegfried and Roy: How
the Tiger Kings Tamed Las Vegas:

The only way to throw a huge party via the internet
without the risk of having your house demolished and
your Dad beaten up:

>> Things that make you go hmm <<
Cats, dog pedicures, Gordon Brown

Crude granny abuse, or a practical measure?
You decide:


In case anyone missed Gordon Brown's career-
defining appearance on American Idol:

Think your dog needs a pedicure? Get
it some nail varnish:

Otter v swan

Don't forget tomorrow, Friday, is Eurovision
night! See this year's acts at The Scala,
London. Get your tickets, quick:

Beauty and the Dirt are running special
competition. Popbitch readers can win a
BlackBerry Pearl 8110 and DVDS for 30
Rock, Chromophobia and 10 Items or Less etc:

Blimey, how big are turtle schlongs?

Primordial dwarf of the week. Very sweet:

Mixmag is 25 this month! No need to feel old,
catch the highlights:

>> End Bit <<
Stuff about Popbitch

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Thanks to: AM, SW, WB, LT, AM, mumbles, dollymixture,
J, lang, danceswithmustelids, richjohnston, A, honk
politicschimpette, spank_daley, 7zark7, celtiagirl

Old Jokes Home:
Kerry Katona walks in to a pet shop and says 'do
you sell large white bears?

Before the shopkeeper can answer a man rushes in
and says “Don't serve her, she's escaped
from the Priory'.

What's wrong? says the pet shop owner.
“She has 'buy polar" disorder”.

Still Bored:
Stars of YouTube bloodbath and (at 19:45 mins) a
brilliant explanation about the internet (It's a
full episode so takes a while to load):

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Film Fest

Raindance presents
2008 Film Festival Toolkit

Raindance Film Festival was launched 16 years ago - in 1993.

We thought we'd share some of the things we've learned through trial and error.

Click here to see the 4 reasons to attend film festivals.

Read on for our Film Festival Toolkit:

1. The Script
Before you shoot, have a think about the script. Is there a special angle that you can use that will make your film (short or feature) stand out?

Here's an article that might help: 9 Elements of Great Films

While you are at script stage, why not look at the top 100 films that did NOT get made in 2007: The Black List

Why Raindance?
Raindance is all about films and filmmakers.
We are not a red carpet festival.
We put all of our resources into making this the best festival for you and your film.
Raindance 2008 Submission details click here
(Early Deadline 1st May, final deadline June 6)
2. Publicity and Promotion
Getting the word out is the creative challenge. First, you will need to write a press kit.

Click here for the 7 Essentials For a Press Kit

Part of your job is to write a press release.
Click here for How to Write a Press Release.

Perhaps you want to market your movie on the internet.
Click here for some ideas on How to Market Your Film on the Internet

Why Raindance?

Filmmakers and film lovers attend Raindance making the festival a fantastic place to network. Many filmmakers, writers, directors and producers have met at Raindance over the years and have moved on to collaborate and exchange ideas.

3. Avoid These Pitfalls

After 16 years of running a film festival and noting dozens of cock-ups, I wrote this article: 10 Stupid Mistakes Filmmakers Make

Probably the biggest mistake you can make is to include music that is not cleared. You won't be able to screen your film at festivals, let alone sell it.
Click here for some advice on Music Rights

Want to take a reality check?
Click here for the 10 Dirty Secrets of Independent Film

Are you interested in the Cannes Film Festival?
Take our tour, courtesy of

Why Raindance?
The Festival team and jury are filmmakers; they are sensitive and responsive to the needs of filmmakers.
The festival is determined to get your films in front of the best eyes in the industry.
Here's a look at last year's jury.
Raindance 2008 Submission details click here
(Early Deadline 1st May)
4. What do festivals want?
Click here for the most common FAQ's we get asked at Raindance.

Here is a great interview with our Senior Programmer.

Interested in a career as a filmmaker?
Here's a tongue-in-cheek article full of useful do's-and-don'ts: How To Fake Being An Indie Auteur

Click here for a useful list of Distribution Tools

Why Raindance?

Prestige and education.
Our panel discussions are considered some of the best anywhere. Have a look at last years events here.
Many of our events were filmed.
You can see them here, courtesy of
5. Some more stuff!
Click here to learn How to Profit from Sundance (and other festivals!)

Click here for The World's Top 100 Film Festivals for Shorts

Click here for 10 Sites to Watch Films

Click here for Money-Making Sites for Filmmakers
Why Raindance?
Awards and jury prizes
Raindance has a long list of Awards which look great on any film's CV.
Have a look a the list of awards from last years festival.
Raindance also founded the British Independent Film Awards. Submitting your short or feature to Raindance means your film is automatically included for the BIFAs
Raindance 2008 Submission details click here
(Early Deadline 1st May, final deadline June 1)
I hope you enjoyed this.

I look forward to seeing you and your film at Raindance.

Elliot Grove and the Raindance Team
Raindance Festivals Limited
RaindanceTV Have you heard of
Filmmakers can make money on our brand new channel

Here's what's on
Here's what it is all about
Here's the 'deal'