Showing posts with the label blog

Get your FREE e-book: The Filmmaker's Toolkit from Development to Distribution

  If you want to skip the short origin story below and just get the toolkit, then click on "Read More" then click -->   HERE . ******* I started the Film Strategy blog in 2013 to merge my interests, experiences, and knowledge as a filmmaker, entertainment lawyer, and movie-lover for the benefit of filmmakers. If you check out the archives ( go to the menu on the left and click archives or labels OR use the search menu on the right and look up terms ), you'll see tons of posts and articles with entertainment legal advice, screenplay tips, production management best-practices, case studies of filmmakers and how they made their films, and cool historical tidbits. I later put together the Filmmaker's Toolkit, a compendium of useful links, articles, and templates for filmmakers that cover every aspect of filmmaking from Development to Distribution. This e-book is FREE and contains tons of useful stuff in the following areas: DEVELOPMENT LEGAL PRE-PRODUCTION PRODUCTON PO

PRODUCTION JOURNAL: A Short Film Director's Journey to Sundance 2015

The 414s |  Michael T. Vollman | 2015 | USA | Format: various/unknown  | 12 min  When I was young I wanted to be a hacker (I also wanted to skateboard). My friends and I toyed around with hacking on our Commodore 64 and our school's old Apple Macintoshes but needless to say we didn't become very good at it. (Or skateboarding). Now comes along the story of some kids who did become very good at hacking. So good that the FBI had to chase them down and Congress had to pass legislation to address hacking. Michael T. Vollman is the director of this short story about these hackers called The 414s: The Original Teen Hackers. I would watch it based on the subject of hacking alone but, as a producer, I'm curious to know about his journey to Sundance. Fortunately for us, he wrote a diary of his trip to Sundance, highlighting his experiences there and sharing what it's like to sell your film. Since I believe that the more we know about how things are done behind the scenes

PRODUCTION TIPS: What is a Loan-Out Company? And Should I Form One?

Although I wrote this originally for El Blog de HOLA with actors in mind, loan-out companies are used by artists and entertainers of all stripes; directors, musicians, writers, producers, fashion designers, etc. Therefore, the following below is beneficial to you too if you have reached a certain level of success in the arts and entertainment industries. +++++++ “I’ve heard that a lot of Hollywood actors have a loan-out company for their acting services. What is a loan-out company and should I form one?” A loan-out company is a business entity formed by entertainers like actors, musicians, directors, producers, etc. (“owner”) to provide their services under the guise of  “employee” to a third party like a studio, production company, television network, record label, etc. Although usually a C corporation (one that is taxed separately from its owners), the loan-out can be an LLC (limited liability company)or an S corporation. It is called a loan-out because the company “le

PRODUCTION TIPS: How to Protect Yourself if You Are a Non-Union Actor

I have recently started a  series  for HOLA (the Hispanic Organization of Latino Actors) on  El Blog de HOLA  based on business and legal questions actors have. “If I choose to work in a nonunion film (one that is not SAG-AFTRA), what key contract terms or clauses should I look out for to protect myself?” Here’s something that any working actor can tell you: there are many more nonunion roles than there are SAG-AFTRA roles. So, actors, in a quest to build their credits, gain experience, make themselves visible and hone their craft will take on a nonunion role if they find it in their interest to do so. Whether they should or not is another story but assuming they do there are some things an actor should look out for to protect themselves from unscrupulous or sleazy producers. • Put it in writing. While it is true that oral agreements are enforceable, if it’s not on paper, your job to prove you were promised something for your work in a production becomes that much harder.


I know it's been a while since I have updated the site but I am still here. I had some personal issues to take care of, primarily, the loss of my mother, earlier this year.  But along with the loss, I am also happy to announce that I am expecting a daughter.  In addition, I am putting the finishing touches on the next step of my evolution as a filmmaker and entertainment lawyer. So stay tuned! Thank you for your support so far. I appreciate the feedback, even when it is not always the kindest. As long as it is useful to filmmakers and helps make the site better, I'll take it. While I plan on resuming the regular posts you are so accustomed to, it will be a little while longer before that happens... in the meantime, don't hesitate to use the production / filmmaker's toolkit for your productions by clicking here .

SCRIPT TO SCREEN: Fast and Furious 6

Fast and Furious 6 | Justin Lin | 2013 | USA | Format: 35mm | 130 min Fast and Furious 6 had a monster weekend in terms of box-office but more importantly fans and critics lauded the film for its high-octane humor and its well-directed  action sequences. Director Justin Lin's efforts paid off in a big way and his storyboard artist, Anthony Liberatore , played a crucial role in helping Lin visualize the crucial action sequences and sight gags.  Recently, Storyboards Inc. interviewed Liberatore on his work with Lin and included storyboards from the infamous tank scene. In the interview, Anthony talks about what it takes to be a storyboard artist, his work methods and process, the importance of developing a shorthand rapport between the storyboard artist and the director. Below are excerpts of the interview discussing the visualization of the movie, some of Lin's storyboards and the related video of the chase sequence to compare and contrast.  I have added