MPI’s Directing Workshop Gives Filmmakers Invaluable Experience

July 7, 2020

Nine filmmakers recently completed MPI’s 2020 Directing Workshop. Participants were hand-selected from our April Screenwriting Workshops, where filmmakers worked to develop and craft compelling, pro-freedom scripts on the theme “standing up for what you believe in even when it’s unpopular.” 

Led by MPI filmmaker and award-winning writer/director Toby Fell-Holden, participants learned how to effectively manage a crew, communicate with a cast, and how to prepare for pre-production, production, and post-production. At the end of the workshop, each director’s final product received critical feedback from Toby and MPI Senior Vice President Lana Link.

The workshop also included top industry professionals who led filmmakers in immersive seminars on topics integral to a director’s success. Founder and CEO of Tandem Pictures Julie Christeas explored production considerations from a producer’s viewpoint, including avoiding common mistakes in pre-production. Inga Diev, general manager with the Academy Award-winning film sales and distribution company Ouat Media, took participants through the process of distributing their films—from what a sales agent does and looks for in a project, to the international sales landscape, festival strategy, and how to maximize the impact of an online release. And participants ran mock casting sessions and worked with actors to rehearse scenes from their scripts under the guidance of Adrienne Weiss, who works regularly as a script consultant and directing actors coach for feature films, television, and commercials.

“This is an experience I will return to again and again throughout my filmmaking career, revisiting notes, books, and concepts that I learned to enhance whichever project I may be working on at any given time,” said MPI filmmaker Gianpaolo Pietri. “Just as important, I have made some incredible connections with industry players that will serve as incredible resources going forward.”

MPI filmmaker Claudia Murray (Gringa) added: “This workshop felt like film school in a month. We had prestigious directors giving us direct, almost one-on-one attention and were able to think deeply about our scripts in a way we’d never have the ability to do without MPI’s support.”

MPI will acquire the very best scripts from the workshop to produce as MPI Original films. 

Click here to learn more about MPI’s Rising Filmmaker Program.

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