Tag Archives: Steppenwolf Theatre

Chicago actress Carolyn Hoerdemann and Joe O. guzzle a bottle of German Pinot Noir and goof on Oscar Wilde’s Lady Bracknell.


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Filed under Chicago Actors, Chicago film, Chicago filmmakers, Chicago International Film Festival, Cinespace, Danny McCarthy, Film, Film Financing, Film Production, filmmakers networking, Illinois Film Office, Independent Film, indie film, mini-series, PMD, Social Media, television, VLOG

Anita Garibaldi – the Early Years

Anita was married off at age fourteen to a drunkard who physically abused her.
When she met Giuseppe Garibaldi she simply left her husband and joined Garibaldi on his ship, the Rio Pardo, and became his common-law wife.It was the first time she was ever at sea and she quickly became an able-bodied seaman and a fierce sword fighter. Legend has it that, at the point of her sword, she forced cowardly shipmates to fight.

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Filed under Crowdfunding, Film, Film Financing, Film Production, Independent Film

Business Babylon

I started in business back in 1973. When you were conducting it, you picked up the phone, made an appointment, met the person (often times over lunch), discussed the proposition and you moved ahead – or you did not. Today requires us to interact through several different forms and at several different levels. That, in and of itself, is a skill that requires patience, coordination, timing, access and understanding of several specific modes of communication.






When you have a large work-group, comprised of people at all different ages, spread across ten time zones,  with varying hardware/software/bandwidth at their disposal. It usually requires someone to step in and ask the question, “are we all speaking the same language here?”




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Filed under Crowdfunding, Film, Film Financing, Film Production, Independent Film, Uncategorized

The Pre-Game Show


In five days, we are launching Phase II of the fundraising for our film – Anita. This initiative is being done through a Crowdsourcing/Crowdfunding campaign. I have hired a group of global professionals. The project itself is being spearheaded by Producer of Marketing & Distribution,  Brian Briskey of PMD Partners out of Austin, Texas. Coordinating with him is Social Strategy consultant,  Naomi Assraf from San Francisco. The Social Media ground troops consist of Mary Losey as Social Media manager, Cristiana Neves-Miller our Portuguese/Spanish Soc. Media expert and, long-time team-member and marketing professional, Jessica Orlandino spearheading the Italian online reach out

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Filed under Crowdfunding, Film, Film Financing, Independent Film

Working with what you’ve got.

A professional colleague of mine, Brian Briskey, put it in perspective; indie filmmakers are subject to the chicken/egg conundrum. To raise money, you need to raise money. Subsequently, you have to take a step back and work with the tools and resources you have…not the ones you want.

indie film producer

indie film producer

Brian is part of an emerging new profession in the industry, the PMD – Producer of Marketing & Distribution. A title I’ve conferred upon myself based on my nearly 40 years in advertising. Yet, the talent one needs to assemble for either the marketing of an indie film or Crowdfunding one becomes almost cost prohibitive.  To launch a campaign without professionals  onboard can be a recipe for disaster. Yet being able to afford those professionals may be out of reach for a film maker who is not a Kristen Bell, Rob Thomas, Zack Braff, Joe Mantegna or now, even Woody Allen. So, moving forward… think, be cautious, weigh your options, use what you have and above all  BE GOOD – to your team, to your vendors, to your film and to yourself. It’s on you.






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Filed under Crowdfunding, Film, Film Financing, Film Production, Independent Film, indie music

Swept Up In The Hype Machine


Hype is the awkward and desperate attempt to convince journalists that what you’ve made is worth the misery of having to review it.  –  Federico Fellini 

P & A. Prints and Advertising. In the digital age the ‘P’ has become less important than the ‘A’. As an advertising professional, I am not immune to the veiled attempts of many film marketers to inject interest in the back story when the story quality of the movie itself is questionable. What relevance does the director/writer/producer’s sexual confusion, suicidal tendencies or high school traumas have to do with the watchability of film they’ve created? Does the director’s near fatal car accident while on the set make the film itself more interesting? The film industry is going through a tumultuous time. Movie attendance is dwindling, DVD’s are going the way of 8-track tapes and promoting 100 million dollar bombs may finally cause us to shrug and pull our collective marketing heads out of the clouds (or another less pleasant area) and re-focus on providing audiences with good movies built around even better stories. Nothing beats word of mouth.

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Filed under Film, Film Financing, Film Production, Independent Film, Uncategorized

A Short Re-Cap

What a year.  I won’t chronicle 2011 like some cheesy “Seasons Greetings from the _______, what we did this year!”  insert in a Christmas Card. Thank God we didn’t get any of those this holiday. Perhaps they are, thankfully, going out of style. Nevertheless, in brief, we have some new additions to our team. The ultra-talented Gary Ramsey is developing our storyboards. Mike Bassett and Gaylin Leth have entered into the picture as potential 1st A.D and Associate Producer respectively. Costante Garibaldi, great-great-great Grandson of Giuseppe and Anita has partnered with us in Rome where he maintains a law practice. And, Jessica “no-relation” Orlandino continues to get  the project media attention throughout Italy. Lucia will be traveling to the eternal city in a few weeks to meet with the folks at Medusa/MediaSet.  After her manager, Marcos Brandao met with my co-producer, Bob Abramoff in LA, we have now secured Leticia (Sabatella) with a firm commitment to the project. Alas, we needed to postpone shooting once again until the fall. But we are going to make that window for sure.

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