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April 2014

Just returned from the National Film Festival for Talented Youth – the largest youth film festival in the world! Hailed as the Sundance of student filmmakers, and tucked away in Seattle, I was amazed at the devoted following and youthful energy of the festival, and especially by how many countries were personally represented. Additionally, we were treated to a fantastic animation panel, featuring producers and animators from Frozen, Ice Age, Frankenweenie and more!

It was a privilege playing alongside great films from some pretty promising filmmakers, and I’m glad I got to experience what I think will continue to serve as a premiere resource for up-and-coming filmmakers. And I’m even more honored to announce having been selected to NFFTY’s Advisory Board, which will help shape the festival and subsequently, the next generation of filmmakers!


Just got back from wine country, where Fortissimo had its second festival experience. Still processing (fermenting? distilling?) everything that happened, but what an unbelievable time. From the moment I arrived, I could sense the relaxed, discerning and cinema-loving atmosphere that only Sonoma could generate.

We were honored to open the children’s program, one day, and play before animated feature Rio 2 another day. This was particularly special, because though our film is live-action, we drew a lot of inspiration from animation, especially things of the Pixar mold… and Sonoma is none other than Pixar’s backyard! Additionally, both screenings were sold out at the largest, most classic venue Sonoma had to offer, The Sebastiani Theatre:

I also met some amazing people – filmmakers, staff and patrons alike. What made this special, in addition to meeting a crew of filmmakers I’ll likely be friends with for life, was Fortissimo producers Claire Brooks and Robin D’Oench, and art director Deirdre Jernigan made the trek from LA to join us.

I’d also be remiss not to thank Alfredo Gomez, Keith Casale, Steve Shor, Kevin McNeely and the entire SIFF team for making the whole festival happen, inviting us, and showing us an amazing time. This is going to be a tough experience to beat!

Oh yeah wine was good too.

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