Monthly Archives: May 2013

StARTfest Film Festival Coming to DeLand June 7

Past Popcorn Gallery panelist and award-winning filmmaker, Kyle Snavely, shines the spotlight on our filmmaking future at this years Student Art Festival. Student Art Festival, Inc. is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization composed of educators, festival coordinators, and film enthusiasts – all of whom are dedicated to seeing STARTFEST becoming a nationally recognized destination for youth education in the film arts. (Look for our coverage in Season 4!)

Kyle has done an amazing job assembling a fantastic board of directors ranging from a former Ops Manager of the Florida Film Festival to a Doctor! The judges are no slouches either. Students will have their work looked over by; ICS featured filmmakers Nicholas Ruff (Dust and Mud), Enrique Zarate (Zellwood) and Ken Lowrie (Situation Normal: A film about SNAFU), as well as a co-producer of The Mentalist, a camera op for CSI: Miami and an Assistant Editor for The Voice! Please support this local, student centric fest and help encourage the creative minds of tomorrow!


Top student films to screen at [STARTFEST] ‘13

Orlando, FL – Where can Florida high school and college students learn from a head camera operator for CSI, an MTV music video producer, or a director with CBS News? Student Art Festival [STARTFEST] bridges the gap between young, aspiring filmmakers, and leading industry professionals. “It’s the first film festival specifically designed for students,” says Kyle Snavely, President of [STARTFEST] and former video production teacher. “From my years teaching at both the high school and college level, I realized there needed to be a place where students can compete against their peers, AND receive valuable, constructive feedback from people who know what it takes to be successful in this industry.

It’s very encouraging to young filmmakers,” explains Amelia Langston, a Senior TV Production student at Oviedo High School. “Not only is it just for students, but we get the opportunity to have our films viewed by professionals. That’s unheard of in most film fests.

Amelia, along with over 100 other high school and college students from across the state, submitted films to be evaluated and scored by current film, video and broadcast professionals. The top 26 films with the highest scores will be shown at the inaugural [STARTFEST] ‘13 at 7 p.m. June 7th at the Athens Theater, 124 N. Florida Ave., DeLand.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors, $10 for students and $8 for groups of eight or more. For more information, go to

Student Art Festival Inc., a Florida nonprofit organization, was founded in January, 2012 to provide high school and college students with education, exhibition and recognition in the arts.


If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview with Kyle Snavely, please call at (321) 285-9237 or e-mail Kyle at


Recon Jet: Does Google Glass Have Competition?

According to this press release they do… but friendly competition. I’ve got to admit – these look pretty cool as well! If I had a similar product, I would do a little piggybacking too. What say you, filmmakers? Would you ever make a film using this kind of technology? Any interest in Recon Jet OR Google Glass? Does the look or durability concern you at all? Battery power? Cloud storage?

Recon Instruments Reveals Recon Jet Heads-up Display Integrated with High-Performance Sunglasses

15 May 2013

Groundbreaking Product Revealed at Google I/O

15th May 2013, San Francisco – Recon Instruments, the award winning technology company behind the world’s first consumer Heads-up Display (HUD) for sports, is proud to be showing an early version of Recon Jet, their hotly anticipated high-performance HUD at Google I/O, Google’s annual developer conference, which starts today.

Recon Jet delivers information instantly, effortlessly and unobtrusively via a microcomputer and high-resolution widescreen display. All this is mounted on a precision-engineered, fashionable pair of sunglasses on par with the best in the world.

Recon has pioneered the miniaturization of affordable wearable technology since launching their first product, for snowsports, three years ago. With Recon Jet, the company is launching a faster, smaller, and more powerful new platform. Recon Jet includes: a dual core processor, dedicated graphics, Wi-Fi, ANT+, Bluetooth, GPS, HD camera, and a comprehensive suite of sensors. This makes Recon Jet a connected, standalone computing solution comparable in capability to a tablet or smartphone.

At Google I/O, Recon is demonstrating the open nature of their platform, showing native apps running on Recon Jet including live activity tracking, video streaming, web and smartphone connectivity and even Facebook integration. Recon’s open SDK empowers developers to create native apps for any activity to run on Recon Jet. The company is already working with some of the top fitness companies and communities to develop on the platform.

Hamid Abdollahi, CTO of Recon Instruments said: “We are excited to be showing Recon Jet at Google I/O. Since we started the company in 2008, we have developed HUDs with a purpose; to relay instant, activity specific, user defined information effortlessly to the user’s eye. This philosophy is inherent in Jet which marries a powerful open platform, a widescreen display and high-performance polarized optics to offer what we believe is a great value proposition.”

For ongoing information on Recon Jet, visit

About Recon Instruments

Recon Instruments is a world leader in Heads-up Display (HUD) technology for sports and activity-specific environments. Founded in 2008, Recon’s award winning multi-patent and patent-pending technology platform integrates a Heads-up Display with a state-of-the-art microcomputer and sensor suite. Recon’s HUDs run an operating system with an open SDK, to empower developers to create apps for an endless variety of sports, social and contextual cases. With worldwide distribution and partnerships with leading technology and optics companies, Recon continues to define and evolve theHUD category. For more information, visit

2014 Bluecat Screenplay Competition

This competition is out of California, but worth the share for all you Screenwriters out there…


The BlueCat Screenplay Competition is excited to announce the opening of the 2014 Competition!

This year, BlueCat will accept short screenplays and establish one of the largest cash prizes in the world for a short screenplay contest, with the winner being awarded $10,000. Three Finalists will be receiving $1500 each.

Overall, the cash prizes will nearly double to over $43,000, with the Grand Prize for the Best Feature Screenplay increasing to $15,000. Four finalists will receive $2500 each.

Each Short Screenplay submission will receive one written analysis, while each Feature Screenplay entry will receive two.

Students will be eligible to submit their short screenplay at a discounted rate of $29 for the duration of the competition.

Entrants will be able to submit a short screenplay with an option not to receive feedback, and all submissions will be eligible for a Resubmission entry if received by the October 15th deadline.

All Short Screenplay submissions received by June 1st will receive their feedback by June 15th. ($40 entry fee)  Entries must be received electronically by midnight PST

All Feature Screenplay submissions received by June 15th will receive their feedback by July 1st. ($55 entry fee)

BlueCat prides itself in its leading reputation as a community for developing screenwriters. We hope these great changes will cement our mission—-to support and develop the undiscovered screenwriter——in all of us, today and days ahead.

Best Feature Screenplay
$15,000 Grand Prize
Four Finalists
$2500 Prize
Best Short Screenplay
$10,000 Grand Prize
Three Finalists
$1500 Prize
The Cordelia Award
Best Feature Screenplay from the UK
$1500 Prize
The Joplin Award
Best Feature Screenplay from outside the USA, Canada or the UK
$1500 Prize
Movie Title Contest:
Three Winners $250 each
All screenplays entered by August 1 are eligible.
Recent achievements by BlueCat Alumni include:
  • Young Il Kim’s script, “Rodham”, a 2012 Blacklist Script, recently attached director Jason Ponsoldt (“The Spectacular Now”). Young recently won the 2013 Alfred P. Sloan Commissioning Grant from Sundance, where he will write a biopic on Stephen Hawking.
  • Elijah Wood produced Ana Lily Amipour’s “A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night”, set for release in late 2013.
  • Aaron Guzikowski’s “Prisoners”, starring Hugh Jackman, Jake Gyllenhaal and Melissa Leo, will be released September 2013.  The Sundance Channel recently bought Aaron’s TV pilot, “The Descendents”, making it their second scripted show after “Rectify.”
  • Ashleigh Powell sold her script, “SomaCell”, to Warner Brothers, with David Goyer attached to produce.
  • “SomaCell”, along with “Rodham”, were two 2012 Blacklist Scripts written by BlueCat Alumni.

For full competition details, please visit the Rules & Guidelines and FAQ.


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Subscribe to Weekly Screenwriting Newsletter here.

Orlando discussion and screening of “Miss Representation” this Wednesday

Taking the place of this month’s WIFT Wednesdays, presented by Women in Film and Television Florida, is a special screening of the documentary film Miss Representation. While not a Florida made film, its message is universal. Writer, Producer and Director Jennifer Siebel Newsom challenges the media’s limited and often disparaging portrayals of women and girls while exposing how mainstream media contribute to the under-representation of women in positions of power and influence in America. Well known women Rachel Maddow, Margaret Cho, Rosario Dawson, Condoleezza Rice, Nancy Pelosi, Katie Couric and legendary activist Gloria Steinem share their stories throughout the film.

The showing will begin at 6:00pm at Urban ReThink, with a discussion afterward (courtesy of  FemCity Orlando and WIFT-FL) will be moderated by friend of the show and Duchess of Orlando, Colleen Burns of Yelp Orlando. Tickets for this screening are $10 for non-members, $5 for members of either WIFT or FemCity and may be purchased here

This screening is sponsored by: Trusted Source Consulting, LLC, Inner Scientist, Balance Orlando, LIVD and Produced, ProductionHUB, IDEAS Orlando/Carolyn Petagno and Thirty-One Gifts.

Enzian FilmSlam this Sunday, May 19

Back from a month off after the Florida Film Festival, FilmSlam is BACK!

Enzian FilmSlam is usually held on the second Sunday of each month at 1pm (February and May are the 3rd Sunday due to holidays observed). A few cool things about FilmSlam; it’s FREE to submit, tickets are only $5 AND you get to check out your work on the big screen! There’s also a Director Q&A after the screening and plenty of networking time afterward at Eden Bar.

Probably the coolest thing is, if your film wins the FilmSlam Audience Vote, it will move on to Enzian’s annual Brouhaha Film & Video Showcase. If it wins at Brouhaha, your film will get a guaranteed slot at next year’s Florida Film Festival! Nothing but WIN for you, our dear filmmakers!

Here are the remaining 2013 dates:

June 9, 2013
July 14, 2013
August 11, 2013
September 15, 2013
October 13, 2013


The Drop Off (2013)
Director: Leora M. Chai, Writer & Producer: Leora M. Chai & Brian K Dery
Running Time: 15 mins
Synopsis: When a mom does the unthinkable to her only child, he is left alone in a park to deal with the difficulties of living with autism while encountering teen bullying.

Tysis (2013)
Director & Writer: Chris Beemer, Producer: Chelsie Holler
Running Time: 10:17
Synopsis: Special Forces Sergeant John Anderton faces an almost supernatural foe from his military past.

Killer 3D (2012)
Director & Writer Steve Vallo, Producer: Steve Vallo, Donald E. Reynolds, Ted Souppa, Christie Vallo
Running Time 8 min.
Synopsis: Killer 3D is an intense trip into the underworld of drug dealers and hitmen.

Your Street – Sherisse Rose (2013)
Director: Manny Cortinas, Writer: Sherisse Rose, Producer: Vincent DeMarco
Running Time: 5:09 min
Synopsis: A song about letting go. Its intention is to share an experience once perceived as painful and heart-breaking, and elevated to gratitude and empowerment.

1910 (2012)
Director, Writer, Producer: Carl Knickerbocker
Running Time: 2:10
Synopsis: The Magmart group in Naples, Italy, invited artists to interpret a randomly assigned year from the 20th century. This is 1910.

Conversations with The Devil (2013)
Director: Ken Barr & Dean R. Baker, Writer: Ken Barr, Producer: Ken Barr Films / Post FX Digital Studios
Running Time: 9:15
Synopsis: In a seedy bar a lone barfly is met by someone claiming to be the devil. Their conversation that day changes the course of both their lives.

[ICS Alumni film!] Star Wars Droids: The Jawa Adventure (2012)
Director & Writer: Brad Murphy, Producer: DAVE School
Running Time: 6:22
Synopsis: C-3PO and R2-D2 embark on a rollicking adventure when Jawas hijack an experimental Mon Calamari starship.

Florida Film and Entertainment Incentive Update

In case you weren’t aware, here is a legislative update from our Metro Orlando Film Commissioner, Sheena Fowler…

Dear Orlando Film Community:

Thank you for your support during the recent Legislative Session. As you know, there was no additional funding added for the Florida Film & Entertainment Industry Financial Incentive program. While this is not what we had hoped for, here is our current reality:

  • We have no incentive money to bring any NEW projects to the area with the exception of Commercials and Music Videos
  • Future seasons of currently “in-production” TV series are pre-certified and will continue to film
  • There is the opportunity for projects in line who have been pre-certified to fall out thus opening some funds to the projects currently in line behind them

Our next steps include working together to educate our legislators on the validity of this industry and to form a more effective plan to better our efforts of receiving new funds to the program next year.

In the meantime, I wanted to let you know that there is still money left in the queue for commercial and music video production. As such, you’ll see our office aggressively going after this opportunity. Additionally we will continue to advocate the Orlando market as an ideal location for productions based on our indigenous incentives, experienced crew, large talent pool, variety of locations and stages, experienced infrastructure including post houses and the sales tax exemption program.

This is a good time to be sure to log into your account with FilmOrlando’s online filmbook to make sure your listing is up-to-date. You can do this 24/7 from this link:

Today (May 14th), I’m leaving for New York City to attend the CLIO Awards, “the world’s most recognized awards competition for creativity.”  This event gathers the best in the commercial industry from across the globe for one night to celebrate commercials. I’ll be meeting with clients who’ve filmed here before and working to interest those who have yet to take advantage of Orlando’s commercial market.

If you have any questions, please contact me at

Thank you,

SHEENA FOWLER | Orlando Film Commissioner
Metro Orlando Film Commission
A Division of the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission
301 E. Pine Street, Suite 900 | Orlando, Florida 32801
407.422.7159 x262 | c 407.923.3454 | f 407.425.6428
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