What Orson Welles Can Teach Us About How to Use Music in Films

We’ve not just got his work to watch and listen to. We’ve also got his notes.

After we’ve watched and enjoyed Orson Welles classic film noir “Touch of Evil” for the 27th time, what do we remember? Is it the amazing long continuous shot that opens the movie? The dramatic final confrontation in the oil fields? How about the incredible varied and creative way he uses music in the film?

On my The Art of Film Funding Podcast, I interviewed award winning composer and Roy W. Dean Grant donor, David Raiklen. We both share a love of movie scores, Orson Welles, and his classic thriller “Touch of Evil”.

I knew the music was integral to the film. It defines characters, sets the atmosphere, and compliments the action. What I didn’t know was how Orson Welles planned out the music and how it was to be used before he shot the film.

David explained he left detailed notes for his composer, Henry Manicini, and his sound mixer. In my latest video, I cover what filmmakers can learn from those important notes on placing music in their films.

Imagine How Music Will Be Used in a Scene Before Its Shot

The opening scene is probably the longest continuous shot that’s been executed on film without CGI. It follows a bomb in the trunk of car as it heads to a border crossing down a city street filled with people.

Instead of using a traditional score, Orson wanted to use source music. He directed the scene knowing this. As we follow the action, the music appears to come naturally from car radios and musicians that are in the shot.

This music, David describes, was specifically created for A “Touch of Evil” and it creates a magical environment.

It’s not like a typical movie score. It sounds natural as it comes from sources in the shot. But, as music changes as the scene progresses, it’s jarring as well and puts us on edge.

Use Music That Fits the Characters

For example, the characters are walking down the street in a town where they have lots Orson Wellesof live bands. The music the characters in the movie are hearing is the same music that the audience is hearing. But, because the camera is moving around to different groups of characters, the music is constantly changing.

The Mexican characters are listening to very festive mariachi music while the detective people are listening more to cool jazz.

This is the sort of thing that their character would listen to but it also tells us emotionally what to feel and gives us insight into the character. It’s source music, it’s character themes, and it’s dramatic underscore telling the story on multiple levels at the same time.

To make it happen was very complicated. Henry Mancini said it was one of the most difficult things he’d ever done. Without the notes and detail Orson Welles provided, it would have never been accomplished or attempted. That music is part of what makes that first scene so involving.

Consider How Sound Will be Mixed

Orson didn’t stop with notes to the composer. He also had a note for the mixer. While most films have a clean, high quality sound, he knew that would not be great if source music was being use.

“The characters are listening to music as they walk down the street,” Orson detailed, “and if the music sounds perfect like it was recorded in a studio, that will destroy the illusion that the characters are walking down the street.”

He suggested they take several loud speakers from your studio and put them out in the alley that’s behind the dubbing stage. Then, record the sound of the microphone traveling down the alley behind the stage on a dolly. This would be like the microphone was the character’s point of view and we’re following them down the street.

When you hear the sound in A Touch of Evil in this first street scene you will truly appreciate all of the great creative genius that went into making it. Getting your sound to enhance and support your story is paramount to a successful film.

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-profit that offers fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.

How to Manifest Miracles (Part 5)

by Carole Dean

Mastering Creative Visualization to Manifest Miracles

Using the work of author Stuart Wilde as a guideline, I’ve created a 5 part series of blogs and videos to show filmmakers how they can have a miracle happen in their life.  I outlined creating a miracle action plan and its components. 

The final video of my video series on How to Manifest Miracles concludes with how to complete your miracle action plan.  Stuart says the final step to master for your plan is visualization. 

Using Visualization

Visualization is the ability to live as if what you asked for actually exists.  You need to live and act as if it is a fact.   Stuart says that the inner mind does not know the difference between fact and fantasy. 

Once you can see yourself walking through a scene, you can feel you are actually a part of it.  

Stuart writes “imagine this: if you can create a powerful and strong image of yourself as a miracle maker, as this wonderful, wonderful human being that has so much to give, so much to offer the world, then that being comes alive.  It is almost as if, by putting that energy into the mind, you shine a light in there that stimulates the mind.”

Others will see this light in you and know that you love and support yourself and this brings miracles.

Creative Visualization

Creative visualization can benefit you when you begin to use it to see yourself living Creative Visualizationyour dream life. 

Whatever your life’s purpose, you want to imagine yourself living that now on a daily basis.  Day dreaming is part of visualization.  Use your driving time or your house cleaning time to see yourself living the life you want.  Live it, feel it, see it, smell it.  Use all your senses and make it real. 

If you are a filmmaker, then see yourself receiving an award for your film.  See you and your crew on a TV interview show discussing how you made the film.  Just create imaginary scenes that could happen.  Give the universe a vision of what you want your life to be.

Goal Setting with Creative Visualization

One powerful use of creative visualization is for goal-setting. Please don’t set goals that are impossible for you because if you can’t conceptualize it or feel that this can happen then you may never reach that goal. 

I think setting small goals first is best.  Then, when you hit that goal  it truly empowers you.  You set another realistic goal and hit that and you are on your way.

I like to see myself at a holiday like Thanksgiving at the table with friends.  I’m sharing what the goal was and how proud I am that this has happened. 

You should “feel” into a goal.  If your body reacts with fear or stress, reduce the goal or give yourself more time until your body relaxes.  The mind and body need to be in alignment to achieve your goals.

This visualization is the last and most important element in creating miracles.   Use this information to create some exciting miracles in your lives and share them with me.   

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-profit that offers fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.

How to Manifest Miracles (Part 4)

by Carole Dean

Using the Power and Energy of the God Inside of Us

Author Stuart Wilde has some incredible lessons about manifesting miracles as a means to your personal and professional success.

In my latest video based on his work, I discuss how Stuart believes that God is not just a figure outside of us.  He is a powerful energy inside us all.   

Learning to Use the God Inside of Us to Create Miracles

Stuart says “As you work to expand power, it is almost impossible to do so if you see God outside of yourself.  If you do see God outside of yourself, then what you are saying is, “I do not control my life. Some entity above me or beyond me is controlling my life.” 

There is an Indian greeting you may have seen where people hold their hands in prayer and say Namaste to each other.  My Indian friend explained that Namaste means, the God inside me salutes the God inside you. 

What you want to do is move to the belief that you are the creator of your own future. You are a God.  That tiny part of you that never dies is a God and knowing that you are powerful is important to manifesting miracles.  Your faith in yourself is paramount to creating miracles.

Allow Yourself to Receive

He says “As you push out as a miracle maker and as you begin to get your action plan God Inside of Usgoing, you have to establish in your feelings the idea that, one, you are worthy and two, you can receive.”

So often in our society, we put an emphasis on giving, that it is more blessed to give than to receive but you have to understand, for every giver, there has to be a receiver.

A filmmaker emailed me recently to take me to lunch.  I immediately started writing saying I would love to go to lunch but I would not let her pay….then I thought, how can I keep asking to receive, if I don’t accept? 

So, for once I said OK and I want you to pay attention to gifts offered and say YES!

Keep Working on Miracle Action Plan

In your miracle action plan, you must be very specific on what you want.  Don’t just say you want lots of money soon, but outline exactly what you want.  Have specific dates in mind for achieving it.

Remember to use the affirmations like, I am a power, positive individual.  All events in this day are for my highest good.  You are saying that the power lies with you and not with someone else.

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-profit that offers fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.

How to Manifest Miracles (Part 3): Understanding Time and Personal Power

by Carole Dean

Understanding Time and Personal Power

I see miracles happen every day to our fiscally sponsored indie filmmakers at From the Heart Productions.   Getting a large donation from an unexpected source, getting a contract from film distributor they thought they’d never get, winning a well-deserved, but surprising grant.

I want you to know how to manifest miracles and “make a miracle happen in your life.”  But, miracles aren’t random occurrences.  First, you need a miracle action plan

You also need an understanding of time and how to use your personal power. I cover these in my latest in a series of videos on How to Manifest Miracles.    It’s based on the work of the brilliant British author Stuart Wilde

Within Universal Law, There is No Time

Stuart says, within the universal law, there is no time. Things are in a state of gradual evolvement.  A tree has no concept of time because its essence is eternal.  It responds to the warmth of the sun.   It is not in time, but it is in time with the universal law.

This law can deliver instantly.  But, if your energy is not all there, it will seem to you as if it has taken time. Therefore, you need learn patience and keep moving towards your goal; knowing that your thought forms will manifest.

If You are Moving Towards One Particular Miracle and a Different Avenue Opens Up Unexpectedly, Take It. 

Stuart shares a story of a friend whose goal was to be a filmmaker.  After graduating, he could not get into the union and he took a job as a waiter.  He met an older man who regularly ate at the restaurant.  Stuart waited on him for months before he discovered that he was the head of the filmmaker organization in London!

All the time he’d been serving this man, he never gave up his mediating on his goal.  

Understanding Time and Personal Power

This man helped him to fulfill his dream of filmmaking.  His miracle had been delivered.  

When you move into an energy alignment, you can never tell what will happen. Watch for signs. Use your feelings to help you decide. If a direction is right, you will know it automatically.

Understanding Your Personal Power

You want to recognize that you have energy of power around you.  To achieve complete success, you have to work constantly on your mind’s doubt.  Remind yourself that you’re not your mind.  You do not accept energy contrary to your goals.  In this way, you establish a pattern of positive affirmation in your life.

Write down in your own words nine affirmations that express your belief in yourself and your complete fulfillment in this lifetime.  There should be three affirmations for the dawn, three for the day, and three for the night.  

Before reading your miracle list, read your affirmations slowly. Be sure that you feel their power and that they mean something special to you.  Here are a few examples from which you can build:

  • I am a powerful, positive individual and all events in this day are for my highest good.
  • What I am is beautiful and I pull to me this day only beauty and refreshment. This day is a day of balance.
  • What I am is eternal, immortal, universal and infinite. I see only beauty and strength every moment of my life.
  • I see only beauty in all the people who are pulled to me.
  • What I am is infinite. I do not judge the evolution of others.
  • I give thanks for the beauty of this day and may the energy of this night bring rebuilding and review. So be it.

Your affirmations act like small twigs in a fire. As you rise, you begin to build energy in the day. Use your affirmations to keep that energy going.

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-profit that offers fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.

“Stranger at Home” Wins First Roy W. Dean Grant for 2017

Documentary Explores Mental Health Crisis Facing Active Duty Soldiers, Veterans, and Their Families

Oxnard, CA October 21st, 2017 –   The first Roy W. Dean Grant for 2017 for independent filmmakers, awarded by the non-profit From the Heart Productions, goes to the documentary “Stranger at Home”.  Now in its 25th year, the Roy W. Dean Grant is awarded 3 times a year to films that are unique and make a contribution to society.  “Stranger at Home” will receive $3,500 in cash and $30k in film production products and services to help it complete production.

First Roy W. Dean Grant for 2017

“Stranger At Home” filmmakers with their main story subject Navy Commander (retired) and Psychologist, Dr. Mark Russell (c) with war stress injuries cohorts Dr. Charles Figley and Bonnie Zinn.

Directed by Luis Remesar and produced by Luis, Beth Dolan, and Sheila Higgins, “Stranger at Home” documents a Navy psychologist’s personal journey from decorated officer to reluctant whistle blower. His relentless mission is to hold the military accountable for continually disregarding their own solutions to the military mental health epidemic. 

“Stranger at Home” has completed research, development and secondary, photography production.  The filmmaker’s goal is to finish production in time to submit to Sundance Film Festival in September of 2018. 

“From the Heart Productions is committed to supporting films that have life changing stories told by filmmakers with passion.” said Carole Dean, founder and president of From the Heart Productions. “This film follows in that tradition.  We are proud to award it our first Roy W. Dean Grant for 2017 and to help in its completion.”

About the Winner of First Roy W. Dean Grant for 2017

The documentary reveals that active duty military, veterans and their families are facing a mental health crisis of catastrophic proportion.  But, even in this day and age of advanced knowledge and unlimited resources, the mindset of the military is one where mental illness and the admission of psychological trauma are still considered a weakness or a defect of character.

Through the film, we see the staggering consequences of these archaic and damaging beliefs.  This includes 24 suicides to every one battlefield death since 1999, rampant homelessness, substance abuse, incarceration and broken homes. These are all symptoms of untreated war stress Injuries.   The film explores the questions of why are we failing our bravest men and women who suffer needlessly? What is being done and what more can we do about it?  Why have we let this preventable crisis happen?

As winner of the first Roy W. Dean Grant for 2017, filmmakers receive $3,500 cash given by From the Heart Productions.  The winners also receive a hard drive from G-Technology, 40% deduction on color, editing, and sound & all production services from ProMedia, 30% discount in equipment rental from AbelCine Tech, Inc. NYC, Movie Magic Budgeting software as a gift from Entertainment Partners , and much more from many heart-felt donors

About the Filmmakers

Luis Remesar – Director/Producer/Editor

Luis, a native of Havana, Cuba, is a graduate of Columbia University where he studied psychology as well as filmmaking under both Andrew Sarris and Milos Forman. He has been honored by the Los Angeles City Council for his short film OUT OF ORDER and won an ACE Award of Merit for his bilingual,anti-smoking PSA for the American Lung Association. His feature-length documentary REGRESO – about the resiliency and inventiveness of people living through the many challenges in today’s Cuba – has screened at festivals and universities worldwide.

Beth Dolan – Producer/Writer

A graduate of Carnegie-Mellon University School of Drama, Beth has worked on popular situation comedies such as FOLEY SQUARE and VAN DYKE.  She also worked on LOS BELTRAN,  an award-winning Spanish language comedy for Sony/Telemundo. Under her own production banner Coyote Pass Productions, Beth has produced award-winning PSAs and short form documentaries. Her feature-length documentary REGRESO premiered at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival and has screened at other festivals and universities worldwide.

Sheila Higgins – Producer/Editor

Sheila has worked in multiple media genres as a producer, director, editor and videographer.  This includes working on such shows as: TALK SOUP, E! TRUE HOLLYWOOD STORIES, as well as the OSCARS, EMMYS, and the GOLDEN GLOBES.  She’s also worked as an editor for Tribune/KTLA News and Special Projects where she won awards from the Greater Los Angeles Press Club as well as a TELLY. Other documentaries she has worked on inlcude: OUR STORY, KIDS GET CANCER TOO – SEEING IS BELIEVING; THE INSPIRING STORY OF RWANDA – AHE PASSION TO PLAY, ONE PLAYER’S STORY and SINGING FUNNY.

About the Roy W. Dean Grant

The Roy W. Dean Grant has awarded over $2,000,000 in cash and donated film services to films.   The grant has been an important lifeline for filmmakers that need help to complete their film.  Without assistance from the grant, many excellent and important films may never have been made. 

Past winners of the grant that have been completed include the Emmy winning Mia: A Dancer’s Journey, the SXSW Best of Fest Music Film The Winding Stream: An Oral History of the Carter and Cash Family, and the now in release on video and on demand the very relevant The Brainwashing of My Dad.

About From The Heart Productions

From The Heart Productions is a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to helping filmmakers get their projects funded and made.  Besides providing funding through the grant, they offer films fiscal sponsorship which allows donations made to films they sponsor to be tax deductible.  From The Heart has raised over $2.4 million for crowdfunding films as a partner with Indiegogo.  President Carole Dean is the best-selling author of The Art of Film Funding: 2nd Edition, Alternative Financing Concepts

For More Information and interview requests, please contact:

Richard Kaufman

www.fromtheheartproductions.com

 

How to Manifest Miracles (Part 2)

By Carole Dean

How to Get Started on a Miracle Action Plan

Do you have Miracle Action Plan?  Sounds funny, right?  I mean aren’t miracles just supposed to happen out of the blue? 

No, because as I covered in my previous blog on How to Manifest Miracles, you can create and manifest miracles.   You can take control of your thoughts and desires to create funding for your film and success in your life. 

But, to get there, you need a Miracle Action Plan.  In my latest video based on the work of brilliant New Age author Stuart Wilde; I go over the steps you need to create that plan.

Setting the Stage for Your Miracle Action Plan

In daily life, your feelings, thoughts and attitudes are your order form.  Before you decide to change your present conditions, you must be very sure what you want from life.  You need write clearly and state exactly what you want.  

But, before embarking on a miracle action plan, spend some time meditating on the conditions or material objects you want.  The universal law is the shipping clerk waiting for your clear and concise order. The currency with which you are going to pay for it is belief. 

If you can maintain that feeling of power and live as if your wish has already been granted by the universal law, your wish will be delivered, guaranteed, but you cannot be half-hearted.

Creating Your Miracle Action Plan

Stuart says that your mind is your key to attracting miracles.  First, you decide carefully what you want to have or achieve.  Second, you need to be able to visualize it as if it has happened.  Remember the universe is impartial and unemotional, so you need to be exact with your requests.

  • Now, create a list of 2 or 3 things you want to have or achieve.
  • Faithfully, you read your miracle list 3 times a day. Early morning, noon and bedtime.
  • Meditate on the list and see them as if they have happened.
  • Don’t tell people about this. Keep your miracle action plan to yourself.
  • Pretend what you want is now part of your life.
  • Give gratitude daily for everything you have and everything that happens to you.
  • Be open to the instructions from the universal force. Listen to the little voice and you can learn what to do to achieve your miracle.
  • Smile a lot because you know your miracle is due any day.
  • Take actions to make it happen.

Miracles Bring You in Alignment with Goals

Stuart says understanding energy is important.  Energy is power. As you work with theMiracle Action Plan power, it will have a way of showing you the next move at every turn.  Believe in it. Know that this inner force is so powerful that it will pull you into excitement and adventure beyond your dreams. Keep it pure, remain silent and remember to keep your method secret and never doubt.

The more you come in touch with the universal law within you the more you’re in touch with the things around you.  Everything becomes a symbol and strength to you. The world helps you and the fuller you become, the more dimensions you can pull from. This is where small miracles happen to bring you in alignment with your goals.

Mr. Wilde has seen astonishing things.   He believes as you work towards your miracle, watch for every sign, for every change around you and you will see the universal law communicating with you.

The more you trust it, the more the energy is encouraged to reveal itself and various unusual things begin to occur, your energy quickens and opportunities pop up like corks on a lake.

Then you will know that the power is truly with you.  

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-profit that offers fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.

How to Manifest Miracles

By Carole Dean

Lessons for Filmmakers on How to Manifest Miracles In Their Lives and Work

For those of you who ready my blogs and watch my videos, you know I am a firm believer in miracles.  I see them happen every day to independent filmmakers for which From the Heart Productions is their fiscal sponsor.  I want you to know how to manifest miracles in your life.

This is why I want to introduce you to the brilliant British author Stuart Wilde.   He is the author of over 20 books and best known for his works on New Age, self-empowerment, and spirituality.

In my first in a series of videos, I cover how you can begin to understand, create, and let miracles happen for you and your films.

Understanding Miracles

Stuart believes that to understand and manifest miracles we have to look at two aspects of the universal law.  First, there lies deep within all mankind an immense power.   Secondly, the power is impartial and unemotional.  

Call it the universal mind or what you will, it is this power that allows man the recognition of the universal life force that we call “God.” The life force is eternal; it is a part of all things.  Moreover, it is a major part of each of us.  Consequently, we all have within us an unlimited power.

You also need to look at the beliefs you express as thoughts and feelings.   We create our reality by our beliefs and thoughts. 

This reminds me of Henry Ford, who said: Whether you think you can or whether you think you can’t, you are right!  Ford knew that our mind controls our destiny.

Creating Miracles

Creating miracles in our lives becomes a matter of identifying with the power, How to Manifest Miraclesunderstanding its characteristics and learning to use it effectively.  

Stuart says you need to say to yourself: I’m eternal, immortal, universal and infinite and what I am is beautiful.” to lock into the power source.  

The universal law is impartial and unemotional.  It has no way of knowing what you want. It’s pure energy.

It accepts whatever thoughts, feelings and actions you project and reflects them back to you unemotionally in the form of events that you experience day-to-day, in much the same way as, he explains, electricity illuminates both a brothel and the vicar’s tea party.  It will give you anything you believe in, no more and no less.

Letting Miracles Into Your Life

To move into your true power, you need to honor your talents and never put yourself down.  Next, move yourself out of the controlling mind set of the collective unconscious into discipline and power.  In this place, you can believe anything is possible. 

Remember when they said no one could break the 4 minute mile?  Well as soon as that happened, many more people ran broke that barrier.  It was the collective unconscious that said you can’t do it.  Move out of that field into the infinite knowing that you are a powerful being and connected to the God force.

Your ability to manifest miracles is predicated entirely on how easily and quickly you can give the collective unconscious the slip. It is your attachment to the collective unconscious or world belief patterns that holds you back.

Using these lessons and knowledge, you’re going to achieve your goal no matter what confronts you.  Stuart truly believes your mind can create your future. Next is the Miracle Action Plan and we will cover that in part 2.

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-profit that offers fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.

Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists for Summer 2017 Selected

Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists for Summer 2017 Selected

Winner to Receive $30,000 Grant to Complete Their Project

 

Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists for Summer 2017From The Heart Productions, the non-profit dedicated to helping indie filmmakers get funding, has selected 21 Roy W. Dean Grant finalists for Summer 2017.  Now in its 25th year, the grant seeks films that are unique and make a contribution to society.  The winner will receive $30,000 in a combination of cash and donated services from film industry professionals and companies which support independent filmmakers. 

“It’s so wonderful to see that great indie filmmaking is alive around the world” said Carole Dean, President of From the Heart Productions. “Submissions included entries from a record 22 countries.”

The grant is open to documentaries, features, short films and web series.  Every filmmaker that applies to the grant gets a free consultation on their project. 

That along with the cash and production services awarded has made the Roy W. Dean Grant one of the top grants to apply to for new filmmakers.  Just some of the nations represented in the applications include Sierra Leone, Ireland, Great Britain, Israel, Thailand, Japan, and India. 

About the Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists for Summer 2017

View overview of project summaries and filmmakers with loglines for the 21 Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists for Summer grant.  These films (some of which do not have web or social media sites set up as yet) include:

419: How Nigeria Was Scammed Out Of Its Rightful Identity (Documentary)

American Justice on Trial: People v. Newton (Documentary)

An Act of Terror (Short)

Axe Cop: The Documentary (working title) (Documentary)

Daughters of the Revolution (Documentary)

Finding Kai (Documentary)

Free Spirit (Feature)

In the Executioner’s Shadow (Documentary)

Ken and Alex (Documentary)

MANRY AT SEA ~ In the Wake of a Dream (Documentary)

No Man’s Land (Documentary)

Parallel Chords (Feature)

Pick (Short)

Restoring Balance: Autism Recovery (Documentary)

Salt Water (Feature)

Stone | Fruit (Feature)

The Rukus (Documentary)

Troubled Water (Documentary)

Untitled Witchcraft Project (Short)

Women of the Holocaust (Other)

Ashes To Eden: an Immigrant’s story (Documentary)

From this group of Roy W. Dean Grant Finalists for Summer 2017, a smaller group of 4 to 6 finalists will be selected by our judges. The winner will be chosen from that group and will be announced in late October.

This year’s grant winner will receive $3,500 in cash provided by From the Heart Productions and donations of film services and products from film industry professionals and companies.  Some of which include a 1TB G-Drive from G-Technology,  $1295.00 Scholarship to Writers Boot Camp , 35% discount on lighting from Paskal Lighting,  Discount of rental of screening room from Raliegh Studios, and much more from heartfelt donors those who care about helping independent filmmakers. 

About the Roy W. Dean Grant

Founded in 1992, there are 3 Roy W. Dean Grants awarded each year.   There is a Spring, Summer and Fall Grant.  The Fall Grant is now accepting entries and closes October 14th.  Films submitted to the grant can be short films, documentaries or features from early stages of pre-production to those needing help in post. 

The grant has been integral in helping talented artists with great stories get their films produced.  Recent past winners of the grant include the award winning “Heist: Who Stole the American Dream”, “The Brainwashing of My Dad”, and Emmy winner “Mia: A Dancer’s Journey” which just won an Emmy award.  

About From The Heart Productions

Carole Dean founded the 501(c)3 non-profit when she saw how many filmmakers with important, new, and often controversial stories were having trouble getting financing for their films.    From The Heart offers fiscal sponsorship for films which allows donors to get a tax deduction for their donations.  Their Intentional Filmmaking Classes which teaches filmmakers the tactics on how to get funded is now open for enrollment.  Classes start September 30th

Roy W. Dean Grant Spring 2017 Finalists Named

Roy W. Dean Grant Spring 2017 Finalists21 films that are unique and make a contribution to society were named as Roy W. Dean Grant Spring 2017 finalists.  The grant is offered by From The Heart Productions, the non-profit dedicated to helping filmmakers get funding.  The winner will receive $30,000 in a combination of cash and donated services from film industry professionals and companies which support independent filmmakers. 

“We are very fortunate to have so many filmmakers exploring stories and ideas that look to change how we view our world.” said Carole Dean, President of From the Heart Productions. “These finalists highlight the passion and dedication of the hundreds of applications we received.”

A record number of 345 films were submitted to this year’s Roy W. Dean Grant for Spring from across the US and around the world.  Entries were received from France, Mexico, Australia, Japan, Canada, and the United Kingdom.  The projects included features, short films, documentary, and web series. 

View overview of project summaries and filmmakers for the Roy W. Dean Grant Spring 2017 Finalists which include:

American Justice on Trial: People v. Newton (Documentary)      

Belly of the Beast (Documentary)

Bruce the Challenge (Feature)

Flight of the Dodo (Short)

Grace (Documentary)

Imagemakers (Documentary)

L (Feature)

Louder Than Thunder (Documentary)

Restoring Balance: Autism Recovery (Documentary)

Rising Up to Climate Change: Storytelling with Saris (Documentary)

Stoke (Feature)

Stranger At Home (Documentary)          

Stunt Life (Documentary)

The Creative High (Documentary)

The Last Amendment (Documentary)

The Real Thing (Short)

The Roar of a Lion Cub (Documentary)

What If (Short)

Yellow is Forbidden (Documentary)

Yoshi: Wake Up With Me (Documentary)

Now in its 25th year, the Roy W. Dean Grant seeks films that are unique and make a contribution to society that need help getting started or completed.   Out of this group of 21 Roy W. Dean Grant Spring 2017 finalists, a smaller group of 4 to 6 finalists will be selected by our judges.  From that group will come the winner of the Roy W. Dean Grant.  Winner is expected to be announced in late September.

This year’s grant winner will receive $3,500 in cash provided by From the Heart Productions and donations of film services and products from film industry professionals and companies.  Some of which include a 1TB G-Drive from G-Technology, a 30% discount in equipment rental from AbelCine Tech, Inc. NYC, 40% deduction on color, editing, and production services from ProMedia, and much more from heartfelt donors those who care about helping independent filmmakers. 

About the Roy W. Dean Grant

Founded in 1992, there are 3 Roy W. Dean Grant every year.   There is a Spring, Summer and Fall Grant.  The Fall Grant is now accepting entries and closes September 30th.  Films submitted to the grant can be short films, documentaries or features from early stages of pre-production to those needing help in post. 

The grant is integral in helping talented artists with great stories get their films produced.  Recent past winners of the grant include the award winning “Heist: Who Stole the American Dream”, “The Brainwashing of My Dad”, and Emmy winner “Mia: A Dancer’s Journey” which just won an Emmy award.  

About From The Heart Productions

The 501(c)3 non-profit was founded by Carole Dean when she saw how many filmmakers with important, new, and often controversial stories were having trouble getting financing for their films.    From The Heart offers fiscal sponsorship for films which allows donors to get a tax deduction for their donations.  Their Intentional Filmmaking Classes which teaches filmmakers the tactics on how to get funded is now open for enrollment.  Classes start September 30th

Blink and They are Gone – 3 Key Factors That Will Make or Break Your Presentation

By Carole Dean

3 Key Factors That Will Make or Break Your PresentationGary Hankins is the author of The Power of the Pitch and an expert on creating a persuasive presentation.  He shocked me when I started my interview with him on my The Art of Film Funding podcast The Perfect Pitch, What it is and How to Create it.

Gary takes people who have difficulty speaking in front of audiences and teaches them how to become persuasive presenters.  It’s an important lesson to learn and skill to have.  Especially, when trying to get investors or donors to give money to your documentary, feature, short film or web series.

What shocked me was his explaining that people make decisions about other people within 30 seconds of meeting them.   Also, what you have to say is the least important aspect of gaining their trust and acceptance.

He says people decide in 30 seconds of meeting you if you’re going to be persuasive and if they are going to like you based on three key factors.

Presentation Factor 1 – Your Physical Actions and Appearance

The number one factor is how you physically present yourself.  This includes your facial expressions, your eye contact, your gestures and even how you sit.  

Albert Mehrabian, Professor Emeritus of Psychology, UCLA, says that 55% of total likability is how you physically present yourself.   Do you have eye contact, are you relaxed, or are you stressed or anxious?   In other words, how you look and act accounts for more than anything else in a presentation or a pitch. 

People see this nonverbal communication and are receiving this while you speak.  This is important information to them.  It becomes critical especially when it’s incongruent with what you are saying.  That’s when they will doubt you and make a decision not to trust you even before they really hear your pitch.  

Gary says you need to smile, be friendly, be open and make people feel comfortable around you.  Remember, donors want to know if you trustworthy.  They are instantly making a major decision and asking themselves, “Are you someone that I can know, like, and trust?”

Presentation Factor 2 – How You Sound

How you sound is 38% of the acceptability.   When you speak, are you enthusiastic?  Are you upbeat and positive?  Do you sound confident?   Do you use appropriate inflection, tone, and range?  All of these are important elements that should be considered when making your pitch.

Gary warns to not use fillers like uhh..   And do not pause often.  This can make you seem unsure of yourself.

Personal Tip – In our Intentional Filmmaking Class, producer and co-instructor Tom Malloy always teaches filmmakers to practice the pitch until it is part of their DNA.  You have to know it word by word.  He suggests you get in front of a mirror and watch and listen to yourself as you are pitching.   You want your pitch to be perfect with no pauses, it has to be natural.  You have to believe it to get me to believe it.

Presentation Factor 3 – The Words You Use        

The final 7% is what you say in the meeting.  That’s it.  It sounds amazing that this is so low.  But, remember, we are discussing the decision that people make in 30 seconds on whether they can like and trust you.

People decide on what you say after they decide if they like you or not. This decision of likability comes from the nonverbal components that are happening once they meet you.  When people trust you, then they listen to your pitch and make a decision.   When they don’t trust you, they tune you out in the first 30 seconds.

If donors do trust you, this is when your pitch has to be awesome.   If they trust you and your pitch is good, you get the check. 

Final Thought – People Give Money to People Not to the Film

The main thing about getting a donation is the donor is giving the money to you not to the film.  Your first job is to create a feeling of trust between you and the potential donor.  You must get this right because by the time you get ready to give the world’s greatest pitch if the trust and the likability factor are not there you won’t get the donation.  

Gary says they will turn you off and stop receiving your information early in the meeting if they don’t find that comfort zone.  Malcolm Gladwell in his book Blink advocates your instinct comes to you in the blink of an eye.

Your donors are operating under their instinct immediately upon meeting you.  Your job is to immediately put them at easy, look then in the eye, be confident, happy, proud of who you are and excited about your film.

Carole Dean is president and founder of From the Heart Productions; a 501(c)3 non-profit that offers fiscal sponsorship for independent filmmakers. She hosts the weekly podcastThe Art of Film Fundinginterviewing those involved in all aspects of indie film productionShe is also the author of The Art of Film Funding, 2nd Edition: Alternative Financing Concepts.  See IMDB for producing credits.