2006 Panels & Workshops

from the April 2006 film festival
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Saturday, April 22, 2006 – 6:45 p.m.

Film is arguably the most influential medium around, with the power to educate, inspire, frighten, and delight. Used skillfully, it can change the way people think, how they feel, and how they choose to spend their lives. We will explore the power of film with four panelists whose films tackle some of today’s most compelling issues, and hear about the challenges they face in bringing those issues to the screen. Often gathered under extreme and dangerous conditions, these are the filmmakers’ stories from the field.

Panelists: Brooke Goldstein, The Making of a Martyr; John Antonelli, Global Focus: The New Environmentalists; Caroline Petit, promotion and distribution manager, United Nations Department of Public Information (UNDPI); Bob Madey, Building Trust: Stories from the Field – India, Kiran Khalid, reporter and producer

Moderator: Erika Jakubassa, filmmaker and educator; MCA-I NY Stories from the Field Festival Committee

Sunday, April 23, 2006 – 3:00 p.m.

As the United Nations concludes its 60th anniversary year, new challenges emerge. What is the purpose of the UN, how can it help countries implement and achieve the Millennium Development Goals, how can it overcome the difficulties that it faces not only within itself, but also from the outside and the countries within which it operates? An in-depth look at the UN and the real stories of the people in the field.

Panelists: Stephen Schlesinger, director, World Policy Institute, The New School; Opia Kumah, chief, Advocacy and Information Management Branch, OCHA, United Nations

Moderator: Linda Lopez, publicist and communications consultant; co-producer, Stories from the Field film festival

Sunday, April 23, 2006 – 7:00 p.m.

Although it has grown in popularity in recent years, the documentary is still the stepchild of film. Feature films get the lion’s share of the attention, distribution deals, A-list actors, and financing. But that seems to be changing. What does it take for a documentary filmmaker to get distributed, to obtain financing or finishing funds? This panel will discuss the necessary steps and what role the right idea, talent, planning, connections, and chutzpah play in the process. An absolute “be there” for documentary filmmakers, directors and producers.

Panelists: Page Ostrow, president, Ostrow and Company; Simon Kilmurry, COO P.O.V., vice president, American Documentary; Heidi Reinberg, producer, Progeny Pictures

Moderator: Corinna Sager, producer; president MCA-I NY; co-producer, Stories from the Field film festival