The TriFilm Society is hosting a social on Tuesday, June 23rd, from 5:30 to 7:30 PM at The Frontier in the Research Triangle Park. Light refreshments will be provided.
The TriFilm Society, in an effort to build a stronger local film community, will be highlighting local filmmakers and their productions. By sharing these projects, we hope to provide inspiration and information to guide your career path—no matter your experience level. If you’re working on a project you wish to share, please contact us or use the comments section below to learn more about having your work featured on the blog.
Below is an interview with filmmaker Danika Adams who is working on a documentary film about Deputy Marshal Bass Reeves, the inspiration for The Lone Ranger. It was recently announced that HBO has put in development an untitled miniseries from Morgan Freeman, Lori McCreary, and James Pickens, Jr., about Reeves. (Read more at deadline.com.) Danika answers our questions about the film, why she’s making it, and what she’s learned about crowdfunding.
What’s your film about?
We’re doing a documentary about a man named Bass Reeves — born a slave in 1838, escaped, and became a Deputy Marshal who would make more than 3,000 arrests without ever being shot or wounded — proclaimed to be the actual base for our legendary Lone Ranger.
What compelled you to tell this story?
To hear that such a man existed, and that he was the inspiration for our esteemed Lone Ranger, yet we’ve never seen a history book mention him, we have to know what’s going on. The leading historian on Bass Reeves, Art T. Burton (author of Black Gun, Silver Star), had quite a journey ahead of him when he first attempted to dig up any records about this man, as during that time period we didn’t “keep records of black people.”
We want to know the truth, how it was discovered, and then spread the word. If everything we’ve heard about this man is true, we should be honoring Bass Reeves as part of our history.
What will audiences gain from seeing this documentary?
We will interview Art about his journey and go visit some of the places and people he mentions in his books. Moreover, his books have inspired other writers and producers and even a statue of Bass Reeves at a museum in Arkansas — so we are visiting those places as well, to hear from others who have been inspired by Bass Reeves, and see what else we can do to assist them in honoring this man.
We will learn and present more of Bass’s history, about his life, morals, and upbringing — and we will show how these facts were actually uncovered. We don’t want to just present people with a fluffy fairy tale, but with as much evidence and as many puzzle pieces as possible so that we can know the real man behind the legend.
Why did you choose to crowdfund the film?
Crowdfunding is able to present a project to many people, with the anticipation of their involvement. This documentary in particular is one which we believe is truly amplified by the involvement of others — because this project is about honoring a man in our history. Many of us grew up on Westerns, and those stories are a part of our lives, and based off real people who shaped history. Since we want to spread the word and be a voice about this man, we will do this at every step and opportunity along the way.
What lessons have you learned about crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding is a bit new to us. So we’ve made notes.
For one thing, don’t go into a project before knowing who you might present it to — having a base idea who might be willing and able to aid the project, and spread the word about it, beforehand is a definite plus.
Another thing is the ability to capture an audience’s attention in three seconds, or with a simple and alluring image — there are many great projects out there, all seeking support.
Also, and greatly, we’ve learned patience. Patience and timing. Certain things must be done at certain times, and sometimes that requires waiting, especially with crowdfunding. It takes a while to hear back from others, or to see things come together — but it’s never good to rush things.
But perhaps the best thing we’ve learned is that if you know even one person, no aspiration is a lost cause. In the grand scheme, there are very few things anyone can do alone, but just by letting a few know our minds, we’ve met many who are capable, helpful, and involved.
What else you would like to share?
We make videos to honor people, aspirations, creativity, nature, the enjoyment of life in general. This project will be our first of many, because it’s what we enjoy. We are genuinely excited to see where this one goes, and how far our voice can reach about one man.
It’s an extra pleasure working out of North Carolina because there is at least one person from every single continent represented in just a single city like Greensboro, so there are many people and cultures and places and dreams to promote and learn about in this one little location.
The Bass Reeves documentary will require a lot more travel from D.C. to Arkansas, Texas, and Illinois. We can’t wait to find out what/who else we discover along the way!
Danika Adams has loved film since she was three years old and saw her first Shirley Temple movie. Life Is Fun! was started by Adams in 2013 to highlight people, places, and professions in and around Greensboro, North Carolina. She has interviewed a craftswoman who upcycles plastic bags, the producer who created the film Bragg n East, and explored downtown Greensboro featuring three of her favorite places. “Bass Reeves: The Real Lone Ranger” is the first official documentary for Adams and Life Is Fun!
Bass Reeves: The Real Lone Ranger is in production. The crowdfunding campaign is live and ends on Monday, June 15th. You may contribute here (http://kck.st/1QPy4bA) and follow Danika and her progress online:
Sound is an incredibly important part of making a professional film or video. It’s one of the things that separates the amateurs from the pros.
To get good sound on your production it’s helpful to understand how to respect it in every stage of filmmaking: pre-production, production, and post. Even if you’re hiring a sound engineer, it’s helpful to understand what’s important to them so that you improve your odds of capturing the best sound.
If you’re interested in learning more about sound design there’s an excellent opportunity in North Carolina this summer. Sound editor Frank Serafine will be teaching a one-day workshop in Charlotte, N.C., from 9:00 AM to 7:30 PM, on Saturday, June 20th.
The workshop includes instruction on:
- Sound recording
- Sound editing
- Sound effects
- Sound mixing
- Sound design
- Sound inspiration
Even if you’re a seasoned pro and you feel like you may know most of these things already, a course like this can bee incredibly helpful.
A course like this can give you a chance to step away from your work. It offers the chance to learn, and potentially solve problems you may have struggled with for a while. It provides networking opportunities with people that may need your services or someone you may recommend if you’re not available for a gig.
Courses like this will help you improve your craft, find new opportunities, and advance your career.
Because you follow the TriFilm Society, you’re eligible to get $10 off the registration fee for this course.
Here’s how to get $10 off:
- Use this link only to register for the course
- When checking out enter this discount code: SATCW10
If you sign up, please let me know in the comments below. I would love to know who’s going to be there!
Please note. This is an affiliate link. When you sign up using this link I will receive a small incentive for sharing the course with you. That goes directly towards creating more opportunities for you through the TriFilm Society. Know that I only share something I truly believe will help you improve your craft and further your career. I have found MZed to produce top-notch quality content and would recommend them to beginngers and pros alike, after going through several of their courses in 2014. If you have specific questions about this I’m happy to answer them.
The 2015 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival starts next week. It will take place in downtown Durham, N.C., starting on Thursday, April 9th and run through Sunday, April 12th.
Passes to the festival are already sold out but you can still buy individual film tickets. There are also excellent opportunities to enjoy the festival for free.
Free Film Screenings
During the festival there will be free screenings of films.
Some screenings are free but require tickets. All free tickets may be reserved online or by calling the Duke University Box Office. Starting at 12:00 PM on April 8th, you can also call the Festival Box Office in the Durham Convention Center. Get all of the information about getting tickets here.
FRIDAY, APRIL 10
- 4:30pm — DINOSAUR 13 (Full Frame Theater, free ticket required)
- 7:00pm — Fresh Docs (Full Frame Theater, free ticket required)
- 8:30pm — LOVE IS ALL (Durham Central Park, Food Truck Roundup starts at 5:30pm)
SATURDAY, APRIL 11
- 6:30pm — LOVE IS ALL (Full Frame Theater, free ticket required)
- 8:30pm — DINOSAUR 13 (Durham Central Park, Food Truck Roundup starts at 5:30pm)
SUNDAY, APRIL 12
- 2:30pm — School of Doc (Durham Arts Council, PSI Theater)
- 8:00pm — SUNSHINE SUPERMAN (Carolina Theatre, Fletcher Hall, ticket free required)
Free Panel Discussions
Panel discussions are a great way to learn more about the film industry. The panel discussions are free, open to the public, and do not require a ticket. Seating is limited, though, so get there early if you want a good seat.
Get all of the details about the panel discussions, called Speakeasy Conversations, at fullframefest.org.
FRIDAY, APRIL 10
- 9:15am — THE MORAL COMPASS (Durham Convention Center, A&E IndieFilms Speakeasy)
- 12:15pm — SENSITIVE STORYTELLING (Durham Convention Center, A&E IndieFilms Speakeasy)
- 3:15pm — DANGEROUS DOCS (Durham Convention Center, A&E IndieFilms Speakeasy)
SATURDAY, APRIL 11
- 9:15am — INDIE CAUCUS (Durham Convention Center, A&E IndieFilms Speakeasy)
- 12:15pm — GIVE IT TO ME STRAIGHT (Durham Convention Center, A&E IndieFilms Speakeasy)
- 3:15pm — THE FESTIVAL CIRCUIT (Durham Convention Center, A&E IndieFilms Speakeasy)
Attending the 2015 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival? Tell us in the comments what you’re excited to see this year!
The TriFilm Society, in collaboration with The Frontier, hosted a networking event for the film community called a social last night.
Nearly 80 people were registered for the free event, which was open to film and video professionals of all experience levels. It was held at The Frontier, a wonderful space in the Research Triangle Park, which is right in the middle of the Triangle.
Many attendees enjoy the chance to step away from work, meet new people, and catch up with old friends. These events offer a chance for everyone to find resources, make connections, and build solid relationships that lead to great work.
TriFilm hosts these socials to help unify the existing, vibrant film community in North Carolina.
There are many active, talented groups of filmmakers in the area but accessing them can be difficult for newcomers or outsiders. By hosting socials in collaboration with local businesses, TriFilm facilitates an open and inviting environment for anyone interested in connecting with the local film community. It also raises awareness about what’s happening here by being more visible and accessible. This, in turn, connects the local and global film communities and helps foster collaborations.
TriFilm was started in 2009 and has always been free and open to the public, however, plans to change this were unveiled at the most recent social. Starting in 2015, TriFilm will open registration for paid membership available to anyone interested in connecting with the local film community. Paid memberships will provide access to the online community, education, and programming.
If you’re interested in membership, upcoming events, or more information about the TriFilm Society please sign up for our email list below. We will be sharing more information very soon!
All photos below are also posted on our Facebook page.
Social media has been an integral part of the TriFilm Society from day one. The idea actually began as a tweet in 2009. Social media has helped us stay connected, meet new people, and connect to the global film community.
This is why we always encourage you to follow us online but, more importantly, tweet with the same hashtag: #TriFilm. Using the hastag and tagging @TriFilmSociety helps us follow your conversations and stay connected. It also helps you broaden your audience and connect with people you may not otherwise meet in person.
Here are a few things people shared about the social last night:
— Michele Hlass (@MicheleHlass) March 26, 2015
— Jessica D. Woodbury (@jsdwoodbury) March 25, 2015
— The Frontier (@RTPFrontier) March 25, 2015
Events like last night’s social are not the work of one person. It is with the help of many passionate people.
We would like to offer special thanks to The Frontier (@RTPFrontier) for supporting the TriFilm Society. We sincerely appreciate the help of Beth Yerxa, Triangle Art Works (@TriArtWorks), for providing tours of The Frontier during the social and so much support for TriFilm from the beginning. We also want to thank Danika Adams (@danikaadams7) for welcoming everyone at the front door.
At the social many people asked about ways to get involved and support the TriFilm Society right now. We are always looking for support and ways to serve the community!
Here are a few ways you can help right now:
- Tell a friend about TriFilm.
If you know someone who wants to connect to the film community for any reason (finding resources, support, jobs, or talented professionals) please tell them to sign up for our free emails. The form is on our front page: trifilmsociety.com.
- Chat with us online.
We’re on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. We love connecting with you, so be sure to start a conversation with us. Ask questions, seek advice, tell us what you need. We’re here to help.
- Volunteer to help at events.
We always need volunteers at events to help with greeting people at the door, answering questions, and making sure everyone knows they’re in the right place. Sometimes we need help setting up before an event or cleaning up afterwards. We’re also looking for talented photographers, videographers, and social media pros to help cover events.
- Connect us to collaborators.
Collaboration is a big part of making films and videos successful. We mirror that ideal by collaborating with local businesses that have a vested interest in supporting this community. We’ve partnered with The Frontier, Trailblazer Studios, Poyner Spruill, SPARKcon, and many others. If you know someone that wants to host or sponsor an event by providing space, food, or beverages please introduce us. (This would help us keep some of the events free and open to the public.)
- Connect us with experts.
We love sharing knowledge with the community. If you know a subject matter expert connected to the film industry, please connect us. We may feature that person in a variety of ways that support our members and the film community.
TELL US WHAT YOU NEED
We are always interested in providing the support you need most, and want you to feel at home in the Triangle film community. If you have suggestions for programming, need support on a project, or want to share an event with this community please use the contact page to connect with TriFilm Society Founder Camden Watts.
Be sure to sign up for our free emails below so that you are the first to hear about our next events, and when we open membership registration in 2015. We have a lot of fun things in store for you!