Contact: Alia Quart Khan, Film Independent
Tel: 310.432.1287 or aqkhan@filmindependent.org

Gina Pence, Ginsberg/Libby
Tel: 323.645.6800 or gina.pence@ginsberglibby.com



LOS ANGELES, CA (September 17, 2015) — Film Independent, the non-profit arts organization that produces the Film Independent Spirit Awards and LA Film Festival, announced today that the 11th annual Film Independent Forum will feature Blumhouse Productions Founder and CEO Jason Blum, along with Couper Samuelson, Head of Motion Pictures and Terri Taylor, Head of Casting participating in an Executive Conversation on Sunday, October 25.Additional panelists at the Forum include producers Miranda Bailey (The Diary of a Teenage Girl), Nina Yang Bongiovi, (Dope, Fruitvale Station; Partner, Significant Productions), writers Bridget Bedard (Transparent, Mad Men), Wendy Calhoun (Empire),

Josh Braun,Co-President of Submarine Entertainment, Submarine Deluxe and Jessica Lacy, Head of International & Independent Film at ICM Partners, to list a few. The Forum will take place during the weekend of October 23-25 at the Directors Guild of America (DGA) in Los Angeles.

“Our company is committed to giving filmmakers creative freedom to tell their stories so we are excited to be at the Film Independent Forum to share our process with some of the most talented and up and coming writers and directors,” said Blumhouse Productions Founder and CEO Jason Blum.

“I’m thrilled that Film Independent Forum attendees will hear from Jason Blum who with his team is leading the charge in creating smart, director-driven, low-budget films,” said María Raquel Bozzi, Film Independent’s Senior Director of Education. “I’m sure they will offer some great insight into what the possibilities in independent filmmaking are today.”

At the Forum, Film Independent will present the Sloan Producers Grant, which provides a $30,000 production grant to a Film Independent Fellow accepted into the Producing Lab that is developing a narrative film with a scientific, mathematical and/or technological theme. The Producing Lab is one of Film Independent’s highly selective Artist Development programs. In addition, Loyola Marymount University School of Film and Television will host a reception during the Film Independent Forum to celebrate documentary filmmakers.

The 2015 Film Independent Forum is presented by Indiewire. Additional sponsors include Premier Sponsors Directors Guild of America, SAGindie, Indiegogo, Singani 63 and Principal Sponsor Montana Film Office.


Panelists for the 2015 Film Independent Forum include:

Miranda Bailey, producer, The Diary of a Teenage Girl

Hend Baghdady, producer, Lucas Bros Moving Co, Axe Cop

Bridget Bedard, writer, Transparent, Mad Men

Jason Blum, Founder & CEO, Blumhouse Productions

Nina Yang Bongiovi, producer, Dope, Fruitvale Station; Partner, Significant Productions

Josh Braun, Co-President, Submarine Entertainment, Submarine Deluxe

Wendy Calhoun, writer, Empire

Wendy Cohen, Principal & Partner, Picture Motion

Mercedes Yolanda Cooper, Director of Marketing, ARRAY

Alex Fumero, Director of Programming & Development, Fusion

Kirk Hamilton, Indieworks

Marc Hofstatter, Head of Film, Indiegogo

Azazel Jacobs, writer/director, Doll and Em

Simon Kilmurry, Executive Director, IDA

Jessica Lacy, Head, International & Independent Film, ICM Partners

David Magdael, President/CEO, David Magdael & Associates

Paul O’Neill, Business Development, Premiere Digital for Quiver

Erick Opeka, EVP, Digital Networks, Cinedigm

Tommy Pallotta, writer/director, Last Hijack

Nicole Papincak, Indieworks

Couper Samuelson, Head of Motion Pictures, Blumhouse Productions

Terri Taylor, Head of Casting, Blumhouse Productions

Michael Tringe, Co-Founder, CreatorUp

Lois Vossen, Independent Lens Executive Producer ITVS

Femke Wolting, writer/director/producer, Last Hijack

with additional panelists to be announced


Topics for this year’s panels are:

Viable Films: Your Budget Vs. The Market

Market Report: Documentaries

Five F#@*Ups And How To Fix Them

Doc Case Studies: Measuring Impact

Gatekeepers And Enablers: Documentary Funders

Television: The Writers Room

Your Film + Your Audience: Marketing & Distribution Clinic

Interactive Documentaries

Conquering The Web: One Episode At A Time

Social Media Tools: The Nitty Gritty Details

Breaking The Gates: Artists In Control

New Media: POV And Film Independent Story Hackathon


Early registration conference passes are $215 for Film Independent Members and $285 for non-Members who register through Friday, September 18.  After September 18, conference passes are $275 for Film Independent Members and $325 for non-Members. For more information about this year’s Film Independent Forum or to purchase a pass, visit FilmIndependent.org/Forum or call 310.432.1213.


About Film Independent Forum

Now in its 11th year, the Film Independent Forum is the pre-eminent conference for independent filmmakers and content creators in Los Angeles. Off-the-record conversations with working filmmakers make this the must-attend fall event for filmmakers and industry professionals. If you are anywhere near production or close to entering the festival circuit, join your peers for a weekend of solution-driven strategies, success stories, and opportunities to connect one-on-one with working artists and industry pros.

The 2015 Film Independent Forum takes place October 23-25 at the Directors Guild of America (DGA) in Los Angeles, CA. For a full schedule of events, speakers and to register, visit FilmIndependent.org/Forum.


About Film Independent

Film Independent is a non-profit arts organization that champions independent film and supports a community of artists who embody diversity, innovation, and uniqueness of vision. Film Independent helps filmmakers make their movies, builds an audience for their projects, and works to diversify the film industry. Film Independent’s Board of Directors, filmmakers, staff, and constituents, is comprised of an inclusive community of individuals across ability, age, ethnicity, gender, race, and sexual orientation. Anyone passionate about film can become a member, whether you are a filmmaker, industry professional, or a film lover.

Film Independent produces the Spirit Awards, the annual celebration honoring artist-driven films and recognizing the finest achievements of American independent filmmakers. Film Independent also produces the Los Angeles Film Festival, showcasing the best of American and international cinema and the Film Independent at LACMA Film Series, a year-round, weekly program that offers unique cinematic experiences for the Los Angeles creative community and the general public.

With over 250 annual screenings and events, Film Independent provides access to a network of like-minded artists who are driving creativity in the film industry. Film Independent’s Artist Development program offers free Labs for selected writers, directors, producers and documentary filmmakers and presents year-round networking opportunities. Project Involve is Film Independent’s signature program dedicated to fostering the careers of talented filmmakers from communities traditionally underrepresented in the film industry. For more information or to become a member, visit www.FilmIndependent.org.