We just announced the workshops for the 2011 Biola Media Conference!  These breakout sessions are the best opportunity you’ll ever have to hear from Hollywood’s film, television and digital media experts in a very intimate setting where, in most cases, you can ask questions. I am not overstating that point. There is NO other event in the country where you can have this much access to this many professionals who share your faith.  See the schedule online.

Which execs or pros you would most like to meet personally at the BMC conference?

Off-the-Shelf Visual Effects – Scott Smith and Tim Naylor

The gap between the power of the large VFX facilities and the home computer is narrowing. What used to take special lights, cameras, elaborate props and expensive animated effects can now be done on a Macbook with a handful of easily accessible (sometimes free) applications. The history of feature film visual effects is still being written and the future holds even more promise for the budding, budget filmmaker.  (speaker bios) 

Pitching and Selling Your Project – Lisa Blum and Susana Zepeda

In a market that is constricting, it is tougher than ever to sell projects. The face of the buyer has changed, as have their goals. Gone are days of 20 dramatic features in development per studio, gone are the “programmer” comedies. The changing leadership and moving targets of TV networks and studios adds an added layer of difficulty in knowing your buyer and their needs. So how to do you prepare and package a project for sale in this changing climate? Change the rules, change the players, change the game. In this workshop we will explore what it takes to sell these days and how to know your buyer.  (speaker bios) 

Navigating the Film Festival World – Thomas Ethan Harris, Lisa Swain

For most emerging filmmakers, the goal of launching a film on the film festival circuit begins with one singular dream: SUNDANCE! But what lies beyond Sundance for you and your film? In this informative seminar, film consultant Thomas Ethan Harris (former Director Of Programming Los Angeles Film Festival and Palm Springs International Festival Of Short Films) offers filmmakers practical skills to navigating the world of film festivals to maximum effect.  (speaker bios) 

Option Agreements Principles EVERY Writer and Producer Should Know – Travis Mann

Travis will go through the required elements of option agreements, illustrating variations that can benefit either the writer or the producer, but seldom both. Handouts will illustrate boilerplate language, negotiated terms, and problem areas in need of special attention. There will also be an open Q&A for any entertainment law related questions.  (speaker bios) 

Bringing Films of Faith to Screen – Dan Rupple, Bobby Downes, Chris Bueno, Noah Hamilton

Faith based films have made great strides in quality and quantity; attracting a significant and ever increasing Christian audience. But, as the studios’ interest in films of faith grow, can we as filmmakers bring relevant stories to mainstream audiences and continue our appeal to church congregations? Join a stellar panel of leading Christian filmmakers as we explore these questions, as well as discuss the process, challenges and pitfalls of bringing films of faith from concept to screen.  (speaker bios) 

Hollywood Economics 101 How Movies Make Money (or not!…and Other Inconvenient Truths) – Bobette Buster

A fun, fact-filled, foundational and basic overview of the Business of the Business, Providing the context for why the Industry operates as it does, demonstrating how the flow of money flows from Box Office back to the Producer for both studio and independent films. In understanding Target Audience, and today’s trends in marketing and distribution, you can develop better projects that truly connect with your audience.  (speaker bios) 

Film Finance Using Foreign Pre-Sales – Travis Mann

Travis will explain the fundamentals of motion picture finance using the foreign pre-sales model. Real-life examples will be used to illustrate the process of attaching talent to package you project, getting a sales agent and making pre-sales, banking those contracts to obtain a production loan, and obtaining the completion bond required to close that loan. There will also be an open Q&A for any entertainment law related questions.  (speaker bios) 

Plot & Soul – Bill Marsilli

In this seminar, screenwriter Bill Marsilii (“Deja Vu,” “The Wind in the Willows”) shares his insights and experiences as a Christian screenwriter working in Hollywood, and discusses numerous ways that one can best incorporate spiritual themes within the framework of mainstream feature films.  (speaker bios)

Making It Real For The Actor – Adam Collis

This seminar will give actors and directors simple and effective techniques for creating more honest and emotionally engaging performances. By knowing the right questions to ask about a particular scene, the actor and/or director can start to get a handle on what the scene is really about. By finding the right language to describe what the scene is about, the actor and/director can activate real emotions. This will lead to the scene feeling real for the actor, the director, and the audience – the ultimate aim of any performance. Come learn the techniques that will help you make it real.  (speaker bios)

Shrink Your “Buts” – Eliminating Barriers to Effective Church Media  – Bub Kuns and Charlie Matz

Ever wonder what it takes to create and maintain an effective media ministry? Ever hear of the “Four Layer Deep” strategy? Join the Veracity Project partners as they provide resources and tips to help you creatively communicate your message while uncovering the excuses and barriers that need to be eliminated so you can consistently produce biblically sound, highly effective, entertaining videos.  (speaker bios)

Anatomy of a Social Media Campaign – Matt Meeks

The only constant in social media is change… rapid change. With everything moving so fast, how do marketers and content creators stay ahead of the curve? With a focus on applying core, unchanging strategies to the seemly endless array of new tools and tactics, this session will walk through the creation of a social media campaign — collecting data, building strategy and understanding when and how to implement. With an eye on future trends and developments, you are sure to leave excited for things to come with enough comfort to dive headfirst into the digital world.  (speaker bios)  



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The Biola Media Conference has a proud 16-year history of bringing together top industry leaders, men and women of faith and integrity, who offer their expertise from the trenches and forecast their vision for future opportunities in film, television and digital media.  It attracts 700 attendees — making it the largest event in the nation for people of faith working in the entertainment industry. It is known for its intimate and practical conversations with Hollywood leaders, and professional training and instruction from some of the most influential individuals in Film, TV, PR, Media Marketing, Management and Digital Media. Conference topics cover every aspect of media related careers, technologies, and ministries from the creative, to the financial, to the production process.


Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/BiolaMediaConference and on Twitter at @BiolaMediaConf.


Sponsored in part by Biola University’s Cinema and Media Arts Department, the Biola Media Conference has a limited number of sponsorship opportunities available through FrontGate Media.   


For more information or to register online, visit www.BiolaMedia.com. $150 General Admission through April 24th; and $180 at the door.  Lunch and coffee bar provided.  Limited press passes available upon request. Call 562-777-4061 for press pass information.