Categorized | Education, Featured

The A to Z of documentary and non-fiction video production (March 27)

Still from the Keith Nealy documentary, “Khmer-girl,” made in Cambodia in 1979 about the Pol Pot holocaust and the people’s struggle for survival. (Photo courtesy Keith Nealy Productions)


On Saturday, March 27, acclaimed filmmaker Edgy Lee will lead an impressive line-up of Oahu and Big Island documentary producers for an all day workshop, “The A to Z of Documentary and Non-Fiction Video Production.”

The program is at the University of the Nations in Kailua-Kona, with registration beginning at 8:30 am. The aim of the seminar is to cover many of the important aspects making documentaries: development, fund raising, production, editing, marketing and distribution.

Edgy Lee

Edgy Lee is one of the state’s most accomplished filmmakers with experience as a writer, producer, and director who has accumulated a long list of credits throughout her award-winning career.

She will kick off the day with an overview of how to produce programs for the national Public Broadcasting System, PBS. Her presentation will focus on development, working with fundraisers, and storytelling. She will also discuss her pioneering enterprise, the Pacific Network, an internet television network with nine channels of programming.

The challenges and protocols of “Physical Production” will be covered by Keith Nealy, of Keith Nealy Productions, and Willy Navarro, head of the School of Digital Filmmaking at the University of the Nations. Both of these accomplished filmmakers are based on The Big Island.

Since moving to The Big Island 14 years ago, Keith has focused on producing films that take their inspiration from Hawaii’s rich cultural and historical landscape. He is currently working on a documentary, “Kindy Sproat: A Gift from the Heart,” about one the island’s most beloved musicians and storytellers.

Keith also has the island’s only RED Digital Cinema camera which he is using to record Hawaii Island landscape footage for another documentary he is working on.

Willy Navarro is a producer, director, and writer who has shot news stories and documentaries in more than 30 countries. He has covered such diverse topics as street kids in Brazil and hurricane relief in Honduras.

Award-winning filmmaker Marlene Booth from Oahu will cover aspects of “Editing and Post-production.” She will focus on rights management, clearances, and intellectual property rights issues. Her latest documentary, “Pidgin: Voice of Hawaii,” won the audience award in documentary filmmaking at the recent Hawaii International Film Festival and it has aired on the local PBS channel. Her work has earned her a CINE Golden Eagle, an Emmy nomination, and a Bronze Apple award from the National Educational Film and Video Festival.

Gerard Elmore

Oahu filmmakers Gerard Elmore and Mericia Palma will end the day with an overview of the “Marketing and Distribution” of documentaries, with a special emphasis on non-traditional methods of marketing and distribution. Gerard is the current host of “Hawaii Reel Stories” on cable channel OC 16 and his latest project, an independent feature film, “All for Melissa,” has received national distribution.

Mericia Palma is the founder of a content creation and marketing company, Left of Center, that helps media artists create, produce, and market their work. She co-produced “All for Melissa,” and led the national distribution effort.

A panel discussion with all of the workshop speakers will conclude the day. This “not to be missed” seminar is targeted at media professionals looking to gain greater insight and practical knowledge about producing documentaries at a high level, and to network with others on collaborative projects. Students serious about digital media and production should also attend to upgrade their skills and meet working professionals.

Registration fees: $35 for professionals, $20 for students, light breakfast and lunch included. Advanced registration by March 23 is strongly advised. Don’t delay since space is limited.

The Big Island Film Office, with assistance from video production companies Visionary Video and VIP Concepts, is sponsoring this program.

For more information or to sign-up for the workshop, call 327-3663.

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