Ottawa Digi60 – September 22 to 24, 2011

For those who are into film-making or supporter of the arts in the Ottawa community.
Why not check out this event happening on September 22 -24. *Digi60 people didn’t state where the location will be*.
But here is their press release.

The Digi60 Filmmaker’s Festival is proud to announce that the Catches for this year’s Festival will be released on September 22nd and 24th. Filmmakers will be given the Catch – the one element that they will be required to include in their short films for 2011. They will then have 60 days to write, shoot and edit their film.
The Festival will have two categories this year – a Documentary Stream and a Scripted Stream. Each will have their own separate but related Catch (the Documentary Catch will be released on September 22nd on the Digi60 web-site and the Scripted Catch will be released September 24th at our “Catch Event”), and each will have their own dedicated Gala Screening night on December 2nd and 3rd. Nine of the submitted films from each category will be chosen by a judging panel of industry experts to be included in these screenings. The screenings will take place in the west end of the City this year, at Centrepointe Theatre.
Digi60 is coming off a successful 2010 Festival, with seven of its shorts selected to play at this year’s Ottawa International Film Festival, and two chosen to air on the CBC over the summer.  “We had an amazing year last year”, says Festival President Kevin Burton. “We sold out our screening at the Shenkman Theatre, and the quality of the films pretty much blew us away. We’re expanding into documentary this year, and we want to make this more than just a screening event … we want Digi60 to be a festival that both celebrates and incubates the talent of our filmmakers and all members of the filmmaking community”.
The Scripted Stream of the festival will have a new wrinkle this year which will bring the area’s screenwriters into the mix. There are two invited filmmakers, who are GUARANTEED their film will screen at the Gala night. The twist ? They must use a script written by a screenwriter from The Writer’s Room, an Ottawa based screenwriting group. 48 hours in advance of releasing the Catch to the filmmakers and the world, 8 screenwriters will get the Catch in advance ( they will be sworn to secrecy – what they will swear to is still to be determined ! ). They will have 48 hours to come up with an idea and prepare a pitch.
The Catch will be released to the public at an event on Saturday September 24th at 6:00pm at a location to be determined. The two invited filmmakers will be there. They will receive the Catch, then one by one, they will be “Pitched” an idea by each of the screenwriters. At the end of the pitches, the two filmmakers confer and let each other know which pitch they want. If they are different, great. If not, they flip a coin to determine who gets to use the idea, and the other filmmaker chooses from the remaining ideas.
All other filmmakers are invited to be there to watch the pitches, and are invited afterwards to try to “woo” the other 6 writers to let them use their ideas … but the other filmmakers are also free to write their own scripts. We will video the pitches, and on the night of the Gala, play back the video of the pitch after the film to see how closely the final product was to the original idea.
“One of our goals this year was to bring together the different groups that work in some aspect of the business.”, says Festival founder Andrew Smith. “For example, The Ottawa Gatineau Branch of the Documentary Organization of Canada will be instrumental in helping us with the new documentary stream. We’re also planning on running a weekend of workshops during the Festival’s screening weekend. When it came to developing the classes, we realized that we didn’t need to reinvent the wheel … the classes exist throughout the region in different organizations. We just needed to invite them to join us under one roof”.
The Algonquin College Television Broadcasting Program has stepped up, offering instructional space throughout the weekend. Organizations like SAW Video, A.C.T Ottawa, The Writer’s Room and the Ottawa Gatineau Film Office will be among the workshop presenters.
“Our Filmmakers will have the opportunity to attend these workshops, but if there is room, we hope to open them up to anyone interested”, says Kevin Burton. “There will be some costs to take these classes, but we have been fortunate to receive some funding from the City of Ottawa, as well as local production companies like Mountain Road Productions, inMotion, and All For Nothing Productions. We are also nearly half way to our funding goal in our crowd sourcing campaign, and this will help to keep the costs to our participants to a minimum. “
The Catch Event on September 24th is free admission and open to any interested Filmmaker. Details of the event will be posted on the Digi60 website at:

This year:

  • the Documentary Stream Catch will be released on Thursday September 22nd
  • the Scripted Stream Catch will be released on Saturday September 24th
  • the Deadline to submit films for the Documentary Stream will be November 21st
  • the Deadline to submit films for the Scripted Stream will be November 23rd
  • the Gala Screenings will both be held at Centrepointe Studio Theatre
  • the Documentary Screening will be held on December 2nd
  • the Scripted Screening will be held on December 3rd

Here is a sample
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About Ming Wu

Ming Wu - Photographer and blogger from Ottawa, Canada

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