The 2012 Film Independent Forum (FIND) was held at the DGA's Los Angeles theater complex from October 19-21. Presented by indieWIRE ‑‑ a news, information and networking site for the independent film community ‑‑ the weekend featured off-the-record discussions, practical solutions and extensive case studies, reflecting the reality of the industry today.
In addition to the Guild serving both as venue and a sponsor, several DGA members participated in the events, screenings and panel discussions.
The opening film on Friday night was Silver Linings Playbook, written and directed by 2010 DGA Award nominee David O. Russell (The Fighter). On Saturday, DGA director-member John Singleton (Boyz N the Hood, Shaft, 2 Fast 2 Furious) delivered the keynote address where he urged would be filmmakers to believe in their projects. DGA director-member Amy Berg (West of Memphis) and indie directors Kelly Duane de la Vega (Better This World), Katherine Fairfax Wright (Call Me Kuchu), and Rory Kennedy (Ethel) spoke about the current climate for documentaries and discussed their recent experiences circumventing some of the perils of documentary filmmaking in Reality Bites: The Perils of the Doc, a conversation moderated by director AJ Schnack (Convention).
On Sunday, the panel discussion Distribution: A Fork in the Road? (Off-the-Record) featured DGA director-member Seth Gordon (Horrible Bosses), indie director Greg Whiteley (New York Doll) and producer Neal Dodson (Margin Call) in a candid exploration of the decision making involved in figuring out the right strategy to distribute their films moderated by Crowdstarter co-founder Paola Freccero.
DGA director-members Rodrigo Garcia (Albert Nobbs) and Jake Avnet (Mitch Albom's Have a Little Faith [Second Unit Director]) participated in the discussion Channeling the Web: Online Indie Channels, with AwesomenessTV’s Joe Davola, Machinima Inc. Chairman & CEO Allen DeBevoise and YouTube strategist Courtney Lischke in a discussion about creating original web content for new online channels moderated by ZEFR co-founder Rich Raddon. DGA director-member Jordan Roberts (3,2,1… Frankie Go Boom) discussed the benefits and challenges of releasing a film via the video-on-demand model in Crunching the Numbers: VOD Calculations Revealed with Gravitas Ventures’ Founder & CEO Nolan A. Gallagher, New Video’s VP of Digital Distribution Erick Opeka, and PUMit’s Head of Business Development Olivier Pfeiffer moderated by Variety’s Andrew Stewart.
And DGA director-members Jon Chu (Justin Bieber: Never Say Never), Jay Duplass (Jeff, Who Lives at Home), Lynn Shelton (Your Sister's Sister), and indie director Lorene Scafaria (Seeking a Friend for the End of the World) discussed how they leveraged their passion-driven independent projects into a career directing more studio gigs in the panel How They Got There: Career Advice from Young Indiewood moderated by Indiewire Editor-in-Chief Dana Harris.