cynthia silver

IndieWorks - July Recap

Tuesday evening was our second screening in our 7th year of IndieWorks and, coming off the heels of a decision to test venues for the new annual season, it was our first time trying out Nuyorican Poets Cafe. The space is great with a beautiful screen and solid sound system. We had the whole venue to ourselves and it created a wonderfully immersive environment. The team and mission behind the space are also topnotch. The drawbacks, though, are that we had to enforce a stricter drink minimum than we typically like to and, more importantly, had a hard out of 9:30, which meant capping our lineup at 4 films again and really watching the clock during our usually casual & curious Q&A. But as a whole, the night was a real success. We had a solid 40 people in house for our fantastic films of the evening, and the Q&A was as thorough & thought-provoking as we love for it to be. The first half of the lineup featured complex & impactful pieces about moments & encounters that shape us, and the second half was weird, whimsical and equally wonderful! We'd like to say thank you to filmmakers and the audience for coming out to spend the evening with us. We hope all enjoyed the films, as well as the opportunity to network with other filmmakers and film enthusiasts. We know some connections were made!

We hope to see YOU at our August screening on the 20th, this time at Sanger Hall in Sunnyside, for a moving mix of narrative and documentary shorts about identity and overcoming loss.

See photos from the evening:

The Films of the night:

Chemistry (Directed by Cynthia Silver, Written by Charlotte Martin)
As the audition tape continues to roll, a casting director and producer are caught candidly discussing the repercussions of casting a mixed-race actress.

Eudaemonia (Written & Directed by Julia Ngeow)
A talkative Australian traveller and a reclusive artist form an unlikely bond after an accidental 'break and enter' in Brooklyn.

The Only Thing I Love More Than You Is Ranch Dressing (Written & Directed by Sydney Clara Brafman)
Ranch. Dipped. Chicken. Fingers. 

Loveseat (Written & Directed by Grace Kim)
A lonely, middle-aged man sets out in search of his soulmate after what he believes to be a fateful encounter with a banana. 

Watch our Q&A Recap. *Please know there are some film spoilers - feel free to look for an opportunity to catch the films at a festival or computer screen near you & then come back to watch!

The awards go to...

At the end of the evening, we announced our winning filmmakers for both Audience Choice Award & Silver Whiskers Award. The Audience Choice Award is voted upon by all those in attendance, and the Silver Whiskers Award is judged by the CongestedCat Team based on a rating system of 8 categories:   StoryDialogue/WritingDirectionActingCinematographySoundEditing, and Production Value, along with a nuanced discussion focused on inclusion and originality. The Silver Whiskers winner goes on to screen again at our end of year Best of Fest screening next April. 

The Silver Whiskers winner also receives $50 towards a crowdfunding campaign on SeedandSpark.com should they use the platform and 50% off 4MileCircus' post-production audio cleaning service for a future project. 

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For the July 2019 lineup, our winning films were:
    Audience Choice Award:  "Loveseat"
    Silver Whiskers Award:  "Eudeamonia" 

Join us for our August edition on the 20th!

IndieWorks: Best of Fest Year 6 Recap

INDIEWORKS: BEST OF FEST

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Last Tuesday was a special night at IndieWorks! We celebrated the conclusion of our 6th year! Between watching the 9 fantastic films, mingling with the talented filmmakers, and engaging with the wonderful audience, we had a ton of fun! In total, we had over 70 people in attendance and it was clear the crowd enjoyed the lineup. We hope new connections were made! There was, unfortunately, some bar noise towards the end of the night, but thankfully it didn’t disrupt the films as a whole. Please know that we’re addressing this behind the scenes and will be making an announcement regarding our venue very soon!

THANK YOU. 

To all of the incredible people involved in this community who submit their work, attend our monthly series, follow our content, and spread the word of anything IndieWorks... we truly thank you. It's been another great year of innovative, local films and filmmakers.

Six years ago, Christina decided she wanted to create a monthly film series for local independent filmmakers to showcase and discuss their work with an audience and connect with their (our) peers in a friendly, supportive, engaging and still encouragingly competitive environment. Sure enough, we made it happen and it has grown into something so wonderful, more so than we could have imagined over the past six years. It's been a real passion project from our team, and we hope it has stayed true to the ideals of helping independent filmmakers find an audience and build a network & community of likeminded, productive & talented individuals. Thank you all for being part of it! We're honored to screen & support your work! 

The full lineup & nominations can be found in our previous post.  

THE AWARDS GO TO...

AUDIENCE CHOICE: "Adult" (Tatienne Hendricks-Tellefsen & Cynthia Silver) - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign, a free one-year subscription to Seed&Spark’s streaming platform, and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST EDITING: "Goodbye Old Friend" (Rafael De Leon Jr) - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign, a free one-year subscription to Seed&Spark’s streaming platform, and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST ENSEMBLE: "Her Being Home" (Ellie Gravitte) - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign, a free one-year subscription to Seed&Spark’s streaming platform, and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST WRITER/DIRECTOR: "AMYDEE" (Amy DePaola - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign, a free one-year subscription to Seed&Spark’s streaming platform, and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY (Adam Volerich) & GOLDEN WHISKERS (BEST OF FEST): "We Were Kids" (Adam Taylor (Pictured: Marquis Wood)) - Wins (collectively) $250 towards a Seed&Spark campaign, a free one-year subscription to Seed&Spark’s streaming platform, a 1TB G-drive, an hour production, post-production, or marketing phone consultation from 4milecircus., script coverage from the CongestedCat team of two future short screenplays, and a day of social media promotion from the CongestedCat team.

See all the fun we had and testimonials from the filmmakers below! 

THAT'S A WRAP!

Check out the recaps from ALL 10 SCREENINGS of Year 6 of IndieWorks. 

As we take next month as an opportunity to go out and make things, we hope you will too. Our 7th Year of IndieWorks kicks off in June on the 11th, with our Pride-themed screening -- so keep in touch & stay up to date through our social media accounts. We want to see YOU at the next screening!

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Be sure to submit your films on our IndieWork page, and watch episodes of our Insider Series with the monthly Winners from all 6 years to get more insight into their screened films & upcoming work. Also, films that are available for free online from ALL 6 years are watchable on our Past Films page.


IndieWorks - September Recap

Last Tuesday was the September edition of IndieWorks! And it was our annual web series month, where we screen episodes from local series. We screened 5 episodes total and had 35 people in house. Smaller crowd than usual, but considering the pouring rain all day, it was quite an impressive turnout! Web series month always plays a little different because we can’t fully program thematically, the way we would other months. We only showcase web series once per month, so we have to be extra selective based on what we get, while also making it a point to highlight the different styles, genres, and unique stories being told in the local episodic space. So, it ends up being a very eclectic night where the only thing fully tying the lineup together is the fact that the stories are all ongoing rather than standalone. It seems this audience was onboard for the ride and enjoyed the different series highlighted.

We'd just like to say thank you to everyone who came out to support the filmmakers and spend the evening with us & them. We do hope you enjoyed all the webisodes and the opportunity to network with other filmmakers and film enthusiasts. We know some connections were made! AND we hope you'll join us again for our Halloween Special on October 30th! (We’ll be in costume and it’s going to be super spooky & fun!) 

See photos from the evening:

The Series of the night:

Open Mic (Creator, Writer: J. Martin Raider, Director: Larry Alan Rosenzweig)
David hosts an open mic and struggles to survive while raising his son in New York City.

Split (Creator, Writer: Yael Shavitt, Director: Molly McGaughey)
After auditioning for a drama high school, 13-year-old Sammy makes a crucial choice that splits the path of her life in two. Flash forward twelve years: in one world, Sammy’s grown into Sam, a confident up-and-coming actress in a turbulent relationship with her girlfriend. In another world, she’s Samantha, an eager assistant director living a life of routine with her longtime boyfriend.

Hidden Guardians (Creator, Writer, Director: Daniel Armour)
Held hostage by her abusive father Albur, sixteen year old Zadie Emerson desperately fights to get free and start a new life. When she awakens a mysterious power within her, however, she must decided between using it to runaway or exacting her revenge. 

Queer & Down (Creator, Writer, Director: Jamie DiNicola)
Noah and Julia have never felt like they belonged; aside from with each other.

"Queer & Down" is the story of a young queer couple navigating their love for one another, and their sexualities. Noah, a queer transgender man, hopes to find belonging in a world that denounces his unique masculinity. Julia tries to find her place in a world that invalidates feminine queerness. 

Adult (Creator, Writer: Tatienne Hendricks-Tellefsen, Director: Cynthia Silver)
Two unlikely friends with a ten year age gap, Clementine (19) and Allison (29), face problems from the harsh, judgmental world, and find solace in their weird, but loving friendship.

Watch our Q&A Recap. The perk of web series month is that the episodes can be watched online NOW to offer context to the Q&A! Find most on Youtube!

The award goes to...

At the end of the evening, we announced our winning filmmaker of the Audience Choice Award. We've realized from past years that web series episodes always feel a bit confusing alongside all standalone films at Best of Fest, so we decided moving forward that at this specialty month we'll exclude our Silver Whiskers pick and just award one audience-selected winner all the monetary prizes. The winner receives $50 towards a crowdfunding campaign on SeedandSpark.com should they use the platform and and 50% off 4MileCircus' post-production audio cleaning service for a future project. 

For the September 2018 lineup, our winning series was:
    Audience Choice Award:  "Adult"

Join us next month for our Halloween edition on the 30th! 

(The deadline to submit for consideration is September 29th.)

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IndieWorks: Best of Fest Year 5 Recap

INDIEWORKS: BEST OF FEST

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Last Tuesday was a special night at IndieWorks! We celebrated the conclusion of our 5th year! Between watching the 10 fantastic films, mingling with the talented filmmakers, and engaging with the wonderful audience, we had a ton of fun! In total, we had nearly 80 people in attendance and it was clear the crowd enjoyed the lineup and the evening as a whole. We hope new connections were made!

THANK YOU. 

To all of the incredible people involved in this community who submit their work, attend our monthly series, follow our content, and spread the word of anything IndieWorks... we truly thank you. It's been another great year of innovative, local films and filmmakers.

Five years ago, Christina decided she wanted to create a monthly film series for local independent filmmakers to showcase and discuss their work with an audience and connect with their (our) peers in a friendly, supportive, engaging and still encouragingly competitive environment. Sure enough, we made it happen and it has grown into something so wonderful, more so than we could have imagined over the past five years. It's been a real passion project from our team, and we hope it has stayed true to the ideals of helping independent filmmakers find an audience and build a network & community of likeminded, productive & talented individuals. Thank you all for being part of it! We're honored to screen & support your work! 

The full lineup & nominations can be found in our previous post.  

THE AWARDS GO TO...

AUDIENCE CHOICE: "Sibs" (Samantha Slater & Cynthia Silver) - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST EDITING: "Runaway" (Harrison Heller) - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST ENSEMBLE PERFORMANCE: "Chocolates" (Patricia Selznick & Ford) - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST WRITER/DIRECTOR: "Cake" (Anne Hu) - Wins $50 towards a Seed&Spark campaign and script coverage from the CongestedCat team of one future short screenplay.

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY (DJ Carroll) & GOLDEN WHISKERS (BEST OF FEST): "Madness" (TJ Choi) - Wins $250 towards a Seed&Spark campaign, a 1TB G-drive, 50% Off any a la carte Post-Production Service 4milecircus offers, script coverage from the CongestedCat team of two future short screenplays, and a day of social media promotion from the CongestedCat team.

Our team with all the talented filmmakers of the night!

Photos by Chris Carroll. Video coverage by Kimberly Drew Whiten. Big thanks for their time & talent throughout night! See all the fun we had below! 

THAT'S A WRAP!

Check out the recaps from ALL 10 SCREENINGS of Year 5 of IndieWorks. 

As we take next month as an opportunity to go out and make things, we hope you will too. Our 6th Year of IndieWorks kicks off in June on the 5th, with our Pride-themed screening -- so keep in touch & stay up to date through our social media accounts. We want to see YOU at the next screening!

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Be sure to submit your films on our IndieWork page, and watch episodes of our Insider Series with the monthly Winners from all 5 years to get more insight into their screened films & upcoming work. 


IndieWorks: December Recap

Last Tuesday was the December edition of IndieWorks! It was a lovely lineup and a wonderful way to celebrate the end of 2017. With 5 films, we had just over 50 people in attendance, made up of a super engaged audience.  All the films of the evening focused on women and revolved around similar themes, notably family and choice. Thoughtful conversations were had!

We'd just like to say thank you to everyone who came out to support the filmmakers and spend the evening with us & them. We do hope you enjoyed all the films and the opportunity to network with other filmmakers and film enthusiasts. We know some connections were made!

Have a happy new year! And we hope you'll join us again for our January screening on the 16th -  featuring films focusing on sex & love, or the lack thereof!

See photos from the evening:

The Films of the night:

Family Rewritten (Directed by Yasmin Mistry)
Despite battling Cystic Fibrosis, Camilla, age 16, identifies as a typical middle-class American teenager until the thread that holds her family together suddenly snaps. Just months before her 18th birthday Camilla finds herself in foster care, but instead of being ashamed, she makes a conscious decision to not let her situation define her.  

Choices (Written & Directed by Rick Hamilton)
Deborah relies on chance to avoid making any choices in her life, but then faces a decision that can’t be left up to fate.

There For You (Directed by Viktoria King)
Based on a true story, a young woman finds herself torn apart after having to give away her baby to her mother-in-law.

Sundogs (Written & Directed by Elizabeth Chatelain)
A single mother and her 4-year-old daughter struggle to survive a homeless night in the oilfields of North Dakota.

Sibs (Directed by Cyntia Silver, Written by Samantha Slater)
Sophie, a struggling musician in New York, goes home for her father’s funeral and is met with the sudden reality of becoming her 13 year old, now orphaned, half-brother's guardian. A family drama about figuring out how to grow up.

Watch our Q&A Recap (edited by Kimberly Drew Whiten). *Please know there are some film spoilers - feel free to look for an opportunity to catch the films at a festival or computer screen near you & then come back to watch!

The awards go to...

At the end of the evening, we announced our winning filmmakers for both Audience Choice Award & Silver Whiskers Award. The Audience Choice Award is voted upon by all those in attendance, and the Silver Whiskers Award is judged by the CongestedCat Team based on a system rating 8 categories of StoryDialogue/WritingDirectionActingCinematographySoundEditing, and Production Value, along with a nuanced discussion focused on inclusion and originalityThe Silver Whiskers winner goes on to screen again at our end of year Best of Fest screening next April. 

The Silver Whiskers winner also receives $50 towards a crowdfunding campaign on SeedandSpark.com should they use the platform and a free Social Media audit ($200 value) from 4MileCircus

For the December 2017 lineup, our winning films were:
    Audience Choice Award:  "Sibs"
    Silver Whiskers Award:  "Sundogs"

Join us next month for our January edition on the 16th!