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In the Land of Show Biz

If you’ve always wanted to pitch your own reality show, or learn about the documentary film industry, two nice Jewish boys Have. Your. Back.

Industry veterans Richard Propper and Chuck Braverman are the team behind the upcoming WESTDOC conference next week–nestled right between Yom Kippur and Sukkot, Sept. 15 – 18, at the digitally designed auditoriums of the Landmark Theatre in LA.

Propper is a documentary distributor and Braverman is a filmmaker/producer, most recently of the Discovery Channel reality TV show, “Weed Wars”.

The fourth annual WESTDOC brings together preeminent documentary and reality producers, directors, writers, network executives, agents and distributors. More than 150 industry speakers are expected to participate in WESTDOC’s two dozen panels and seminars covering all aspects of both docs and reality, with panels, up-fronts, face-to-face meetings, case studies, cocktails and shmoozing.

Topics include financing, packaging, PR, new digital distribution models, online networks and selling a documentary one-off or reality TV series, with keynote presentations by filmmaker/entrepreneur Ondi Timoner and Blip’s CEO Kelly Day.

Unique to the west coast, the third day of WESTDOC is dedicated to an all-day PitchFest, in which filmmakers pitch new projects directly to agents, network and development executives in front of a live audience for potential acquisition or co-production funding. Inspired by the internationally renowned Hot Docs Forum and IDFA Forum, in-kind contributions and a $10,000 cash prize go to one lucky winner. The first awardee was director Bess Kargman with her ballet documentary, “First Position.” Other past winners include “Indie Game: The Movie,” from James Swirsky and Lisanne Pajot. [If you’re a prospective crowdfunder, be sure to check them out… Swirsky and Pajot raised more than $90K with two Kickstarter campaigns.]

Lisanne Pajot, James Swirsky Bess Kargman, previous winners of WESTDOC's PitchFest.

Lisanne Pajot, James Swirsky and Bess Kargman, previous winners of WESTDOC’s PitchFest.

More than 500 people attended last year. Will you be one of them in 5774?

Photos courtesy of The WESTDOC Conference.

Lisa Klug

Wordie. Foodie. Jewie. Nerdie. Ashkefardic keyboard addict. Visit me at lisaklug.com, on my travels and in the pages of my books, "Hot Mamalah: The Ultimate Guide for Every Woman of the Tribe," and "Cool Jew: The Ultimate Guide for Every Member of the Tribe."

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1 Comment

  1. my web

    5/13/2019 at 1:56 pm

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