Celebs Dish on Sexism in Radio & Horror Film Life

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We had a lively conversation on What Women Want Talk Radio this week week with celebrity guests Melissa Carter and Bill Oberst Jr. ¬†Melissa, a famed Atlanta radio personality, discussed the glass ceiling of the radio world. ¬†Bill, dubbed indie horror’s sexiest man, discussed his vibrant acting career, including his upcoming stage offering, Ray Bradbury’s Pillar of Fire.

Listen in!

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Break the Ice to Break Career Barriers

HELLO MY NAME IS….

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We’ve all had a hard time breaking the ice and the pressure at conferences and networking events to make something happen can make it even more difficult.  How many times have you walked into a room for a professional event and just felt awkward?  We all have.

Is there a better way, or even a strategy to making the most of a networking opportunity?  Powerhouse networkers Judy Goss and Marie Fratoni have years of experience attending and putting on events.  They divulge their best advice on making the most of your next networking event and Judy discusses her upcoming conference, Spirit of Women, in Atlanta, October 7 & 8.

Judy Goss, high fashion model turned lifestyle journalism mogul, wanted to create a lifestyles networking experience.  Her networking group, What Women Want, now has chapters spanning the entire country.

Marie Fratoni, a master networker and founder of Get Clients Everywhere, elucidates the correlations between networking and sales.  She also discusses how important setting intentions are to having success at networking events and conferences.

Listen in to the broadcast for real, actionable tips to making your next networking outing a success!

Penny Wise Pound Foolish

Peruse this article from the Austin Business Journal on the debate on film incentives in the state of Texas.

If you’ve ever done a professional film budget, the often invisible costs of making a movie are massive: ¬†permits, feeding ¬†people, putting cast and crew up in hotels, renting vehicles, supplies, location fees. ¬†A film of any scale involves a massive infrastructure, often localized, to support it. ¬†The last budget I prepped, I had to price out renting a local herd of goats, feeding said goats and the cost of a local wrangler and stable fees. ¬†It’s this detail and minutiae that really make the cost of film what it is–and profitable for locals that can cash in on it.

I really want to film in Texas. ¬†Why? ¬†It’s my home state. ¬†It’s where many of my stories are. ¬†It’s what I know. ¬†I probably won’t. ¬†Texas’ neighbors have better incentives. ¬†I want to do something for my community and filming could bring massive influxes of money to a very economically vulnerable area.

When I was asked at the San Antonio Film Festival why I hadn’t spent more time filming in my home state, I said at the time that, “It was not where my opportunities were, where my education led me.” ¬†I keep returning to that question. ¬†Here’s another reason why, one I couldn’t quite articulate in the moment:

The state doesn’t commit to its film community. ¬†

Why should I commit to spend potentially millions of dollars in the state?

Movies aren’t made overnight. ¬†They are long-haul projects. ¬†It may take a screenwriter a year to get a camera-ready draft. ¬†It may take us a year or more to get funded. ¬†It may take us several months of pre-production, which will likely involve traveling back and forth. ¬†We try to hire locally qualified people for the crew. ¬†We will be in your state 30-60 days just filming, 12 hour days and paying for food and hotels and ancillary services, like dry cleaning, local assistants, etc. ¬†We may be in your state several months after that if there’s a great post-house. ¬†We may spend money on a Texas premiere if it’s a Texas subject.

The stability of state’s commitment to arts funding matters. ¬†It’s a risk management consideration. ¬†If you’re always threatening to pull a plug on your incentives, it’s not enticing.

 The counter-argument is that film jobs are temporary jobs and that is true to a point, but if you invest in creating a community, the jobs will keep coming.  Just ask Atlanta.  It seems there are some in government that would much rather have its denizens chained to an overabundance of low-paying retail jobs than branching out into a more highly skilled, better paid, film position.

I think it’s very shortsighted of the Texas legislature to nix film funding. ¬†You could film almost anything in Texas, such is the geological and architectural diversity. ¬†This is a whole state issue, not just an Austin or Dallas concern, where much of the film making takes place. ¬†There are many areas that could benefit from more filming. ¬†And frankly, it’s unnerving when New Mexico is standing in as Texas on film. ¬†It’s happening more and more often.

¬†There’s a poster on the wall at the UTLA Center, an older poster, red, of all the great films made in Texas, which was a promo poster done by the Texas Film Commission a few years ago. ¬†I hope they have to update that poster soon, with new, great films being made in Texas, but ¬†the legislature must seize the opportunity.