Wednesday, April 29, 2009

2009 Biola Media Conference Wrap-Up

The Biola Media Conference, which is a little more for people interested in Hollywood but attracts Christian filmmakers of all stripes, was last week and I wanted to share a couple of great wrap-up links.

First there is the "official" site, which as a handful of quick interviews with some of the speakers and attendees.  Brian Bird has an interesting story of networking that throws some cold water on the "independant" ideas of many independant filmmakers.  Also, a good thing to remember is that Bird himself got started as a writer on "Fantasy Island" and didn't move into "Christian" filmmaking until 23 years into his career(& No, I don't count "Touched by an Angel" as Christian).

For a more "ground-level" look, check out this page of Twitter posts about the conference.  Some are silly, some interesting.  One thing of note is that a key speaker at the conference, Ralph Winter, hasn't stopped making X-Men movies to make Christian movies.  He wears both hats, one that pays the bills, one that makes Christian films.  Winter still seems less a hands-on producer than a businessman to me, especially given the wildly varying quality of the film's he's associated with in the "producer" role.  I mean, he produced X2 & X-Men: The Last Stand, and those film's couldn't be more different in quality, so Winter's involvementis probably much more on the business end and less on the creative.  That's why I take his comments about the creative aspects Christian filmmaking with a grain of salt:  he's a businessman after all. 

The most interesting thing was all the people talking about Joe Eszterhas and his conversion, which, given that he published a memoir about it last year is kind of old news.  I was hoping to hear more about Eszterhas returning to film writing, but nothing I've seen.  He does have a movie coming out soon, but I have no idea how or if it was effected by his conversion.

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