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$10K Film Grant Available: Now Accepting Liberty Lab for Film Applications!

FIRST TIME APPLICATION FORM | ALUMNI APPLICATION FORM

Are you a liberty-minded director, writer, or producer? Bring your perspective to the Liberty Lab for Film (LLF) to fine tune your craft as a filmmaker and storyteller while making a great, professional quality short film or web series.

LLF is an advanced program from Taliesin Nexus, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, for those who have filmmaking, screenwriting, or producing experience eager to work alongside like-minded creatives with the guidance of seasoned professionals such as Daniel Knauf, (executive producer, NBC’s The BlacklistAdam Simon, (creator of the FOX series Salem) screenwriters Bill Marsilii (Deja Vu, Cold), Paul Guay (Liar Liar), David H. Steinberg (American Pie 2) and Erica Beeney (The Battle for Shaker Heights and “Project Greenlight” winner)  in making your film.

If selected, you will receive $10,000 to make your short film and embark on a 100 day development and writing phase, before moving into production and post.  You and your team will work together from script development until your film or web series premieres at our gala SmashCut screening in Los Angeles and/or selected cities across the country.

LLF participants will also take part in CineShots, intimate discussions focusing on screenwriting, producing, directing, and post-production lead by industry veterans. Participants will also receive a free copy of Final Draft 10 (valued at $249), the industry’s leading screenwriting software.

The LLF is not for the faint of heart. You will undergo a compressed studio experience including script development, pre-production, production, post-production, and editing before finally seeing your film on the big screen!

(Taliesin Nexus is the owner and operator of the SmashCut Culture blog.)

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Why I Murdered My Roommate

Screen Shot 2015-03-26 at 2.28.00 PMAnnouncing Why I Murdered My Roommate a new television and trans-medial series set and filmed in Buffalo, New York and sponsored by Fractured Atlas.

The project is a creation of three graduates of the Taliesin Nexus 2014 Filmmaker’s Workshop (renamed Apollo Workshop).  Feeling inspired by the fact that there was a sympathetic group of liberty-loving filmmakers out there, longtime friends Michael Pauly and Tilke Hill decided to finish working on a script exploring one woman’s desire to live outside of anyone or anything’s control and what ensues when she decides that to be a radical individualist doesn’t have to mean rejecting all human bonds.

Why I Murdered My Roommate is a half-hour dark comedy series where the hash absurdity of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia meets the twisty, violence-promising flashback storytelling of Damages or The Affair.  It is the story of EZ Walensa, performance artist, borderline anarchist, and lonely woman looking to make a genuine connection.

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When The Wrong Mans Do the Right Thing

The Wrong MansThere’s a certain kind of character everyone loves to hate: the supposedly average person who gets thrown into a terrible situation and suddenly becomes unrealistically good at everything he or she needs to do to save the day. Fanfiction writers call the female version “Mary Sue” and her male equivalent “Marty Sam” or “Gary Stu.” Of course, there are plenty of real-world instances of ordinary people doing extraordinary things in extraordinary circumstances, but most people tend to panic in an emergency. Mary Sues are annoying because they ignore that reality. (And having purple hair, wilver eyes, and a fake Japanese name doesn’t help, either.)

Occasionally, however, a writer will turn that trope on its head to great effect. And that’s exactly what actors/writers Mathew Baynton and James K. Corden have done in their action-comedy The Wrong Mans, available in the US on Hulu. Even the title is a twist on Hitchcock’s The Wrong Man, and the first season’s tagline pretty well sets the tone of the series: “Danger called. They happened to answer.”

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Taliesin Nexus sponsors five $10,000 prizes for web series and short film pitches

I’ve never been able to wrap my head around the adage “There Ain’t No Such Thing As a Free Lunch” (or TANSTAAFL, for all you acronym aficionados). Because if you’re not the one picking up the tab then, yeah, it’s FREE, so Super Size that #5! (Feel free to use the comment section to point out how flawed my logic is, while I munch on my Big & Tasty.)

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Anyway, in the vein of things being “FREE,” the folks over at Taliesin Nexus are giving away $50,000 to be used on five winning pitches for this year’s Liberty Lab. According to TN:

“The Liberty Lab is an advanced program for those who have some filmmaking or video-making experience or training under their belt but want an opportunity to work with like-minded creatives with the guidance of seasoned professionals.

“In this program, you will have 100 days to write, shoot and edit a short film or video (between 5-30 minutes long) while receiving feedback from one of our faculty along the way at crucial stages (first draft of the script, first rough cut of the video, etc.).  And you will have a $10,000 production budget with which to work.”

This is an awesome opportunity for those of you looking to take your filmmaking to the next level, but are struggling to come up with funds to show the world what you’ve got.

Pitches must be submitted no later than May 15, so get crackin’!

[Note:  This article has been corrected from an earlier version.]