Back in June at the Provincetown International Film Festival, Jeff Hill (left) asked Brian (right) and I to join him for lunch. He had something important to share. Over burgers Jeff broke the news that he’d decided to close up shop and head to Palm Springs. The new economy of making and marketing movies had taken a toll and it was time for a change. We were floored (and snapped this photo to mark the moment).
Today, Jeff formally announced the news.
Jeff Hill (some of his close friends affectionately call him, ‘Mary’) has been one of the leading gatekeepers in the film scene for more than twenty years, guiding the PR strategy for countless movies by acclaimed and emerging filmmakers alike: Almodovar, Leigh, Van Sant, Haneke, Vachon, Schnabel, Coppola, Lee, etc. It’s a long list. After lunch, as Brian and I went for a walk to talk about Jeff’s news, we momentarily wondered if experience mattered in this new media landscape.
Obviously, PR drives indie and foreign films to wider attention among critics and audiences alike and there’s no question that Jeff Hill has been a tireless advocate of some of the best films of the past twenty years. Jeff’s role in getting such films to audiences has been crucial, his experience essential, and his insights invaluable. He’s also been a vital conduit for indieWIRE and become a personal friend. NYC’s film scene won’t be the same without him, but he’ll remain active in PR from his new Palm Springs perch.
Film PR has changed. But, more on that another time. For now, cheers Jeff!