DAILY NEWS: New Doc Site; IFC and Ed Burns/P>
by Eugene Hernandez and Maud Kersnowski/indieWIRE
>> New Site Aimed at Becoming a Home Base for Docs
(indieWIRE/02.23.01) -- The last few years have seen an explosion and
implosion of the Internet film business but few of those sites were
dedicated to documentaries. Docs-in-progress.com is attempting to bring
some of the benefits of the digital age to this under-funded segment of
the industry by using the online space to build a community and bring
together funders and filmmakers who are in the process of creating their
films. "We're streaming films at a point when they might not have the
resources to bring the project to fruition," Paul Power, Managing Editor
of the Independent Film & Video Monthly and co-founder of the new curated
site that presents works in progress online, explained.
The "Works" section shows partially finished films in need of cash to
funders who pay an annual access fee. To maintain high quality, submissions
are screened by panels of experts specializing in different areas and
regions of the world. Any film can post a still and basic information.
An extensive database of global contacts specific to documentary filmmakers,
a webzine and community building tools will also be introduced along with
partnerships with other groups like Doug Block's D-Word.com site. In the
future, the site will also be multi-lingual.
As a post-market-correction launched site, Docs-in-progress is building a
business based on the Internet concept of bringing together people who are
otherwise isolated from each other. At the same time they are expanding on
some of the ideas developed during the MBA drenched period of the last few
years. "With the changes in the dotcom world, we're going to have to look at
some new models with slower builds," co-founder Pegi Vail told indieWIRE.
"We're not going to take this slam bang approach." Vail reports that one of
those new approaches may be the strategy of partnering their virtual
community with the bricks-and-mortar of respected film institutes.
The site's "Webzine" section is expected to launch next month, while other
areas will be active this Spring, according to Paul Power. With its heavy
emphasis on building and serving a specific community, this may well be a
site for the Internet business specialists to watch and it's definitely one
for documentary filmmakers to bookmark. [Maud Kersnowski]
[For more information, visit:
>> Burns and IFC Set for "Ash Wednesday"
(indieWIRE/02.23.01) -- Just in time for the Catholic church's celebration
of Ash Wednesday, IFC Productions has announced the start of principle
photography on Ed Burns fifth feature, "Ash Wednesday." The film is set in
New York in 1983 and is described as, "a drama about two brothers trying to
escape their past." The film is set to star Burns, Rosario Dawson and
"Edward Burns is gifted storyteller, filmmaker and actor," commented IFC
Entertainment President Jonathan Sehring, in a prepared statement. "Like so
many others, we have been following his career since the beginning and we
are excited to add him to our family of filmmakers." Burns' fourth feature as
writer, director, producer and star, "Sidewalks of New York," is being
released by Paramount Classics in May. He is starring in New Line's "Fifteen Minutes," which open next month. [Eugene Hernandez]