Chris O’Falt has been promoted to the new role of Deputy Editor, Film & TV Craft, a move that reflects IndieWire’s increasing commitment to coverage of the creators, crews, and craftspeople of the entertainment industry. O’Falt’s mandate covers film, television, and all other content platforms.
He will continue to work closely with Bill Desowitz, who now holds the title of Crafts and Animation Editor and will spearhead all animation coverage for the site, which includes expanding IndieWire’s coverage of animated TV. O’Falt reports to IndieWire editor in chief Dana Harris-Bridson.
“Over the last four years, Chris has helped build IndieWire’s craft coverage into the best in class,” said Harris-Bridson. “Creators love participating in his Toolkit podcast for the opportunity to present intelligent and in-depth discussions about the art of craft. His deep relationships with the guilds, and the communities they represent, have allowed us to gain real insight into the issues that matter most, and he’s guided by his real-world experience in production and education. We are very proud to have him lead and shape our craft coverage.”
Film & TV Craft is a discrete section that joins IndieWire’s long standing Film and Television sections, which are led by Deputy Editors Kate Erbland (Film) and Ben Travers (TV). The two coordinate on daily reviews, features, and feature packages in addition to alternating columns on the streaming space, with Streaming Wars and Streaming Wars: Indie Edition.
“The Kate-Ben alliance has been a crucial part of our success in navigating the balance of coverage between film and television on the site, as well as the ways those media overlap,” said Executive Editor and Chief Critic Eric Kohn. “Their ability to juggle the regular onslaught of new films and series with insight and aplomb raises the bar for us each day.”
Added Ann Donahue, IndieWire’s Executive Editor, TV, “Chris’s knowledge of the below-the-line community and his depth of sourcing is a tremendous asset to our TV coverage. His ability to celebrate the details of a production, and explain why they matter to readers and listeners in compelling terms, is what makes his work so vital.”
In addition to his awards-season coverage in film and TV, O’Falt’s work has included breaking news, the first in-depth exploration of the “Parasite” houses, a four-part series exploring David Lynch’s work on “Twin Peaks” through his closest collaborators, in-depth interviews with Emmy-nominated cinematographers, and reporting on the issues facing crews in the midst of the heated IATSE contract negotiations.
He also hosts the Toolkit podcast that features top film and TV creators, including the last four Oscar winners for Best Director, and spearheads the IndieWire Influencers franchise, which honors the key craftspeople whose distinctive work sets the bar for film and TV.
“Writing about craft for IndieWire is unique because of the excitement our readers have for filmmaking,” said O’Falt. “It’s never just about a cool costume, a fancy camera movement, or the how-to of some new technology, but the vision of our favorite creators and how they use the tools of cinema to tell their stories.”
O’Falt graduated with a masters in film history from Wesleyan University, where he also taught film production and screenwriting, and helped create the school’s digital filmmaking program. He also built dozens of non-profit filmmaking programs in New York City, where he worked with underserved high school and college-age students to make hundreds of short films.
Desowitz, who has a masters from UCLA in film and TV studies, has covered the entertainment industry for more than 35 years. Working closely with IndieWire Editor at Large Anne Thompson, he specializes in IndieWire’s Oscar and Emmy Awards season reporting/analysis of the crafts and animation. He is the former editor of VFX World, and served as managing editor of Animation Magazine. He is also the author of “James Bond Unmasked,” which chronicles the screen portrayal of the iconic superspy and boasts interviews with all six 007 actors.
“Bill has been a crucial voice for IndieWire, providing his take on the crafts of film and TV. We’re thrilled to be expanding his role and showcasing his expertise in animation,” said Harris-Bridson.