Atlanta Film Festival: Creative Conference Series

April 7, 2016


Attending any film fest and skipping out on the seminars, is like having a 5 course meal, but only eating dessert.

Tucked away in the 7 Stages Theatre (L5P), is the Creative Conference series in conjunction with the Atlanta Film Festival.


Today's agenda offered a smorgasbord of topics to festival goers:

-The day kicked off with a panel discussion on how to move your idea to a script in 'What's the Big Idea?'. Panelist offered advice through personal experience on successfully getting the project off the ground even if the thought or idea isn't perfected or complete.


TAKE AWAY: Move forward with your idea and work out the kinks along the way.

-'Invading Hollywood' provided a bumpy path along a well traveled dirt road, with panelists sharing their challenges and a few sweet spots in breaking through the wall of the Hollywood circle. The discussion, wide in scope, captured the climate of their journey and gave attendees a clear understanding of what to expect.

Panelists also shared words of wisdom regarding the pivotal moment of having a Manager, an Agent, and even an Entertainment Attorney to help ease the journey for you as you focus on your craft.

TAKE AWAY: Hollywood is a "people business", networking is essential to the success of your project and growth in the industry. As cliché as it is, "It's all about who you know".

-90sec Pitch Fest was like the first rounds of American Idol auditions <except>, without the corny performances and heart tugging, gut wrenching, sappy back stories.


There were thirteen willing souls that  volunteered to pitch their script ideas before an audience of 50-75 onlookers, and a panel of industry professionals.

The moderator provides the setup in reading the logline and the pitch person paints a visual story in 90secs.

The perfect pitch was presented by a 14y/o in his idea of a script titled "Bad News Bitches". His idea was brilliantly delivered and set the tone for the others in the room.

TAKE AWAY: When presenting your pitch, be sure to give life to your main character without diverting the point. Steer clear of delivering a pitch with episodic tones that leave the listener/audience wondering. Present the climax.  "You can't see the forest for the trees."

The day at 7 Stages ended with the  seminar 'Table Read', to be Frank  (even though I'm Jeri), after sitting through roughly 5 hours of a buffet of information my plate was full, and my cup runneth over. After 30 minutes in this seminar, I pushed away from the table and begin to digest the entire day bite by bite.

TAKE AWAY: Your 'Table Read' sessions paints the picture of your script. It's the rehearsal for your vocal delivery of the role you are tasked to portray.

All in all, the Creative Conference series is the fuel to reignite the passion within. Be sure to take in a few before the festival wraps this weekend.

Ohhh, ...and you're welcome!



Written by: Sr. Writer

Jeri Garrison


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