Back from the Road

It’s been a good long while since my last post – over two months! – but there’s an excellent reason. I’ve been in an extended teaching mode that began with a terrific workshop for Film Interchange. We had a good time and covered a lot of ground, as always. I’ll be doing more workshops for these folks in 2014 and you’ll be hearing more about them in future posts.

But for the past three and a half weeks I’ve been on the road at two of the Caribbean’s top film schools. The first and the granddaddy of Latin American film schools is La Escuela Internacional de Cine y TV (EICTV) in San Antonio de Los Banos, Cuba. The school was founded in 1986 by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Fernando Birri. The second was at Universidad Veritas’s Nueva Escuela de Cine y TV in San Jose, Costa Rica where there is an exciting new program in place for undergraduate film students that is the foundation for the burgeoning Costa Rican film industry.  I’ll be talking more about the individual schools in the next few weeks when I launch a new video series on film schools around the world starting with these two.

The experience of meeting new filmmakers – both the veteran filmmakers who teach at these schools as well as the energetic students in each place – is always invigorating. Everyone has stories to tell and the advanced technology of digital filmmaking is making it easier and easier for people to tell them. I feel very lucky to have come across some really cool finished films as well as some very exciting proposals that I hope will get made into feature length documentaries and fiction films.

The other wonderful thing about teaching is that it allows you to learn more about the subject you are teaching. Having to explain filmmaking, especially to a culture different from your own always makes you reflect on the good (and bad) sides of what you do every day. The last two months have been that way for me.

So we won’t be winding down over the next six weeks, but rather gathering steam for a new year with new projects and adventures. Stay tuned.

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