2018 Talent Lab
Each year during the Luang Prabang Film Festival, LPFF collaborates with the Tribeca Film Institute® (TFI) to lead an exciting Talent Lab for Southeast Asian filmmakers on grant writing and project pitching. Now in its third year, the Lab has established itself as one of the leading opportunities for ASEAN filmmakers.
The Lab consists of various instructional and practice sessions, as well as a pitch forum, during which participating filmmakers receive feedback from industry professionals. On the last day of the Lab, the TFI jury selects one project showing great promise to attend the TFI Network market, which takes place in New York City during the Tribeca Film Festival®. There, the filmmaker will meet with editors, distributors, and financiers. TFI will then act as the filmmaker’s mentor through the completion of their project.
The selected participants receive an airfare stipend of $1,500 to travel to New York City, as well as hotel accommodation for the duration of the TFI Network market. All participants in the Talent Lab will also receive preferential consideration for any of TFI’s grants.
Additionally, Aurora Media Holdings, one of Southeast Asia’s leading media and entertainment specialists, will select one project to receive their Aurora Producing Award. The award consists of a $10,000 cash investment towards the production of the completed film project. The award, which aims to discover and co-produce the best feature concepts, has, over the past few years, become a notable feature in some of Asia’s most influential project markets and film events.
Activities During the Talent Lab on 7-9 December 2018
1. Learning How to Pitch
Filmmakers complete an exercise to talk about their projects and begin to hone their pitches in a clear and engaging way. The session has a practical, back-to-basics approach, which aims to clarify what the filmmakers’ stories are about and what message they are looking to convey in order to keep their pitches focused.
2. Practicing the Pitch
Filmmakers volunteer to present their pitches to the group, and TFI provides feedback on pitches and improvised meetings. TFI helps review questionnaires for the projects and addresses whether the pitches accomplished conveying the projects’ stories. Other projects can weigh in for peer-to-peer review.
3. Master Class
Filmmakers attend a master class with a renowned filmmaker. LPFF holds a private screening for filmmakers, followed by a Q&A session with the film’s director, screenwriter, or producer.
4. Group Lunch and Informal Meetings
TFI and other invited industry professionals meet with filmmakers in an informal roundtable setting, providing an additional opportunity to discuss the projects and pitches. After the pitch forum, attending industry professionals are welcome to schedule one-on-one meetings with filmmakers.
5. Funding/Grants Info Session
TFI leads a short session on funds available to filmmakers, addressing dates and application processes. TFI speaks to the “do’s and don’ts” of writing a grant application and suggests tips on taking a funding meeting. TFI presents examples of successful applications, and gives advice on improvements within a Q&A format. All participating filmmakers will receive priority status for future TFI grant programs.
6. Pitch Forum
Each project pitches in front of a group of influential media professionals, having refined their pitch with feedback from the workshop. Working alongside a jury of various industry professionals, a TFI panel provides detailed notes on each pitch. The jury chooses one project to join the 2019 TFI Network market.
7. Sunset Cruise on Mekong Kingdoms
Following the pitch forum, all filmmakers board a Mekong Kingdoms boat for a sunset cruise, where the jury announces the project attending the TFI Network market. Justin Deimen of Aurora Media Holdings also announces the project selected for the Aurora Producing Award. The cruise includes beverages and canapés, and filmmakers have the opportunity to network with the jury and celebrate the end of the Talent Lab.