It’s been three years since writer/producer/director Chris Bower and his team started work on their locally produced sci-fi movie Moon Europa, and it appears that all of the work may finally be paying off. The team was recently invited to participate in the Independent Feature Project’s Narrative Rough Cut Film Lab, a four-day mentoring program in New York City that aims to help up-and-coming filmmakers put a final polish on their films.
“They have a whole team of industry professionals that help you over the course of the week,” says Bower of the invite. “It’s basically a lot of workshopping, and we learn what we need to do to make our film the best it can be.”
Such expert insight can be invaluable to budding filmmakers, particularly those who have never been through the film-festival and distribution process.
“It’s very important for us to get that kind of help,” Bower says. “Being in this part of the country, we’re isolated from the film industry in a lot of ways.”
An invite to Rough Cut is something of an honor in the indie-film world, with only 10 of the more than 300 submitted films being accepted for the program. The lab also includes a fellowship to the IFP Film Market, a weeklong showcase in September where independent filmmakers can present their works directly to buyers, promoters and film-festival representatives.
“If you don’t get your movie into the hands of someone involved with a festival, it’s going to be tough getting the film in competition,” Bower notes. “Meeting people from these festivals isn’t a guaranteed way to get your film included, but it does help.”
As helpful as the IFP’s program will likely be to Moon Europa, the required travel and lodging for Bower and co-producer G. Craig Hobbs will likely prove expensive. To help offset the costs, the filmmakers will hold a fund-raiser at Mela Indian Restaurant (70 N. Lexington Ave.) on Saturday, June 2, starting at 10:30 p.m. In addition to screening clips from the film, the event will feature DJs, dancing, a raffle and the debut of the new Moon Europa poster. The suggested donation is $10.
Visit www.MoonEuropa.com for more information.