28 Jun 2014

Three Must Read Filmmaking Blogs

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In the first of a series that profiles our favorite blogs for moving picture professionals, we're giving a shout-out to three that focus on the art, craft, and business of filmmaking.

RedShark News strives to provide high quality content for our readership of industry professionals and budding filmmakers. Generally, that means breaking news, product reviews, workflows, noteworthy videos, and opinion pieces. Through this editorial focus, we touch on and explore the topics we think are the most important and vital for the film community at large. Yet, as we mature as a publication, we're realizing that there is one very important section of our community that we've neglected.

I'm speaking of the dedicated film bloggers, many of them industry professionals, who freely share the fruits of their experience with the world, one post at a time. It's time to give credit where credit is due.

This is the first in a multi-part series on our favorite film blogs. In the coming weeks, we'll share our picks for film tech and screenwriting blogs, but we're kicking off the series by taking a look at three bloggers that each cover a wide scope of filmmaker-related topics, touching on directing, writing, tech, film business, and the occasional oddity.

Mentorless

The first blog up in our line-up comes courtesy of Nathalie Sejean, a French-born writer and filmmaker who emigrated to Los Angeles to devote herself full-time to filmmaking. After gaining her Directing and Film Entertainment Certificates from UCLA Extension, and garnering awards and acclaim along the way, she launched mentorless.com in 2010, a wonderful resource chock full of filmmaking tips and entertaining posts. She has since returned to Europe, but still operates the blog, which is a big win for filmmakers everywhere.

Mentorless draws heavily from the lessons learned by well-known filmmakers, but it always delivers a unique take on its subjects. To be blunt, the art of blogging has become an exercise in curation, but as the well of readily-available content out there continues to swell, seemingly exponentially, curation becomes an increasingly valuable skill. Sejean has expertly tapped into that well, such as juxtaposing a post on the behind the scenes of Blade Runner with another on an art series by Jeff Hong placing Disney characters in present-day context.

Disney todays context

It seems the overarching lesson of Mentorless is that all this wisdom and wonder from disparate sources are simply building blocks as we construct our own filmmaking careers. This idea is most evident in a tremendous eBook by Sejean, How Did They Write It? (FREE download for subcribers of the Mentorless Weekly Newletter). This is an incredible resource; it takes over 400 screenplay situations, like phone calls, overlapping conversations, chase scenes, and breaking the fourth wall, and pulls actual script excerpts from 25 well-known movies, so readers can see how professional screenwriters dealt with these situations and how they spaced the page.

If it were just for How Did They Write It?, Sejean would be someone to follow. But her steady and stellar work on Mentorless makes it a blog that you need to check out.



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Patrick Jong Taylor

Patrick Jong Taylor is Editor-at-large on RedShark News. He is also a Strategist for bigSTORY, a business consultancy specializing in agile communication strategies.

Website: bigstorybiz.com/

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