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MOONDANCE MID-MAY SPECIALS & NEWS!

“A good beginning makes a good ending.” ~ Old English proverb

SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE NEWS, INFO & ARTICLES OF INTEREST!

MOONDANCE ENTRY FEE DISCOUNT DAYS EXTENDED!

~ UNTIL POSTMARK May 31, 2012 ~

Moondance is extending our very popular Springtime Special opportunity! All films, scripts, written works and music submitted to Moondance and postmarked during the month of May can send in:

TWO ENTRIES FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!*

*Pay the full entry fee for the first one, and send the second one (of an equal or lesser entry fee) for free. Spring Special discounted two-for-one entry fees are available only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of May, are eligible!

AND! One lucky winner, selected from the 2012 competition, who submits during May, will receive a free V.I.P. All-festival pass to the 2012 Moondance Film Festival event! April V.I.P. All-festival pass winners will be announced in the next news blog!

3 EASY WAYS TO SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY:

1. MIFF Entry Form

<http://moondancefilmfestival.com/pdfs/MIFF_FESTENTRYFORM.pdf>

2. Acteva Online Entry

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

3. Withoutabox.com

<https://www.withoutabox.com/login/1240>

(no discount, no two-fers)

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

Thanks a million for all the fine entries we’ve received so far!

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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT MOONDANCE:

As Moondance’s founder, executive director & artistic director, I have had the rare pleasure of personally previewing and judging every single film, reading all screenplays and other written works, and listening to all music and film scores submitted to each of the annual competitions. I have selected all the films to be screened and all the winners in every category, and have done so, successfully, from the very first Moondance, in 2000. I do not travel to other film festivals looking for films to invite. In the rare event that a very special film is invited to be screened at Moondance, it is clearly labeled as “invited”, and it can have no chance of winning an award. Only submitted films have that opportunity. When submitting your work to the Moondance annual competition, you can be 100% assured that it will be carefully previewed and judged fairly. ~~Elizabeth English

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MOVIEBYTES.COM

lists Moondance as one of the top ten film festival competitions

worth the entry fee!

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MIFF DONATION REQUEST 2012

Dear Moondance Friends, In a time when politics and public policy, environmental issues, the poor economy, social justice, and equality for all, has become less about serious debate and deliberation — and more about sound bites, and the distortions spun out by the corporate media — Moondance provides a substantive and transformative alternative. The films, written works and music we receive reinforce our belief that for those artists, and for many of you, Moondance International Film Festival, with our mandate for integrity, the highest quality, and our mission, is an essential part of a progressive future.

We would like to say,  “thanks a million”, to all of you Moondancers who have contributed in the past, and have submitted your projects! Without your support, we wouldn’t be here. With your support, we are getting stronger every day. And as our progressive, independent, pro-active voice reaches more people – via the art of film, writing and music, and providing encouragement, reliable information, critical thought and creative ideas — more audiences, artists and activists are entertained, informed, encouraged, and inspired.

Today, Moondance really needs your help to keep this vital mission moving forward! We need to meet our financial goals before we can produce the 13th annual film festival.

Send in your entry now, and/or sponsor us, or donate whatever amount you can afford. Let other colleagues and friends know about Moondance, via your FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media accounts. Everything will help.

SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY, AND/OR DONATE HERE:

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

READ MOONDANCE SPONSOR INFO HERE:

http://moondancefilmfestival.com/04_sponsors.info.html

Remember – We can’t do it without you!

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PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES:

Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is a nominal $50 for each critique requested during the Moondance Springtime Special days!

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BE SURE YOU’RE SUBSCRIBED TO OUR NEWS BLOG in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines, news, specials and happenings! Sign up for it now, at: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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MOONDANCER NEWS:

• Bangladeshi filmmaker Rubaiyat Hossain has won the prestigious Orson Wells Award for her debut feature film Meherjaan. The Orson Wells Award is given to a newcomer to encourage aspiring and independent filmmakers from all over the world to bring a new wave of talent and creativity to the art of cinema. The film has received critical appreciation and awards at various film festivals, like the Moondance International Film Festival, (where it also won for its film score).  Excerpted from the online magazine OutlookIndia.com

Writer/Director Dempsey Tillman has a flair for the dramatic, the supernatural, the fantastical. One of a growing number of young African-American writer/directors making their mark in the industry, Dempsey aims for his films to “look beyond the ordinary to the extraordinary.” 
Dempsey got his start working alongside Hollywood’s most respected and successful directors of our time, including billion-dollar director Steven Spielberg (Lincoln), visionary Sam Raimi (Spider-Man franchise), Oscar-winner Robert Redford (Lions for Lambs), veteran Rob Reiner (Rumor Has It…) and groundbreakers Antoine Fuqua (Training Day), Justin Lin (Fast and Furious) and Michel Gondry (The Green Hornet with Seth Rogen) to name a few. Currently, Dempsey is at work on the feature film The Almighty, a supernatural thriller. The screenplay for The Almighty won the 2011 “ABYSS” award from the MOONDANCE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL. Please support Dempsey’s efforts to fund the production of his film at: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1469627416/the-almighty

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WRITERS & FILMMAKERS: DID YOU KNOW?

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: TITLES & LOGLINES

By Elizabeth English

Have a fabulous, unique idea for a movie? That’s wonderful, but you need to know how to turn your great story into a great logline. There is and always has been only one real secret to success in the entertainment industry. Tell a great story. Period. And you need to figure out how to tell that fabulous story in only 25 words or less! You need to learn how to get your script idea or film  enthusiastically seen or read by an agent and then a producer, director and actors. Learn what they look for in a title and logline. Your first impression to these movers and shakers is all about the fine art of pitching your film or screenplay, your TV series concept or story idea, via your eye-catching title and logline!

TO READ  MORE, CLICK  HERE!

• SELL THE SIZZLE; NOT JUST THE STEAK!”

• GREAT TITLES:

• HOW NOT TO WRITE A LOGLINE

• WHAT YOU SHOULD DO:

• ADAPTING YOUR LOGLINE TO YOUR READER’S OR VIEWER’S  INTEREST

THE ONE-PAGE SYNOPSIS:

Generally, you should leave some mystery to entice the reader to read the screenplay. But a final sentence, such as, “But does she ever learn what happened?”, is too common, and overdone, leaving the reader feeling forced to read the script, which isn’t good. You need to entice a reader to want to read it. Sometimes, you can hint at or indicate the ending, while still leaving the reader interested and wanting to know what or how it is accomplished. For example, if you say “and he saves the town from certain disaster”, the reader wonders how he did it. If you say “she discovers her purpose in life”, the reader wonders what that purpose is, how she came to that conclusion, and what were the results. But only if the reader relates to, and is invested in, the characters and/or plot line by that time.

Elizabeth English

Mermaid7seas Productions

WEBSITE: www.mermaid7seas.com

EMAIL: mermaid7seas@gmail.com

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ARE DVDs OBSOLETE?

I recently read this: “DVDs are obsolete now.” So Netflix and everyone who watches DVDs on their TV or computer, uses Red Box, goes to a movie theater where they screen DVDs, or judges films on DVD for film festivals are all out-of-date, and are out-of-touch? Do people actually prefer to sit alone and watch movies on a 4″ or 8″ screen, with bad sound, bad lighting, and bad focus? As at YouTube, for example. Maybe the folks who say this have never seen a real movie on a big screen or on a DVD. They should consider comparing the quality of a film, both ways.

When filmmakers submit a film to Moondance via WAB, online only, no DVD, I do, of course, preview the film that way, but cannot really tell for sure if the film is that good or bad, even when I enlarge it to full-screen, because then it’s always slightly out-of-focus. I often then ask the filmmaker to send me the DVD, for a proper (and fair) preview. I would never allow my own films to be judged digitally online.

Films submitted to Moondance are judged on story & uniqueness, first, but without top quality in all other aspects (lighting, sound, focus, framing, direction, production values, editing, camera-work, acting, dialog, sets, costuming, music, & etc.), the film will not be selected. So, a DVD is the easiest way to show me, or any judge, what you’ve got, and how good your film really is!  ~~ EE

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

MAGIC LAMP RELEASING

http://www.magiclampreleasing.com/

MAKING A GOOD FILM IS JUST THE BEGINNING!

  • Many independent filmmakers and producers spend years of their lives bringing their projects to completion, only to be stopped cold right at the finish line. All their hard work comes to nothing because of one simple fact: They Don’t Know How To Get Their Films noticed. What does it take to actually get your film into theatres? How do you attract the attention of top-level distribution executives? How do you know which festivals are right for your film?
  • What if you had a team of
 world-class distribution & marketing professionals 
working to bring your film to market? Founded in 2001 by legendary distributor Marc Halperin, formerly of Fine Line Features and Miramax Pictures, MAGIC LAMP RELEASING was created to level the playing field for the independent filmmaker.
  • With 28 years of experience, Halperin’s expertise has been key to the successful distribution of such films as Sex, Lies And Videotape, Repo Man, The Lost Hitchcock Films, Cinema Paradiso, The Crying Game, My Left Foot, Shine, Hoop Dreams, Truth Or Dare, and Dancer In The Dark, to name just a few.
  • A unique hybrid of distributor, sales agency, PR firm, consultant and production company, MAGIC LAMP RELEASING provides a variety of custom professional services for indie filmmakers, and has successfully promoted quite a few winning Moondance films. Contact Marla & Marc at: marla_magiclamp@me.com

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PUSH GIRLS TRAILER

WATCH THIS TRAILER!

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EARTH DAY PICNIC FOR THE PLANET!

Some of the folks at the Palmer Research Station held an Earth Day Picnic for the Planet on one of the coldest spots on the planet: Antarctica. Temperatures this time of year hover around 0 degrees C, but that didn’t stop them from enjoying some ice cream!

All 12 residents of tropical Palmyra Atoll (including 4 from a visiting vessel) attended this “floating” Picnic for the Planet on Earth Day.

http://blog.nature.org/

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A UK MOONDANCER WRITES TO US:

Elizabeth English and the Moondance film festival have been an amazing support to me as a filmmaker. In the last two years, I have had four films win awards at Moondance. She is professional, inspiring, and sets high standards on the films she allows through to the festival. This means that is it always a feast of interesting, artistic and affecting films. Elizabeth is always encouraging, but also challenges us as filmmakers to be the best we can be. She supports us in bringing work of integrity to the screen. I am a writer and award-winning director. I have just written and filmed a short film which we are in post-production on, and which we will be submitting to Moondance this year.” ~ Lou Hamilton (UK) www.createlabproductions.com

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THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

Maurice Sendak has left us, and has gone to where the wild things are.

Maurice Sendak portrait by Annie Lebowitz for Vanity Fair

Maurice Sendak (June 10, 1928 – May 8, 2012), an American writer and illustrator of children’s literature. He is best known for his book Where the Wild Things Are

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Illustration by Maurice Sendak, “Where the Wild Things Are”

“An artist’s work always offers another way of seeing the world; it is almost painfully generous, that an artist turns herself inside out, and offers that up to the gaze of strangers.” ~ Dominique Browning / SlowLoveLife.com

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“If we face our unpleasant feelings with care, affection, and nonviolence, we can transform them into a kind of energy that is healthy and has the capacity to nourish us. By the work of mindful observation, our unpleasant feelings can illuminate so much for us, offering us insight and understanding into ourselves and society.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh, Vietnamese-born Buddhist monk, teacher, author, and peace and social justice activist http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/9074.Thich_Nhat_Hanh

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“Storytellers broaden our minds: engage, provoke, inspire, and ultimately, connect us.” ~ Robert Redford

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Human minds yield helplessly to the suction of story. No matter how hard we concentrate, no matter how deep we dig in our heels, we just can’t resist the gravity of alternate worlds.” ~ Jonathan Gottschall, author of The Storytelling Animal

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THE GREAT MOONDANCE ROADSHOW!

Host the very best of Moondance films, professional workshops & popular networking parties in your community, anywhere in the US and in the world! You really can bring Moondance to your area. Contact Elizabeth English now at: moondancefestival@gmail.com to discuss the details and fabulous benefits of this unique opportunity.

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Thanks a million for reading & subscribing to the Moondance news blog!

"Box Garden" sculpture by Amy Leigh, photo by Dominique Browning

Please pass this along to your friends & colleagues.

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HAPPY MAY DAY FROM MOONDANCE!

Welcome to the early May edition of the Moondance news blog!

SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE NEWS, INFO & ARTICLES OF INTEREST!

Tulips, Central Park, NYC, photo by Dominique Browning, www.slowlovelife.com/

“By plucking its petals, you do not gather the beauty of the flower.” ~ Rabindrath Tagore

MOONDANCE ENTRY FEE DISCOUNT DAYS EXTENDED!

~ May 1 – 31, 2012 ~

By popular demand, Moondance is extending our very popular Springtime Special opportunity! All films, scripts, written works and music submitted to Moondance and postmarked during the month of May can send in:

TWO ENTRIES FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!*

*Pay the full, higher entry fee for the first one, and send the second one (of an equal or lesser entry fee) for free. Spring Special discounted two-for-one entry fees are available only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of May, are eligible!

AND! One lucky winner, selected from the 2012 competition, who submits during May, will receive a free V.I.P. All-festival pass to the 2012 Moondance Film Festival event! April V.I.P. All-festival pass winners will be announced in the next news blog!

3 EASY WAYS TO SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY or ENTRIES:

1. MIFF Entry Form

<http://moondancefilmfestival.com/pdfs/MIFF_FESTENTRYFORM.pdf>

2. Acteva Online Entry

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

If using Acteva, please remember to go to the MIFF entry form, print it out, fill it in, and send it along with your submission!

3. Withoutabox.com

<https://www.withoutabox.com/login/1240>

(no discount, no two-fers)

If using WAB, please write your WAB tracking number on your submission!

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

Thanks a million for all the fine entries we’ve received so far!

MOVIEBYTES.COM

lists Moondance as one of the top ten film festival competitions worth the entry fee!

PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES:

Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is a nominal $50 for each critique requested during the Moondance Springtime Special days!

BE SURE YOU ARE SUBSCRIBED TO OUR NEWS BLOG in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines, news, specials and happenings! Sign up for it now, at: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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ADVICE FROM A TREE

By Ilan Shamir

  • Stand tall and proud
  • Sink your roots deeply into the Earth
  • Reflect the light of a greater source
  • Think long-term , go out on a limb
  • Remember your place among all living beings
  • Embrace with joy the changing seasons
  • For each yields its own abundance:
  • The energy and birth of spring
  • The growth and contentment of summer
  • Give of your fruits and shade to others
  • The wisdom to let go of leaves in the fall
  • The rest and quiet renewal of winter
  • Feel the wind and the sun 
, and delight in their presence
  • Look up at the moon that shines down upon you
  • Learn from the mystery of the stars at night.
  • Seek nourishment from the good things in life
  • Simple pleasures: Earth, fresh air, rainfall, snows, moonlight
  • Be content with your own natural beauty
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Let your limbs sway and dance in the breezes
  • Be flexible
  • Remember your roots
  • Enjoy the view!

Sweet Chestnut tree, Wikipedia photo

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8 Tips on How to Write a Great Story!

Author photo: pitch.com

WRITING ADVICE FROM KURT VONNEGUT:

1. Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.

2. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.

3. Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.

4. Every sentence must do one of two things-reveal character or advance the action.

5. Start as close to the end as possible.

6. Be a Sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them-in order that the reader may see what they are made of.

7. Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.

8. Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To hell with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US:

“I’m so pleased you’re still Moondancing. You are so passionate about it, and so committed. You are really an inspiration. What you do is so much grander and so much a festival. I have to send you massive congratulations on what you have achieved.” Jennifer Ussi, Australia, Moondance winner, “The Unique Oneness of Christian Savage” short film

“This is such a good deal. Moondance is a great place for screenwriters because they have several opportunities to network with filmmakers in local restaurants.” ~ Vicki Bartholomew

“I’ve attended a few Moondance Film Festivals over the past 7 years. It’s a great, intimate Film Festival with Elizabeth English at the helm. I love the idea that it’s a smaller festival, and that we have unlimited access to the speakers and VIP’s, but not regimented by the event!!!” ~ Vera Holman

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DID YOU KNOW…?

The Pulitzer Prize board did not name a winner in the editorial writing category and, more notably, declined to name a winner in the coveted fiction category, for the first time in 35 years. “The message from the committee to any author who published a novel or short story collection in 2011 seems to be: Sorry, you’re just not good enough.” ~ Stephan Lee, EW.com

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

Saving Dolphins & Whales – Protecting the Oceans

BlueVoice.org is an ocean conservation organization founded in 2000 by Hardy Jones and Ted Danson. Its mission is to protect dolphins, whales, and other marine mammals and to raise popular awareness about the plight of the oceans. BlueVoice has fought to end the slaughter of dolphins in Japan and to expose the harmful levels of toxins in the marine environment, including mercury, PCBs, and persistent organic pollutants, and their impact on both marine mammals and humans. In an effort to leverage the power of the Internet in the cause of preserving and restoring the oceans and its creatures, film and television star Ted Danson, a highly respected ocean activist, has joined film producers, environmentalists and digital technology partners to launch BlueVoice.org.

READ MORE: http://www.bluevoice.org/

Watch a short dolphin video: http://bluevoice.org/webfilms_dolphinobserve.php

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~~~~~ MAP OF THE WIND! ~~~~~

http://hint.fm/wind/

Remember lying on your back in the grass or on the sand at the beach, watching the clouds roll by overhead? You’ll be simply mesmerized by this gorgeous US map of the wind! It would make a great, moving, minute-by-minute real-time, and ever-changing screensaver or desktop wallpaper, too. Move your cursor to any area on the map to see what the wind-speed is at the moment.

And do read the lovely article about this incredible wind map in Time.com, by Dominique Browning, at: http://ideas.time.com/2012/04/26/what-the-wind-tells-us/?iid=op-main-lede. The Wind Map is about as graphic as it gets in making a simple point: Wind connects us. It is such a huge force, moving in such enormous sweeps across our land, that it overwhelms all the boundaries we have thrown up…It’s a lesson easy enough for a child to understand: We share the air. That sense of interconnectedness is what we should be sharing.”

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Moss gardens in Kyoto, Japan

The famed moss gardens of the Saiho-ji Zen Buddhist Temple in Kyoto, Japan, constructed during the Nara Period (AD 710 to 794) by Gyōki, feature more than 120 types of moss which blanket the ground surrounding Saiho-ji’s Golden Pond. To protect the delicate moss, the temple’s caretakers now require visitors to request entry to the garden no less than a week in advance. Once at the temple, which was originally built in 1339 and is a UNESCO World Heritage site, visitors must chant or copy on paper a Zen sutra before gaining access to the garden. The monks keep all the sutras in the pagoda and continue to pray for all.

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THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

Waterfall, Ithaca, NY

“People usually consider walking on water or in thin air a miracle. But I think the real miracle is not to walk either on water or in thin air, but to walk on earth. Every day we are engaged in a miracle which we don’t even recognize: a blue sky, white clouds, green leaves, the curious eyes of a child — our own two eyes. All is a miracle.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh, Vietnamese-born Buddhist monk, teacher, author, and peace and social justice activist http://www.goodreads.com/author/quotes/9074.Thich_Nhat_Hanh

“Success is ten percent opportunity and ninety percent intelligent hustle.” ~ Elbert Hubbard

Navajo weaver

“The artist is nothing without the gift. But the gift is nothing without the work.” ~ Emile Zola

“Movies are to our civilization what dreams and ideals are to individual lives: they express the mystery and help define the nature of who we are and what we are becoming. Go and tell stories that illuminate our times and our souls, that awaken the sleeping angel inside the beast.” ~ Frank Pierson, former president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and of the Writers Guild of America

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THE GREAT MOONDANCE ROADSHOW!

Host the very best of Moondance films, professional workshops & popular networking parties in your community, anywhere in the US and in the world! You really can bring Moondance to your area.

Contact Elizabeth English now at director@moondancefilmfestival.com to discuss the details and fabulous benefits of this unique opportunity.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thanks a million for reading & subscribing to the Moondance news blog!

Please pass this along to your friends & colleagues.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



MOONDANCE FILM FESTIVAL SPRING SPECIALS!

2012 MID-APRIL BLOG

SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE NEWS, INFO & ARTICLES OF INTEREST!

"Narcissus", by John Waterhouse

MOONDANCE SPRINGTIME SPECIAL DISCOUNT DAYS!

~ April 1-30, 2012 ~

In celebration of spring, all films, written works and music submitted to Moondance and postmarked during the month of April can send in:

TWO ENTRIES FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!*

*Pay the full entry fee for the first one, and send the second one (of an equal or lesser entry fee) for free. Spring Special discounted two-for-one entry fees are available only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of April, are eligible!

AND! Three (3) lucky selected April entrants will each receive one V.I.P. All-festival pass to the 2012 Moondance Film Festival event!

3 EASY WAYS TO SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY:

1. MIFF Entry Form

<http://moondancefilmfestival.com/pdfs/MIFF_FESTENTRYFORM.pdf>

2. Acteva Online Entry

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

3. Withoutabox.com

<https://www.withoutabox.com/login/1240>

(no discount, no two-fers)

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

MOVIEBYTES.COM

lists Moondance as one of the top ten film festival competitions

worth the entry fee!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES:

Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is a nominal $50 for each critique requested during the Moondance Springtime Special days!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BE SURE YOU ARE SUBSCRIBED TO OUR NEWS BLOG in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines, news, specials and happenings! Sign up for it now, at: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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Please check out our MIFF listings on Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boulder,_Colorado#Film

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moondance_International_Film_Festival

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SCREENWRITERS, YOU NEED TO READ THESE

MOONDANCE E-ZINE ARTICLES!

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US:

“I was a Moondance screenplay finalist, around the year 2000. It looks like the festival has really grown and is going strong. Congratulations! Just wanted to let you know that somewhere along the way since Moondance I switched from writing screenplays to writing novels, and something great happened; my novel Grace Grows is being published by St. Martin’s Press. It will be out next October. I wanted to let you know that I appreciated your encouragement about my writing, and I persevered.” ~ Shelle Sumners www.shellesumners.com

“I have been searching for a female-centered venue to send my MOW teleplay, and your site keeps coming back hard – as the only one that has such a strong focus on the use of female positive, and non violent conflict resolution – so fitting. I often say – name me one war started by a woman.” ~ Gregory Terlecki, Toronto, Canada

“As a Screenwriter I feel it’s very important to support film fests! Moondance is one to watch and participate in. It’s events like this that allow true talent to shine through.” ~ Stacy Shawtee Arcangel, Intuitive Edge Consulting

“Moondance! 
It is a remarkable blog. 
It is chance to reach coast of your dream.” ~ Marina Albert, Freelance screenwriter, Melbourne, Australia

“Elizabeth English is Executive Director for one of the best film festivals around, the Moondance Film Festival. Since she’s been at the helm, the festival has grown tremendously. She makes herself readily accessible and disseminates information thoroughly and in a timely fashion. She’s great at coordinating and a team leader.” ~ Kvachenyuk-Boretsky Alexander hired Elizabeth as a Writer/Editor in 2010

I worked directly with Elizabeth at Moondance International Film Festival. She is a detail-oriented person. Personable, On Time, Creative. ~ Sonya Alexander, Journalist/Editor/Proofreader/Screenwriter/Producer

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DID YOU KNOW…?

photo by Dominique Browning, "Slow Love"

Many people around the world feel strongly that their particular place—home, neighborhood, area, village, town, city, state, province or country—is superior to any other place, and that as residents of this place, they have a unique history, customs, accents, lifestyles, beliefs, traditions, or concerns that are different from, and better than, those of other places and people.

The Moondance film programs are always well rounded, entertaining, and enlightening, highlighting diverse cultures, opinions, and stories. We welcome individual expression and are committed to presenting diverse points of view. Moondance aims to entertain, increase awareness, provide multiple viewpoints, address complex social issues, provide forums for deliberation, and strengthen ties between a large variety of international audiences.

The long-term vision of the Moondance International Film Festival is to preserve and revitalize our intangible heritage, cultivate creative diversity, develop an intercultural dialogue, and stimulate this creative resource. Our mission is to present a vibrant and growing collection of films, writings, and music, which is an ideal means for communication across perceived boundaries of place, culture, race, age and gender.

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WIRELESS INTERFERENCE: THE HEALTH RISKS OF RF-EMFS

By Christopher Ketcham, excerpt from “Earth Island Journal”, May/June 2012

The health risks of RF-EMFs, the radiation from cell phone towers and other media technology, are not entirely known, though early signs are troubling. We all live in range of cell towers now, and we are all wireless operators. As of October 2010 there were 5.2 billion cell phones operating on the planet. We now live in a wireless-saturated normality that has never existed in the history of the human race, and the effects of EMFs on human beings are largely untested. Read more: http://www.utne.com/environment/rf-emfs-zm0z12mjzros.aspx#ixzz1rviVTWzZ

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THE MOONDANCE ROADSHOW!

Host the very best of Moondance films, professional workshops & popular networking parties in your community, anywhere in the US and in the world! You really can bring Moondance to your area. Contact Elizabeth English now at director@moondancefilmfestival.com to discuss the details and fabulous benefits of this special opportunity!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~~~ MERMAID7SEAS PRODUCTIONS ~~~

www.mermaid7seas.com

Mermaid7seas Productions, an enthusiastic Moondance International Film Festival sponsor, annually, now offers reading services, critiques, coverage and edits to all Moondance writers & filmmakers, composers and to production companies and agencies, at a special discount price!

Focusing on the elements crucial to creating a compelling and readable script, or a winning, marketable film or film score, our helpful comments will allow you to concentrate on solving the problems that will make your material move toward receiving a CONSIDER or a RECOMMENDED from a studio or prodco reader, and will assist in advancing your script or film up toward WINNER in competitions & film festivals. An advantage of this low-cost critique service is that we will help you prepare your project before sending it to producers, agents, managers and others who may have requested it.

COVERAGE & CONSULTATION WILL ADDRESS THE
 FOLLOWING ELEMENTS:
 Theme, Premise, Genre, Concept, Story, Plot, Subplots, Subtext, Principal Characters, Cast-ability, Relationships, Depth of Characterizations, Dialogue, Exposition, Syntax, Conflict, Action, Scene, Humor, Tone, Attitudes, Pace, Flow, POV, Marketability, Audience Appeal, Interest, Visualization, Transitions, Balance, Titles and Loglines, Screenplay Evaluation or Film Evaluation!

Visit the Mermaid7seas website and contact Elizabeth English now, to get your script or film ready to win any competitions and/or enthusiastic attention from buyers! Mermaid7seas@gmail.com

MERMAID7SEAS CLIENT TESTIMONIALS:

I have just finished my second screenplay, using the methods and the writing secrets you exposed me to on my first screenplay. Your critique of my work was dead-on. Your common sense, no-nonsense approach brought out the details and cut out the fluff, added deeper characterization, improved the dialogue, added to the action sequences, and made the story move forward. I’m very proud of both scripts, neither of which could have been so well-written without your insight, suggestions, professional coverage and massive edits. I am confident that I have achieved a higher plane of writing quality since your evaluation and help with the necessary re-writes. My first screenplay, which we worked on together, is already being considered by a major production company. Thank you so very much! ~ Mike L. Edwards

“Quality, Productivity and Creativity! You’re in good hands when you work with Elizabeth.” Sam Archer, Samali Music Publishing

“I wouldn’t hesitate in recommending Elizabeth – she is a consummate professional, whose passion and unique vision inspires others to excel.” ~ Mike Arsuaga, author with five books under contract

www.mermaid7seas.com

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

http://backtotheroots.com/our-story

Mushrooms Offer Solutions for Environment and Economy

Utne Reader article excerpt by Suzanne Lindgren 04/09/12

It turns out the fungi kingdom is capable of fixing some of our species’ biggest environmental gaffes, and boosting the economy while it’s at it. Paired with a little human ingenuity, mushrooms could be our ticket to a viable future. Nikhil Arora and Alejandro Velez instead opted to invest in closing the food-to-soil loop. During their final semester, the young men began growing mushrooms in a bucket of used coffee grounds. With a little legwork and a $5,000 grant from UC Berkeley, they soon had a deal to collect grounds from a west coast chain, Peet’s Coffee, in which they would grow mushrooms for northern California Whole Foods stores. Soon their company, Back to the Roots, was making money for both grounds collection and mushroom sales. Read more: http://www.utne.com/environment/mushrooms-offer-solutions-for-environment-and-economy.aspx#ixzz1rZZ9pMf9

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~~~ LATE JULY ORGANIC SNACKS ~~~

Barnstable, Massachusetts

A bag of Late July organic chips, on the beach at Cape Cod

Late July Organic Snacks is a family-owned and operated company that cares deeply about family and the integrity of our products. Not only are all our products certified USDA organic, and proudly wear the organic seal, but on any given day, you can find three generations at work, including eight year-old Stephen and four year-old Benjamin. We all hope you enjoy our snacks! As a small, independent, organic brand we truly appreciate it every time you choose to purchase one of our products. Visit us at: http://www.latejuly.com/ and http://www.shoplatejuly.com/

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THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on.~ Havelock Ellis

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Here is the test to find out whether your mission on Earth is finished: if you’re alive, it isn’t. ~ Richard Bach ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave. ~ Mahatma Gandhi

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Don’t part with your illusions. When they are gone, you may still exist, but you will have ceased to live.  ~ Mark Twain

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Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness and love never decrease by being shared. ~ Buddha

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Photo by Marion Post Wolcott, 1940

“Pilgrim, do not spend too much time planning your journey, for you may learn of so many hazards that you might decide not to go.” ~ Source Unknown

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Thanks a million for reading & subscribing to the Moondance news blog!

Please pass this along to your friends & colleagues.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



MOONDANCE SPRINGTIME SPECIAL DAYS!

SPRING AWAKENINGS! Trees are blossoming, green sprouts are everywhere, flowers are coming up, birds are singing, honey-bees are buzzing, the weather is sunny and warm, and the skies are blue again! It’s time to get over those winter blues! And now is the time to send in your films, written works and music to Moondance for your big chance to win at the 2012 film festival!

MOONDANCE SPRINGTIME SPECIAL DISCOUNT DAYS!

~~~~ April 1 – 30, 2012 ~~~~

In celebration of spring, all films, written works and music submitted to Moondance and postmarked during the month of April can send in:

TWO ENTRIES FOR THE PRICE OF ONE!*

*Pay the full entry fee for the first one, and send the second one (of an equal or lesser entry fee) for free. Spring Special discounted two-for-one entry fees are available only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of April, are eligible!

AND! Three (3) lucky selected April entrants will each receive one V.I.P. All-festival pass to the 2012 Moondance Film Festival event!

3 Easy Ways to Submit Your Entry:

1. MIFF Entry Form

<http://moondancefilmfestival.com/pdfs/MIFF_FESTENTRYFORM.pdf>

2. Acteva Online Entry

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

3. Withoutabox.com

<https://www.withoutabox.com/login/1240>

(no discount, no two-fers)

Thanks a million to all those talented people who sent in their entries for the Moondance March Madness specials!

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

MOVIEBYTES.COM

lists Moondance as one of the top ten film festival competitions

worth the entry fee!

PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES:

Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is a nominal $50 for each critique requested during the Moondance Springtime Special days!

BE SURE YOU ARE SUBSCRIBED TO OUR NEWS BLOG in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines, news, specials and happenings! Sign up for it now, at: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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A HAPPY MOONDANCER WRITES US:

“I’m delighted to share that my play ‘Nuclear Family’ (which won the Moondance Atlantis Award for Best Stageplay 2011) and has already been produced in festivals in Adelaide, London and Edinburgh, will have its New Zealand premiere in July this year, very exciting. Needless to say, the Moondance laurels happily accompany the graphics in our poster. ~ Desiree Gezentsvey

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

THE NATURE CONSERVANCY

http://www.nature.org/

On the weekend of Earth Day, April 22, people around the world will celebrate the planet we live on, the food that it provides, its natural habitats,  and the people and animals with whom we share it. There are many ways to participate:

1) Attend a Picnic — The Nature Conservancy is holding picnic events all around the world — from Melbourne, Australia to Boulder, Colorado. Locations are added weekly, so check out our map to find events in your area

2) Host a Picnic — Don’t see an event near you? Host your own picnic and invite family and friends. Your picnic could even help us set a world record

3) Donate or Fundraise — Help us protect green space, and the lands that provide our food and clean water. Make a donation, or turn your picnic into a fundraising event!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

THE MOONDANCE ROADSHOW!

Host the very best of Moondance films, professional workshops & popular networking parties in your community, anywhere in the US and in the world! You really can bring Moondance to your area.

Contact Elizabeth English now at director@moondancefilmfestival.com to discuss the details and fabulous benefits of this special opportunity.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

MERMAID7SEAS PRODUCTIONS

www.mermaid7seas.com

Mermaid7seas Productions, an enthusiastic Moondance International Film Festival sponsor, now offers reading services, critiques, coverage and edits to all Moondance writers & filmmakers, composers and to production companies and agencies, at a special discount price!

Focusing on the elements crucial to creating a compelling and readable script, or a winning, marketable film or film score, our helpful comments will allow you to concentrate on solving the problems that will make your material move toward receiving a CONSIDER or a RECOMMENDED from a studio or prodco reader, and will assist in advancing your script or film up toward WINNER in competitions & film festivals. An advantage of this low-cost critique service is that we will help you prepare your project before sending it to producers, agents, managers and others who may have requested it.

COVERAGE & CONSULTATION WILL ADDRESS THE
 FOLLOWING ELEMENTS:
 Theme, Premise, Genre, Concept, Story, Plot, Subplots, Subtext, Principal Characters, Cast-ability, Relationships, Depth of Characterizations, Dialogue, Exposition, Syntax, Conflict, Action, Scene, Humor, Tone, Attitudes, Pace, Flow, POV, Marketability, Audience Appeal, Interest, Visualization, Transitions, Balance, Titles and Loglines, Screenplay Evaluation or Film Evaluation!

Visit the Mermaid7seas website and contact Elizabeth English now, to get your script or film ready to win any competitions and/or enthusiastic attention from buyers! Mermaid7seas@gmail.com

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

SIMPLE LIVING MANIFESTO:

IDEAS TO SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE!

By Leo Babauta

A simple life has a different meaning and a different value for every person. For me, it means eliminating all but the essential, eschewing chaos for peace, and spending your time doing what’s important to you.

It means getting rid of many of the things you do so you can spend time with people you love and do the things you love. It means getting rid of the clutter so you are left with only that which gives you value.

However, getting to simplicity isn’t always a simple process. It’s a journey, not a destination, and it can often be a journey of two steps forward, and one backward. If you’re interested in simplifying your life, this is a great starter’s guide!

CLICK HERE: ZEN HABITS http://zenhabits.net/simple-living-manifesto-72-ideas-to-simplify-your-life/

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DID YOU KNOW…..?

1. Many US Republican senators and congressional representatives oppose the Violence Against Women Act!

This landmark legislation has provided support to domestic abuse survivors and has given prosecutors the resources to convict violent abusers — but Republicans refuse to renew it. The same Republicans, with their apparently radical, anti-women agenda, also have been said to refuse to allow any women’s voices to be heard on their all-male panel about contraception. Go to www.credoaction.com for more info & to sign the petition.

2. The rhino is being hunted into extinction and could disappear forever unless we act now. Shocking new statistics show 440 rhinos were brutally killed by poachers last year in South Africa alone. Fueling this devastation is a huge spike in demand for rhino horns, used for bogus cancer cures, hangover remedies, supposed male sexual enhancement, and good luck charms. So far this year, one rhino has been killed every single day in South Africa. Horns now have a street value of over $65,000 a kilo — more expensive than gold or platinum. The situation is so dire that the threat has even spread into many world zoos, which are now on red-alert for rhino-killing gangs! Let’s raise a giant outcry to push for new protections to save rhinos from certain extinction. We must demand a complete ban on all rhino trade — from anywhere, to anywhere — when countries meet at the next crucial international wildlife trade summit in July. Please SIGN THIS PETITION now, to take immediate action to help save the rhinos!  http://www.avaaz.org/en/save_rhinos/?tta

Dürer's Rhinoceros, in a woodcut from 1515

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THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

photo by N.A.

People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel.”  ~ Maya Angelou

“Listen, can you hear it? Spring’s sweet cantata. The strains of grass pushing up through the snow. The song of buds swelling on the vine. The tender tympani of a baby robin’s heart. Spring!” ~ Diane Frolov and Andrew Schneider, Northern Exposure, “Wake Up Call”, 1992

photo by S.V.

You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair.  ~Douglas MacArthur

House in Orlando, Florida where Jack Kerouac lived and wrote "The Dharma Bums"

“Popular opinion is, of course, a form of feedback and, as such, implicit peer advice.  ~ Jack Kerouac

Don Quixote ink drawing by Pablo Picasso

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” ~ Pablo Picasso

“I love the way cherry trees writhe and gnarl as they age, the way they bear their scars. These trees have a great deal to teach us about wabi-sabi*, a Japanese aesthetic of beautiful imperfection. I visit this particular tree frequently. It looks like it is trying to say something.” ~ Dominique Browning, text & photo: Slow Love Life blog, http://www.slowlovelife.com/

  • Wabi-sabi represents a comprehensive Japanese world view or aesthetic centered on the acceptance of transience. The aesthetic is sometimes described as one of beauty that is “imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete”. Characteristics of the wabi-sabi aesthetic include asymmetry, asperity (roughness or irregularity), simplicity, economy, austerity, modesty, intimacy and appreciation of the ingenuous integrity of natural objects and processes. Wabi-sabi nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect. (info from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wabi-sabi)
  • Hagi ware Japanese tea bowl, 18th-19th century, Freer Gallery of Art

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

MORE RECOMMENDATIONS:

This music & video will surely make you smile and tap your foot! Edgar Meyer, Chris Thile, Stuart Duncan, Yo-Yo Ma, and vocalist Aoife O’Donovan perform “Here and Heaven” from the album, “The Goat Rodeo Sessions”. The Goat Rodeo Sessions is an ambitious and groundbreaking project that brings together four string virtuosos: world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, fiddler Stuart Duncan, bassist Edgar Meyer and mandolinist Chris Thile, with female vocalist Aoife O’Donovan. While each artist is a prominent figure in his or her own music sphere, they have come together as a unified ensemble on a most remarkable and organic cross-genre project. This music and video will make your day! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-BkhEF1d5U&feature=player_embedded

http://www.artopportunitiesmonthly.com

Art Opportunities Monthly (AOM) This is the list professionals trust, and is a carefully screened art opportunities list for traditional and contemporary artists working in painting, sculpture, photography, film, video, printmaking, book art, computer art, collage, weaving, fiber, textiles, ceramics, papermaking, mixed media, photography, computer art, monoprint, pastel, performance art, drawing, enameling, wood carving, crafts, jewelry, installation art, new media, public art, gouache, watercolor painting and every other visual medium. It is for those working in any style or geographic location.

http://www.brainpickings.org/

Brain Pickings has a free weekly newsletter, and people say it’s cool! It comes out on Sundays and offers the week’s best articles. Brain Pickings is the brain-child of Maria Popova, a cultural curator and curious mind at large, who also writes for Wired UK, The Atlantic and Design Observer, among others.

••••••

Info on email etiquette:

http://tedchris.posterous.com/help-create-an-email-charter

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Thanks a million for reading & signing up for the Moondance news blog!

Please pass this along to your friends & colleagues.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



PITCH & NETWORKING SUMMIT: sign up now!

MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS THIS UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY :

The upcoming InkTip.com Pitch & Networking Summit!

Complimentary Pitch & Networking Summit Passes!
The top-three writers who pitch the most companies will receive a full refund of their pass purchase!

To Enter:

1)     Register at http://www.inktippitchsummit.com/?page_id=5

2)     Email us with a list of the companies you pitched after the Summit.

3)     The top-three writers who pitch the most companies will be refunded their pass purchase price!  It’s that easy!

InkTip also guarantees a 100% refund if you’re not completely satisfied with the experience.*

Dear Screenwriter,

The more producers who see you and your scripts, the better the odds of selling your screenplays – and achieving your dreams.

It is a number game, period. There is no escaping this fact.

At other pitch events, you are able to pitch an average of 8-12 in a day, and that is absolutely not enough.

Only at InkTip’s Pitch & Networking Summit, will you have the opportunity to personally meet and pitch an average of 30 companies (producers, agents and managers) – all in a single day.

The first two Summits broke all the records: already resulting in three films in production, and more than double the number of options, sales, writer hires and reps than ANY other pitching event (more than 50+ deals confirmed).

If you miss out on Pitch & Networking Summit III, you’ll have to wait months before the next one; so take advantage of this opportunity, before it is too late, to jump start your career.

Go here to register: http://www.inktippitchsummit.com/?page_id=5

Some of the most recent companies among the 340+ to confirm include:

  • ABC Studios
  • Fremantle Media North America’s Bogner Entertainment | Soccer Mom, Trailer Park of Terror
  • Broken Toy | House M.D. (TV), CSI: NY (TV), The Cape (TV)
  • Comedy Central
  • Conundrum Entertainment  |  Hall Pass, Shallow Hal
  • Dallago Films  |  Turistas, Crazy/Beautiful
  • Deep River  |  Meet Dave, Little Miss Sunshine
  • Eclectic Pictures  |  The Death and Life of Bobby Z, Homeland Security
  • Fedora Films  |  The Client List (TV)
  • Fortune Films  |  Punisher: War Zone, The Wendell Baker Story
  • GMI  |  Death Race, Open Water
  • Indomina Media  |  Devil’s Playground, Bodyguards and Assassins
  • Infinity Media  |  Just Friends, Capote
  • Informant Media  |  Crazy Heart, Hysteria
  • ABC/Disney’s Junction Entertainment |  National Treasure
  • Kopelson Entertainment  |  Twisted, Joe Somebody
  • Mad Hatter Entertainment  |  How to Train Your Dragon, The Strangers
  • Sony Pictures’ Mike Wittlin Productions  |  The Chief, On the Inside
  • Mosaic  |  Step Brothers, The Other Guys
  • Muse Entertainment  |  Catch Me If You Can, The Kennedys (TV)
  • NBC Studios
  • Nu Image  |  The Expendables, Brooklyn’s Finest
  • Panoptica Productions  |  staff credits include: Law & Order: SVU (TV), First Blood, The Shooter
  • Paradigm Agency | major agency
  • Robert Cort Productions  |  Save the Last Dance, Runaway Bride
  • Roundhouse Entertainment  |  staff credits include The Bucket List, Hairspray
  • Southpaw Entertainment  |  August Rush, Brooklyn Rules
  • Tower Hill Entertainment  |  staff credits include Lucky Number Slevin, The Butterfly Effect
  • Winkler Films  |  Trespass, Home of the Brave
  • Yari Film Group (YFG)  |  Crash (TV), Street Kings
  • Zenescope Entertainment  |  The Island
  • Zero Gravity Management  |  Management/Production Co – Running Scared, The Canyon

New studios, production companies, agents, managers and professionals are signing on every day!

Register here: http://www.inktippitchsummit.com/?page_id=5

Moondance and InkTip.com have been partners for many years, and InkTip.com donates free promotions for all of Moondance’s winning feature screenwriters each season!

•••••••••••

Don’t forget to take advantage of Moondance’s March Madness entry fee discount days, good only for submissions postmarked by March 31!

Scroll down here to see more info on this!

And be on the lookout for the upcoming

~ ~ MOONDANCE SPRING SPECIAL ~ ~

in the April news blog!



MOONDANCE MARCHES ON!

GREAT ENTRY FEE DISCOUNTS IN MARCH!

Spring is in the air!

MOONDANCE NEWS:

1. Special discounted entry fees are available only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of March, are eligible! More info below…

2. All entries submitted during Moondance’s March Madness days will receive 5 free movie tickets at the 2012 film festival!

3. WRITERS: Moondance is the only US film festival competition that accepts written works in several languages other than English! The following foreign languages are accepted: German, French, Africaans, Dutch, Spanish! These works will be read & judged by professional writers who are native speakers of those languages!

4. Moondance has added a new competition category to our extensive list! You may now submit screenplay treatments. See the note below for details.

5. Host the very best of Moondance films, professional workshops & popular networking parties in your community, anywhere in the US and in the world! You really can bring Moondance to your area. Contact Elizabeth English now at director@moondancefilmfestival.com to discuss the details and fabulous benefits of this special opportunity.

6. In our continuing success of promoting top-quality original filmmaking, writing and music composition by talented artists from around the world, the Moondance International Film Festival is very pleased to announce that our festival competition has brought in great submissions, in all genres and categories, from Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, India, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Malta, Marshall Islands, Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Russia, Serbia/Montenegro, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Tasmania, Turkey, the UK, the US, and Venezuela! SEND IN YOUR ENTRY NOW, TO REPRESENT YOUR COUNTRY!

_______________________________________________

  • SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE ITEMS OF INTEREST:
  • 1. CALL FOR ENTRIES INFO
  • 2. COMPETITION CATEGORIES
  • 3. CRITIQUES
  • 4. MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS
  • 5. THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY
  • 6. HOW TO SUPPORT MOONDANCE

MOONDANCE 2012 CALL-FOR-ENTRIES GOING ON NOW!

Don’t miss out!

SEND IN YOUR 2012 MOONDANCE SUBMISSION NOW

AND GET IN ON THE

MOONDANCE “MARCH MADNESS”

DISCOUNTED ENTRY FEES

Only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of March, are eligible for these special low-cost entry fees:

  • FEATURE FILMS & FEATURE SCREENPLAYS:  $50 (save $25!)
  • SHORT FILMS & SHORT SCREENPLAYS: $25  (save $50!)
  • ANIMATION FILMS & SHORT STORIES: $25 (save $50!)
  • MUSIC VIDEOS, FILM SCORES & 1/2 HR. TV EPISODICS: $25 (save $50!)
  • ALL OTHER CATEGORIES: $50  (save $25!)
  • OPTIONAL FEATURE SCREENPLAY CRITIQUES: $50  (save $25!)

PLUS: All submissions entered during Moondance’s March Madness days will receive 5 free movie tickets at the 2012 film festival! That’s a $50 value!

3 Easy Ways to Submit Your Entry:

1. MIFF Entry Form

<http://moondancefilmfestival.com/pdfs/MIFF_FESTENTRYFORM.pdf>

2. Acteva Online Entry

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

3. Withoutabox.com

<https://www.withoutabox.com/login/1240>

(no discount)

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

_______________________________________________________________

COMPETITION CATEGORIES:

  • ANIMATION FILMS
  • DOCUMENTARY FILMS
  • FEATURE FILMS
  • FEATURE SCREENPLAYS*
  • FILMED TV PILOTS
  • LIBRETTI*
  • MUSIC VIDEOS
  • ORIGINAL MUSIC & FILM SCORES
  • RADIO PLAYS
  • SHORT FILMS
  • SHORT SCREENPLAYS*
  • SHORT STORIES*
  • STAGEPLAYS*
  • TREATMENTS** (new!)
  • TV EPISODICS*
  • TV PILOT SCRIPTS*
  • & more…

*Written works in the following foreign languages are also accepted: French, Spanish, German, Dutch & Africaans. These works will be read & judged by native speakers.

**Screenplay treatments: No more than 10 pages, double-spaced, or 5 pages, single-spaced. Please include title,  logline & short  synopsis.

MOVIEBYTES.COM  Lists Moondance as

“one of the top ten film festival competitions worth the entry fee!”

_______________________________________________

BE SURE YOU ARE SUBSCRIBED TO OUR NEWS BLOG POSTS by email in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines and happenings! Announcements will be on the Moondance website, and in the news blog. Sign up for it now, at: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

_______________________________________________

PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES:

Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is a nominal $50 for each critique requested during Moondance March Madness days!

_______________________________________________

MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

THE INCREDIBLE EDIBLE FOREST!

Excerpts from an article by Utne Associate editor Margret Aldrich

This spring, in the Beacon Hill neighborhood of Seattle, seven acres of underused land will be transformed into the nation’s largest urban “food forest”—a community park planted with a cornucopia of produce that visitors are encouraged to harvest and eat, for free. It will be an urban oasis offering a variety of edibles: apples and blueberries, herbs and vegetables, chestnuts and walnuts, persimmons and Asian pears. Built around the concept of permaculture, it will be a perennial, self-sustaining landscape, much like a woodland ecosystem in the wild, creating a system on public land that combines the concepts of urban farms, orchards, and natural forestTo read more, click here: http://www.utne.com/The-Sweet-Pursuit/The-Incredible-Edible-Forest-Beacon-Food-Forest-Seattle.aspx#ixzz1odtdZO3I

________________________________________________________________

LITTLE PHONE BOOTH LIBRARIES

Excerpts from an article by Utne Associate editor Margret Aldrich

Obsolete phone booths are turned into mini-libraries, and passersby are encouraged to take a book or leave a book from the improvised bibliothecas which are reminiscent of the Little Free Libraries born in Wisconsin or the Phoneboox found in the UK. (This) project, will encourage an increased sense of local camaraderie, (with) more people in the neighborhood sharing, talking, and just having a heightened awareness and sense of engagement with their surroundings. The little phone booth libraries marry whimsy and practicality in every way. Nestled between used copies of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance and Middlesex, the existing payphone remains fully functional—just in case one of those 17 million cell phones runs out of juice. To read more, click here: http://www.utne.com/The-Sweet-Pursuit/Little-Phone-Booth-Libraries.aspx#ixzz1odwHg3CI

_________________________________________________________________

A MOONDANCER WRITES:

“Great job with the March Madness MIFF newsletter. Looks good! The discounts are very attractive and I really like the inspirational quotes.” ~ Cynthia Butler, Moondance reader & critiques maven

_________________________________________________________________

THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

Walt Whitman birthplace, Huntington, NY

The flux of the soul is happiness,

here is happiness,

I think it pervades the open air,

waiting at all times,

Now it flows unto us,

and we are rightly charged.

~ Walt Whitman, American poet, essayist & journalist (1819-1892)

_________________________________________________________________

“If you have a library and a garden, you have everything you need.” ~ Cicero

Garden shed photo, Melissa J. Will

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If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.” ~ Anne Bradstreet (1612 – 1672)

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Diogenes, by Gerome

On creativity: When Alexander the Great visited Diogenes and asked whether he could do anything for the famed teacher, Diogenes replied: ‘Only stand out of my light.’ Perhaps some day we shall know how to heighten creativity. Until then, one of the best things we can do for creative men and women is to stand out of their light.”~John W. Gardner (1912 – 2002)

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Painting by Vladimir Kush

Happiness lies not in the mere possession of money. It lies in the joy of achievement, in the thrill of the creative effort.” ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt (1882 – 1945)

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Cornwall Path photo by Michael Wiese

“The tragedy of life doesn’t lie in not reaching your goal. The tragedy lies in having no worthy goal to reach.” ~ Benjamin Mays

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“…and those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane, by those who could not hear the music.” ~ Friederich Nietzsche

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MOONDANCE FRIENDS, SUPPORTERS & SPONSORS:

Right now, Moondance really needs your help to keep this vital mission moving forward. We need to meet our financial goals before we can produce the 13th annual film festival.

Send in your entry now, and/or sponsor or donate whatever amount you can. Please let other colleagues and friends know about Moondance, via your FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media accounts. Everything will help!

DONATE HERE

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

OTHER OPTIONS & MOONDANCE SPONSOR INFO: http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com/04_sponsors.info.html

Moondance Mermaid, by Elizabeth English

Please forward this news blog to your friends and colleagues!





MOONDANCE “MARCH MADNESS” CALL-FOR-ENTRIES!

2012 MIFF “MARCH MADNESS”!

Boulder, Colorado, winter scene

SEND IN YOUR 2012 MOONDANCE SUBMISSION NOW

AND GET IN ON THE

MOONDANCE “MARCH MADNESS”

DISCOUNTED ENTRY FEES

Only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva. All submissions postmarked during the month of March, are eligible for these special low-cost entry fees:

  • FEATURE FILMS & FEATURE SCREENPLAYS:  $50 (save $25!)
  • SHORT FILMS & SHORT SCREENPLAYS: $25  (save $50!)
  • ANIMATION FILMS & SHORT STORIES: $25 (save $50!)
  • MUSIC VIDEOS, FILM SCORES & 1/2 HR. TV EPISODICS: $25 (save $50!)
  • ALL OTHER CATEGORIES: $50  (save $25!)
  • OPTIONAL FEATURE SCREENPLAY CRITIQUES: $50  (save $25!)

PLUS: All submissions entered during Moondance’s March Madness days will receive 5 free movie tickets at the 2012 film festival! That’s a $50 value!

3 Easy Ways to Submit Your Entry:

1. MIFF Entry Form

2. Acteva Online Entry

3. Withoutabox.com

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

COMPETITION CATEGORIES:

  • FEATURE FILMS
  • SHORT FILMS
  • DOCUMENTARY FILMS
  • ANIMATION FILMS
  • MUSIC VIDEOS
  • FEATURE SCREENPLAYS*
  • SHORT SCREENPLAYS*
  • ORIGINAL MUSIC & FILM SCORES
  • STAGEPLAYS*
  • TV PILOT SCRIPTS*
  • FILMED TV PILOTS
  • TV EPISODICS*
  • SHORT STORIES*
  • LIBRETTI*
  • RADIO PLAYS
  • & more…

* Written works in the following foreign languages are also accepted: French, Spanish, German, Dutch & Africaans. These works will be read & judged by native speakers.

MOVIEBYTES.COM  Lists Moondance as

“one of the top ten film festival competitions worth the entry fee!”

BE SURE YOU ARE SUBSCRIBED TO OUR NEWS BLOG POSTS by email in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines and happenings! Announcements will be on the Moondance website, and in the news blog.

Wallace & Gromit, Aardman Animation

Sign up for it now, at: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES: Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is only $50 for each critique requested during Moondance “March Madness” days!

* SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE ITEMS OF INTEREST:

MOONDANCE MISSION:

To enhance the quality of life within the world community by providing important and meaningful cultural events, with innovation, professionalism and an absolute commitment to excellence.

THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

Angelina & Alison, photo by Nick Anastasiadis

“What the world needs now is love, sweet love. It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of.” ~ Hal David, lyricist

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“Borea” Painting by Waterhouse

“The Universe constantly gives us feedback through synchronicity of
 events and through subtle signs, symbols, and messages throughout
 our everyday life. Such messages mirror to us where we are on the
 path of alignment, our consciousness journey, and help us see
 where we may be obstructing our own progress. Although sometimes we may feel like we are taking a detour, or
 we’re getting side-tracked by life’s circumstances, we may actually 
be right where we need to be, and life will find a way tell us. Through the messages we receive, we are being nudged towards reality and peace.”~ Lynne Forrest

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Photo by Mustafa Ozer / AFP / Getty Images

“LET US SHAPE OUR FUTURE, NOT WAIT FOR IT!” ~ A sign posted outside the Discovery Center for children, in Damascus, Syria 2012

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“Light gives of itself freely, filling all available space. It does not need anything in return. It asks not whether you are friend or foe. It gives of itself and is not thereby diminished.” ~ Rabbi Michael Strassfeld

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"Window Box" painting by Lorna Kanter

“There’s a new type of alarm clock on the market! It makes no noise. It just uses lights, and gets brighter and brighter until you wake up. I already have one of these. It’s called a “window”. ~ Jay Leno

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Still photo from Walt Disney’s “Alice in Wonderland”

“The world is not just in the center of the frame.” ~ booklet of advice for the filmmaker & guides to life, by Roger Sherman

MOONDANCE FRIENDS, SUPPORTERS & SPONSORS:

Right now, Moondance really needs your help to keep this vital mission moving forward. We need to meet our financial goals before we can produce the 13th annual film festival.

Send in your entry now, and/or sponsor or donate whatever amount you can. Please let other colleagues and friends know about Moondance, via your FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media accounts. Everything will help.

DONATE HERE!

OTHER OPTIONS & MOONDANCE SPONSOR INFO: http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com/04_sponsors.info.html

~~~ EXTRAORDINARY OPPORTUNITY: ~~~

Would you like to host the very best of Moondance films & workshops in your community, anywhere in the US and the world? Bring the Moondance Roadshow to your area! Contact Elizabeth English now at director@moondancefilmfestival.com to discuss the details and fabulous benefits!

_________________________________________________________________

MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

Watch these amazing underwater videos!

Go full-screen & enjoy the music, too!

FIJI & BALI

http://bubblevision.com

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change.org

Mahatma Gandhi

START A PETITION – MOBILIZE SUPPORT – WIN CHANGE

Change.org is a non-partisan organization that empowers anyone, anywhere to start and win campaigns for social change. Every day, people who start petitions on Change.org win meaningful change using the most easy-to-use & powerful grassroots organizing tools on the web. A few examples of successful campaigns at change.org:

  • The “Saudi Women for Driving” Coalition petitions U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton to support women’s driving rights. 22,000 people join after Clinton declines public support, gaining media attention. In the light of media coverage, Clinton reverses her stance and becomes highest-ranking official to publicly support women driving.

  • Molly Katchpole, a 22 year old nanny working two jobs, starts a petition asking Bank of America to drop an unexpected new $5/month banking fee. 300,000 people join, gaining national media exposure and driving customers to leave Bank of America. In less than 1 month, Bank of America announces it will drop its new banking fee, as do all other major national banks.
  • After international outcry from over 100,000 people across the world, the beginning of the end is here.  The end of women suffering physical and emotional abuse including sexual assault and torture in Ecuadorian clinics trying to “cure” them of being lesbian.
  • After hearing from more than 82,000 people, Chase Bank called off foreclosing on 78-year-old grandmother and civil rights activist Helen Bailey.

  • McDonald’s finally responded to the 100,000 people (and groups like the Humane Society of the United States) who told the fast food giant to stop sourcing pork from factory farms using inhumane “gestation crates,” (cages so small that pigs can’t move or turn around). McDonald’s told all of its suppliers yesterday to start phasing out the cages — an earthquake for the food industry.

Have something you want to change?

Click here to start your own petition

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El Sistema: Fighting Poverty, Armed With Violins

Venezuela’s program of social uplift through classical music.

NY Times photo

El Sistema’s aim is to address a depressingly universal problem: how to remove children from poverty’s snares, like drugs, crime, gangs and desperation, and to instill values that can come from playing in ensembles: a sense of community, commitment and self-worth. All instruction and instruments are free. No child is turned away, teaching is done in groups, and many of the instructors have passed through El Sistema themselves (and are thus committed to the movement). El Sistema also has choirs and programs to teach instrument-making and repair. (Excerpt from a February 16, 2012 New York Times article, by Daniel J. Wakin)

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DON’T FORGET: SEND IN YOUR 2012 MOONDANCE SUBMISSION NOW AND GET IN ON THE MOONDANCE “MARCH MADNESS” DISCOUNTED ENTRY FEES, only via the Moondance official entry form and Acteva.

_______________________________________________________________

Please forward this news blog to friends & colleagues,

and check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com




MOONDANCE MARCH MADNESS!

MOONDANCE’S MARCH MADNESS!

We can't stop this dancing until we meet our goal of 1000+ submissions!

SEND IN YOUR 2012 MOONDANCE SUBMISSION NOW AND GET IN ON THE MOONDANCE MARCH MADNESS DISCOUNTED ENTRY FEES, only via the Moondance official entry form or Acteva. All submissions postmarked from February 15, and all of March, are eligible for these special low-cost entry fees:

  • FEATURE FILMS & FEATURE SCREENPLAYS:  $50 (save $30!)
  • SHORT FILMS & SHORT SCREENPLAYS: $25  (save $55!)
  • ANIMATION FILMS & SHORT STORIES: $25 (save $55!)
  • MUSIC VIDEOS, FILM SCORES & 1/2 HR. TV EPISODICS: $25 (save $55!)
  • ALL OTHER CATEGORIES: $50  (save $30!)
  • OPTIONAL FEATURE SCREENPLAY CRITIQUES: $50  (save $25!)

PLUS: All submissions entered during Moondance’s March Madness days will receive 5 free movie tickets at the 2012 film festival! That’s a $50 value!

3 Easy Ways to Submit Your Entry:

1. MIFF Entry Form

2. Acteva Online Entry

3. Withoutabox.com

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

COMPETITION CATEGORIES:

  • FEATURE FILMS
  • SHORT FILMS
  • DOCUMENTARY FILMS
  • ANIMATION FILMS
  • MUSIC VIDEOS
  • FEATURE SCREENPLAYS
  • SHORT SCREENPLAYS
  • ORIGINAL MUSIC & FILM SCORES
  • STAGEPLAYS
  • TV PILOT SCRIPTS
  • FILMED TV PILOTS
  • TV EPISODICS
  • SHORT STORIES
  • LIBRETTI
  • RADIO PLAYS
  • & more…

Written works in the following foreign  languages are also accepted: French, Spanish, German, Dutch & Africaans. These works will be read & judged by native speakers.

MOVIEBYTES.COM  Lists Moondance as

“one of the top ten film festival competitions worth the entry fee!”

Be sure you are subscribed to our news blog posts by email in order to be kept up-to-date about all of the Moondance deadlines and happenings! Announcements will be on the Moondance website, and in the news blog.

Wallace & Gromit, Aardman Animation

Sign up for it now, at: www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

_____________________________________________________

SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE ITEMS OF INTEREST:

1. MOONDANCE 2012: WHEN & WHERE?

2. MOONDANCE DONATION REQUEST

3. EXTRAORDINARY OPPORTUNITY!

4. PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES

5. MY FAVORITE MOVIES

6. MOONDANCERS WRITE US

7. THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY

8. MOONDANCE CALL FOR ACTION

9. MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS

MOONDANCE 2012: WHEN & WHERE?

The date & venue info is not posted on the MIFF website (yet), because, while it may be in Boulder, Colorado in mid-September, as usual, we’re considering doing the film festival at sea this year, on an ocean liner, from Miami to the Bahamas, in early December (past the hurricane season there), if we can get enough people to join up. Or, we could do both dates & venues!  We’ll keep everyone posted!

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MIFF DONATION REQUEST 2012

Dear Friends of Moondance,

In an time when the entertainment industry, international politics and public policy, environmental issues, the poor economy, social justice, and equality for all, has become less and less about serious debate and deliberation — Moondance provides a substantive and transformative alternative. The films, written works and music we receive reinforce our belief that for those artists, and for many of you, Moondance International Film Festival, with our mandate for integrity, the highest quality, and our mission, is an essential part of our progressive future.

We would like to say thanks a million to all of you Moondancers who have contributed in the past! Without your support, we wouldn’t be here.

With your support, we are getting stronger every day. And as our progressive voice reaches more people – via the art of film, writing and music, and providing reliable information, entertainment, critical thought and creative ideas — more audiences, artists and activists are informed, encouraged and inspired.

Today, Moondance really needs your help to keep this vital mission moving forward. We need to meet our financial goals before we can produce the 13th annual film festival.

Send in your entry now, sponsor us, and/or donate whatever amount you can afford. Let other colleagues and friends know about Moondance, via your FaceBook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social media accounts. Everything will helpDONATE HERE

“Charlie” photograph by Chris Anastasiadis

Charlie says, “We can’t do it without you!”

OTHER OPTIONS & MOONDANCE SPONSOR INFO: http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com/04_sponsors.info.html

EXTRAORDINARY OPPORTUNITY:

Would you like to host the very best of Moondance films & workshops in your community, anywhere in the US and the world? Bring Moondance to your area! Contact Elizabeth English now at director@moondancefilmfestival.com to discuss the details and all the fabulous benefits!

________________________________________________________

PROFESSIONAL CRITIQUES:

Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form. The fee is a nominal $50 for each critique requested during Moondance March Madness days!

__________________________________________________________

MY FAVORITE MOVIES:

Sophie’s Choice, The Piano, Raising Arizona, The Last Emperor, Dersu Uzala, M*A*S*H*, Night of the Iguana, Quigley Down Under, Like Water For Chocolate, Whale Rider, Moby Dick, Brazil, Chocolat, Rashomon, Kagemusha: the Shadow Warrior, Never on Sunday, East of Eden, Spirited Away, Casablanca, Magnificent 7, The Virgin Spring, The Lion in Winter, Lawrence of Arabia, The World According to Garp, Monsters, Inc, Jules et Jim, Amelie. 2001: A Space Odyssey, The African Queen, Cabaret, Cool Hand Luke, Dr. Strangelove, or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, Citizen Kane, The Graduate, Being There, Koyaanisqatsi, Phantom (Slovenia), Rabbit-proof Fence, Midnight Cowboy, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, A Streetcar Named Desire, Fiddler on the Roof, To Kill a Mockingbird, Siberia Monamour, and The Wind That Shakes the Barley…and all the wonderful Moondance winning films! What are your favorites movies? Email me at: moondancefestival@gmail.com

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US:

“I was a finalist in your Moondance 2006 contest and I thought you might want to know that I have now moved to L.A., quit my day-job and am now a full-time screenwriter! I’ve completed three scripts on contract in the last six months and now I’m looking for my next assignment!”  ~ Zack Van Eyck

“In researching Moondance I came across a couple of the interviews you’ve done online and having read about your mandate, I couldn’t be happier to have found your festival. I’ve always felt that honest depictions of women have been in short supply in the film industry; this pains and embarrasses me as a man. Thanks for creating Moondance, all the best with it. I’m looking forward to my opportunity to get involved.” ~ Tyler Gibb

“I greatly appreciate your critique. It is very insightful and I agree with everything you said about my screenplay. It really validates the process thus far and encourages me for the next project. With sincere gratitude,” ~ Meg Weidner

I finally have the time to reflect on what was one of the most wonderful experiences in my life.  To have been chosen as a Gaia award winner for my screenplay, ‘A Fish Story’ in your film festival was an honor I will cherish for so many reasons.  Your festival was an incredible experience!  I met wonderful people who make and write movies about things in this world that are important and meaningful.  People who want to make a difference and do it through their art.  What a concept!

My Moondance experience was even more special because I was able to share it with my family.  As a father, I was able to show my kids that movies can be good and at the same time be about something important.  All of the people that we met during those 3 days were so wonderful and interesting and talented! I suppose the highlight of it all was to see my children’s faces as you presented me with my award.  They were truly proud of me and I am so grateful to you for this. Thank you!” ~~ Sam Roberts, 2008 Moondance winner

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THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

“When you take a bite of an apple that’s not ripe, perhaps even bitter, the problem isn’t with the apple; the problem is that we didn’t wait for the tree to get to the place where the apple is ripe. It’s our timing that is the problem, not the apple itself, nor the tree.

This is a powerful message for us, because it makes it clear that the only real problem we have is that our process is not yet complete. We’re just a work in progress. We are the fruit not yet ripe for the picking. Would you cut down a tree because it gives unripe apples? No. You would be patient and have trust in the process.” ~ Yehuda Berg, The Kabbalah Centre International (http://www.kabbalah.com)

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Photo by Dominique Brown

“I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.” ~ E. B. White, American writer, honorary Pulitzer Prize winner, long-time contributor to The New Yorker magazine, wrote “Charlotte’s Web and “Stuart Little

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Photograph by Clark Little

Our character…is an omen of our destiny, and the more integrity we have and keep, the simpler and nobler that destiny is likely to be.” ~ George Santayana

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“If you give up trying to live the image of who you think you’re supposed to be, that opens the vent to allowing you the comfort of realizing: What do I think? What do I feel? What is it in my life I dream of doing, as opposed to the fear that I can’t do it?” ~ Henry Winkler

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Publicity still forAMC’s “Breaking Bad”

“…the truth is you have to allow other people into your creative process. You’d be a fool not to.” Vince Gilligan, (“BREAKING BAD” TV Series Creator)

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“Kabbalists have long known that our thoughts shape what we perceive as reality every bit as much as reality shapes our thoughts. We are more than mere observers of reality – we are creators. It is we who produce and direct our own movie – the same movie in which we ourselves are the stars.

What kind of movie would you like to create today? Love story? Comedy? Drama?” ~~ Yehuda Berg

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MOONDANCE CALL FOR ACTION:

“SOUP: Refused”
photo by Mandy Barker. Ingredients; plastic oceanic debris

“This photo series aims to engage with and stimulate an emotional response in the viewer by combining a contradiction between initial aesthetic attraction and an awareness of the disturbing statistics of dispersed plastics . . . which results, ultimately, in the death of sea creatures.” ~ Mandy Barker SEE & READ MORE: http://mandy-barker.com/

Please sign this important petition now, to ask the Canadian government not to poison wolves in order to have a rainforest-sized tar-sands extraction site in the wolves wilderness habitat. If they do go ahead, it will cause a terrible environmental disaster.

http://act.credoaction.com/campaign/tarsands_wolves/?rc=LA_wolves_02092012_ad2

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

http://www.utne.com

_________________________________________________________________

Please forward this news blog to friends & colleagues,

and check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com



NEWS FROM THE MOONDANCE!

HAPPY ST. VALENTINE’S DAY!

Metal art sculpture by Charlotte Zink, http://www.zinkmetalart.com/

2012 CALL-FOR-ENTRIES!

Send in your entry now!

Regular submission postmark dates: January 1-June 30, 2012

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

SUBMISSION CATEGORIES:

Feature Screenplays, Short Screenplays, TV Pilot Scripts, TV Episodics, Short Stories, Stageplays, Libretti, Feature Films, Short Films, Documentary Films, Animation Films, Music Videos, Filmed TV Pilots, Film Scores, & more!

3 EASY WAYS TO SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY:

MOONDANCE OFFICIAL ENTRY FORM

http://moondancefilmfestival.com/03_submission.entry.html

• ACTEVA SUBMISSION SERVICE

http://www.acteva.com/go/miff

WITHOUTABOX.COM SUBMISSION SERVICE

https://www.withoutabox.com/login/1240

Moviebytes.com lists Moondance as

one of the top ten competitions worth the entry fee!

~ Thanks for all the great entries received, so far, in 2012! ~

We cordially invite all local, national and international screenwriters and filmmakers, playwrights, short story writers, TV writers, radio play writers & producers, librettists, music composers, children’s filmmakers & writers, and young people, students, seniors, music video filmmakers, and multi-media filmmakers to participate in this truly international film festival.

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THE MOONDANCE MISSION:

The long-term vision of the Moondance International Film Festival is to preserve and revitalize our intangible heritage, cultivate creative diversity, develop an intercultural dialogue, promote non-violent conflict resolution, to raise awareness of the invaluable contributions of women to the entertainment community, and to encourage environmental conservation & protection.

We wish to actively participate in creating a bridge of understanding to another person’s or culture’s experience, and to stimulate this creative resource in writing, film and music. Our mission is to present an inspiring, vibrant and growing collection of films, music, and writings, which are an ideal means for communication across perceived boundaries of race, culture, age and gender.

We believe that the world’s most powerful narrative and educational medium – movies and television, as well as scripts and music can contribute to a healthier society and that these works should encourage the active involvement of audiences to connect and act collectively to address social challenges. Winning and finalist films, scripts and music are innovative, distinctive, compelling and engaging, relevant to varied audiences and encourage participation.

We are eager to continue to be one of the most important film festivals in the world by being innovative, risk-taking, truly independent, and open to new thinking, new concepts, new talent, and new ways of telling stories. Let’s make a splash!

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Please take a moment to watch this beautiful video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUDIoN-_Hxs

Video by Philip Scott Johnson ”500 Years of Female Portraits in Western Art”,

Music: Bach’s Sarabande from Suite for Solo Cello No. 1 in G Major, performed by Yo-Yo Ma.

Nominated as Most Creative Video
2nd Annual YouTube Awards.

For a complete list of artists and paintings visit http://www.maysstuff.com/womenid.htm

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In our continuing success of promoting top-quality original indie filmmaking, writing and music composition by talented artists from around the world, the Moondance International Film Festival is very proud to announce that our annual festival competitions have brought in great submissions, in all genres and categories, from Afghanistan, Australia, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, India, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Marshall Island, Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia/Montenegro, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Tasmania, Turkey, the UK, the US, and Venezuela. Send in your submission now, to represent your country!

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FIRST IMPRESSIONS: TITLES & LOGLINES

“You’ve got 5 minutes; pitch me what you’ve got.” That’s what the entertainment industry movers & shakers will tell you. But to get that meeting or even a reply to your query letter, you need an interesting title and logline. Ms. English has developed a method for finding that great, eye-catching title, and a sizzling short logline to go with it. You’ll end up with a great title & logline, and knowing how to “dress” your scripts or films for success! WEBSITE: www.mermaid7seas.com

CONTACT: Elizabeth English • mermaid7seas@gmail.com • 303-545-0202

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* SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE ITEMS OF INTEREST:

1. DVD vs. DIGITAL ONLINE FILMS

2. FILM AS COMMUNICATION

3. MOONDANCERS WRITE US!

4. MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS

5. LOTS OF THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY

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FILMMAKERS:  DVD vs. DIGITAL ONLINE FILMS:

As a judge and the artistic director for the Moondance, I personally prefer DVDs for previewing and judging films submitted, because the quality of image and the sound is almost always much better than what one sees and hears with an online film. I’m assuming that filmmakers want to present their very best-quality project when spending money for entry fees to competitions. I realize that submitting digital films is more convenient and less expensive for the filmmaker than making and mailing a DVD to the competition, but you’ve already spent a lot of money, time, talent and effort to make the film…why not spend a few dollars more and a little time to submit the absolute best version of your film that you can? By the way, the best-quality DVDs come from a video production house, rather than DVDs burned off your computer. ~ Elizabeth

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FILM AS COMMUNICATION:

Living in the 21st Century is to engage in the consumption, production, and distribution of sounds, images, films, writing, music, and information. This enables creative talents and audiences to realize and gain a more sophisticated and contemporary understanding of the world around them, via media. Media is defined as the multiple channels, technologies, and interfaces through which information, ideas, art, and emotions are stored, shared, inspired and reciprocated.

And the ways in which that plethora of media shapes our understanding of the world and our ability to act in it, for the common good, can make it a better place, as well as to promote a heightened ability to analyze, contextualize, create and use all forms of media and emerging trends. Media can be a vital exercise in creative expression and positive change, through all the various entertainment mediums.

And films sell popcorn, which is a very lucrative and amazingly profitable product for the movie houses! So-called “popcorn movies” are regularly at the top of the charts for ticket sales.

Films screened at Moondance are entertaining and uniquely distinguished by our focus on the relations between media and social justice, and how media is inextricably linked to questions of power, rights, human development, peace, national and international social and environmental issues, creative expression, entertainment, collaboration, self-determination and powerful calls for action.

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MOONDANCERS WRITE US!

"Wallace & Gromit" animation

“I am once again so overwhelmed by the beauty, sensitivity, information, helpful tips, beautiful photography, and artwork in your blog, that I felt compelled to write to you immediately. You have, as usual, put together a news blog of wonderfully helpful information done as a work of art itself. As an artist and a writer, I am most appreciative of your marvelous achievement. I also know how much effort and care you take in helping writers and artists.”  Lorna Kanter, screenwriter & artist

The presentation in class went well.  Your film festival is undoubtedly different from any of the other festivals that were discussed, which included Sundance, LA film festival, Slamdance, a human rights documentary festival, and more.  When I introduced the film festival, I mentioned that the director is a woman, and a student in the class exclaimed “Finally!”

You always hear about those big festivals, like Cannes, Venice, even Sundance.  So it was like a breath of fresh air to hear about a festival whose mission is so different.  And I really stressed the mission statement during the presentation, as you suggested, because that really is the key to the choices of films you show, how you operate, etc.  In general, people were intrigued, and some in the class might submit a film to your festival after hearing about it!  She was definitely interested after hearing that your festival supports women so much.” ~ Thuongvu Ho, film student at the University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB)

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MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

John Lennon sings “Imagine”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2xB4dbdNSXY&feature=related

Imagine there’s no heaven

It’s easy if you try

No hell below us

Above us only sky

Imagine all the people living for today

Imagine there’s no countries

It isn’t hard to do

Nothing to kill or die for

And no religion too

Imagine all the people living life in peace

You, you may say

I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one

I hope some day you’ll join us

And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions

I wonder if you can

No need for greed or hunger

A brotherhood of man

Imagine all the people sharing all the world

You, you may say

I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one

I hope some day you’ll join us

And the world will live as one!

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http://www.freehugscampaign.org/index.php

Watch this touching “Free Hugs” video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vr3x_RRJdd4

___________________________________________________

~~~ Arbor Day Foundation ~~~

http://www.arborday.org/

The Arbor Day Foundation is a nonprofit conservation and education organization, with a mission to inspire people and organizations to plant, celebrate and nurture trees. It also provides resources to connect children with nature. The Foundation plants and distributes more than 10 million trees each year, and helps to preserve rain forest land through the Rain Forest Rescue program.

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http://www.miamiherald.com mediafreedominternational.org

“…war is a different universe. What seems normal there is appalling here. It is not too much to say that war is a form of madness.” ~ Leonard Pitts. Jr., Pulitzer prize winner, 2004

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THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY:

“Hollow Man” by Bruno Catalano, France

“Joy can be real only if people look upon their life as a service, and have a definite object in life outside of themselves and their personal happiness.” ~ Leo Tolstoy

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One African legend of the Baobab tree describes what happens if you are never satisfied with what you have: The baobab was among the first trees to appear on the land. Next came the slender, graceful palm tree. When the baobab saw the palm tree, it cried out that it wanted to be taller. Then the beautiful flame tree appeared with its red flower and the baobab was envious for flower blossoms. When the baobab saw the magnificent fig tree, it prayed for fruit as well. God became tired of the complaints, and so yanked it up by its roots, and placed it upside down, to keep it quiet.” ~ Blue-Eyed Ennis, text & photo

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“By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which can be the bitterest.” ~ Confucius

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“With realization of one’s own potential and self-confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world.” ~ The Dalai Lama

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“Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.” ~W. Clement Stone

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“Brooklyn Bridge”, Portable Networks Graphic Images

“Integrity is the essence of everything successful.” ~ Buckminster Fuller

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“When small men attempt great enterprises, they always end up reducing them to the level of their own mediocrity. “ ~Napoleon I

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“Talent is often a disguise for hard work and determination” ~ Mac Proffitt

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“Freedom” by Zenos Frudakis

“It helps to have your back against the wall. Adversity is a huge advantage – as long as you think of it as an advantage – because it helps you do things you never thought you were capable of doing.” ~ Philip Anschutz

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The labyrinth at Chartres Cathedral, France

“I think happiness comes from a self-acceptance. We all try different things, and we find some comfortable sense of who we are.” ~ Jamie Lee Curtis

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“Jones Beach Sunset” photo by Chris Anastasiadis

Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.” ~ Albert Einstein

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“Plus la critique est hostile, plus l’artiste devrait se sentir encouragé.” (“The more hostile criticism is, the more the artist should feel encouraged.” ~ Marcel Duchamp

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Mahatma Gandhi’s glasses

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MOONDANCE 2012 CALL-FOR-ENTRIES & NEWS!

View from Boulder, Colorado

Moondance wishes you a very happy new year!

Louis Armstrong sings “It’s a Wonderful World”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5TwT69i1lU&feature=youtu.be

MOONDANCE 2012 CALL-FOR-ENTRIES!

Send in your entry now!

Regular submission postmark dates: January 1-June 30, 2012

Check out the Moondance website for more info!

http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com

SUBMISSION CATEGORIES:

  • FEATURE FILMS
  • SHORT FILMS
  • DOCUMENTARY FILMS
  • ANIMATION FILMS
  • MUSIC VIDEOS
  • FEATURE SCREENPLAYS
  • SHORT SCREENPLAYS
  • ORIGINAL MUSIC & FILM SCORES
  • STAGEPLAYS
  • TV PILOT SCRIPTS
  • FILMED TV PILOTS
  • TV EPISODICS
  • SHORT STORIES
  • LIBRETTI
  • RADIO PLAYS
  • & more…

In addition to English, written works in the following languages are also accepted: French, Spanish, German, Dutch & Africaans. These works will be read & judged by native speakers.

SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY TO MOONDANCE NOW!

Don’t wait until the last minute…get your entry in early!

• SIGN UP FOR THE MOONDANCE NEWS BLOG NOW!

http://moondancefilmfestival.com/

CLICK BELOW FOR 3 EASY WAYS TO SUBMIT YOUR ENTRY:

MOONDANCE OFFICIAL ENTRY FORM

ACTEVA SUBMISSION SERVICE

WITHOUTABOX.COM SUBMISSION SERVICE

MOONDANCE SCRIPT CRITIQUES:

Cynthia Butler, Moondance’s very popular reader will write a one-page critique and assessment of your submitted screenplay, stageplay, teleplay or up to 3 short stories. Check off the box for critiques on the Moondance entry form or at Withoutabox.com. The fee is a nominal $75 for each critique requested

MOVIEBYTES.COM  Lists Moondance as

“one of the top ten film festival competitions worth the entry fee!”

Are you undecided about which film festival competitions to enter this season?  You can’t go wrong by choosing Moondance first, because our finalists & winners, writers, composers and filmmakers, are happy to discover that doors are finally opened to them, after being a part of the Moondance! Please check out our SUCCESSES page, and read our archived newsletters to see what great new opportunities Moondancers enthusiastically write to us about! You could be next!

SCROLL ON DOWN FOR MORE NEWS & ITEMS OF INTEREST:

  1. MOONDANCERS WRITE US
  2. NEWS WE ALREADY KNEW
  3. TWO BRADS OR THREE? Adventures in Judging Screenplay Entries in a Film Festival
  4. THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY
  5. MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS
  6. SEEKING DONORS, SPONSORS & FRIENDS
  7. EXTRAORDINARY OPPORTUNITY

MOONDANCERS WRITE US:

Re: 2012 Moondance Film Festival at Sea: “We are avid cruisers and look forward to this opportunity to combine our two loves: writing and cruising! ~ Jan Rogers, 2011 feature screenplay for kids semi-finalist & Bruce McCay

“I understand that your mission is what separates you from other film festivals. I think it’s very interesting that you consider music and writing to be just as important as films. I haven’t heard of another film festival which places so much emphasis on music. I get the impression that one of the goals of your festival is to help up-and-comers, especially those who are marginalized by Hollywood because of their gender or the kinds of stories they want to tell. It sounds like you try your best to help the artists and help them be recognized, (and) that accessibility to the film festival experience is something you care about.” ~ Thuongvu Ho, film student at the University of California, Santa Barbara

“Our short film, EXPERYMENT6, will be aired nationwide in Australia via cable on the program series, “Dark Carnival” on Foxtel Aurora.” ~ Michael D. Lies, Producer/Writer, ALCYONE PICTURES, www.alcyonepictures.com 2009 Moondance semi-finalist film

“Thank you so much for your friendship, love and support. I am so blessed to have you in my life!” ~ Beverly Smith Dawson, Moondance screenplay winner

“My granddaughter Catherine and I remember with great fondness our experience at the 2010 Moondance Festival. You are an inspiration to young and old! We hope to see you at this year’s festival with our latest screenplay.” ~ Julie Bliss, 2010 feature screenplay winner

“We are very impressed the way your team runs this fantastic festival and giving new filmmakers an opportunity to display their work. We definitely want to submit our film to your fabulous film festival.” ~ Faizan Sheikh

NEWS WE ALREADY KNEW:

“Gender Inequality Still Has a Starring Role In Hollywood, USC Study Finds”, excerpts from a Los Angeles Times, November 11, 2011 article by Rebecca Keegan

…one facet of Hollywood moviemaking proving remarkably consistent is gender inequality, according to a study…(which) reveals an industry formula for gender that may be outside of people’s conscious awareness. It’s not just the ratio of female to male characters that continues to be imbalanced but the manner in which they’re depicted… The USC study determined that women were still far more likely than men to wear sexy clothing in movies, such as swimwear and unbuttoned shirts, to expose skin and to be described by another character as attractive.

Behind the camera, the gender inequality is just as dramatic: only 3.6% of the directors and 13.5% of the writers …were female, according to the study. Some of this is a function of the fact that we see more males working behind the scenes than females, and they’re telling the stories that they know. Women bought more than 50% of the movie tickets sold in the U.S., according to the Motion Picture Assn. of America…(but) our cultural storytellers today are male. The problem is really…about the perpetuation of the status quo.

TWO BRADS OR THREE?

Adventures in Judging Screenplay Entries in a Film Festival

By Elizabeth English

21 Suggestions to Better Your Chances of Winning,

When Entering Screenplay Competitions:

Suggestion #1: Please send your submissions in early! Don’t wait until the final deadline date! Your submission can be buried under a pile of hundreds or thousands at the bigger festivals and competitions. The readings could be hurried. Maybe the reader saw one sent in earlier and has decided that’s his or her favorite.

Suggestion #2: Two words: Two brads, sometimes called fasteners. Brass brads, SOLID brass brads #6, not those short, wimpy brass-plate brads that let the script fall apart by page 40. Acco has them at Office Max & Office Depot by special order. Try to find or special-order those little brass washers (to fit the #6 brads), too. They seriously hold the script together, even to the last page. Readers curl the script pages behind what they’ve read; they leave them overnight, half-read, to read next day. Your script is roughly handled, by three or four people. Make sure it stays together through all of that! Yes, the paper has 3 holes, but put the brads only in the top and bottom holes. Writers from outside the US might consider ordering these brads, and some 3-hole punch paper, 8 ½ X 11 size, for submissions to US competitions, agents or production companies.

Suggestion #3: Covers: please use plain cover-stock or card-stock. Print only the script title & author name on the front. Any color is OK, but white, grey or tan are preferred & more professional-looking. Do not bind your script in a high-school plastic binder or one with metal bars inside. Nothing else is acceptable but front and back card-stock covers.

Suggestion #4: Title Page: Please have the first page of your submission be the title page. Print the title, author’s name, info on copyright or WGA-registration, and the author’s contact info: mailing address, phone number & e-mail address. If you change your address, phone number or e-mail address, please let the festival know this right away, so they can contact you if you win! Send e-mail addresses for co-authors to be notified of script’s status in contest, too.

Suggestion #5: Do not write the title or your name on the binding side of the script. That makes the script look old & shopped-around. The festival readers or registration people will do that when they receive the entry.

Suggestion #6: A printed-out copy of the script from your computer looks a lot better than a copy-shop’s or a Xeroxed, faded copy. Make sure it’s nice and clear and clean, with black ink. It’s actually cheaper to print out a computer copy than it is to take it somewhere to be printed, in most cases. Check every page after printing to make sure all the pages are there, and that there are no duplicated pages or blank pages.

Suggestion #7: Use COURIER 12 point font. Nothing else will do. Hollywood likes this traditional font and size because it looks a lot like the old typewritten scripts, and makes all submissions appear equal, font-wise.

Suggestion #8: Do not try to cheat by doing a “loose” script to make your script look like 120 pages. Do not do a “tight” script, to try to make a too-long script look like 120 pages. If you have a 90-page script, that’s fine. If you have a 150-page script, you need to do some edits. Double-check every page of your submission, to make sure it’s printed clearly and that the pages are in order and none are missing or duplicated.

Suggestion #9: Have someone who is an English-major read your script for typos, incorrect grammar (except in the dialog, if that’s what you intend anyway), punctuation, spelling, syntax & other errors. You could offer to pay him or her a dollar for each error found (with which you agree). This will make you really edit in advance, like crazy, to save yourself the expense! Don’t ever rely only on your spell-check program. Print out the script and read it in hard-copy, and edit as you read. Use a red or blue pen, so you can easily find the edits when you do the re-write. Spend the time to correct the errors. Nothing makes an author look more lazy and unprofessional as lots of un-edited errors in your submission.

Suggestion #10: Format: use the standard script format found in books on the subject and in computer screenwriting programs, such as Final Draft. Don’t customize it. Use correct, standard spacing between elements and in all four of the margins.

Suggestion #11: I would love to see the second page of your submission be the logline and mini-synopsis! Film festivals and prodco readers don’t usually ask for this, or require it, but it would make reading the screenplay a lot easier and more enjoyable. Plus, if your logline is great, it induces the reader to put your screenplay submission at the TOP of his or her pile of must-read-now.

Suggestion # 12: Give your submission a GREAT title! Make it stand out and be memorable. Read the Moondance e-zine article on Titles & Loglines, for some good suggestions.

Suggestion #13: Don’t send in long résumés and lists of credits or info about your other festival wins with your entry forms and submission. It won’t help you win. It won’t (or shouldn’t) influence the readers and judges, because each festival has different criteria.

Suggestion #14: Entry fees: Attach the check or money-order with a paper-clip (don’t staple it in) to the front of the entry form. If it’s a US festival or competition, make sure the funds are in US dollars. Don’t just toss the entry fee into the bottom of the envelope. When sending a money-order, write your name on it, so we know who it’s from. When sending a check from someone else, write your name on it, and the script’s title, for the same reason. If you pay the entry fee via withoutabox.com (WAB), be sure to note your tracking number on the script.

Suggestion #15: Mailing: use the simplest packaging form possible, one that’s easy and quick to open. Don’t tape it together as if the contents were made of gold. Avoid the use of those envelopes that are full of grey fluffy kapok that gets all over desks and clothes and the floor when the reader has finally managed to slice it open. A script generally does not need a padded envelope.

Suggestion #16: Postage: use enough postage to cover the cost of mailing. Most festivals and competitions want to read a screenplay in hard-copy, but will not pay any postage due, and your entry will probably be returned to you, un-opened.

Suggestion #17: Entry forms and release forms: Please fill them out CLEARLY in black ink. Sign them. Print them, rather than using fancy cursive writing in purple or pink ink. Make sure your e-mail address is clear. If you use withoutabox.com (WAB), be sure to note your tracking number on the script, as this gives the festival judge all the info needed, when they track your submission.

Suggestion #18: Remember to enclose the entry form, release form and entry fee with your script in the same envelope.

Suggestion #19: If sending your submission from a country outside the US, please note on the customs form that it is a commercial sample, so no customs fee will be charged to the festival, agent or production company.

Suggestion #20: Do not send an SASE (self-addressed, stamped envelope) with your submission if the festival or competition announces that they will not return any entries or submissions. You’ll be wasting the postage.

Suggestion #21: Make sure your entire submission package is reader-friendly!

Every one of the above 21 suggestions are based on personal experience of mistakes former entrants made when submitting materials to Moondance or to other festivals and competitions.

As for the content of your screenplay; structure counts, usually. Have a clear Act I, II, and III. Try to hook the reader on the first page! Make the first five (or ten pages at most) be Act I, wherein you introduce all the main characters and show the reader the who, what, where, when and why of your story. Notice that I said SHOW. Telling is not so good. Film is a visual medium and you should actually be writing a FILM, not a script.

Act II is the rest of the story, where you build on what you started, and it climaxes at the clear end of Act II. Act III should be five or ten (max) pages, where all characters have been accounted for, and all loose ends are tied up and all conflicts are resolved.

Make sure you’ve defined your characters and have given them unique descriptions and qualities special to them, so they are recognizable as individual people and have depth. Same with the dialog. Don’t have every character speak the same. Or as you speak. Let the environment and ambience of the settings be shown. Show people as they would be in real life.

“Peaceable Kingdom”, Jenny Stein, director, 2009 feature doc film winner

Remember foreshadowing of events and situations! Mention the weather and seasons and time of day or night. Make sure your characters develop throughout the story, and visibly REACT, according to their personalities, to the situations, each other, and to dialog spoken to them. Don’t end scenes with just dialog; show some action or reactions to end the scene.

Have lots of conflict in action and emotions, whether personal, local, national, or world-side…or even universal. Then resolve that conflict at the end. And don’t forget to tie up all loose ends in the story, in or by the final scene.

“Alice in Wonderland” illustration by Tenniel

Avoid clichés in characterizations, dialog, actions and reactions. Do something new and interesting. Avoid like the plague having your actors speak long lines of exposition or explaining! Actors and directors and the audience never want to hear a character verbally explaining, on and on, what he or she is thinking, planning, worrying about, or is going to do, or did in the past. Action! Show it, don’t tell it!

Every word of dialog and every word of action and exposition in your screenplay must move the story forward toward its conclusion. Every scene must move the story forward. The screenplay should read like a good novel, and the reader should not want to put it down until the end.

Remember foreshadowing and transitions. Each scene should flow into the next, logically, or be hinted at in a previous scene. Don’t make the reader wonder where we are in this scene. Lead them into it. If your two characters will be going out for pizza in the next scene, or are going to rob a bank, hint at that in the previous scene(s). Set it up for the pay-off. You can have many set-ups and pay-offs in every scene, all adding to deeper characterizations, and moving the story forward and building toward the ending pay-off, which resolves the conflicts.

“Sherlock Holmes’ Smarter Brother”

It’s perfectly OK if the reader and the audience knows, or think they know, what will be happening in your story, by the first 5 pages or five minutes. That’s what Act II and the final scenes are for. You’re not writing a mystery novel where lots of plot-points are hidden, to be revealed later. Think of all the movies you’ve seen where you just know the two leads will fall in love by the end, or that the bad-guy will bite the bullet at the end, but you’ve looked forward to see how the story and characters develop.

James Dean, “Rebel Without a Cause”

Consider writing your dialog and scenes for specific actors you may have in mind, and imagine them reading your script to see if they’d like to play the parts. Give the stars and lead characters the best lines and the best action. Try to write memorable dialog &/or memorable action. The actors and the directors love it and this stuff sticks in the audiences’ minds. Remember, somebody has to spend millions of dollars on your idea, if they like it. It has to make them a profit. Most studios and production companies are not only in the business of making movies; they’re primarily in the business of making MONEY.

Judy Garland, “The Wizard of Oz”

Don’t write a director’s or production script. Don’t have scene numbers on the sluglines. Don’t use CUT-TO or DISSOLVE-TO at all. No camera angles, unless it’s vital. You’re not the director of photography, cinematographer, nor the film’s editor. MORES & CONTINUEDs at dialog and scene breaks are not needed anymore. Keep dialog and scenes on the same page: don’t break a block of dialog or a scene at the bottom of a page and continued on the next page.

Don’t direct the actors. You’re the screenwriter, not the film’s director. Too many parentheticals don’t allow the actors to do their jobs.  Try to keep the number of sluglines to 85-100, max. Each scene change during the shoot is very time-consuming and costs a lot of production money.

And finally: The more professional and reader-friendly your entire submission package is, the better your chances are of winning a competition and of selling that screenplay. Remember, when entering a competition, if your script wins or is a finalist, or even a semi-finalist, producers and agents will ask you for it, and the festival will want to be proud to have selected your screenplay!

“Wallace and Gromit” animation, UK

THOUGHTS FOR THE DAY

A sunbeam to warm you,

A moonbeam to charm you,

A sheltering angel,

So nothing can harm you.

~ Irish Blessing

Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, CA

What saying would you chisel into the stones of your palace?

As a solid rock is not shaken by a strong gale, so a wise person remains unaffected by either praise or censure. ~ Buddha

Drawing by Evelyn De Morgan (1855-1919)

Many of life’s failures are merely those who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up. ~ Thomas Alva Edison

I can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses. It’s all in how you look at it. ~ Abraham Lincoln

Romantic Rue, Paris, France

“It is more important to know where you’re going than to get there quickly. Do not mistake activity for achievement.” ~ Mabel Newcomer

The Oracle Shell, Asian

“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” ~ James Baldwin

Unicorn Tapestry, 15th century, Musee de Cluny, Paris

“Language is the apparel in which your thoughts parade before the public. Never clothe them in vulgar or shoddy attire.” ~ George Crane

“If you wait to do everything until you’re sure it is right, you will probably never do much of anything.” ~ Win Borden

Mahatma Gandhi

All you rule-breakers, you misfits & troublemakers, all you free-spirits & pioneers… Everything that the establishment has told you is wrong with you – is actually what’s right with you! Wayseers are the change engines of society. Wayseers are the one’s who know first, who sense earliest the disturbances in the fabric of human affairs – the trends, the patterns, the fashions, the revolutions that are afoot, the coming groundswells. Some Notable Wayseers: Albert Einstein, The Dalai Lama, Nikola Tesla, Leonardo Da Vinci, Mahatma Gandhi, Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, Thomas Edison, Benjamin Franklin, Amelia Earhart, Joan of Arc, Martin Luther King, Jr, Mother Teresa…

~ Go here: http://WayseerManifesto.com

MOONDANCE RECOMMENDS:

~~~The Art of Doing Nothing~~~

Doing nothing can be a waste of time, or it can be an art form. Here’s how to become a master, and in the process, improve your life, melt away the stress and make yourself more productive when you actually do work. Start small; doing nothing, in the true sense of the word, can be overwhelming if you attempt to do too much nothing at once. Do small nothings at first. Now, close your eyes, and do nothing. Then read more at: http://zenhabits.net/the-art-of-doing-nothing/

HEIFER, INTERNATIONAL: Heifer envisions a world of communities living together in peace and equitably sharing the resources of a healthy planet. Heifer’s mission is to work with communities to end hunger and poverty and to care for the Earth. By giving families a hand-up, not just a hand-out, we empower them to turn lives of hunger and poverty into self-reliance and hope. As people share their knowledge, resources, and skills – an expanding network of hope, dignity, and self-reliance is created that reaches around the globe. This simple idea of giving families a source of food rather than short-term relief caught on and has continued for over 65 years. Today, millions of families in 128 countries have been given the gifts of self-reliance. Instead of buying more “stuff”, choose a meaningful gift to give a loved one and help children and families around the world receive training and animal gifts that help them become self-reliant. http://www.habitat.org

THE WAYSEER MANIFESTO – [Official Video]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPR3GlpQQJA

Che Guevara

Please watch this important & passionate video!

Elizabeth English & Mchael Bavota at MIFF 2011

CHECK OUT THE WEBSITE OF A PROUD MOONDANCE 2011 WINNER:

http://www.michaelbavota.com/id5.html

Arthur Kanegis, on location

“In Baja this year I enjoyed the fun of being an extra in “Little Boy” a new movie coming out next August about a young boy who moves mountains to end World War II and bring his dad home from a POW camp. It was exhilarating to be on a crowded street, all whooping for joy celebrating the end of a war!” ~ Arthur Kanegis, Moondance feature screenplay & short doc film winner, www.bullyproof.com

MOONDANCE IS SEEKING DONORS, SPONSORS & FRIENDS!

Dear Friends of Moondance International Film Festival: Please seriously consider helping support Moondance’s on-going efforts to promote, inspire and encourage the world’s independent filmmakers, writers and composers, with a financial donation to start off the new year right! Your contribution makes it possible for us to enlighten, inspire, enrich, educate, and entertain through film, writing & music. Any donation amount is greatly appreciated.

A donation of $1000 or more, to help fund our 2011 film festival, will put your name, or your company’s name, in the Moondance credits as a co-producer: on our website, in the newsletters, and in the festival print program!

Thanks a million!

TO DONATE NOW, GO TO: http://www.acteva.com/go/moondance2011

TO SEE OUR SPONSOR PAGES, GO TO: http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com/04_sponsors.info.html

SPECIAL LIMITED-TIME OFFER*! Anyone who donates $1000 (or more) in 2012 to support Moondance’s continuing efforts to help make the world a better place through film, writing & music, will receive this brand-new, beautiful custom-made Luna Guitar with Victorian-era Mermaid art on both sides as a gift for your generous, much-appreciated financial support! www.lunaguitars.com

DONATE AT:  http://www.acteva.com/go/moondance2012

OTHER OPTIONS & MOONDANCE SPONSOR INFO: http://www.moondancefilmfestival.com/04_sponsors.info.html

EXTRAORDINARY OPPORTUNITY:

Would you like to host the best of Moondance films & workshops in your community, anywhere in the US and the world? Bring Moondance to your area! Contact Elizabeth English now at director@moondancefilmfestival.com to discuss the details and fabulous benefits!

____________________________________________________________

Please forward this news blog to friends and colleagues!

www.moondancefilmfestival.com/blog

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