The CIFF 2008 Iron Filmmaker Winner

May 1st, 2008 by Clint Posted in film | 1 Comment »

The CIFF 2008 Iron Filmmaker Winner – Wasn’t Us!

In Livermore on April 17th, we entered the California Independent Film Festival’s 24-hour Iron Filmmaker competition. The TV show Iron Chef is the competition’s namesake. In Iron Chef a secret ingredient is revealed, and cooks compete to see who can make better culinary creations with the ingredient. In Iron Filmmaker the secret ingredients are things that need to be in contestant’s film creations.

I suspect there wasn’t enough communication between the sponsor and the festival representatives. Instead of a themed competition, we were told to make a Carl’s Jr. commercial. The sponsor didn’t make the proper connection to Iron Chef, and in the printed rules they even called the event the “Ironman Film Contest”. The prizes were great for encouraging first-time filmmakers, but were at least an order of magnitude less than usual for an advertisement competition. The Contra Costa Times covered the kick-off (EDIT: but since put the article behind a pay-wall).

I wanted to make a film, I wanted to be creative in the spirit of the competition, and I wanted to make it impossible to use our work as a promotion. I feel sorry for the people who paid to watch – under normal circumstances they would’ve been paid for being in the focus group and watching commercial after commercial.

We got the biggest laughs, and the biggest applause, and somehow didn’t place in the top three. There was a scary moment when they stopped the film after the first segment and had to re-start it. The momentum was lost, but it didn’t really matter in the end.

After work, Aaron went grocery shopping while I drove Nick around town to gather footage before sunset. We filmed in Aaron’s kitchen and wrapped up within a couple hours. Marisa kept me caffeinated while I edited all night long. I made it out the door just in time for the traffic jam on the freeway. The back-roads were slow, but I made the submission deadline.

Thanks again to everyone who helped out. I had a great time in spite of the flawed premise, and am proud of what we accomplished.

One Response to “The CIFF 2008 Iron Filmmaker Winner”

  1. This video is improved by the backstory. I watched it before I understood what was going on, and it didn’t quite make sense, because it seemed like an advertisement but instead of wanting the crummy burger I wanted the S2000 and steak.

    I think the commentary from the Contra Costa Times is priceless. A Berkeley guy storms off (rightfully angry), and the kids don’t care that their pimp is keeping all their money.

    The organizer doesn’t see any conflict of interest, or if he does, he doesn’t act like it is a problem. Why wouldn’t all these people want to give their creative labor to a large corporation for no benefit? What a joke.

    And then you come in, find a way to express yourself and avoid being taken advantage of. It is good work, it shows conception, execution, and creativity in the spirit of the advertised competition (as opposed to the actual competition). And it is funny.

    Nice job.

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