Wednesday, July 30, 2008

SALESGIRL at the Laemmle

Yesterday at this time I was on the set of the short film SALESGIRL (directed and produced by the super-talented Sara Pratter), and today it's entirely finished (complete with an original score, amazing costumes and a ton of vision) and screening at the Laemmle Theater!  That's the glory of the DWF 2-step film challenge!  Our team had 4 hours to shoot and edit, and I had the pleasure of acting in it. Our friends at Canon (who provided the cameras) said that SALESGIRL turned out great!  I can't wait to see it! Tonight 7pm. Be there.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I'm OK, Are You OK?

Just had a 5.6 earthquake.  Jenn's living room window fell out and smashed into pieces. :( My cell phone is out, the land line is down at Jenn's. I can see that Matt and Kristen have left me voice-mails, but I can't listen to them.  rrrr.  The internet is up (obviously), and I have ichat on.  Matt, try to IM me.  Ok?  xoxo

Monday, July 28, 2008

Taking My Own Advice

Thanks to my friends at DWF, and thanks to the healing power of art, I'm inspired again. I had been feeling very down for quite a while. (I still can't figure out why I'm attracting unkind people into my life these days. It happened again this week. I'm feeling like I was used, and it's depressing.) I think the lesson here is that it's time to start thinking about my own projects again. Last week at a Goddess meeting, I gave Tam some advice, and I just realized that it applies to me too! I need a creative outlet. I feel all bottled up. I NEED to create something... Not Just POTA (for other people) but some ART. Just thinking about this, I feel so much better. Also: eat better and exersize more!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

11 Feature Films in 5 days

This week is the Dances With Films Festival at the Leammle Theater on Sunset,and I'm watching 11 features in 5 days! Today I watched numbers 5, 6 and 7.  Good stuff.  Good people.  Good fun.  This is the festival where PURGATORY HOUSE has it's Los Angeles premiere in 2004, and MORBID CURIOSITY played in 2006.  I'm feeling inspired to get on with ODD BRODSKY, financing or not.  I saw a film last night that was shot on the Viper, and it's the first time I saw something shot in HiDef video that actually looked spectacular, and could make me consider shooting OB on something other than film. 

Saturday, July 26, 2008

SAG Says No to Majors' Final Offer

According to today's Variety: The month long contract stalemate between SAG and the majors shows no signs of a breakthrough anytime soon. Instead, both sides have settled in for continued sniping — probably for the rest of the summer...  Read full story here.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Baby Baer

Our family is expanding. Now don't go getting any crazy ideas... I'm going to be an Auntie!  My brother Josh and his wife Amy are expecting Baby Baer in November. Here's a photo of the little one from the great beyond. Modern technology is amazing.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Real 3D Has Arrived

I'll admit that when Matt suggested we see JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH in 3D this weekend, it wasn't at the top of my "must see" list.  Well, it should have been! What an amazing experience. This new Real-D technology is simply spectacular.  I can't remember the last time I had this much fun at a movie!  Forget those old 3D glasses with one red eye and one blue eye.  This new technology uses polarization, and it's truly unlike 3D movies of the past.  Going to a Real-D movie is more like an experience than art!  I can't even begin to describe this, so I will simply say: you must go check this movie out in 3D.  FUN!  For a nice back story about the evolution of 3D movies and Hollywood, check this story out.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

AMPTP Makes Direct Appeal To SAG Members

Story by IMDB: The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers has placed an ad in yesterday's (Monday) Los Angeles Times quoting the leaders of the four major Hollywood unions who extolled the agreements that they had signed with the AMPTP earlier this year. The ad also notes that its final offer to SAG would result in $250 million in pay raises over three years, increases in minimum payments, pensions and health contributions, and the same terms for work in new media that were accepted by the other unions. But at a membership meeting on Saturday, SAG leaders bashed the previous agreements and insisted that they would hold out for better terms. Meanwhile, yesterday's L.A. Times, citing unnamed guild insiders, reported that at a board meeting scheduled for July 26, SAG leaders will likely decide to put the studios' offer to a membership vote -- either without an endorsement or with a recommendation that it be rejected.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Monday and Blue

It's hard not to feel depressed with all that happened at the end of July through the middle of August. I've really tried to put these bad things out of my mind and move past my injuries, but it's not working. I hoped that time would heal my wounds, but sometimes only actions help. I don't understand why people are unkind. I know this sounds naive, but I always believed that human nature was innately good. It's funny: this statement makes is sound like I've had an easy life, but anyone who knows my history knows my life has been far from easy. I've created everything my life is today, myself. I think part of how I overcame my childhood was realizing that when I was an adult I would have the freedom to choose the people in my life. I pictured myself surrounded by loving, good, kind people who had integrity. And I'm so very grateful that those are exactly the people I have the privilege of sharing my life with today. The problem is that there's no way to completely avoid the others. The internet (with its anonymity) brings out the bad side of people. And so today I am still feeling very down. I hope the clouds life soon. I'm tired. My life story will make one hell-of-a book one day.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

In Honor of Christopher Walken

In honor of Christopher Walken's Saturday Night Live re-run last night, please enjoy one of my favorites: Weapon Of Choice - Fatboy Slim.  Click on the photo to view video. (Then choose "high quality" on the youtube player).

Friday, July 18, 2008

Filmmaking Panel

Last night I had the pleasure of speaking on a filmmaking panel at USC given by Eve Honthaner, who was founder of the Film Industry Network, and is a well known author of some amazing industry books. It was fun recounting stories about the marketing and film festival strategy for PURGATORY HOUSE. I got to hear stories from fellow panelists including my producer friend Milan, (who's lastest film ROCK SLYDE just finished shooting last month), and award-winning director Stuart Altman.  Also on the panel was L. Todd Taylor from, a different kind of distributor who has a new business model. (He says he prides himself on being an honest distributor). Thanks for a great night everyone!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

No Deal from SAG

I just received an email from SAG saying they are not accepting the terms of the AMPTP contract.  "Your national negotiating committee has not accepted the June 30 offer put across the table by the Alliance of Motion Pictures and Television Producers (AMPTP.) For one reason and one reason only: It’s not a good offer. It doesn’t address enough of your priorities (as outlined in past SAG Contract 2008 Reports), particularly in new media..."

So what happens now?  With the Writer's strike earlier this year California has already lost billions of dollars in revenue.   Even though the SAG strike has not yet happened, its already affecting our industry, an my own life personally.  As the studios halt production, big DP's (like Matthew Libatique who shot IRON MAN and John Bailey who shot a ton of main stream films including THE BIG CHILL and AS GOOD AS IT GETS) and other studio crew people are reportedly taking smaller budgeted Independent films away from the littler fish.  Littler fish meaning... us.  What a year it's been for our industry.  And it's only July. I'm worried.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Join us on Facebook

Patron of the Arts has it's own group on facebook now!  Come join us at:

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $20,000.

I'm sorry to announce that we were not awarded the grant.  Thanks so much to everyone for your love and support and your vote!  Many of you are encouraging us to try one more time, since we came in second place.  Please understand that I just can't bring myself to commit to this right now and potentially go through what happened again.  Besides everything else, it's very time consuming. Reaching out to people, I put in more hours than working 2 full time jobs for all of June!  That being said: I've had 2 weeks to process this now. I realize that we really do need funding to start this nonprofit, before it can benefit anyone. So I'm trying to stay open. How about this: Let's wait.  Let's see how July goes.  If the SA people do not participate in the July competition, we may try again.  But no promises. Okay? 

From the bottom of my heart: thank you to every single person who championed this project.  I am so grateful for you all.  Cindy

Monday, July 14, 2008

First Milestone

Jenn and I finished our Articles of Incorporation on Friday and just mailed them to the Secretary of State!  POTA is on its way to becoming a non-profit!  

Sunday, July 13, 2008

DWF Festival is July 24-31

If you love truly independent film, come check out the 11th annual DWF Festival, which will be held July 24-31 at the historic Leammlee Theater on Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood.  I had the honor of being on the programming committee for the second year in a row, and there are some really great films!  There will also be fun parties, seminars and events. For info/schedule visit

And don't forget: tomorrow night (Monday July 14 at 11:59pm) is the deadline for the DWF 2-minute 2-step short film challenge! The jury-selected winning short receives AMAZING prizes including: a Canon HV30 camcorder, Baseline Film Tracker software, a Showbiz Labor Guide, Showbiz Film and TV contract software, and a ticket to "The Secrets to Distribution Seminar by Jerome Courshon"! 

Dances With Films has an amazing energy, great networking opportunities, and really good people. Good luck! --See you there!

Friday, July 11, 2008

SAG Ponders Deal

Story by Home Media Magazine

Screen Actors Guild (SAG) leadership continued to mull over a contract proffered by The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) the evening of July 10.

The AMPTP’s final offer to SAG includes more than $250 million in additional compensation over the course of the three-year contract, as well as new-media terms. The current contract, which expired June 30, is still being recognized on an interim basis. Producers said they would make wage and salary increases outlined in their offer retroactive to July 1 if it is ratified by Aug. 15. Still, producers did not revise the DVD residual rate — a source of considerable consternation to SAG president Alan Rosenberg. The current DVD residual rate pays 3% for TV and 3.6% (movies) of the distributor’s gross receipts.  “We remain hopeful that SAG will accept our final offer,” the producers said in a statement.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Picture This: EIC Publciations

As part Entertainment Industry Counsil's ongoing effort to encourage accurate portrayals of addiction and health issues in film and TV, EIC has created some great resource guides. These publications are based on EIC's "Picture This" forums aimed at generating discussion and consensus building between the entertainment industry and health experts.  

I had the honor of speaking on a "Picture This" panel in Washington DC regarding the making of PURGATORY HOUSE, which is featured in the EIC publication: Depression and Suicide. The EIC also hosts the annual Prism Awards.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

AFTRA Approves New Contract

 According to The American Federation of Television & Radio Artists (AFTRA) ratified their primetime agreement, quashing SAG's efforts to have the contract voted down.

The AFTRA deal was passed by 62% of voting members and echo those signed by WGA and DGA. SAG had wanted this deal killed to gain leverage with producers. SAG feels actors should get better terms in new media, DVD residuals and salary minimums. AFTRA claims their contract keeps people employed and increases salaries without concessions.  In brief, primetime TV minimums increase by 3.5% 7/1/08 with an additional 3% on 7/1/09 and 3.5% on 7/1/10.

SAG agreed to meet with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) 7/10/08 to discuss the last and apparently final offer presented more than a week ago.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Paralyzed by Opportunity

OK, I am completely overwhelmed by the internet. There are so many resources available and websites, and databases and forums and tools. I don't know where to even begin. I suppose these are good problems, but I am literally feeling paralyzed, and very unorganized right now. Help?

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Try Blue. It's the New Red.

We saw the movie WALL-E this weekend.  Watching all the isolated, animated people in the film mesmerized by their computers felt like a sad commentary on society (and my own life).  It's inspired me to take a hiatus from email!  I spend hours every day just keeping up with emails, many of which are correspondences with friends. I feel like I've become too disconnected from the real world.   So I'm cutting back!  If you don't hear from me right away, feel free to give me a call! I'm going to make an effort to call you too.  I miss our human connection.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

On 4th of July weekend, NASA forecasts lights in the sky

Story by NASA: Look beyond the fireworks. Almost halfway up the western sky, just above the twilight glow of sunset, a trio of worlds is gathering: Saturn, Mars and the crescent Moon.

The show gets going on Friday, July 4th. Red Mars and ringed Saturn converge just to the left of the bright star Regulus. The three lights make a pretty 1st-magnitude line in the heavens. But that is just the beginning. On Saturday, July 5th, with weekend fireworks at fever pitch, a lovely crescent Moon joins the show. Saturn, Mars, and the Moon trace an even brighter line than the night before.

Scan a small telescope along the line. You'll see Saturn's rings, the little red disk of Mars, a grand sweep of lunar mountains and craters, and just maybe—flash!—a manmade incendiary. How often do you see fireworks through a telescope? 

During the short night of July 5th, the Moon glides past Mars and Saturn so that nightfall on Sunday, July 6th, brings a different arrangement—a scalene triangle. The triad is easy to find in the hours after sunset. Look west and let the Moon be your guide.

In the nights that follow, the Moon exits stage left, leaving the others behind. Don't stop watching, though. Saturn and Mars are converging for their closest encounter of the next 14 years. After nightfall on Thursday, July 10th, the two planets will be just ¾ of a degree apart, snug enough to fit behind the tip of your pinky finger held at arm's length: sky map.

Symbolic Dream

5:35am, Saturday Morning.
I just woke up from a nightmare. I dreamed I drove my car to a parking lot, parked and left. When I returned to my car it was beginning to rain pretty hard. There was a parking attendant there, who was ready to go home for the night. He told me to go to my car and wait out the storm which would end soon. I made it to my car, but the rain got much worse. I became stuck inside as the pouring rain continued all night, and rose around me, until my car was floating in a lake of water. Eventually I knew nobody was coming to help me. I climbed out the window and jumped onto the roof tops of other floating cars which made a trail to dry land. When I got to land, there was a police station right there! I sloshed inside and told them what had happened, asking how I might get my car back so I could drive home. They asked me why I had not sought help before I became trapped. I explained that the parking guy said to wait out the rain, and I'd be fine. The policeman said it was the responsibility of the parking lot owners to protect me, since they had advance warning that a terrible storm, the likes of which they had never seen before, was on it's way.  I wondered how I would ever get home.

This was one of those dreams that felt very real.  The kind that is a relief to wake up from.  I'm going to try and go back to sleep now.

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Birthday

The 4th of July has always been one of my favorite holidays.   I am so grateful to be alive in this day and age, and living as a woman in the United States.  Sometimes I sit and think about how completely different my life would be had I simply been born in another country, or even at a different place in time. We are so very fortunate compared to many nations, and as a person who lives her life trying to make a positive difference in the world, I never take my freedoms for granted.   

So today, I'll put on my annual outfit (red, white and blue pants), go have an American BBQ with a group of good friends, wish my dear friend Larisa a happy 40th birthday (thanks Larisa for always supporting my dreams), remember my beautiful Grandmother Lillian (who was also born on this day, and to me defined the term "unconditional love") and enjoy a fourth without fireworks, in honor of all those who are suffering through the currently burning California blazes.  Happy Birthday USA!

A Fourth Without Fireworks

California is burning. Lighting strikes have started thousands of fires this week, and over 70 are still burning in Santa Barbara county. There's been a mandatory evaluation for residents along 25 miles of PCH and all of Big Sur (which is home to writers and artists inspired by living in one of the most beautiful places in the country) has been evacuated. 55,000 acres have burned, threatening 12,000 homes and a number of historic buildings. High temperatures, high winds and low humidity make the work of firefighters more difficult.

Gov. Schwarzenegger has requested Californians to refrain from using fireworks this year. According to the LA Times, "Instead of temporarily forbidding sparklers and their pyrotechnic kin, he should be pushing for a permanent, statewide ban on so-called safe and sane fireworks... Especially bad fire seasons are becoming less special in California. As global warming raises temperatures and lowers precipitation through much of the state, longer and drier fire seasons are predicted for coming decades." Please take extra care when celebrating this year.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Matt Danced

14 months in the making, 42 countries, and a cast of thousands.  Thanks to Goddess Tamara for sending me this. It made me smile! (from Matthew Harding on Vimeo.)

Back To Calm (Office Space Anyone?)

Boy, It's good to finally get some rest.  With the grant competition over, and the house no longer filled with people all day, it's nice to have down time.   And just in time for the holiday weekend!

One thing this whole experience has made me realize is that the time has come for an office space. Ideally, we'd like something in Burbank or Studio City with two large rooms; one for the office area, where we can have a several workstations set up, and the other room as a meeting/rehearsal type room.   Maybe there is another company who has some extra space they can donate or rent out for very cheap?  If anyone has ideas, let me know.  

Abigail from Elmidae

Abigail is a very talented artist/designer who was in the finals with POTA. Check out this amazing ad she made for the competition! Her dresses rock too. If you need something for a premiere or a festival gala, go to:

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

SAG Strike Update

Dear SAG Member:

Your national negotiating committee and the industry bargained throughout the weekend and are continuing bargaining yesterday. Nonetheless, the Screen Actors Guild Codified Basic and Television Agreements which cover television programs and motion pictures expired Monday June 30th, at midnight. All members should continue to report to work and to audition for new work past the expiration date until further notice from the Guild. Such work will be covered under the terms of the expired television and theatrical agreements.

Members are also reminded that the Commercials Contract, Basic Cable Live Action Agreement, Basic Cable Animation Agreement, Television Animation Agreement, Interactive Media Agreement, Internet Agreement, and Industrial & Educational Contract are unaffected by the status of these negotiations, and members should continue to audition and work under them as usual.   If you have questions, please email

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Waiting Game.

Hi everyone,
Well, it's been an extremely long 9 days.  Thanks to everyone who took the time to vote and have your voice be heard in the grant competition, and for sharing this crazy journey with Jenn and me.  We had a ton of votes come in yesterday, and I only hope it's enough to win, considering the loss of our Craig's Lists votes.  To everyone who has phoned or sent emails, I'll let you know when I hear anything.  (Also, I believe the contest sends out an email announcing the winners to everyone who voted.)

Jenn and I want to send our heartfelt thanks to everyone who voted for us, including friends, family, and all the amazing organizations including: The Hampton's Table, Dances With Films, Film Radar, Filmmaker's Alliance, SoCalFilm,, Micro Filmmaker Magazine, Filmmakers at the LA Film Festival, Hollywood Happy Hour and team leaders and blogger/posters: Robin Brodsky, Susan Shearer, Debi Hall, Jim Shea, Kathy Close, Seth Aronson, Deidre Wagner, Serita Stevens, Barbara Kerr Condon, Lisa Lee, Cyndy Bohonovsky, Joshua & Amy Baer, Anne Marie Bank, Julie Marsh, Lis Fies, Neil Kaplan Alex E, Leslee, Morgan, Matt and our last but not least Kristin.  (I'm adding to this list as I think of people --please let me know if I've left you off!!)  

With love and gratitude,