ICYMI: The Best of November 2016 on Moviemaker.com

Break out of that Thanksgiving food coma and join us as we wrap up November 2016 on Moviemaker.com with our monthly best-of list.

Here are our staff’s top 10 picks of this month’s indie film art and business coverage. Dig in!


1. Absolute Submission: Top Programmers Share the Secrets to Getting Into the Festivals of Your Dreams (by Roya Rastegar)

You wanted comprehensive? We got comprehensive. Our braintrust of leading programmers joined heads to flesh out this chart-filled manual on the ins and outs of successfully submitting your indie to the film festival of your dreams.

2. MovieMaker’s 2017 Guide to DIY Digital Distribution: Our Fifth Annual VOD Overview (by Erin Trahan)

Think really hard about this question: Why are you making your film? Recouping investments may not be possible. Use our annual digital distribution guide to recalibrate your idea of success. You may have to sacrifice the emotional satisfaction of a theatrical presence, or shell out the bucks to make it happen.

3. Elle Director Paul Verhoeven: “Look at American Movies, There is a Total Addiction to Destruction” (by Amir Ganjavie)//“You Either Are an Actor or You Aren’t an Actor”: An Interview with Isabelle Huppert (by Carlos Aguilar)

Dutch auteur Paul Verhoeven and French performative powerhouse Isabelle Huppert tapped into a feral intensity to make their acclaimed revenge thriller Elle. Both sat down with MovieMaker to reflect on the film’s leading role that sent most actors running for the hills, the destructive impulses of American cinema and more.

Paul Verhoeven directs Isabelle Huppert on the set of Elle

4. Motion Picture Production Guide 2017: 25 Resources to Get Your Film Made Faster, Cheaper, Better (by MM Staff)

Put together with the oversight of some indie producers, we present to you our 2017 Motion Picture Production Guide—more streamlined, more personal and helpful as ever.

5. Tell MM: What Movies Made You a Better Person? (by MM Staff)

Still reeling from the election? Or just doing some overdue soul-searching? Either way, come join our conversation on the films that shaped your character and consciousness by telling us what movies made you a better human being.

6. Train Yourself to Be Open to Ideas: Jeff Nichols on Screenwriting (by Jeff Nichols)

“Don’t think about what the industry wants out of you, or what was successful last week. That’s a real fool’s game,” cautions Loving writer-director Jeff Nichols. Instead, he advises screenwriters, open yourself to the “inspiration bouncing off the walls” and the images popping into your head.

7. Criterion Crash Course: Moviemaking Lessons From Criterion’s Lone Wolf and Cub (by Joe Yanick) and Punch-Drunk Love (by Kelly Leow)

Our Criterion Crash Course series explores every aspect of The Criterion Collection’s packages as weapons in a moviemaking arsenal. Learn to carve your own path as an independent producer with Kenji Misumi, Yoshiyuki Kuroda and Buichi Saito’s Lone Wolf and Cub series, and to integrate your film’s soundtrack and story with Paul Thomas Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love.

Lena Leonard (Emily Watson) and Barry Egan (Adam Sandler) wine, dine, whine and opine in Paul Thomas Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love

8. “Americana With a Hint of Jaundice”: DP Seamus McGarvey Talks Style, Mood of Nocturnal Animals (by Paula Schwartz)

Social decay and emotional ugliness fester like sores in designer-turned-director Tom Ford’s sophomore psychodrama, Nocturnal Animals. Cinematographer Seamus McGarvey spoke with us about the fun challenge of turning Ford’s fastidious fashion sense into a “meandering, kaleidoscopic” visual scheme, the beauty of shooting on film and more.

9. Secrets of Successful Screenwriting Teams: How to Avoid Bloodshed When Writing a Script With a Partner (by Lauri Donahue)

When you work so closely with someone on something so subjective, how do you avoid tearing your partner’s hair out when conflicts arise? Some screenwriting pairs who’ve been there and kept (most of) their hair share their secrets.

10. Meeting Expectations: How to Take a Meeting Like an Old Hollywood Pro, Even as a First-Time Filmmaker (by Jessica Sharzer)

Wear deodorant, know who you’re meeting with, don’t trash-talk and oh—don’t bullshit. Invaluable advice on taking meetings. MM

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