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Orlando Was Filled With Sun, Films, And Fun For This Year's FilmapaloozaTuesday, March 26, 2019

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Orlando is home to Disney World, Universal Studios, sunny weather, and of course, this year's Filmapalooza. And "The City Beautiful" was quite the gracious host to the nearly 400 filmmakers from around the world who traveled there several weeks ago for our official 48HFP end of year festival and celebration.

48hfpfilma2019-8-loBefore the festival even officially started, some Filmapalooza attendees were treated gratis to a unique Orlando experience--they attended a very special tour of the Universal Studios production facilities that was set up just for the 48HFP. The tour showcased what it would be like for an independent filmmaker to shoot a movie using their sound stages, studios, and backlot locations, which are actually available for filmmakers to rent. The official Filmapalooza festivities started off with a Welcome Reception at EVE Orlando, where attendees were greeted by 48HFP staff and had a chance to meet up and network with each other. From there, attendees walked down the street to the Cobb Plaza Cinema for the 48HFP Retro Screening, which featured a selection of favorite Orlando-area 48HFP films, along with some other crowd pleasers from Filmapaloozas of years past. After the screening, everyone headed back to EVE for the first official after-party of the festival.

The following day marked the beginning of the screenings of the 2018 Tour's Best 48HFP Films from across the globe, all back at the Cobb Plaza Cinema. In addition to these films, there was also a special screening of the top 48HFP genre competition films. Later that day there was a special networking event just for 48HFP Team Leaders, which gave them another opportunity for some one-on-one introductions to other filmmakers around the world. 

Day Three of Filmapalooza began early for the people that keep the 48HFP running and make it such a great event for filmmakers around the world--our 48HFP City Producers. Filmapalooza is one of the few opportunities in which our vast network of producers have the chance to meet face to face--precious time used for connecting with each other, meeting with individual members of the HQ staff, and participating in special workshops designed to help producers run better 48HFP events. 

48hfpfilma2019-617-loThe final day of Filmapalooza began with a series of filmmaking workshops at the downtown Orlando Library. This was one of the biggest highlights of Filmapalooza--attendees got to learn from some of the top professionals in their respective niches--an opportunity that they probably wouldn't have access to otherwise.  A panel of industry professionals, who work with film festivals and critique films, shared their best advice on how to succeed in the film festival circuit; several of our own 48HFP filmmakers were featured in a workshop about making the transition from short film to feature films; and there were workshops on topics like preproduction, motion capture animation, low-budget filmmaking, script writing, DIY marketing and crewing, and even a workshop on film-ready practical makeup application, by the talented artists at Universal Studios. Filmmakers walked away with a wealth of knowledge and new techniques they could apply to their own film projects.

The final events of Filmapalooza started around sundown with a special Best of Filmapalooza screening at the beautiful Walt Disney Amphitheater right on Lake Eola in downtown Orlando. In between sets of 1-2 films, teams were presented with their official 48HFP Best Film trophies.

The recipient of the 48HFP's Creative Inspiration Award was also unveiled at Best Of event. 2019 is the second year for the award, which is given to a writer/director whose films inspire creativity and empower independent filmmakers around the world. This year the 48HFP honored Sofia Coppola, who is known for directing films such as The Virgin Suicides, Marie Antoinette, and Lost in Translation, for which she also won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. In 2006 she became the first American woman to win the Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival for the film Somewhere, and at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival she became the second female in the festival's history to win the Best Director Award, which she won for the film Beguiled. Ms. Coppola couldn't make it to Orlando to accept the award but thanked the 48 Hour Film Project for taking the time to honor her, and encouraged all of our filmmakers to continue striving to be inspired in their filmmaking endeavors.

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Another big announcement of the evening was the location of next year's Filmapalooza--the city of Rotterdam, in the Netherlands! The city-winning films from the 2019 48HFP tour will all screen at Filmapalooza: The Netherlands in March of 2020. Our Rotterdam City Producers Hans Groenendijk and Jasper Joosten have already begun preparations for next year's event, so brush up on your Dutch and plan on winning your city's 48HFP this year to make sure your film gets screened there.

And speaking of winning--this year's Filmapalooza ended with the announcement of the global award winners from our 2018 tour. Congratulations to Barbak & Gougoutte Films from Cote d'Azur (France)--their 48HFP film "Sonrisita" was crowned as the Global Grand Champion! The full list of award winners can be found here.  This year's selection of 48HFP films screening at the Cannes Short Film Corner was also announced--you can watch those films here. The evening concluded with a special Awards Reception, where Filmapalooza attendees toasted the winners and celebrated all of the new friendships that developed over the course of the festival. At the end of the day, Orlando's Filmapalooza turned out to be as inspirational as it was fun, and was the perfect sunny ending to what turned out to be a magical 2018 Tour for the 48HFP.

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Barbak & Gougoutte films from Cote d'Azur were the Global Grand Champions from our 2018 for their film "Sonrisita"

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