Local independent movie producer to speak at European film festival

Get to Know about the Raindance Film Festival

everything>Raindance Film Festival aims to nurture, support and promote independent films and filmmakers from the United Kingdom and around the world. The festival is known for being bold, edgy and sometimes daring, screening all genres of feature fiction and documentary and more than 200 shorts. everything>Source: raindance.org

Anthony Pedone is passionate about the art of filmmaking. But, he would like to see changes on the business side of the industry.

He said he will do what it takes to ensure the film's completion.

"I make movies because I love working with creative people and you cannot put a dollar amount on that," he said.

Pedone said he would like to make more movies in Victoria. In fact, he plans to attend the city council meeting on Tuesday to lobby for funds on behalf of Texas Artists' Cultural Alliance.

Pedone said the alliance's purpose is to enhance the lives of self-described artists as well as laypeople in the state of Texas by providing quality programs and developing national and international artistic relationships.

He set up the event, "Making Movies in Victoria," on Facebook to garner more support.

After Pedone meets with local council members, he will fly to England to take part in the Raindance Film Festival.

The 10-day trip has multiple purposes.

As soon as Pedone lands, he will begin filming "Culture Shock," as an associate producer. The independent film is about four American college graduates who take their first trip abroad and get caught in an international crime ring.

Pedone will also speak on the panel for the Independent Film Union SAGIndie and Equity. Pedone describes the association as the United Kingdom's equivalent of the Screen Actors Guild.

The 41-year-old producer said that more affordable technology allows independents to make movies. But, the Screen Actors Guild rules can cause a financial strain.

"Digital content has never been a major issue, so long as there are always major festivals," said Xavier Rashid, of London. In his opinion, independent filmmakers start making movies just to say they created them, even if it is as a lower standard.

Pedone, a Victoria High School graduate, said he doesn't want to compromise quality because he wants the film to be be visually appealing.

The budgets between producers of major motion-pictures and independent films vary. Yet Pedone said, they do share a common interest.

"We all want to make money and be successful," he said.

Pedone said under current rules, actors must be paid at least $100/day and up to $20 additionally for insurance.

The filmmaker said he would like to see SAG produce a waiver for the union actors to sign to receive deferred payment until after the sale of the film.

"It's either pay them according to SAG rules or work outside the union," he said, "SAG frowns upon that."

Some actors have approached Pedone about getting a waiver, but they are afraid to speak out against the union because they fear being blackballed.

In an ideal setting, Pedone would like to make agreements with the actors to work on a pro-bono basis.

The arrangement would be mutually beneficial because it lowers production costs and gives members of the cast more acting credits and free promotion.

Pedone will also premiere two films at the Raindance Film Festival.

The London-based festival began in 1993 and has premiered hits including "Pulp Fiction" and the "Blair Witch Project."

Pedone's "Camp Casserole" will show on Sept. 30 He was the producer and director.

The independent film is about a filmmaker named Steve Balderson who puts the entire cast and crew in the same living quarters before and during the shoot.

And as a result, the experience is more like a summer camp than an actual job.

"It's like a real life 'Boogie Nights' without the sex and drugs," according to raindance.org.

Pedone and his wife, Kelly Pedone, star in the "Casserole Club," which will show on Sept, 29. It is about a group of mod 1960's era suburban housewives.

Pedone said he plans to network during his European trip.

And once he returns to Victoria, he will start working on a new film and a festival.

His desire to create will keep him going,

"I just love being able to do all this," he said.