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"The Art of the Pitch" Workshop

with Joanne Butcher

PART I: “The Art of the Pitch: A Day-Long Workshop”

TBD | 10am-5pm @ the Arbor Institute

There is perhaps no skill more important for an independent filmmaker to hone than the verbal pitch. This full-day workshop, led by renowned filmmaker coach Joanne Butcher (bio below), will teach you the skills to deliver a pitch so powerful that people will be rushing up to you to get involved. You will also learn about the business assets necessary to turn those conversations into tangible funds afterwards. Film projects of all stages are welcome - but to advance through the entire series, you will need a budget, timeline, and impact/distribution ideas in place, as well as an unwavering sense of story. From that pool, LUCA staff will determine which projects move forward. You don’t have to participate in the entire series to attend this workshop. Lunch and light refreshments provided.


10-11am - Introductions 

During this time everyone, including Joanne, will introduce themselves and the current film/series they are working on


11am-12pom - Your Audience

Who are you pitching? How do you speak to funders? 


12-1pm - Writing a Logline that Sells

There are many different approaches to writing a logline. Here, Joanne will focus on going beyond story to write a logline that focuses on selling.


1-2pm - Networking Lunch 

A great opportunity to practice your pitch in a friendly environment! Lunches provided on-site - please let us know if you have dietary restrictions.


2-3pm - Role Play

We will divide the room into two groups: Funders and Pitching Filmmakers. Funders: Who’s film would you invest in, and why? Then, switch!  Each group will report out on their experiences.


3-4pm - The Complete Package

Logline + Project timeline + Request for $ = Your Pitch

This section will empower filmmakers through an energizing round of exercises, a fun game of pitching each other’s films, and time to put everything together into a pitch and ask that gets results.


4-5pm - Preparing for Donor Conversations

What happens after the pitch, when a funder walks up to you and wants to give or invest? LUCA will talk through the investment side; Joanne will discuss donations. Filmmakers will learn exactly what they need to have prepared to move conversations into action. 


5pm - Workshop ends. Optional drinks out on the town! 

stay tuned for new date


Joanne Butcher, a film producer and business coach to independent filmmakers, teaches fundraising, film financing, and screenwriting. She has worked extensively with hundreds of filmmakers from the U.S., U.K., Brazil, Cuba, the Caribbean, and Latin America. Currently, her clients’ work includes 46 feature-length films (narrative and documentary), a PBS series, and several shorts, in various stages of development. 


Previously, Joanne was director of the Alliance Cinema on Lincoln Road, Miami Beach, IFP/Miam, and a founder of IFP/National. She created and spearheaded the Florida Statewide Film Competition that provided $200,000 cash and services to a winning feature film. Joanne worked as a global marketing consultant for YouTube, eventually running their U.K. movie rental unit and collaborating with engineers and curatorial teams around the world.


Joanne’s mentors include James Schamus (producer/screenwriter for Ang Lee’s THE ICE STORM and CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON); Ted Hope (producer, IN THE BEDROOM, 21 GRAMS); Laura Bickford (producer, TRAFFIC), and Lucy and Luis Carlos Barreto, who have made more than 200 films in Brazil and produced two filmmaker sons, both Oscar-nominees. 


Joanne is an internationally renowned speaker, and writes regularly on filmmaking.

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