Elo Films Duo: Filmmaker Magazine’s 25 New Faces of Indie Film

Excerpt from Filmmaker Magazine:

“Husband and wife filmmaking team Logan George and Celine Held have a bit of advice for those looking to interweave drama-free creative and personal partnerships. “We try to adopt a ‘no bullshit’ rule with each other,” says George. “It’s a phrase we say that enters us into a safe space,” continues Held, “and then we tell the other what’s bothering us. ‘No bullshit!’”

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“It’s good to know that the couple have a mechanism to sort out creative disagreements because a visit to the website of ELO Films, the company they formed in 2015, reveals a dizzying array of work, from commercial spots to artistic passion projects. Both Held and George — who operate as their own two-person crew (George shoots and edits, Held does sound) — have degrees in drama from NYU and originally pitched themselves to international schools as film and drama teachers. A trip to Oman resulted in them making a promotional video for British School Muscat there. “We made it artsy and edgy and a cut above,” says George. The clip led to more videos for more schools, something that’s now a real business, with Held having reached out to more than 300 schools to pitch their services.

“With their filmmaking income, the two make shorts and are preparing for a feature shoot this fall. (“We don’t have anything better to spend our money on than narrative work,” says George.) Just in 2017, there have been three wildly different but equally strong films. The SXSW-premiering Mouse is a stomach-wrenching, Trainspotting-esque blast about a desperate, strung-out couple (George and Vanessa Wasche) who try to use a dead mouse to scam a cereal company. Based on a real incident from Held’s life, Valencia Road is a quiet meditation on a mysterious nonfriendship that occurs between two women, one of whom rescues the other from a car wreck. And Fever deftly crosscuts among four teenage stories taking place in Japan, the United States, Oman and Nepal, building to a wrenching succession of crisis moments. “Celine is the genesis of all our ideas,” says George. “She’s the one who does all our research and first drafts.” “And Logan is our editor,” continues Held. “For pretty much all of our work, he’ll come in and rework the ending.”

“Three more shorts in various stages of production are all leading up to the feature, Little, about a heroin-addicted mother and her daughter living in the tunnels beneath New York. The duo extensively researched the project, even creating an online doc series, 50 Moments, comprised of interviews with the homeless they spoke with. The film’s setting is Freedom Tunnel, on Manhattan’s West Side, a site Held and George found via their passion for urban exploration. Indeed, they write in an e-mail, wherever they travel, “we try to find an abandoned site to explore. Our favorite by far is the Sathorn Unique — a 49-story tower in Bangkok that was abandoned just after the frame was built. Other favorite sites include the Red Hook Grain Terminal, a stadium ruined by the earthquake in Kathmandu and an abandoned prison in Lille, France. Urban exploration has always been something that helps us see a city in a new way.”

The Black List and David Cronenberg Producer Martin Katz Team Up to Award Nadeem Siddiqui

Excerpt from Hollywood Reporter

“Now the service is also honoring screenwriters at the Toronto Film Festival as the prizing-giving there got underway Thursday. The Black List and David Cronenberg’s producer Martin Katz teamed up to award Nadeem Siddiqui their 2017 TIFF/Martin Katz Independent Screenwriting Fellowship.

“As part of the fellowship, Siddiqui receives an all-expense paid trip to TIFF, which runs through Sept. 17. Siddiqui’s dark romantic comedy script Slut made the cut on The Black List, whose ranked screenplays have gone on to be produced and earned 50 Oscars and more than $26 billion in box office worldwide.

“Nadeem’s writing is assured, funny and in-your-face sexy. He has written a romp of a romantic comedy, and I’m excited to be able to introduce him to the industry at TIFF,” Katz said Thursday. Katz via his Prospero Pictures shingle has produced Cronenberg films like Spider, A Dangerous Method, Cosmopolis and Maps to the Stars, which earned Julianne Moore the best actress Palme d’Or in Cannes.

“Katz is also chair of the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television. Siddiqui is represented by Woolf + Lapin Agency”

Featured Script: Nadeem Siddiqui’s SLUT

Nadeem Siddiqui just joined our roster. His script SLUT caught our attention. It is riotously and daringly funny.

The script also got the attention of Martin Katz who included Nadeem in his Screenwriting Fellowship for this year’s TIFF.

The Martin Katz Canadian Independent Screenwriting Fellowship is a program designed to encourage and identify new Canadian talent in the field of independent cinema by awarding one screenwriter with an all-expenses paid trip to the Toronto International Film Festival, an opportunity to meet with Producer Martin Katz (Cosmopolis, Hotel Rwanda) and a participant slot in the Black List’s Toronto Screenwriters Mini-Lab at TIFF.

Woolf+Lapin Signs Emerging Czech Director Robert Hloz

We are very excited to be working with the up and coming, award-winning director Robert Hloz. Robert is Prague-based and this works very well with Woolf+Lapin’s aim on developing talent through its European office.

Everything he has touched has garnered awards and recognition.

Robert is developing his first feature film, Restore Point. It is a futuristic piece set in a post-immigrant Europe.

In 2017, the project was selected for the Hong-Kong Asia Film Forum and Fantasia’s Frontières co-production markets. It also won the Best Project Award at Midpoint Feature Launch in 2016.

Production will be handled by Jan Kallista through Prague’s Film Kolektiv.

Marshmallow Laser Feast’s Colossal Wave at Montreal’s 375th

Congratulations to our friends at Marshmallow Laser Feast and we wish them a colossal success with this new VR experience that launched the 30th of August.

“Virtual Reality is usually a solitary affair, but this time you are invited to collectively experience aural and visual immersion in a public space.

An actual ball dropped from a great height allows goggle wearers to witness an eruption of colorful drawings. Actions in the real and virtual realms merge, freeing the imagination and intriguing passersby. A Colossal Wave is also linked to Montreal’s Phi Centre, where participants are invited to explore a different perspective on the connected virtual world.

“A Colossal Wave is co-commissioned by the British Council, in partnership with the Quartier des spectacles and Hull Uk City of Culture 2017, and additional support from the Great Britain Campaign, Canadian high Commission in the United Kingdom.”