Independent film is produced around the globe, not just in the bigger film hubs. Learn how to network and cultivate a film community where you live, find regional resources, and gain support for your work. Award-winning Utah-based filmmakers Robert Machoian (THE MINORS), winner of the Sundance Short Film Special Jury Prize for Directing, and Luis Puente (I HAVE NO TEARS, AND I MUST CRY), Sundance Short FIlm Grand Jury Prize Nominee will discuss producing a film in lesser-known markets. Virginia Pearce, Director of the Utah Film Commission, will also join to share the many resources available through the Utah Film Commission. 

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This event is co-presented by the Utah Film Commission, which has helped thousands of projects film in the state, including many Sundance Institute supported projects. From the beginning, our locations, professional crew, and industry have left their mark on the unique stories that unfold in Utah. Visit our website to learn more about our state’s resources.

Robert Machoian has been taking photographs his whole life and making award-winning, critically-acclaimed films for well over a decade. In his career as a writer-director and as a cinematographer, both solo and with his frequent collaborator, Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck, Robert has had films premiere at the Sundance, SXSW, Locarno, LA, and Tribeca Festivals, been nominated twice for a Film Independent Spirit Award and twice as well for a Cinema Eye Honors award and his feature, God Bless the Child won Best Film at CPH:DOX 2016 as well as many other best film and as well best cinematography awards. His feature script, “I Love You Now & Forever” made the 2022 Blacklist. His feature, The Killing of Two Lovers, premiered at Sundance 2020 and was released by NEON (2021). more...
Born in Monterrey, Mexico and emigrated to the US during his childhood, Luis Fernando Puente studied Media Arts at Brigham Young University, where he learned to develop his voice as a filmmaker. His recent work includes the shorts, I Have No Tears, and I Must Cry, which was part of the official selection for the 2023 Sundance Film Festival, and El Moño, which earned a Golden Gate Award at the San Francisco International Film Festival. more...
With over 20 years of experience in the film industry, Virginia Pearce has been the Film Commissioner for the state of Utah since 2014. Under Virginia’s leadership, the Utah Film Commission has brought five major network television series and numerous award-winning projects to the state. Virginia has a passion for nurturing new voices and has created a number of programs encouraging diversity in the entertainment industry, including a lower budget incentive program, women’s network, workplace harassment policies and an emerging talent grant program. more...

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