Tuesday, June 18, 2013

AFI Docs Announces Film & Politics Boot Camp

Lucy Walker's The Crash Reel

From our friends at AFI DOCS...

Best Kept Secret, The Crash Reel, Gideon's Army, I Learn America and Lost for Life selected for pro-bono advocacy support by top Washington advocates.

AFI Docs presented by Audi (formerly Silverdocs) announced today their inaugural Policy Engagement Program designed to connect filmmakers making social issue documentaries with policymakers to maximize their impact on the issues their films cover. The program includes a Film and Politics Boot camp in the U.S. Capitol on June 20th, pre-festival guidance and counsel, a networking lunch, and for a select number of films strategic meetings with elected and appointed officials who have responsibility for the issues covered in their films.

“The expansion of this year’s festival into the heart of Washington, DC provided an opportunity to engage leaders with our filmmakers in a way that is unprecedented and that will distinguish AFI Docs for years to come,” said Sky Sitney, AFI DOCS festival director. “We are very excited about this new addition to the festival, and so are our filmmakers. This is not only a great opportunity for them to connect with policymakers, but also for elected and appointed officials to connect with strong artistic voices that are interested in their causes.”

After the Boot camp, filmmakers have the opportunity to schedule independent meetings with Congressional Members and staff from regions and committees as well as Federal agencies related to their films. The filmmakers behind GIDEON’S ARMY, I LEARNED AMERICA, BEST KEPT SECRET, THE CRASH REEL and LOST FOR LIFE were selected for personalized, targeted pro bono advocacy support by leading advocates.

The Bi-partisan panelists include former and current staffers from the house, senate, administration and prominent NGO’s, most of which have experience working with filmmakers. Panelists and full schedule can be found below.


10:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m. Film and Politics Boot camp

10:00 a.m. Campaigns and Elections Panel includes Sery Kim, former Deputy Coalitions Director for the Romney for President Campaign and former health counsel to Chairman Darrell Issa at the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee (R), and Matt Thornton, former Senior Communications Adviser at American Bridge "Super PAC" and Communications Director for Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D).

10:30 a.m. Congress and the Executive Branch Panel includes Minh Ta, Chief of Staff for Rep. Gwen Moore (D) and former Legislative Director for Rep. Keith Ellison (D), MJ Henshaw, Press Secretary and Legislative Aide for Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R), Clark Mica, former Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental Relations at U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (Bush Administration) and Will Jenkins, Director of Communications at U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (Obama Administration) and former Director of Communications for Senator Jim Webb (D).

11:20 a.m. Advocacy and Lobbying Panel includes Heather White, Executive Director of the Environmental Working Group, Michael Bracy, Founder, the Future of Music Coalition and Katie Vlietstra Wonnenberg, the Director of Government Affairs for the National Association for the Self-Employed and President of Women in Government Relations.

12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. Networking Lunch with DC Insiders. Filmmakers have the opportunity to have more in depth conversations with some of the DC insiders over lunch in the Capitol.

1:00 – 5:00 p.m. Strategic Afternoon Policymaker Meetings

3:30 – 5:00 p.m.  AFI DOCS and Chicken & Egg Present “Capital Cocktails”

About AFI DOCS presented by Audi:

AFI DOCS presented by Audi (formerly Silverdocs) is an internationally recognized event that honors excellence infilmmaking, supports the diverse voices and free expression ofindependent storytellers and celebrates the power of documentaryto improve our understanding of the world.  Now in its 11th year, the festival is embarking on a transformational chapter in its history with an expansion into landmark Washington, DC venues and with the AFI Catalyst Sessions which serve as stimuli for national public discourse and an opportunity to engage our nations leaders with filmmakers striving to shine a light on the greatest issues of today. The festival historically has attracted over 27,000 documentaryenthusiasts, policymakers and thought leaders.  Visit AFI.com/AFIDOCS and connect on twitter.com/AFIDOCS, facebook.com/AFIDOCS and youtube.com/AFI.

About the American Film Institute:
AFI is America's promise to preserve the history of the motion picture, to honor the artists and their work and to educate the next generation of storytellers. AFI provides leadership in film, television and digital media and is dedicated to initiatives that engage the past, the present and the future of the moving image arts. AFI programs include the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and AFI Archive, which preserve film heritage for future generations; the AFI Life Achievement Award – the highest honor for a career in film – now in its 41st year; AFI Awards, honoring the most outstanding motion pictures and television programs of the year; AFI's 100 YEARS...100 MOVIES television events and movie reference lists, which have introduced and reintroduced classic American movies to millions of film lovers; year-round and special event exhibition through AFI Fest presented by Audi, AFI Docs presented by Audi and the AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center; and educating the next generation of storytellers at the world renowned AFI Conservatory, renowned for the quality of its instructors and speakers, and its notable alumni.

For more information about AFI, visit AFI.com or connect with AFI at twitter.com/AmericanFilm, facebook.com/AmericanFilmInstitute and youtube.com/AFI.

About Audi:
Audi of America, Inc. and its U.S. dealers offer a full line of German-engineered luxury vehicles. AUDI AG is among the most successful luxury automotive brands globally. Audi was a top-performing luxury brand in Europe during 2012, and broke all-time company sales records in the U.S. Through 2016, AUDI AG will invest about $17 billion on new products, facilities and technologies. Visit audiusa.com or audiusanews.com for more information regarding Audi vehicle and business issues.