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Month: January 2018

Episode 136 – Gordy Hoffman – A Screenwriter’s Journey and How Screenwriting Competitions Work

Join us for this inspiring conversation with Gordy Hoffman about how screenplay competitions work and why you should never give up. If you want to make films, Gordy says don’t wait, “do your dream today!”

Listen to this episode now or visit iTunes to download it to your device (or wherever else you find your podcasts).


Who is Gordy Hoffman?

Gordy started the BlueCat Screenplay Competition 20 years ago, but that’s not the whole story. Gordy himself is a screenwriter and his career started in 2002 with a film called “Love Liza” that starred his younger brother Philip Seymour Hoffman. Love Liza played Sundance in 2002 and won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award and was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize.

Since then, Gordy has ventured into directing, most recently with a short film Dog Bowl (Available to watch on Amazon Prime) which played at 2015 Sundance and that led to a gig at Annapurna. Gordy also teaches screenwriting at USC.

How Screenplay Competitions Work

Gordy runs the BlueCat Screenplay Competition, so we ask him a bunch of questions about how screenplay competitions works.
How are Screenwriting Competitions Judged?
Is that judging fair?
Does Gordy worry that a good script might slip through the cracks?
 What are some reasons you should enter screenwriting competitions?
  • They give writers deadlines, which is always a good thing
  • They give writers validation that they are on the right track
  • They can further your career
  • But mostly they can give you inspiration and a reason to keep going

How Gordy Became a Screenwriter and Director

Gordy recaps his career from Love Liza to his current short. In looking at Gordy’s career, he’s found a way to keep going, but at 53, does he ever think about quitting? When is it too late to pursue your dreams?
We dive deep into the despair every writer feels and why it’s important to push through it. Screenwriting is a solo venture and there are some traps we can all fall into, Gordy has some advice on how to avoid them.
Some Questions We Ask Gordy
  • How did you get started as a writer?
  • After “Love Liza” came out, to it make it easier to get work as a writer?
  • There’s a big gap on your IMDB page, what were you doing between your films?
  • For your second film, Dog Bowl, how did you make the leap from writing to writing and directing?
  • What challenges have you been facing as a writer/director?

Contact Gordy

February 20th is the final deadline to enter your screenplay and short films to the BlueCat Screenplay Competition The BlueCat Website is also a place to contact Gordy if you want to reach out to him.
Also, check out his films. Here are links to Love Liza and Dog Bowl.

This Episode Sponsored by Film Casualty

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A HUGE THANKS to Film Casualty for sponsoring the podcast!

Contact Timothy & Alrik

Episode 135 – Directing Commercials in LA and Casting Known Actors with Paul Schneider!

This week we have commercial director Paul Schneider on the show to talk about making a living as a director, making the transition from commercials to narrative and how he casted two known actors in his short film, Fifty Minutes.

Listen to this episode now or visit iTunes to download it to your device (or wherever else you find your podcasts).


Who is Paul Schneider?

Paul is the director of film and television and can usually be found working in LA… and sometimes the world.

He got his start working in Chicago and now lives in Los Angeles, directing commercials all over the country.

Having directed commercials for over 12 years, Paul is now moving into narrative film and television directing and his short film Fifty Minutes, starring Stephen Tobolowsky and DJ Qualls is his first entry into that world.

Commercial Directing

Paul talks to us about his commercial career, how he got started and what kind of work he does.

  • How Paul was able to evolve as a director.
  • Spec commercials, what’s your approach?
  • Making the transition from commercials to narrative work.

Paul’s Spec, Breath

Fifty Minutes

Paul talks about how Fifty Minutes came about, his approach and how he got these two big actors to be in a no budget short film.

  • Finding the story of Fifty Minutes.
  • How Paul got Stephen Tobolowsky to sign onto the film.
  • How Paul then was able to get DJ Qualls attached.
  • What has happened since the short has been made and released?

 Contacting Paul

Commercial Work:

Vimeo Page:



If you want all the nitty gritty on the making of Fifty Minutes, directors notes did a really nice write up on the movie, check it out at this link!

Make Money with Your Footage!

Dissolve is a sponsor of our podcast and they invite all you filmmakers to apply to become a contributor to their stock footage library. For every clip they license, you get paid. Apply now:
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Contact Us

Thanks for joining us. Have more to say, or a question? Here’s how you can contact us.

Episode 134 – New Year Special with Andrew Schrader, Arielle Zakowski & Evan Kidd

We talk to more past guests this week about what they’ve been up to since we last talked. This week we chat with Andrew Schrader, Arielle Zakowski and Evan Kidd. This is an extra long one to keep you company during your travels. Happy New Year everyone!

Listen to this episode now or visit iTunes to download it to your device (or wherever else you find your podcasts).


Andrew Schrader

Since we last talked, Andrew has moved to Los Angeles and has also gotten a book published. Find Andrew’s book “What Goes On In the Wall At Night” on Amazon or download it for free on his website!!!

Andrew talks to us about living in Los Angeles, writing and pursuing a career as a full time filmmaker.

Here’s a Link to Andrew’s Book on Amazon:

Andrew’s Website:

Episode 20 – Sustainable Ideas with Andrew Schrader

Arielle Zakowski

Last time we talked to Arielle (way back in Episode 66) she had just started a full time position as an editor.

Episode 66 – Editor Arielle Zakowski

After quickly moving through the ranks of assistant editor into a lead editor role, Arielle was excited to tackle new opportunities. And she did.

  • She tells us about editing for Chef’s Table
  • The ins and outs of balancing commercial work with passion work
  • And the power of saying yes!

If you want to learn more about Arielle, visit these websites

Her Website:

Arielle’s Commercial Reel:


Evan Kidd

Evan Kidd joined us back in Episode 45 to talk to us about producing a very cheap movie. Now he’s back to tell us how he produced an even cheaper TV show that’s now streaming on Amazon Prime.

Episode 45 – How Evan Kidd made a $3,000 Feature Film in North Carolina

Evan’s $3,000 film “Son Of Clowns”:

Evan’s $200 TV Series “Home Remedy”:

And be sure to check out Evan’s Website:

Contact Us

Thanks for joining us. Have more to say, or a question? Here’s how you can contact us.