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New Orleans to throw MediaFest

The Big Easy will go Big Media this fall with a planned MediaFest that combines film, music, vidgames and advertising.

Event, running Oct. 26-Nov. 1, is backed by the city of New Orleans, H.S.I. Prods. and the Louisiana Institute of Film Technology. Designed to rival Mardi Gras and the city’s Jazz Festival as a destination event, it will offer exhibitions and competitions for feature films, shorts, musicvideos, commercials and vidgames.

Competition films will require convergence themes,” tying together elements from advertising, music or interactive content, or use “nontraditional” production or distribution techniques. Given the event’s overlap with Halloween, a special section will be devoted to horror films.

Event’s board of advisers includes ICM vidgame guru Keith Boesky; helmers Francis Ford Coppola and Paul Hunter; New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin; record execs Jason Flom, Michael Caren and Steve Stout; commercials makers David LaChappelle, Matt Miller and Pam Tarr; actor Harry Shearer; Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences prexy Paul Provenzano; chef Emeril Lagasse; and Young & Rubicam ad exec Ken Yagoda.

The Slamdance organization will run its “By Filmmakers for Filmmakers” workshop, with helmer Allison Anders among those booked to appear on panel discussions. Sony will show off eight shorts made by participants in its “Dreams” project, all shot with its 24P CineAlta digital cameras, and a New York-based academy will teach participants how to be scratch DJs.

Musicvideos on display will include several by directors such as LaChappelle, Mark Romanek and Francis Lawrence, who scooped up multiple awards at the recent Music Video Producers Assn. awards, which Tarr heads.

Event concludes with a benefit concert for Rock the Vote and an awards show. More information is available at Neworleansmediaexperience.com.

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