Friday, November 20, 2015

"Happiness" Premiere, Director Mike Ugada 11-19-15

Houston Director Mike Ugada presented the premiere of his new feature drama motion picture "Happiness" Thursday Night, November 19th, 2015 at the AMC First Colony 24 in Sugar Land, Texas. 
Written by Mr. Ugada the movie follows a young woman by the name of Queen, played by Vanessa Simmons, who dreams of the perfect life, the perfect car, the perfect house and the perfect marriage.  Not happy with her current situation, she leaves a man that truly loves her. The problem is that he is struggling to make ends meet as a mechanic, can barley make it but will do anything to be with her. When he proposes to her, Queen has higher ambitions and is lured by a business man with wealth and the things that she thinks will make her happy. She marries this man and when she learns that he is having an affair, everything starts to fall apart, and happiness is just an illusion. 
The movie tells the story entirely without dialogue and focuses on the characters and the actors ability to act with facial movements and emotion, which we think was amazingly presented.  We were actually lured into the story even though there was no dialogue, it was powerful, emotional and it worked. If you missed out on catching this movie, you missed an amazing peice of work by Director Mike Ugada. This is his directorial feature movie and it was a good one. 
The movies starred Vanessa Simmons, Darrin Dewitt Henson, Leith Burke, Lorey Hayes, Christopher McDaniel, Gio Montesinos, and Damien Gerard. 
Behind the camera is cinematographer Micheal Jenkins.

Look for the review of "Happiness" in our FlixReview section of our website at: www.C47Houston.com sometime in December, 2015. 
In the meantime, Mr. Ugada invited us to see his movie and we took a few pictures. Enjoy. 


Learn more about "Happiness" on their IMDB page at:
And, see a teaser on their YouTube page at: 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A Shy guide to networking: so you want to Network

A Shy guide to networking: so you want to Network.

Let’s set this up. You are invited to a mixer/mingle with about 50 people of whom you only know about 5 of them. As you walk into the venue, your heart starts to pump a little faster because you are just a bit insecure and experience a little social anxiety in having to meet people you don’t know. It could stem from fear, a lack of confidence, self-esteem issues, looking or sounding silly or even not having enough information. Whatever the reason is, you have a hard time meeting people. As you enter the mixer/mingle you see people that you do know and you bee-line toward them as they give you comfort and are familiar to you. Over the next few minutes and one by one, your friends start to move towards other people and you are left sitting at a table by yourself, aimlessly looking around, and feeling like you don’t belong.

In a business that centers on networking and meeting new people that are, themselves, looking for new opportunities, not being able to network, talk to people or meet new people may be preventing you from moving forward in your goals. It is imperative that you get out of your comfort zone and to feel comfortable introducing yourself to people that you have never met. You never know whom you are going to meet. This could be the person that gives you that big break you have been dreaming about for so long.

To be honest, WE experience a little social anxiety every time we go out to an event or a mixer/mingle. We are concerned about being “judged”, it’s a common human nature sort of fault. Why? Well, there are plenty of psychology books; articles, research studies, and Dr. Phil type pop psychology discussions that can lead you toward an answer that will fit your particular reason why you have problems meeting new people in any social event. But, let’s take an easy approach to this and say that we feel “uneasy” about social situations and feel even more so having to meet new people. On a basic level we are scared, plain and simple.  On a personal level, I don’t hold to the idea that someone can be without fear. It is ingrained in our DNA. Someone that claims to be fearless is fearing that he will be found to be scared or that you will find out other weaknesses.

We have picked up several books on how to meet people, how to work a room or how to overcome the uneasiness of meeting new people. The one thing that they all have in common is that they take up most of your time elaborating on the need to present yourself as a commodity and an opportunity waiting to happen. They suggest that you approach people that can help you in your career. They suggest that you only give out your business card to people that can further your status. And, they advise you to pick up their latest publication for further development.

You don’t need all that and here is why. WE have social anxieties. WE are not a people person or possess an “A” type personality. WE are introverted and shy. WE shriek at the thought of having to meet new people. When we do go to a mixer/mingle WE tend to linger on the edge where we can make our quick and silent getaway. WE have struggled with our approach to meeting someone new and with all that, we have been told that WE seem to be a “natural” at doing something that not long ago I would consider not doing at all.
But, here we are and I would like to pass along a few tips that can help you meet new people and, at the same time, make new friends or acquaintances.  What I present is not inclusive and by far the magic formula for expanding your list of contacts. However, the people you meet will remember you and appreciate your personalized approach to taking the time to meet THEM.  It does take a little guts to get out there and present yourself to strangers and it takes a little practice, on your part, to develop your skills in approaching new people. Remember, you never know whom you are going to meet and all it takes is that one person that believes in you, gives you a chance, and changes your life.

The first step in breaking that wall around you and to start meeting new people, is to take a deep breath and remember that you are not alone in feeling like you have social anxieties. Everyone has them to various degrees. Some people have learned to deal with their anxieties, they have taken the time to practice their skills, and, eventually, they have come to enjoy the prospect of meeting as many people as they can. While others are still developing their skills, they continue to confront their fears and are honing in on what works out for their particular goals. The more mixer/mingles you go to, or rather the more people you meet, the more comfortable you will be in approaching other people that you don’t know. Before you know it, you will be that person that meets everyone in the room.

(One of the most memorable events that has lingered in my mind for many years is an after party I attended by invitation in Blacksburg, Virginia where I, personally, didn’t know anyone, but my, then, girlfriend knew several people. I felt pretty awkward and absolutely out of place. But, I always feel out of place. There were about 20 to 25 people grouped in small cliques throughout the apartment. As I was looking around aimlessly and watching my girlfriend and the ease at which she talked with people, I noticed this one guy moving from group to group. What was peculiar was that he was taking the time and effort to introduce himself to every person in each particular clique. Then he would excuse himself and move to another group and do the same thing…he would introduce himself to each person in the clique. He finally made it to my side of the room and not only was he very skilled, he looked you directly into your eyes and lingered as if he was genuinely trying to know you. He possessed a firm handshake and introduced himself. We spoke for a few minutes and I was very impressed by his consideration and his people skills in taking great pains in introducing himself and making new friends. Good guy Greg.)

The next step is a little more complicated and requires an effort on your part to exit your comfort zone, take that leap of faith and approach a stranger. Remember, you are at a mixer/mingle or event where there is a common denominator and that is your key to starting up a conversation with a total stranger. All you have to do is go up to someone you don’t know, and say “Hello”.  You will be surprised at how many people will say “hello” back to you. Now, this is where it gets a little problematic. After the initial greetings, where do you go from there? One solution to staring at each other is to continue the conversation with your key common denominator - the purpose of the mixer/mingle or event.  For example: “Are you enjoying yourself?”, “How are you associated with this event?”, “What did you think about the movie?”, “What area do you work in?” and “Are you one of the filmmakers?” are good start up and “breaking the ice” questions to ask. If you notice the questions all reference the person you are addressing. Generally, people like to talk about themselves and, more importantly, they enjoy the fact that someone other than their friends or relatives are taking an interest in them and their work. Continuing with a conversation after the initial greeting requires a bit of small talk on your part. That is another skill that has to be applied and practiced when you are trying to improve or develop your people skills.  Some people have that gift of gab. They can talk endlessly about absolutely nothing, and, at the same time, they can talk about a lot of general things that they know about because they work in their specific areas. 

Most of the time you will find that the conversation will die out because the person with whom you are conversing with, is in the same position that you were just a minute ago and before you decided to exit your comfort zone, take that leap of faith and approach a stranger. You just happen to be able to approach first and initiated a conversation. YOU are one step closer to meeting new people who may be able to help you in the future or one step closer to meeting friends that you can collaborate with on a project.

Of course, this may not work all of the time. There are some people that are very difficult to talk to and they have their own motivations for interacting with others. Simply, say, “it was nice to meet you. I hope to run into you again but can you please excuse me?” This is your exit line and it is a very polite way to move on to your next total stranger.  (One word of advice… do not take it personally. There may be other reasons for their lack of interaction or they may be having a bad day.) I can not count the many times that people have been quiet and reclusive at one meeting and very outgoing and friendly at another meeting, mixer/mingle or event.

Now that you have taken that deep breath of air and understand that you are not alone in thinking that you are a social misfit, have exited your comfort zone, have taken that leap of faith, got your butt off that chair, and started a conversation with a total stranger, there is still the matter of the “little” things that you need to remember as you develop your skills in meeting new people with similar goals. While they may seem minor and not at all important in the overall goal, it is nonetheless, something that will give you “street cred” as you move forward into your life and when you network.

Your first impression is what gives you the credibility in being able to approach people who may be looking for new opportunities. It is important that you act PROFESSIONALLY and in a PROFESSIONAL manner when you meet someone for the first time. You may be the type of person that thinks that people ought to take you for who you are, but that is na├»ve and unrealistic especially in the business world. And, of course, as an actor, director or producer in a field that centers on networking and meeting new people that are, themselves, looking for new opportunities you are only as good as you appear to be. People will judge you and, let’s be honest, you are judging others.

When you meet someone for the first time and as you introduce yourself, you are going to be judged by your handshake. Your handshake should be firm. This goes for both men and to a certain extent…women. YOU would think that a handshake doesn’t matter if your talent is exceptional, but YOU are wrong. A firm handshake establishes your initial confidence. Whatever you do, don’t just put your hand out there and let someone squeeze your hand unless you feel the need to commit social suicide. Shake someone’s hand with firmness and with conviction. YOU don’t have to squeeze the hell out of someone’s hand, but you ought to match their own squeeze. As you are shaking someone’s hand and introducing yourself, be sure to always look the person you are meeting directly in the eyes. Now, we have a tendency to shift our eyes from one eye to the other, so pick an eye and look at it. I have found that most people in the field are creative and the best eye to look into is their left eye or the right eye if you are looking at them.
When shaking hands, don’t linger too long. A short burst of a handshake is all you need and will accomplish far more than you can imagine.

All of this takes a little practice on your part. Make it a point to meet someone, if not everyday, at the very least, whenever you step out into public for a meeting, a mixer/mingle or even going to grab a cup of coffee. It is absolutely true that practice makes perfect and WE are a testament to that as we have taken a cognizant effort to change ourselves and to be able to meet people. We meet a huge amount of people in our business and it is part of our job to be able to network, to mix and to mingle. Most of the people I meet are friends and while some are acquaintances they are nonetheless part of a community of people that can help you. ]
After you have decided to get up and exit your comfort zone to meet someone that you don’t know and being as professional as you can muster up, introduce yourself and follow up with a firm handshake while looking the person you are meeting squarely in the eye and start talking. 

Be sincere in getting to know the person you are meeting for the first time. Before you know it, you will be the type of person that can work a room, meet people and you will not be afraid of approaching a Steven Spielberg. Remember, all it takes if for you to start with one word…”Hello”.

Don't be Shy! 

Written by H. Luna, Producer 11-17-15 
© 2008-2015 C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine 
C47Houston WEEKLY / C47Houston Quick News 
H.L. Media Productions / www.C47Houston.com All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Just a short flyby over Lego City at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. 

CineSpace, 2015 "Red Pearl"

For the first time the 2015 season of the Houston Cinema Arts Festival has partnered with NASA to offer filmmakers around the world a chance to share their works inspired by, and using, actual NASA imagery, both photos and archive film/video through what is called "CineSapce", a new short film competition for the HCAF. (under 15-mins). Films, using real NASA footage from over 50 years of history were judged on their creativity, innovations and attention to detail that are the hallmarks of spaceflight. 
16 finalists (official selections) were chosen through a "selection committee" and according to the one of the board members of the HCAF, the 16 selected movies were given to Houstonian (and NOW living and working in Austin) Honorary HCAF Honorary Board member, Richard Linklater, to pick out the 3rd 2nd and 1st place winners. The HCAF was honored to choose Mary Magsamen and Stephen Hillerbrand's short movie "Higher Ground" as the 1st place winners and Best of the HCAF, 2015. 
Ms. Mary Magsamen is the current Curator at the Aurora Picture Show, a media arts center, (if you recall, the former Aurora Picture Show's Executive Director Delicia Harvey is currently on the board of the HCAF, as well as the Houston Film Commissions Executive Director Rick Ferguson who is an Advisory Board member with the Aurora Picture Show and Board member at the HCAF, among others.

C47Houston was not participating with this years Houston Cinema Arts Festival, we are not on the board, and was invited to the screening of Director Wayne Slaten's short movie "Red Pearl". This was all part of the HCAF's collaboration with NASA under a short competition called CineSpace. 
The team for Moonlike Filmwerks, Mr. Slaten's Production company were there in support. The team won a jury award, The Best short Film Depicting the Spirit of Future Exploration in Space Award. Directed by Wayne Slaten, Starring Uju Edoziem, Jordyn Lorenz, Troy Parker and Nia Johnson. Cinematography by Larry Mckee, wardrobe by Liz Tee. Produced by Molly Vernon, Martin Delon, Julie Oliver-Touchstone and Mr. Slaten  Music by Jeff Walton Edited by Richard Whitlow, makeup by Marissa Viso and Angela Mendoza
Congratulations to the team!!! If you get a chance to see this movie, it was pretty amazing.
Learn more about "Red Pearl" on FB at: 
Visit their IMDB page at: 
and visit Moonlite filmwerks at: 

We took some pictures...

You can seem a few more pictures on Instagram at: 

Friday, November 13, 2015

So you think you can't afford advertising space in our publications? We have a flat fee rate of only $50. Everything after that is negotiable. Check it out at: 

Friday, November 6, 2015

What you need to know about making a Movie...So, you want to make movies!

What you need to know about making a movie.

There are many schools of thought regarding the approach you take in making a movie for the first time. Some will tell you to pick up a copy of Robert Rodriguez’s movie making book “Rebel without a Crew”. Others will tell you to go to a reputable filmmaking school and learn what you need to know about making a movie. And, still others will tell you to spend your money and take some filmmaking classes, workshops and even seminars with various directors whom are willing to answer your questions about how to make a movie.

We have had the pleasure and opportunity to meet a huge amount of moviemakers over the few years we have been in business. Some come from and have degrees in some reputable schools; some have picked up Mr. Rodriquez book and have created their own projects and some have taken classes, attended workshops and seminars.

These approaches all have their merits, some disadvantages and plenty of information about how one would go about making their movie venture. But, the only approach that you ought to be taking is your OWN approach to movie making. If you are a fan of watching movies you will no doubt have analyzed the techniques used by many directors in the creation of their movies. The only thing stopping you from picking up a camera and telling your story, or someone else’s story is YOU.

If you feel like you need the resources provided by books, schools or workshops go for it, but it is your own approach that may make a difference in being noticed as a moviemaker and director. YOUR creative style is all that counts and all that matters. Being original and having a unique take on making movies may get you noticed on every social network site. AND, you may get the attention from the studios looking to back an up-and-coming moviemaker with something different to show.  

Sure, you can learn some of the basics about movie making, from a book or from a workshop however, it all comes down to your particular and unique creative style in making a movie. It’s the way you move the camera, the way you make it flow from point “A” to point “B”, the way you compose your image within the four angles of a frame, the way you create a scene, the way you backlight an actor or an object, the way you cut and splice and the way you tell your story.

We have seen some really good movies made by people that have no business making movies and they do a great job in creating something unique and inspiring, at the same time, we have seen some bad movies made from people that really have no business making movies but continue to live out their dreams. Regardless of whether the movie was bad or a good venture, WE have to say that the movies that have grabbed our attention have always been creative and utilizing some unique approaches that can not be taught in a book or a workshop. They have a style of their own and a particular approach to making a movie.

Pick up a camera and experiment. Bring out your creative side and make a movie that when shown…people will remember, not because the story was good, but because you leave a visual imprint in their minds…something that they can not forget. This is what is going to get you noticed. Forget about following someone else’s idea on how you ought to make a movie. This was good for them and may not be or apply to YOU. 

Remember, you are an artist with a blank canvas in the form of a giant silver screen in front of you. The brushes you use is a movie camera with various lenses and the image you put on that silver screen is YOUR view of the world. The color you mix is your idea of lighting and sound and the texture you create by composing a scene in front of a camera is only limited by your imagination. When you are ready to apply that first stroke of paint, you are applying your particular style and your unique take on making a movie.  When it all comes together, step back and look at what you have done. You can be satisfied that what you created has your particular signature on it for all to see.

So, get out there and make your movie. YOU don’t need someone else’s version of what it should be. It is YOUR movie! Make it stand out because that is the only way to get your name out there as an artist who has a different way of telling the same story of life.
We are positive that once you start, you will never stop.

Mixer/Minlge Houston

Marketing Producer, Andy Valadez, of Marketing Dynamics is stirring up the Houston Film scene along with Anita Long, the current president of Women in Film & Television-Houston and Rod Mitchell of Houston Cast & Crew who all presented a huge Mixer/Mingle at the Fox &  Hound, Thursday night, November 5th that started with a C47Houston Power Coffee meeting at the Corner Bakery Cafe earlier that afternoon. The Power Coffee meeting brings together filmmakers for a cup of coffee just to talk in a more intimate environment where you can get to talk to other "film" people who have one thing in common...C47Houston News & Entertainment Magazine. About 15 people joined us and Mr. Valadez as he brought in actress Joanna Sanchez from Hollywood and New York.  Ms. Sanchez has been visiting the Houston greater area for a number of years. She presents her acting classes for those people interested in honing their acting skills and their networking skills. Ms. Sanchez is doing some amazing things and can be seen on television, cable and in movies.  Learn more about Joanna on IMDB at: 
or you can keep up with her and her classes at:
Learn more about Marketing Producer Andy Valadez at:
Learn more about Women Film & Television-Houston at:
  Learn more about Rod Mitchell on fb at: 
We took some pictures...Enjoy!