Dick Norris started the Film Foundation last year, after heading the New Mexico Film Office for a year and a half.
Dirk Norris is a man on a mission — to support New Mexico’s independent filmmakers and post-production artists.
Speaking at the Roswell Film Fest and Cosmicon kick-off on Friday, Norris said he wants to grow his organization, the New Mexico Film Foundation, to the point where it can one day offer grants for filmmakers and screenwriters.
“Our mission is to help grow the independent film industry in New Mexico while offering financial support and educational opportunities to New Mexico independent filmmakers,” Norris said.
He started the Film Foundation last year, after heading the New Mexico Film Office for a year and a half, with the intention of supporting both independent filmmakers and the state’s post-production professionals.
“We have some of the most talented film professionals in the world here in New Mexico,” Norris said. “What we want to do is make the film industry more aware of what we have available for post-production services.”
Hollywood already has New Mexico on its speed dial when it comes to shooting, with Disney, Bad Robot, and 20th Century Fox Television among the industry leaders who film in the state.
However, independent filmmakers don’t have the access to funding the big corporations have, and Norris wants to help small films get produced in New Mexico as well as big blockbusters.
“When we get funded, the foundation would like to be able to provide seed grants to get film projects going,” Norris said. “I would like for us to also have grants available for post-production and for screen writers.”
Norris was in Roswell on Friday supporting the film festival and spreading the word of the foundation, as well as seeking financial support.
“I started the foundation last December, and we’re still working on raising funds,” he said.
Norris has been traveling the state on behalf of the Film Foundation, and he is looking forward to getting the funding in place so the foundation can begin supporting filmmakers.
“The New Mexico Film Foundation invests in filmmakers, not films,” Norris said. “We are not a production company. We feel it is important to fund the arts in general and New Mexico independent filmmakers in particular.”
Norris also announced “Life in New Mexico,” a media project the foundation is sponsoring. The project invites residents to submit video clips of up to three minutes in length to the competition.
The project will bring attention to the post-production segment of the New Mexico film industry, Norris said.
Post-production is the phase of making a movie that begins once the filming is completed. Typically, it involves editing the material, correcting color imbalances, improving sound, adding a musical score, special effects, animation and more.
The clips submitted by New Mexico residents will be edited into 10-minute films which will then be made available to promote New Mexico tourism.
Deadline for submission of video clips is April 30. Edited projects will be due on June 30.
For more information on “Life in New Mexico,” visit nmfilmfoundation.org/life-in-new-mexico-media-project/.