DINO GEORGOPOULOS: A TRUE ROAD WARRIOR

Meet Dino. Dino puts on ROADance, a mobile film festival that prowls the streets of Park City during the Sundance Film Festival, screening filmmaker submitted shorts on a 14-foot cube truck with a digital projector, a tape deck, a diesel generator and a rear projection screen.

For both filmmakers and film lovers, it’s an excellent alternative to the other Dances going on at the same time. Films get maximum exposure and screenings are free, open to anyone who happens to catch the truck driving by or sitting in a parking lot.

An excellent alternative, that is, until Park City Police shutdown the rolling festival earlier this year due to a solicitation/exhibition violation.

Is it the end of ROADance? We thought so, but then we recently caught up with Dino and he told us otherwise.

How long did it take you to get shut down last year?
I was up and running for seven straight nights. I was running the festival from about 7:30pm to approximately 3am each night. I believe I got shut down on Friday the 24th at 8:45pm. And I started on the 18th at around 7:30 pm. However, there were times during the week where the police would come by and ask nicely if I could move along. So I would get into the truck, with the films still rolling, and drive up and down Main Street until I found a better parking spot. After a few days, I got a routine down. I would hang out by the Egyptian at the beginning of the night and then move down to the area at the bottom of Main Street where the Chrysler million dollar festival party was happening. Usually I would stay down there until the wee hours of the morning and entertain all the drunks as they sauntered home. Between these locations, I would also hang out in front of the pizza place that was also open late. I tried to hang where the most amount of people were.

Any worries that the same thing will happen with this year’s festival?
Yes and No. Yes, because I am obviously a huge threat to the Sundance Film Festival. The films I show are just as entertaining as theirs and they do not require sound. They are free and there is never a line or attitude…it is truly a festival for independents. Also, the Sundance Festival folks lobbied the city council very hard to have a specific law passed a couple of years ago that prohibits doing what I have been doing these past two years. They are scared that hundreds of ROADance vehicles will show up and take over the streets, which of course is highly unlikely because I am the only person on Planet Earth that has the skill and expertise to pull such an event off (just kidding). And yes, because they told me not to come last year and also told me not to come next year. BUT, NO because as your ROADance article states, there was a recent federal court ruling in New York City that makes the law they passed in Park City unconstitutional due to the First Amendment. SO, I am going to Park City with a lawyer and we are going to fight their law and stand up for free speech!

What made you start doing ROADance?
To give filmmakers a chance to be part of the Sundance experience without the cost and hassle of traveling up there. It is a better way to promote and get your film seen rather than posting one sheets on poles. And finally, ROADance is a sure way to be accepted into a festival and not be part of a money grubbing event that purposely accepts thousands of films (and the submission fees) and only shows a hundred or so…we have closer to a 1:1 ratio, not a 1:1500 ratio. So if you have a film, and you missed the Nodance, Slamdance and Sundance submission dates and you want to have your film seen at Sundance…ROADance is the way, its cheap, it’s reliable, and it is still very independent.

Are you a filmmaker as well?
Yes, I shot my first 8mm film for my 8th grade social studies project, in 1976, on this new fad called skateboarding, and got an “A”. It had sync sound with my cassette deck. The first “Hollywood” project I did was in 1990, a film called “Bikini Island”. I started out as a PA and ended up getting an Associate producer credit. I then produced a film called “Last Dance,” 1991. After that, I produced mostly commercials and music videos and 3D LBE films until I got the DEN gig. The DEN gig was mostly about being an executive, lots of paperwork, approving things and personnel issues, not a lot of in the field or on set producing. I had 20 production teams working for me, it was nice, but a lot of responsibility. After DEN, I got involved with Stephen Nemeth from Rhino Films and I am in the process of producing a feature documentary called “Project Street” with about seven other producers and one very talented director named Cesario Montano “Block”. The film is about the convergence of hip- hop and skateboarding. It should have been done six months ago, but lots of chiefs and not enough Indians….so, yes, my love (besides my wife) is filmmaking. I have cameras and a couple of editing bays, so I am constantly shooting and cutting little shorts.

Get the rest of the interview in part two of DINO GEORGOPOULOS: A TRUE ROAD WARRIOR>>>




Posted on November 21, 2003 in Interviews by
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