Chad Robert Stewart is the managing director and COO for Princebury Productions and Media. With the aid of his team he oversees the organization of the festival, the selection of films, and the creation of the workshops. Over 200 Entertainment Professionals will be attending this year’s event, including top producers, financiers, directors, writers, and actors, such as actress Jenn Gotzon (Frost/Nixon); world-renowned author Dr. Ted Baehr (Movieguide); actor Kevin Sorbo (Soul Surfer); producer Mark Joseph (Chronicles of Narnia); producer Jason Jones (Bella), and many others.
What makes the Princebury Film Festival unique from other film festivals?
What we’re trying to do with the Princebury Film Festival is really unique and unprecedented, not only in the U.S., but throughout the world. Over the past few decades, families have really woken up and realized they want to see better, cleaner programming they all can enjoy. (Just look at the continued success of Pixar at the box office, compared to all other studios, and you’ll see what I mean.) Also films like The Blind Side that show how a companionate family can reach out and help others. We’re seeking to build a place where the very best in family-friendly and faith-based entertainment, from writers and actors to directors and producers, can come together to showcase their work and think together about the future of the family entertainment world. Think of us as the beginning of a burgeoning SXSW (r) — but for families and faith-based productions. It’s an exciting venture for the world of film, but also for the surrounding San Diego community. We’re very committed to promoting our San Diego home along with the work we showcase.
What do you mean by “Where Families Come First”?
It’s simple, really. The Princebury Film Festival is the place where families come first because we are seeking to promote good, clean content, of the highest quality and caliber that the whole family can enjoy. But you’ve probably detected our “where” has something to do with geographical location, too. In our view, San Diego is really the #1 family-friendly tourist destination on the West Coast. From SeaWorld to Legoland, stunning beaches, great dining options, world-class golf for mom and dad, and other cultural events — hey, we’re even positioned #1 in the US for pizza and cupcakes recently, and what’s not to love about that? San Diego really has it all. What better place to promote family-friendly entertainment and bring together the heavy-hitters of the entertainment industry who, themselves, can enjoy a little getaway outside of Los Angeles and unplug with family and friends while having meaningful and impactful discussions about how we can all, together, make a difference?
How do you select which movies to showcase?
All of our showings are selected on the basis of quality: movies that embody the highest production value in the motion picture industry, such as uncompromising family values; professionally written, compelling stories; exceptional cinematography & music; outstanding acting & directing and powerful messages. This year, since it’s our first year as the Princebury Film Festival, we’re focusing on special screenings. Next year, we will cast the net wider and solicit entries from film makers across the country and worldwide.
Tell us about some of the festival highlights this year.
I think one of the most exciting events will be the Friday Night VIP Gala. Over two hundred entertainment industry insiders will be in attendance. This is a great opportunity for the San Diego community to come out, make some new friends, and help launch the festival in style. Break out those jackets and elegant cocktail dresses. It promises to be a mix of Hollywood chic and the more relaxed, yet chic, style San Diego and our surrounding beach communities are all about.
What is the Princebury Pioneer Award?
Princebury is about people: supporting them, encouraging them, and helping them find their way into an industry that is not always family friendly. So this year, we will launch the Pioneer Award, to recognize an individual or group for extraordinary contributions in the family- and faith-based film arena. These are the people who have already made a difference and blazed the trail. They have put down the foundations on which we will build. We look forward to celebrating our first recipient of the Princebury Pioneer Award at the Friday night gala.
How can students get involved in the Princebury Young Film Makers Program?
Beginning in September, we will reach out to local schools for nominations. Princebury is currently partnering with student organizations at University of San Diego and Point Loma Nazarene University, but will start to expand across the nation. We also want to encourage schools to reach out to us, especially if they have worthy candidates in mind. Drop us a line. The application materials will also be posted on our website in the near future. This competitive program is open to all students in the surrounding high schools, as well as college students across the country. It’s going to be an amazing experience. These young men and women will, amongst other things, participate in a special up-close-and-personal private mentoring workshop with industry veterans. Perhaps your magazine would like to run an announcement honoring our winners this year?
What is your goal for the festival?
As we roll out our new vision, we want to get everyone invested in discussions about shaping what the Princebury Film Festival will look like ten, even fifty years from now. The Princebury team is here to facilitate those discussions and put the plan in action, but the families and the players in the family- and faith-based entertainment market have a unique opportunity to contribute to making the festival the best it can be. Our dream is for everyone who cares about good family programming to take ownership of the project and participate in any way they can, whether than means attending the events in person, or sponsoring a young film maker, or, even, recruiting friends to become sponsors. This is your festival. We want to hear from you.
Don’t miss the Princebury Film Festival, held at the prestigious Institute for Peace & Justice, University of San Diego November 8-10, 2013 (www.PrinceburyFilmFest.com). If you care about family and faith-based programming, this is an event you won’t want to miss. Come out and help us celebrate the place where families come first.
Also, Princebury offers 120 years of consolidate experience and provides our clients with fee based Advisory Services from story & script development to finance, distribution and marketing.