Heartland Film Revitalizes Brand and Programming, Announces more than $1 Million in Major Funding Support

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Indianapolis-based nonprofit arts organization formerly known as Heartland Truly Moving Pictures unveils new brand, major funding for 2014, mini-festival, board members and staff.

Heartland Film

The new Heartland Film logo.

Heartland Film fans, volunteers, sponsors and funders — both old and new – can be proud of what the organization has become and where it’s heading.

Heartland Film, Inc. President Stuart Lowry has been on the job for five months, and his vision for the organization’s future is already becoming a reality. Under Lowry’s leadership, the 23-year-old Indianapolis-based nonprofit has been revitalized with a new name (previously Heartland Truly Moving Pictures, Inc.) and logo, staff, board members, high-impact events, and funders.

“As a founding board member, I vividly remember 23 years ago when the Heartland Film Festival was just an idea,” said Heartland Film Chairman of the Board Dan Johnson. “Seeing where we have gone, and where we continue to go, the board of directors is proud and excited to work with President Stuart Lowry to usher in the new era of Heartland Film.”

“As an arts organization that has been around for more than two decades, it is extremely important for Heartland Film to stay relevant, purposeful and forward-thinking,” explained Lowry. “Over the past few years — thanks in part to relocating our headquarters to Fountain Square and the expansion of the Heartland Film Roadshow screening series — our fan base has grown and diversified at an amazing rate. In 2013 our team organized the most successful and highest-attended Heartland Film Festival in the event’s 22-year history, and we have channeled that momentum into new strategic initiatives and branding. Heartland Film fans, volunteers, sponsors and funders — both old and new – can be proud of what the organization has become and where it’s heading.”

From Eight Syllables to Three: the New Heartland Film Brand

To represent the shift in the organization’s growth and expanded appeal, the new Heartland Film name and visual identity was created. While the mission to inspire filmmakers and audiences through the transformative power of film remains the same, the new brand allows for a simpler introduction to the organization and all its moving parts.

“People know about the Heartland Film Festival, but not so much about our parent organization or the extent of what we do all year round,” said Heartland Film Director of Marketing & PR Greg Sorvig. “Ever since we brought marketing and design in-house, we have been able to tell our story in a much more purposeful and impactful way. Our new brand is all about keeping it simple and accessible; the Heartland Film brand defines the organization that we have become, and puts us in a great position to grow our audience base and support for decades to come.”

More Than $1.1 Million in Funding for 2014 and Beyond

Heartland Film, Inc. is proud to announce the following gifts for use starting in 2014 (as of May 16, 2014):

  • $450,000 gift from the David and Betty Klapper Family Foundation to underwrite Heartland Film Festival special events
  • $300,000 gift from Lilly Endowment to underwrite Heartland Film, Inc. operations
  • $175,000 gift from Frank and Katrina Basile to underwrite the Heartland Basile Theatre and operations
  • $90,000 gift from The Margot L. and Robert S. Eccles Fund, a fund of the Central Indiana Community Foundation, to underwrite initiatives including the Summer Rewind mini-festival in Fountain Square
  • $40,000 gift from Christel DeHaan Family Foundation, Inc. to underwrite Heartland Film, Inc. operations
  • $25,000 gift from The Boren Foundation, Inc. to underwrite the Heartland High School Film Competition
  • $19,000 gift from the Indiana Arts Commission to underwrite Heartland Film, Inc. operations
  • $15,000 gift from Eli Lilly and Company Foundation, Inc. to underwrite Heartland Film Festival operations
  • $10,000 gift from the Lacy Foundation to underwrite a film premiere event
  • $10,000 gift from Bob and Alison Spoonmore to underwrite the Heartland High School Film Competition
  • $7,000 gift from the Arts Council of Indianapolis to underwrite Heartland Film, Inc. operations

Summer Rewind: a Fountain Square Mini-fest

The Heartland Film Roadshow travels all across Indiana to offer year-round screenings of select films that are entertaining but do much more than just entertain. Heartland Film is proud to announce an all-new annual mini-festival event: Summer Rewind, made possible by The Margot L. and Robert S. Eccles Fund, a fund of the Central Indiana Community Foundation.

Summer Rewind (June 26-28, 2014) will showcase some of the best Heartland Film Festival movies of the past in an abbreviated, three-day mini-festival format, giving moviegoers an opportunity to see an enlightening slate of independent films and to meet the filmmakers who crafted them. As an Academy Award®-qualifying festival in the Narrative Short Films category, the Heartland Film Festival will open Summer Rewind with a program of short films that were Festival Award Winners at the Heartland Film Festival before they went on to receive Oscar® nominations and/or wins in their respective categories. The event will be followed by an after-party at The Hi-Fi, Fountain Square’s newest music venue.

  • WHAT: Heartland Film Festival Summer Rewind: A Fountain Square Mini-Fest, featuring 17 screenings of past Heartland Film Festival films over three days
  • WHEN: June 26-28, 2014
  • WHERE: Screening and event locations include the Heartland Basile Theatre (with all screenings presented by Frank and Katrina Basile), The Theatre at the Wheeler Arts Community and The Hi-Fi
  • WHO: Nine independent filmmakers from past Heartland Film Festivals will return to Indianapolis to discuss their films and the filmmaking process

Full schedule and tickets, along with other Heartland Film Roadshow programming, available at heartlandfilm.org.

Board Member and Staff Additions

Heartland Film, Inc. is proud to announce the addition of new/promoted staff members and board members:

  • Board Member Christina Hale - Hale is a global communication strategist and community leader based in Indianapolis. Prior to her election to the Indiana House of Representatives, Hale served as an executive at Kiwanis International, where she led a team that focused on strengthening communities and improving the lives of children all over the world.
  • Board Member Seth Maxwell - Founder & CEO of The Thirst Project, a nonprofit that has raised the funds for the construction of over 829 water projects in 11 countries, Maxwell has spoken internationally at over 300 schools, countless churches, and numerous conferences, including the TEDx Hollywood Youth Conference, the Nexus Global Youth Summit, and addressing the United Nations General Assembly. Maxwell was named to Forbes' "30 Under 30" in 2014, and has been honored with the Vh1 Do Something Award, and the Charles Jellinger Humanitarian in Entertainment Award from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts.
  • Board Member David A. W. Wong – Wong is a partner with Barnes & Thornburg LLP where he is a member of the Intellectual Property Department and Chairman of the Internet and Technology Law Group. Wong’s practice focuses on Internet law, technology, media, intellectual property counseling, risk management, prosecution, policing, and enforcement. He regularly advises clients on commercial and intellectual property matters, such as trademark, copyright, defamation, trade dress, advertising, right of publicity, trade secret, and unfair competition issues.
  • Development Director Kristi Barber, M.B.A. - Barber has previously held leadership positions with Hancock Regional Hospital and Alpha Chi Omega. Active in the community, Barber has held high-level volunteer positions with the Greenfield Soccer Booster Club, Junior League of Indianapolis and Phi Mu. Before she earned an M.B.A. from Indiana Wesleyan University, Barber earned a Bachelor of Science from Indiana University.
  • Creative Manager Derek Hulsey – Formerly marketing and design coordinator, Hulsey was recently promoted to manager and is responsible for Heartland Film’s new visual identity. With an affinity for language and letters, Hulsey is especially skilled in typography and hand-rendered lettering. Hulsey received a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Design from the Art Institute of Indianapolis.
  • Artistic Coordinator Jaclyn Jones - Before she earned a full-time role with Heartland Film, Jones was a two-time film programming intern and a seasonal programming assistant/print traffic coordinator the 2013 Heartland Film Festival. Jones earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis (IUPUI).
  • Executive Assistant Abby Specht - Specht works with Heartland Film’s president and board of directors on special projects throughout the year. Before working for Heartland Film full time, Specht worked as a film programming intern and a seasonal marketing assistant for the 2013 Heartland Film Festival. Specht earned a Bachelor of Arts in Biology/Biology Sciences from Indiana University.

Learn more about Heartland Film on the organization’s all-new website, heartlandfilm.org.

About Heartland Film, Inc.

Heartland Film is a nonprofit arts organization founded in 1991 with the mission to inspire filmmakers and audiences through the transformative power of film. Heartland Film is a curator and supporter of purposeful filmmaking, honoring a wide variety of cinema and awarding storytellers from all over the world. The films Heartland Film selects and exhibits – whether they inspire and uplift, educate and inform, or have the ability to shift audiences’ perspectives on the world – all have one thing in common: they are entertaining films that do more than just entertain. Every October, the Heartland Film Festival gives its moviegoers access to more than 100 visiting independent filmmakers from all over the world, right in the heart of the Midwest. Heartland Film Festival showcases more than 130 entertaining movies that do much more than just entertain over 10 days of red carpet premieres and events, parties and hundreds of film screenings across Indianapolis. The Heartland Film Festival has earned the special designation of being a qualifying festival for the Annual Academy Awards® within the Short Films category. Each year, the Heartland Film Festival awards more than $115,000 in cash prizes and presents its Festival Awards to top-judged submissions. Heartland Film has awarded more than $2.6 million to support indie filmmakers over the last 23 years. Beyond the Heartland Film Festival, Heartland Film honors theatrically-released films that align with its mission via the Truly Moving Picture Award, inspires the next generation of filmmakers via the Heartland Film Institute, and exhibits films across Indiana all year long via the Heartland Film Roadshow. To learn more, visit heartlandfilm.org.

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