Imagine being flown to the Big Apple to be personally congratulated by Roberto De Niro and have your film premiere on the silver screen amongst the glitz and glamor of the acclaimed 2014 Tribeca Film Festival. Little did Dennis Lazar (aka @awsommovieideas) know that when he submitted his 140-character movie pitch via Twitter to the #15secondpremiere contest presented by Heineken, the official beer sponsor of Tribeca Film Festival he would have this once in a lifetime experience. Examiner.com was on the scene on April 23, 2014 to see it all come to life.
Each submission was evaluated through a series of seven different criteria: creativity, originality, public appeal (retweets), entertainment value, concept, overall impact, and ability to translate into film. Chosen from the masses of hundreds of submissions, Dennis’ pitch which follows a cloned Abe Lincoln with a not-so-nice agenda was made into a 15 second short titled "Linclone" and produced and directed by a Hollywood film crew.
The premiere was held at the four-star Tribeca Grand and a surprise for Dennis to see for the first time the finished product of his tweet made into a movie. Following the screening, Dennis had to stand behind his mini-masterpiece, amidst all the limelight that comes with the territory of premiering a film.
Check out our exclusive interview with the mastermind him:
Q: How did you find out about this contest?
A: I definitely found out about it on Twitter. I thought it was a perfect opportunity and I submitted - a month later here we are.
Q: Did you have any creative input in the filming process or casting?
A: I didn’t do the casting or anything. They kind of took the tweet idea I had and ran with it, so it was really cool to see that.
Q: Was the final product a surprise to you, was it the way you envisioned it?
A: This was the first time I’d seen it. So it was really cool. I had no idea what they were going to come up with in 15 seconds but they did a great job, it was really cool!
Q: What was the original tweet?
A: ‘They clone Abe Lincoln’s DNA and name the clone President for life…Except there’s one problem: The clone is evil.’ That got me here a month and a half later (laughs).
Yanique Bourjolly contributed reporting.