New York Film Academy Graduate To Screen Film At Tribeca Film Festival
The Tribeca Film Festival was created in 2002 by Robert De Niro, in response to the declining vitality of Manhattan’s Tribeca community following the attacks of 9/11. Since its launch ten years ago, Tribeca Film Festival has established itself as one of the premier film festivals in the world for independent features, documentaries, and shorts. Their mission: “to enable the international film community and the general public to experience the power of film by redefining the film festival experience.”
This year, Tribeca recognized one of New York Film Academy’s international graduates, Martin Rosete. Martin came to New York Film Academy in 2007 thanks to a scholarship from the La Caixa Fellowship Program in Spain. “At that time I could not even dream everything that I was about to learn at NYFA and all the opportunities that this would give me in the professional world.” Now, Martin has a film, Voice Over, being screened at Tribeca and an agent at William Morris Endeavor. His future is ripe for success.
What drives you as an artist?
Outstanding stories. That is what moves me. When I fall in love with a script or story, I am able to commit myself to all the time and pressure that goes into making a movie. If the story is not amazing, it is not worth putting all your energy into. That’s what happened to me with Voice Over. When the writer, Luiso Berdejo, let me read it, I fell completely in love with it and I told him that I would die to direct it. Fifteen months later, we finished Voice Over and now we’re in Tribeca amongst many other film festivals. I also have an agent from William Morris Endeavor and I’m reading many feature scripts. It is a really exciting moment.
Can you tell us about your experience at NYFA?
NYFA is a great place to study filmmaking. It completely focuses on the hands-on experience. I was shooting almost every week on my projects - or classmates’ projects.
In addition to directing, you also gain a sense of each department (sound, photography, editing, etc.) When you leave NYFA, you have a strong understanding about what it takes to make a movie, and that puts you in a great position to enter the professional world.
Also, what I loved the most about NYFA was their advanced equipment (cameras, lighting, etc.) I was able to use the equipment all the time. So, if you go there with the idea of shooting constantly, they will provide you with the resources to shoot 24/7. That is something that no other film school is able to offer.
What is your perspective on screening at film festivals? Advice on the process?
Film Festivals are the main doors to the professional world. Being in the big ones and winning awards, gives you the visibility needed to find the right producer, agent, or investor, interested in your work. My work has been selected in more than 500 film festivals, winning over 100 awards. The only secret is to have something good to show and finding the resources to distribute your work.
With Voice Over we have been super lucky to find the support of the distribution company Marvin & Wayne, The Line Between, Mas Medios, and Genepsis Media who are taking care of the online marketing and social media.
What kind of advice would you give to the aspiring filmmaker and NYFA student dreaming to succeed?
Whatever you do, do it right. Even if you are doing a small project with no budget. Try your best. Put all of your energy and passion into it. Sometimes the result won’t be great, but you may get a good lesson that you can apply in the next shooting. I always joke with my crew, even on low budget sets, telling them that we have to face the shoot as if we were doing Ben-Hur. That kind of commitment from everyone makes the difference. And besides all of that, for me it’s very important to show respect for the profession and for the professionals involved.
New York Film Academy’s Top 5 Robert De Niro Acting Roles
- MEAN STREETS — The original! De Niro’s first movie with Martin Scorsese is certainly one of his best. Johnny Boy jumps off the screen with such vitality and menace that it seems almost “too real” to be simply called a performance. Both hysterical and frightening, De Niro created a character that set the precedent for gritty, urban performances. Some may argue he defined American acting from the 1970’s forward.
- TAXI DRIVER — De Niro’s iconic role is memorable for so many reasons. The delivery, the transformation, the impact on popular culture… The mohawk! Travis Bickle was immortalized as “God’s Lonely Man”. He frightens because he is so effortlessly real. Nothing about this character feels like a performance. De Niro famously drove a night-shift cab for months to prepare for this role. It shows. We don’t doubt him for a minute. Who can look at cabbies the same way again after watching this?
- RAGING BULL — Of course the famous weight gain is impressive. Everything else about this powerhouse performance, however, also shines. De Niro won his first Best Actor statute portraying the troubled pugilist Jake LaMotta, and he definitely deserved it. The fight scenes are some of the most realistic ever filmed. Most importantly, he humanizes a man with very few redeeming qualities. A classic in every way.
- THE GODFATHER 2 — De Niro had huge shoes to fill playing the young version of Vito Corleone, a role made famous by his hero Marlon Brando. He didn’t disappoint. Winning his first Academy Award, he spoke entirely in Sicilian which he learned for the role. De Niro portrays a young Don driven by his need for power and revenge. It’s a study in quiet strength and menace. Undoubtedly, this role solidified De Niro as an actor for the ages.
- GOODFELLAS — De Niro teamed up with Martin Scorsese once again. As the leader of career gangsters, he is chillingly and darkly hilarious. One of my all time favorite films, this film would’ve sunk without De Niro’s performance. Jimmy Conway is so vibrant and memorable that De Niro has parlayed his later career playing a version of this role in subsequent roles.