Recent News from Films for Prizes
Films4Prizes.com recently met legendary producer David Lehre for lunch in Los Angeles. At twenty-four years old, he’s already accomplished more than many people hope to in a lifetime. He’s been featured in LA Times, Esquire, 20/20, GQ, and in Rolling Stone. This Sunday he’ll be hosting the American Music Awards on ABC. How did he get selected to host the American Music Awards? By winning a Coca-Cola video contest of course. Films4Prizes.com wanted to learn how Lehre got to where he is today.
Lehre first began producing films while attending high school in the small town of Washington, Michigan. “When I was 16, I started doing high school theater, I was with a really bad group of friends – like the trouble makers. I joined the theater class and I dropped all my bad friends. I became 100% theater- it was like a family. I didn’t get a part in a play – Little Women- and I was so mad I decided to make a movie. I wanted to get back at them. So I spent $1,000 on eBay and bought a camera, got a copy of Vegas 1.0, filmed with my best friend, and brought it to the school. The school loved it. I realized I was never going to stop making movies.”
By the time he was 17 he was producing music videos for rappers in Detroit. When he 18 he started attending a 3-month-long summer program at the University of Southern California film school . Unlike most students, Lehre entered film school with an extensive portfolio. His teachers were impressed. While he had fun at film school, it really didn’t teach him much. As Lehre put it “Film school in logic is flawed because you read books all day. And then when it comes time you think you’re really good. But the movie sucks because the theory is all there. It’s about trial and error. And learning how to do it. I’ve made over 100 films. My first one sucked and my first 50 sucked. “
Lehre made headlines not though film school, but through his own films on the internet. He produced a film with his friends and won 4 cars in the My Entourage contest. They worked hard and they played hard. “We got all the cars. I gave them to my friends, and then we ripped them-up just doing donuts in them – that video’s online. Then we sold them.” He went on to win other contests too. He won $10,000 from the T-Mobile Sidekick contest and was featured on the Jimmy Kimble show. He won $25,000 in the Verizon V-Cast contest too. Altogether Lehre has entered about 20 contests and won 6 or 7.
Lehre made even bigger headlines by making a film just for fun. Almost overnight he had the biggest studios in Hollywood fighting for him. As Lehre recalls “I produced Myspace the movie. 60,000,000 hits later I was getting calls from agents and managers. They were flying me out every weekend. I was in 6 or 7 meetings a day with the biggest studios in the world. I met with the President of Fox, who’s son was a huge fan of my work. He asked me “Dave what do you want?” I was like dude I want my own show. And he was like “done”. He gave me $400,000 to make a comedy variety show.” Lehre went on to produce the show with his friends as cast and crew. It was called “Vendetta Revolution”.
Now Lehre’s producing “Kings of Campus”. He’s got the backing of FremantleMedia – the same company that produces American Idol. He’s had over 3,000 actor submissions for the series. He’ll be shooting with a RED camera this December. He’s also writing a screenplay called “Michigan Spring Break” with the help of a writer from the “The Hangover”.
Lehre’s got a style that’s energetic, bright and refreshing. It’s unique. We asked him where he gets his inspiration. “It’s just like me. It’s how my life is. At my place the walls are bright yellow and neon blue and there are graphics everywhere. My closet, my shoes, everything is bright.” He also gets his ideas from music videos – especially Korean music videos. “I watch a lot of music videos – three hours per day – I obsess with them. You get the newest, hottest, awesomest ideas, fresh to you in three minute bits. And if you don’t like it you change the channel and you get another. Feature films take a year-and -half to turn around, music videos take one-and-half weeks, TV shows six months. You get the newest film techniques, creative lighting design, and art direction in music videos.”
When asked about gear, Lehre says cameras and software are “just tools”. He personally uses FinalCut and shoots with a RED camera or HVX.
When asked if he had any final tips for aspiring filmmakers he said “ Just have fun and make movies, and keep making them. You’re only going to get better.”
We want to thank David Lehre for his time, and congratulate him for getting on the American Music Awards. We wish him the best.
Support a fellow Films4Prizes Fan:
Mike Beaudoin, of Boston, Massachusetts, is a finalist in the Pistachio contest. He needs your support to win the $25,000 prize! His entry is hilarious and well done. Please support him:
Be sure to check out the Films4Prizes interview with Joel Levinson. He’s one of the top video contest winners in the nation! He won $100,000 from Klondike Bar, $25,000 from Tax Slayer and many others. His interview will be featured on our homepage until this Friday. You can find it, and other interviews on our YouTube channel : http://www.youtube.com/films4prizes
Films4Prizes New Contest Picks:
Submit a short film (no more than 2 minutes) of your home and how you have or would like to make it more energy efficient. Total Prizes: $5,000 In Gift Cards, Computer, 100 Copies of Windows 7 Home Premium. Deadline: January 5, 2010. We recommend this contest because Windows 7 is given to the first 100 entries.
Never Lay Up – Callaway Top Flite:
Make a irreverent, witty, and funny film to promote Top Flite golf balls. The message should be about getting more for less. Grand Prize: $3,500. Total Prizes: $17,500. We recommend this contest because there are 5 prizes of $3,500 each!
Sebago Brewing Company:
Create a cool film about your favorite Sebago Brewing Company brew. Show why you like it. Grand Prize: $50 Gift Card. Deadline January 1, 2010. The Films4Prizes.com Crew are big fans of Sebago Brewing Company’s food and brews. So if you’re in Maine, we recommend entering this contest because it’s a great restaurant!
Open Contests, Number of Entries So Far:
Camo Ammo: 0
I Am T-Pain: 85
Jergens – Winterless Weather Forecast: 40
Livin Digi: 9
Tell The Snickers Story: 60
Tyson HungerRelief: 12
We love to see what you’re making and we’re happy to help support you. So send us your entries! Now make some cool films, win some great prizes, and have fun!
Matthew & The Films4Prizes Crew
Here at films for prizes we are very excited about the release of this new version of our site. We ask that you please bear with us as we work out the kinks and if time permits we would LOVE your feedback and comments on what you like and don’t like and most importantly what sort of features and ideas you have for improving our site. Please contact us here.
Some of the major changes to our site:
- Each contest has its own unique page providing more information as well as the ability for members and guests to discuss their experiences and thoughts on each contest.
- Free Membership (this we are really excited about) enabling our users the ability to save their favorite contests, learn about new contests ASAP and receive exclusive offers/opportunities. Learn More
- An archives section to peruse past contests
- Site Blog for posting updates on the site and its features
Coming in the future
- Ability to share videos
- A forum for discussion
- Exclusive contests hosted by FilmsForPrizes.com
- Members only contests and prizes.
Please contact us anytime with questions, thoughts and comments.
November 11, 2009
The Doritos Crash the Super Bowl contest has ended. Only 3,923 entries were submitted for a chance to win $5 million in prizes. Now that the contest is closed we can expect more producers will have time to focus on other contests.
The biggest open contests are now: The Great TCBY Store Giveaway, Mountain Dew Dewmocracy, and Diski. Those contests are awarding: a TCBY store (ARV $312,500), funding for a Dew TV spot (up to $200,000), and group trip South Africa to attend the world cup (ARV $60,000) respectively. There are also dozens of contests awarding between $5,000 and $25,000 in cash.
This week on our Films4Prizes.com Video News segment, we’ve featured some recent entries people have made into contests. Check it out if you want to see what other producers are up to.
And now some quick updates….
Number of Entries:
20 Minutes With The President: 55
Cools Light Coaches: 1
The Governor Fitzys: 0
Louisiana Hot Sauce: 1
Tyson HungerRelief: Originally November 9th and now it’s November 16th. This contest currently has just 8 entries.
GeniusRocket Tutorial: Originally November 23rd now it’s December 9th.
New Contests: Grand Prize/ Total Prizes
2009 AKC/Eukanuba National Championship: $5,000/ $9,000
Al Fresco All Natural Chicken Sausage: $6,000/ $8,000
Artificial Christmas Trees Unleashed: $1,000/ $1,750
Best Idea on Two Feet -- Z-CoiL footwear: $2,500/ $4,000
Chili’s Baby Back Ribs Jingle: $1,000/ $1,300
EMP -- Best in Emergency Medicine: $5,000 & $10,000 For Research
Every Day A New Adventure -- Mountains Plus Outdoor Gear: TBD/$4,400
GeniusRocket Tutorial: $4,000/ $5,000
Grovemaker: Stanton SCS 3 Controller Bundle & More (ARV $6,000)
Houston Camera Coop – Texas: $500 Gift Card or Ikan V5600 Monitor
InnoCentive 2010: $7,500/ $10,000
International -- Europe -- Akai Pro APC40: Any Current Akai Professional Product
International -- Most Generous Person I Know: $2,000/ $3,250
International – TyroSafe: Trip: Brussels, Belgium
Jergens -- Winterless Weather Forecast: $5,000 Talent Contract, Trip: NYC
Livin Digi: Computer
Making The World A Sweeter Place – Hershey’s Chocolate: TBD/TBD
Nokia & Rihanna: VIP Access To Film Rihanna
OXO -- Worlds Biggest OXOniac -- Cooking Theme: Trip: New York City, $1,000 in Products
PowerDirector 8: Sony HDR-XR100 Camcorder
Southwest Airlines -- What would you do for $100?: Trip: Salt Lake City
Students -- CA -- MO Project 2 -- Own Your Health: Wii or iPod Touch
Students -- Geico Safety: $100/ $500
Students -- Oklahoma Bar Association: $500
Students -- The New York Times Upfront: One Year of UpFront
Students -- Your 24 -- Liberty University Online: Semester Tuition (ARV $4,740)
Swanson Health Products: $1,000/ $1,750
Tell The Snickers Story: $5,000/ $7,000
The Magical Memories Nutcracker Contest: Trip: Aspen, CO, Nutcraker Tickets (ARV $6,710)
Vita-Mix: $10,000/ $20,000
Recent Entries made by Films4Prizes.com fans:
By Charles of New York: http://contest.blackboxwines.com/contests/showentry/88760
By Tina of Maine: http://tongal.com/app/submissionDetail.action?id=434;EL778
Keep your eyes open for the upcoming episode of Films4Prizes .com Email News. We’ll be featuring an exclusive interview with legendary producer David Lehre, founder of Vendetta Studios!
Now go out there, make some cool films, win some great prizes and have fun!
All the best,
Matthew & The Films4Prizes Crew