Christie Conochalla is a writer/producer/director who resides in Los Angeles, CA known for her screwball romantic comedy "Once Upon a Zipper," award winning drama "August in the City," and is currently in post production with her first feature film "Forever Not Maybe." Conochalla is inspired by and desires to continue creating stories about powerful women and their journeys through the complicated ever-changing world. She is currently in development with two projects and hopes to be on set with her second feature in 2019.
What do I do best?
I’m best at setting goals and tirelessly working to achieve them.
What makes me the best version of myself?
I am the best version of myself when my life has balance.
What are my aspirations?
My aspirations lie in the forward movement of my directing career where I want to work side by side with the people who have and continue to inspire me every day.
My Biggest Success?
My greatest accomplishment is completing my first feature film. It has taken three years and all of my time and energy but it’s almost ready to send into the world.
My Most Challenging Moment?
The most challenging moments are those when faith and hope is lost. In this industry one day can be one way and the next 100% different. You have to maintain belief that what you’re doing is important, that you are worthy of achieving your goals and continue to believe. If you lose faith and hope, your job is to find it again without losing any time.
Life isn’t for us to put in order, life is in order, it is for us to live in unison with this order. Henry Miller.
My Favorite People/Role Models?
Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Tilda Swinton, Kamala Harris, Cate Blanchett, Patty Jenkins, Todd Haynes.
My Favorite Places/Destinations?
New York, Berlin, Stockholm
My Favorite Products/Objects?
notebooks, pens, books, Strange Fruit on vinyl, Talisker Scotch, wine from Bordeaux, coffee from Colombia
My Current Passions?
I have a story in my heart and mind. I’m finding a way to get it on the page and this is my favorite process.
How did you get into the industry?
I’ve always wanted to be a part of filmmaking though I didn’t always know in what way. I went to a technical university and earned a degree in film and television production. At the time my intention was to be involved in either a writing room and lighting. I earned a position doing lighting for live and televised events but it didn’t satiate my appetite for writing and wanting to create worlds where things happen the way I think they should. I directed two short films with friends and when working toward production of my third project came across and angel donor who gave me a full budget to do a calling card project called “Once Upon A Zipper” which led to the confidence in writing my first feature “Forever Not Maybe” (currently in post production) and whose journey led me to be hired to direct my award winning short “August in the City.”
Any emerging industry trends?
The industry hasn’t always been supportive of women among their ranks. Through a series of tragic events alongside an uprise of women studio heads with a passion to opening the door for more women filmmakers, the profession is starting to feel like it’s moving toward an equal playing ground.
Any industry opportunities or challenges?
The film industry is ever changing. New technologies make ideas which once seemed impossible possible; making films isn’t as daunting since the digital revolution has made filmmaking less expensive. There are more distribution platforms outside the studio system. A new ways to get your project together and on a path to production. However, as hopeful and helpful these things have become it has made it equally difficult. Crowdfunding can help push your movie forward but it in and of itself is a full time job and one of the most difficult. And getting the films into theaters and on your television has more opportunity but there is a larger chance of getting lost in the mix so ideas and priorities have to be recalculated on how to make money and get your project in front of your audience.
Inspiration for the business idea, and your vision for the Business?
It’s difficult for me to pin point my initial inspiration for the business. Some people have callings and things they do because there is no other option for them. My vision is to work within the parameters of budgets I can viably get with the work I’ve done and continue to do in order to earn bigger budgets for larger and larger projects.
What's next for the Business in the near future?
There is a lot on the horizon for my work. I’m currently in the final stages of post production with my first feature film called “Forever Not Maybe” of which I hope to be starting in the festival circuit at the beginning of 2019. I’m co writing a feature which will star the incomparable Lane Moore to get into development as soon as possible. I’m working on writing another feature to star the amazing Daniela Mastropietro who I’ve been dying to work with since we shot “August in the City” where she played the lead role in our little award winning gem.
Your key initiatives for the success of the Business?
I’m currently finding my way into partnerships and working toward common goals with the various producers, production companies and other allies I find on my journey. Having a successful, supportive team is my key goal presently and moving forward.
Your most difficult moment at the Business? (and what did you learn?)
Being a filmmaker is one of the toughest aspect of my life. You work around the clock in hopes you will create something which will speak to someone who might want to help you put it on a screen. 90% of my time is spent by myself working, self motivating, staying positive and believing. Opportunity knocks only seldomly and the endurance to make yourself ready to grab it when it comes can be a trying task.
Ideal experience for a customer/client?
I want my work to make people feel something. I want an audience who will love and appreciate the world as I see it.
How do you motivate others?
I motivate others by doing what I say I’ll do. There are so many people in this world who want to talk about what they will do but not often do they go out and do it. I don’t want to talk, I want to work, I want to earn my way and my hope is that kind of attitude is inspiring and creates a path which people see can be walked, but also that the path is a bumpy one and not for the faint of heart.
Career advice to those in your industry?
There is no failure. There is rejection. Sometimes hope is hard to find. If you keep going, you will achieve your goals. Or maybe on the way you learn you need to stop and change directions but there is no failure. When you’re down you get right back up again and keep moving onward.