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Kimmie Dee

Originally from the Jersey shore, Kimmie Dee is a freelance writer, stand-up comic, producer and promoter of all things funny. She's worked with Paul Provenza and Troy Conrad of the international comedy show SET LIST. Additionally, she's worked with Doug Stanhope, Kira Soltanovich, Rick Overton, Alonzo Bodden and many, many more. She runs her own production company in Santa Barbara, California called NO INDOOR VOICES and holds a monthly writing salon at Granada Books with famous authors, comedians and other funny professional writers. Oh and she has an opinion on everything, well almost. 



Ok, so if you know me and you’ve been following my blog on Santa Barbara, you’re probably wondering why I’ve been so ‘mild’ thus far. (I love using ‘thus’ in a blog) Well, that’s because, while all the events are exciting in themselves and have a collective energy that rivals something you’d find at an amusement park, frankly, I’ve been pacing myself … until today.




Kimberly Deisler

In the ten years I’ve been working this festival, the writers panel, “It Starts With a Script,” is the one event to die for. For me, both the writers and directors panels are the most inspirational experiences during the festival, a difficult task given the saturation of talent jammed in the theaters, on the red carpets, on the panels and frankly, even in the audience.

This year’s panelists were led by moderator Anne Thompson, (Indie Wire) a walking encyclopedia on the subject of film herself.

First writer up was Mark Boal, (The Hurt Locker) a journalist who spent enough time in Iraq to have the living sh%& out of him, he decided to find a safer way to make a living.

Peter Docter (Up) spoke to the collaborative efforts at Pixar. Since Pixar shelves are lined with Oscars, I imagine the process must be both intimidating and liberating given the amount of talent under one roof.

One of my favorite films this year was “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Saphire and Geoffrey Fletcher was on hand to give his experience adapting a book with a beloved following. Trained as a director, he read the book with a cinematic eye and the final product showed.

Alex Kurtzman (Star Trek) was flying solo, even though Roberto Orci is and has been for over twenty years, his writing partner in crime.

Representing the girls was one of my favorites, Nancy Meyers (It’s Complicated). Backstage we had a moment that brought tears to my eyes. I’ve been a struggling writer all my life and for the past decade, I’ve been working at the festival in hopes of gleaning insight and networking. In order to keep grounded when I’m wallowing in the weight of it all, I have a book I turn to, given to me ‘blank’ by a playwright, that I use as inspiration. Every year, I’ve been collecting ‘words of wisdom’ from other writers who’ve found success but who once sat in that lonely writer’s chair, the likes of which are both significant in cinematic history as well as Oscar nominees and winners. Having said that, Nancy Meyers just blew me away with three simple words. In my book she wrote “Hang In There.” While that may not seem like a big deal, its what she said that made it so. “Billy Wilder said that to me thirty years ago.”

Back to the panel. Scott Neustadter (500 Days of Summer) spoke to the time factor in writing, considering his film jumps around within the span of 500 day. Ironically, timing had a lot to do with Jason Reitman’s project also. Reitman’s adaptation of “Up In The Air,” started seven years ago. As a result of the 9-11 tragedies coinciding with the book’s release, the book was buried with nary a mention. Who would have thought that so many years later the material would be even more timely than when it was published.

I could spend hours quoting, offering anecdotes, etc., but I’m still digesting. Suffice it to say, once again, that this panel did not disappoint, I have new signatures and I’m excited to get back to my own projects.

Kimberly Deisler in Santa Barbara



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