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Peter Ong Lim: A Writer’s Perspective on the PGA’s “Produced By Conference”

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Enough with the producers already. How did the Producers Guild of America's "Produced By Conference" look from a writer’s perspective?

Peter Ong LimPeter Ong Lim is a Seattle-based "writer/producer/creative entrepreneur." Peter started out in entertainment, took a detour through medicine, but now is back with his first love: "I sold my first script at age 14 to a local comic book publisher for 35 pesos" (in his native Philippines). He wrote for Philippine television and co-wrote two films, Jose Rizal (with Ricky Lee and Jun Lana) and Sagad sa Init (with Jun Lana).

Jose RizalPeter, the “Produced By Conference” is a long way from Seattle. What made you think this trip would be worth it?

Seattle is only two hours away by plane so it’s not really a ways off. Some folks came in from Japan, China, and Ireland. There were plenty of NYC-based producers too. I met a producer from Michigan and another from Arizona. The way I look at it, my attendance tells my peers and the rest of the world that I am serious in the art and business of producing.

What was the biggest surprise you encountered at the conference?

I can’t say I was surprised at anything, though I would have loved to attend all the panels. I had been to the San Diego Comic-Con, now that is a totally different animal with surprises at every bend.

Where there any disappointments?

A couple of speakers had to cancel but things like this happen. The organizers managed to replace them with credible and engaging personalities so I wasn’t disappointed in the major sense of the word.

What panel did you enjoy the most?

That’s a very tough question since I enjoyed most of the panels I attended. But if I’m forced to choose, it’s a toss-up between "Conversation: Mark Gordon & Marshall Herskovitz – Where Do Producers Go From Here?" and "New Voices, New Stories, New Audiences."

Was there one person in particular who impressed or helped you?

Lee DanielsI was totally floored by Lee Daniels (Monster’s Ball, Precious, The Woodsman). He was a panelist at the "New Voices" forum. He was simply awe-inspiring. He hit a nerve and was unapologetic with his words, views, and insights. I had goosebumps all the way.

What was your favorite piece of swag handed out by the vendor booths?

Believe it or not, it was the Slinky at the Cast & Crew booth. I never had one as a kid, really. When I passed by, I had the look of "I gotta have one this time."

Tell us about your current or next project, and has attending the conference helped you with it?

I have several projects in development and am always on the lookout for potential partners to help me take them to the next level. I found promising collaborators at the conference. I’m already lining up a few meetings and Skype chats with them.

Is there anything else you think is important to share about the conference?

Congratulations to the PGA for a superb job. Though this conference is hard to beat, I’m sure it will only keep getting better far into the future.

You can get in touch with Peter at his Facebook page.

Coming next: "Summing Up: The Best Advice from 'Produced By 2010'"

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