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"From Idea to Distribution" Weekend Filmmaking Seminar

Filmmaking Seminar Information

What's It All About?

Do you want to learn the writing, directing and production tips, tricks, secrets and "must do"s as well as all the stuff you need to know to keep your film production safe, legal and under budget?

If so, then this event is for you. Tom Hofbauer, multiple award-winning independent filmmaker, will be offering his "From Idea to Distribution" weekend seminar on Saturday and Sunday, April 6th and 7th in Toledo, Ohio. 

This is the perfect seminar whether you are a brand new filmmaker tackling your first project or if you already have a couple of films in the can but want to brush up on the things you need to know more about. Tom will cover every topic from screenwriting to promoting your film at a film festival. (His films have won the top award at 12 festivals and his films have been screened in over 25 festivals.)

Here's a detailed list of the topics covered in this comprehensive seminar:

  • Concept & Story Development
  • Screenwriting
  • Screenplay Format
  • Screenplay Breakdown
  • Scheduling & Budgeting your Film
  • Casting & Auditions
  • Financing
  • Legal Issues
  • Preproduction
  • Location Scouting
  • Directing
  • Who Does What on the Set?
  • What the Heck is THAT THING Called? (tips for the PA / Grip team)
  • Set Management
  • Post Production
  • Editing Concepts
  • Marketing
  • Film Festivals
  • Distribution
  • Craft Services and Catering

The price for this two-day event is only $160. Contact Tom for information on how you might be able to attend this seminar for free.


"From Idea to Distribution" Independent Filmmaking Seminar


Pay with PayPal or a debit/credit card

A comprehensive 2-day seminar on independent filmmaking. We cover 20 different subjects which will have you ready to make your next film. Invest in your filmmaking career with this exceptional seminar. (Friday and Saturday, April 6 & 7 in Toledo, OH)

Contact Us

Drop us a line!

Better yet, see us in person!

Plan to attend the filmmaking seminar on April 6th and 7th in Toledo. Let us know by sending us a message or calling. 


(419) 349-6607

About Us

Screenplay & Producing Coaching


If you've got a screenplay you want to write, we can help you get started. We'll also help you with editing it once it's completed.

Tom's Blog


Making an independent film without the backing or support of a studio is perhaps one of the most difficult things an artist can attempt. Filmmaking is often a huge collaborative effort and requires that the person at the helm understand the process inside and out. Coordinating a team of crew members and actors, sets and locations, meals and craft services, contracts and permissions (and that's just scratching the surface) is not for the faint of heart. 

Start Today


Your first step is to send us a message about your project. If you have a specific question, send it to us and we'll do our best to answer it (and it's a service we provide at no cost to you). If you have a more complex issue, send us a message and we can give you a quote which you can include as you develop your budget. We'll point you in the direction of your next steps. We've been there before so don't hesitate to contact us soon so we can help you get on the timeline you need.

About Us

Who is the MidwestFilmGuy?


Tom Hofbauer is an award-winning independent filmmaker with three successful film projects under his belt. In addition to his own film work, he was a cinematographer and location producer on the Oscar-nominated documentary film, Twist of Faith, which was produced for HBO by celebrated director, Kirby Dick and producer Eddie Schmidt. He's a writer, producer, and director, and he has produced scores of commercials and industrial films.

Find out more

"In the Company of Strangers"


Tom's first feature film won the award for Festival Director's Choice at the 2009 Trail Dance Film Festival in Duncan, Oklahoma, Best Dramatic Feature Film at the Telluride IndieFest in 2002 and the Key West IndieFest in 2003. It has also been honored with the Best Director - Gold Medal for Excellence at the Park City Film Music Festival in Park City, Utah in 2005 and a Best Dramatic Feature Film award at the New York International Independent Film & Video Festival.

What this site can do for you.


Tom provides valuable information based on his experience as an indie filmmaker. And it's not just for producers and directors. There's great information for actors and writers and even craft service people and PAs. He covers it all in his blog posts. 

If you're new to this world, Tom can help you jump over some hurdles without the pain of making a lot of mistakes along the way.

My Blog

Site Content

Private Coaching

Had a great meeting today with Tom Hofbauer. Thanks again Tom for your expertise and knowledge with screenwriting. If anybody out there needs advice or help with a screenplay, get on my friends list and friend request Tom Hofbauer for more. If he can help me, I know he can help you! (Danny Kazee, BGSU)

Headshots & Coaching

My thanks, really really, to everybody.  Tom, you and Laurie and Greg and Jenn, all working so hard to make me look good, and teaching, teaching, teaching me how to do a shoot, how to hold my head, how to fix my hair, makeup, be careful not to go out of the shoot until released, how to get rid of negatives and accentuate the positives.  Constantly giving, caring, warning us what to watch out for, being sure we were doing the right thing, letting us know how to behave on set, preparing us for the future.  Not only do we get incredible pictures, we also get a full class on 'how to be a success in this field.'  It will always be up to the individual to use the information, but if used I believe we have a head start, a big head start, on going further in this business.  (Pat Stroble., Toledo)

Headshots & Coaching

Thanks so much for the shoot today. I had fun and am so glad I came. You guys are so kind, and you both really made me feel comfortable! Hopefully I'll be able to see you both again or maybe even work with you one of these days. Thanks again!!
(Amy Herzig., Toledo)

Audition Skills Seminar

  • Great, great speaker. I am honored to have taken this class!
  • Thought it was VERY helpful. Would love to attend another!
  • My favorite part was the practical advice that makes a world of difference.  Thank you! I learned a tremendous amount.
  • It was very hands-on and I got to talk to someone with first-hand experience.
  • Absolutely amazing. Super informative!! It was so awesome. I liked the tips and advice that most people fail to mention.
  • I had an absolutely great time today! Learned so much. Thanks again!
  • I felt refreshed, excited and wanting to get going. Thank you both for your knowledge and your honesty.
  • It was a great seminar. All 10s.

5 Day Filmmaking Seminar (BGSU)

  • This week of class gave me a lot of information that I would have spent months trying to find. I want to write screenplays and make independent films. This was just what I was looking for to obtain information and knowledge on things I wish to do in my future.
  • Tom, I really enjoyed having you this week. I came in not really knowing what to expect and your presentations set the bar and surpassed it. Some of the material did not directly appeal to anything I have planned for myself but I found it interesting - and who knows, I may be happy to have heard it in the future. Again, thank you and good luck. (E. Shivey - age 21)
  • I think Tom is very well spoken and he is able to talk for eight hours... Impressive. (T. Nafziger - age 24)
  • Very much enjoyed. Knowledge of material was pretty much exactly what I came here to learn. (Eric. Chilton - age 23)
  • I really loved just about every minute of it. Topics were covered very thoroughly. I feel that I could use much of this info to my benefit in the future. Thank you. (John Toth - age 20)
  • I thought you did an excellent job this week. I learned a lot that will help me in the future. I will check out some of the movies you recommended and also maybe take your advice and audition for some things when I am back in NYC. Thanks. (Emily Waters - age 21)

Financing Your Independent Film (BGSU)

  • Very engaging and informative. Thank you! (Male - age 22)
  • This is the most inspirational talk I have ever witnessed - it has given me even greater motivation to shoot my screenplay next summer. Thank you! (Male - age 20)
  • I liked when you said you have to bleed film - that's how I have felt forever and never heard anyone say it. (Male - age 22)

2019 Promo for "In the Company of Strangers"

A brief look at filmmaking and screenwriting.

This is a sample from one of Tom's guest lectures at the Bowling Green State University Department of Theatre and Film.

"Desperate for Domain"

This is an award-winning commercial created for dot.TV. It was conceived and written by Tom Hofbauer and Jennifer Holman who both acted in it as well. 

It won first prize in a national competition.

Courtroom scene from "In the Company of Strangers"

This scene is from the multi-award winning indie film, "In the Company of Strangers", written, produced and directed by Tom Hofbauer, the MidwestFilmGuy.


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Let's Get Started!

Tell us a little bit about your project. We will get back to you as soon as we can with advice and answers to any of your questions.


(419) 349-6607