Celldance 2016: Great Imaging, Great Science, and a Great Platform for a “Tell Your Own Cell Story” Video

Hailed by Francis Collins in his “NIH Director’s Blog” as “microscopic blockbusters” and “bio-action” thrillers, Celldance videos are a high profile opportunity for ASCB members to hone their science communication skills and present the excitement-and impact-of their research. This year we’re looking for a new generation of video storytellers to tell us “What do your cells do?”

Celldance Studios asks you, ASCB members, to nominate fellow ASCB members labs or to submit your own proposals for entry into Celldance. We will directly solicit proposals from your nominations. Three ASCB member labs will be chosen from the short proposals (see below for description to produce short (2-5 minute) “Tell Your Own Cell Story” videos, featuring live cell imaging and aimed at the widest possible audience—the news media, the web, biology educators, and the curious world.

If your proposal is accepted, ASCB will make your lab an unrestricted $1,000 grant toward production costs. In addition, Celldance Studios will take your rough-cut video through postproduction, providing, at our expense, final professional editing, a musical score, credits, titles, and promotion. Your Celldance video will premiere on the web and live at the ASCB 2016 Annual Meeting in San Francisco this December.

Celldance 2016 Timeline

Deadline for Celldance video proposals: August 1 Announcement of three selected ASCB member labs: September 1 Rough-cut video due: October 31 (Halloween) Final edited versions ready for promotion: November 21 Premiere at ASCB 2016 Annual Meeting: San Francisco, December 4 Release online: December 5 Celldance Awards at ASCB 2016: December 6
Celldance is a program to develop the skills of video-based storytelling for cell biologists. We solicit proposals from the ASCB membership and identify three laboratories that will receive $1000 to aid in the development of a rough video draft. This rough draft is then sent to our production team to polish it up for its premiere at the ASCB annual meeting. Celldance is supported by the Public Information Committee (PIC) at the ASCB to promote public engagement and education in cell biology.
  • A Celldance proposal should be simple, a one or two page story outline plus a short video sample of your most beautiful/most exciting cell imaging. (These samples do not have to be the video sequences that you will use in your actual Celldance video.) Tell us about your cell imaging. Tell us what we’re looking at, tell us what you, the scientist, see here. Tell us why these images are important to health or to science or to yourself.
  • Make it personal. Put yourself and your lab mates on camera. The world needs to see what cell biologists look like. Bring outsiders into your lab world and your experiments.
  • Use video imaging to reveal the wonders, dangers, and beauties in your field of research.
  • Use your imagination. Use whatever story telling device you need—animation, white boards, voice-overs, interviews, poetry, song, or dancing. Tell a story. Don’t give a PowerPoint talk.
  • Make it relevant to students and non-scientists. Highlight the impact of your research on health, the environment, or human lives. Imagine that you’re explaining what you do to your parents, a member of Congress or a layperson who just wants to know why researchers study fruit flies or single molecules.
  • Your Celldance Studios producer will help with advice and support. Our postproduction services will polish up your video, give it a (legal) music track, and launch it on the world.
Proposal text should be sent to Celldance2016@ascb.org. If your video is less than 10MB then you can email it, otherwise please send a shared link for download (google drive, drops etc.) or a link for viewing (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.).
Celldance proposals are due August 1, and will be evaluated by the ASCB Celldance committee and production team. The three labs will be announced by September 1.
Nomination and solicitation still require the submission of a Celldance proposal.
If selected, you will immediately receive a $1,000 grant from ASCB toward your production costs. (We prefer to make this grant as a non-taxable donation to your lab through a university or similar non-profit institution. We will explain.) You can spend this $1,000 on anything to do with your video—materials, equipment, professional help, lab staff time, or late-night pizza. Many universities and institutes have professional video production facilities in their public communications offices. Celldance 2014 & 2015 participants report that these in-house video services are well worth enlisting. We will assign a PIC member to be your producer, acting as go-between with ASCB and with our professional post-production videographer and music providers. ASCB will provide at our cost all postproduction services including final editing, music, credit slates, and promotion.
You can spend this $1,000 on anything to do with your video—materials, equipment, professional help, lab staff time, or late-night pizza. Many universities and institutes have professional video production facilities in their public communications offices. Celldance 2014 & 2015 participants report that these in-house video services are well worth enlisting.
Deadline for Celldance video proposals: August 1 Announcement of three selected ASCB member labs: September 1 Rough-cut video due: October 31 (Halloween)
We will assign a PIC member to be your producer, acting as go-between with ASCB and with our professional post-production videographer and music providers. ASCB will provide at our cost all postproduction services including final editing, music, credit slates, and promotion.
ASCB will make all three finished films available for free public streaming or downloading through a Creative Commons license for non-profit, news media, and educational use. All other rights will remain with the filmmakers. You must have the rights to use or permission to reuse all video or other imaging in your video. If materials are previously published, you must help ASCB obtain reprint permission. To submit a proposal, you must be an ASCB member.
Questions? Email John Fleischman.
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