E2 Conference & Film Festival

Bringing the meaning of movies into focus

US Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor joined scholars, filmmakers,  philosophers, entertainment executives, nationally-renown authors, thinkers and Hollywood celebrities at the 2005 E2 Lincoln Center Ethics of Entertainment Conference and Film Festival, held October 20-23 at the Tempe Mission Palms Resort.

E2 was a weekend of film, music, literature and debate about the role of entertainment in our lives.  Issues debated among this diverse group included censorship, the business of  celebrity, diversity,  exportation of American culture through entertainment, and sex and violence onscreen. The weekend events included a Film Festival and a filmmaking workshop, with AZ premieres of leading documentaries and films. The E2 Conference and Film Festival was founded by Laurie A. Trotta and F. Miguel Valenti, Lincoln Professor of Ethics and the Arts and the founder of the Film Production Program at ASU, which is the first filmmaking program in the nation to incorporate ethical decision-making into the learning process.  For a full list of panels and speakers, download the E2 Program. Highlights: 

  • Justice Sandra Day O'Connor received the Joan and David Lincoln Award for Public Virtue
  • Benjamin Barber, author of the international bestseller Jihad vs. McWorld, elaborated on the exportation of American values through entertainment
  • New York Times Magazine photojournalist Peter Howe, author of, Paparazzi discussed the Business of Celebrity with a panel of press photographers, PR executives and sociologists
  • Harry G. Frankfurt, whose treatise on American culture, On Bullshit, has been on the NYT bestseller list for more than half a year, will offer comment on popular culture
  • Born into Brothels, Academy Award-winning documentary, opened  the E2 Film Fest, running continuously throughout the weekend
  • Novelist  Clive Cussler spoke on the torturous process of turning a novel into screened entertainment, as in the recent film by Paramount, Sahara

E2 events kicked-off the first film and media production program in the nation to teach ethics as an integral component of the profession and was presented by the Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics at ASU.  It was organized by F. Miguel Valenti, Lincoln Professor of Ethics and the Arts and founder of the ASU Film Production Program, and Laurie A. Trotta, Strategic Marketing & Communications.

Here's some raves about E2:

“ … I was challenged to think about and address issues that I too often take for granted in the pragmatic working world of filmmaking and production… Please don't hesitate to let me know if there is any other opportunity, now or in the foreseeable future, where I can be of help, even in a more expanded or working role with students or the University…”

                             -- Julian Krainin, Producer, Quiz Show, Wallace

 "… An AMAZING, informative, rich and fun conference!  Your choice and mixture of panelists was unique, diverse and made for great exchanges -- intellectually, artistically, ethically…”

                             -- Crystal Griffith, Documentary Filmmaker

“…From a substantive standpoint (E2) was one of the best programs I have seen in 20 years of going to academic conferences…”

                            --  James Weinstein, Amelia D. Lewis Professor of Constitutional Law, Arizona State University, College of Law

 “… I was able to say that I believe ‘Hollywood’ can ethically consider & address risky material. …  Miguel was excellent about stressing that the conference had no agenda of ‘cleaning up the airwaves.’ … I learned quite a few things.  I've shared that experience w/the writers here & they were all fascinated.  You really provided a valuable forum…”

                             -- Glen Mazzara, Executive Producer, Fox Television’s hit series, The Shield

“… This event will be something the industry trade papers would eventually cover and promote, particularly based on the caliber of participants you were able to bring in … I truly applaud your efforts and the success of your event......I was probably most impressed with the content of the overall conference and the message you wished to convey and I really believe it is something that the entertainment industry as a whole should be apprised of and aware of…  Stay in touch!”

                             -- Kevin Sasaki, Senior Vice President, Rogers & Cowan Public Relations, Los Angeles

“An overall outstanding event! The intellectual content coupled with the relevance and the application of ethics to working professionals in the entertainment industry was exceptional …”

                             -- John Zibluk, PhD., Ethics columnist, News Photographer magazine, National Press Photographers Association

 “Bravo!  The event was a total success. I would be honored to host a panel for you next year.  Many ethics issues of high importance that your students and others might love to discuss… Have you set a date yet?”

                            -- Scott McKiernan, Founder & Director, Zuma Press Association

“…I haven't been impressed with the festivals I've attended, … but I found E2 to be quite a different story.  It was very well planned, organized, ran smoothly, had meaningful content, … (and (n)ot once did I have the misfortune to have to deal with a pretentious film snob there, quite unlike Los Angeles. … I would be honored to help E2 or any of your other projects… a wonderful job.”

                             -- Chuck LeVinus, Independent Filmmaker, Never Been Thawed

"... E2 was a wonderful experience all the way around… the discussions were incredible … (I felt) totally free to explore the issues without having to know any answers. It was terrific.” 

                            -- Anna Darrah, Acquisitions Director, Spiritual Cinema Circle 

“… I hope that all those involved in assessing the success of the conference do not lose sight of the important and unique function that is served both by ASU and your sponsors, Joan and David Lincoln, in bringing such important and often neglected issues to the attention of students, academics, and professionals. … It is significant because the work and forethought that goes into the creation of entertainment, has the potential to profoundly influence not only American society, but also much of the world's culture and values - simply because of the unparalleled and ever-growing pervasive impact of American films and entertainment. Please extend to all those involved my congratulations and appreciation for making such a worthy undertaking possible…” 

                    -- Julian Krainin, Producer, Quiz Show, Wallace 

“… I have every confidence that, year by year, E2 will grow in size and importance. Keep it up!” 

                    -- Michael Switzer, Television Director (Lost, Nash Bridges, MASH, ABC, NBC Movies of the Week)

Laurie Trotta,
Jun 30, 2010, 11:28 AM