By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood September 23, 2010 at 3:00AM
Eugene Hernandez is the reason I hitched my wagon to indieWIRE. He's that rare creature: an idealist. He believes in reaching out to the best of what people can be, as filmmakers, writers, webmasters, distributors or bloggers. He and indieWIRE parent SnagFilms CEO Rick Allen offered TOH a home, where I've been both ridiculously industrious--and happy.
I made the entrepreneurial bet that a single blogger at an online site--even if it was a narrow niche indie--could succeed. I was right.
Now Hernandez, who founded and has been identified with indieWIRE for 15 years, is moving on to another web platform on November 1, as director of digital strategy for the Film Society of Lincoln Center. They are lucky to have him. And I wish him the best.
I'll miss him.
But Hernandez leaves indieWIRE in excellent shape. Brian Brooks, Peter Knegt, James Israel and Eric Kohn are among the brightest people I know. They share Hernandez's ideals and goals for indieWIRE, and love of film. They know how to put out a high-quality must-read indie daily, and will continue to do so. The indieWIRE blog network has burgeoned, with Todd McCarthy, Leonard Maltin, Sydney Levine and Peter Bogdanovich joining the ongoing indieWIRE conversation, and more additions waiting in the wings. In Hernandez's departure announcement, he writes:
Companies can reach a new level of growth after a founder decides to move on. I have no doubt that will be the case at indieWIRE and I'm looking forward to working with the team to pinpoint new leadership, develop a new structure, and then pass the baton. Personally speaking, I'm ready for a change and honored to be joining the Film Society at such an important moment. Despite the move uptown, however, I'll stay in the indieWIRE family and am glad that my blog will remain part of the indieWIRE Network.
IndieWIRE has thrived because it answers a need in the film community, of which it is an essential part. Inevitably, it will evolve into a revised version of what it was under Hernandez. But indieWIRE's vital mission-- to support "filmmakers, biz, fans"--will continue.