Sunday, February 28, 2010

Think Like a Pirate

It is worth taking a look at this video if you create media.  He doesn't say anything that, if you're really paying attention, you don't know already.  But, he does say it clearly and concisely.  I like at the end how he says off-hand, "people have moved on from Blue-Ray."

The lessons:

The days of tightly controlling your product are, or are nearly, over.   The Blue-Ray "consortium" example is a great one.  High licensing fees and lots of rules have made many people just avoid it until a new means appears (online distribution).

There will always be "Hollywood."  However, it will exist only to make projects that require that type of artistic/financial complexity.  It seems doubtful that all those union jobs that have disappeared are coming back.  Just ask all those people who worked for record labels in the 90's.  Right now it feels like a lull in the storm for film and television.  Once the stranglehold is broken on bandwidth, many of the large media producers also own the cable companies, all bets are off.

    Thursday, February 25, 2010

    Cinematography Light

    OMG.  Thank you, Ben, for pointing out this great feed.   I've been doing a lot of color grading lately and reading it is making me (kind of) miss carrying around 70 pounds of camera equipment in the mud and rain.   And all the random things that happen while doing so, like being attacked by birds of prey.

    Anyway, back to what inspired this post, this one is for all the devotees of camera test porn.  It's not what you're probably expecting.

    There is a moment in Cleo de 5 a 7, where Corinne Marchand is in a cab and the camera is handheld on her.  At one point the cab turns and the camera, seeing an interesting passer-by, pauses for just an split second on that passer-by before panning back to Marchand.  Totally by instinct and total genius.

    Wednesday, February 10, 2010


    When's my movie deal?

    The name of this article says it all, Thanks to All Those Shills on Twitter and Facebook, People Don't Trust Their Friends Anymore.  Now, hurry up and sell your camcorder that you use to mostly make web video or DVD's and buy a RED.  Or is it, sell your RED and buy a DSLR to shoot a documentary?  Sell your DSLR and buy an entire 3D work-flow?  Then, spend every waking moment learning twisted work-flows for each new product out there that has been social-media marketed directly to producers and directors by a blog/twitter feed/Facebook friend, etc. that they follow.

    I almost choked the first time I saw an ad on Craigslist looking for a DP to include a RED with lenses in their day rate.  Are there that many of those cameras out there already?  Don't get me wrong, I love all the technological advancements of the past few years.  It's truly an amazing time to be a creative person, but I always have to stop and ask myself "what's in it for me?"  Will it help me pay my rent?  Will it make me creative in a way that the technology that I am currently using can't?  Would I be happier spending a little of that time, money and energy on life, my family and friends?  And, what's in it for the people pimping the dream?  Sometimes it feels as though we have so thoroughly internalized all the hype that we are doing the manufacturers marketing for them.  That wouldn't be of the plan, would it?  Hopefully, there is more for us to aspire to be, as individuals, than unique brand identities cross marketing with other brands.

    Monday, February 1, 2010

    Rip Torn

    I can't even express how sad this makes me.  Rip Torn was arrested again, this time for breaking into a bank while armed.  He was so drunk, he thought it was his house.

    Torn is a brilliant and fiercely independent talent.  Sadly, he will probably be remembered most for Dodgeball or Men in Black.  There's a decent profile of him here in the NY Times magazine.

    Torn, Nicholas Ray and Marilyn Chambers