Music videos have been on the slow decline ever since MTV has stopped playing music videos – but now with the addition of YouTube plays to the Billboard Hot 100 could the music video as a medium see a resurgence?
ERIC DUCKER: For years I’ve been interviewing directors and director reps who complain about the state of the music video, mainly because of the loss of its primary outlet (MTV) and slashed budgets from record labels. But it seems like music videos might be in a place to make a resurgence for both commercial and creative reasons. Is the climate really getting better for music video makers or am I imagining things?
JENNIFER HEATH: From a creative standpoint we have entered a new age of possibilities. On a budgetary level it has taken years to adjust, going from the glorious days of TRL and the sky being the limit for a high-end production team. The directors entering the business now have no idea what that experience was like, ever. Most of them didn’t even grow up watching those types of videos — they were exposed to the downside of the market. So for the new age of directors, the ideas always came from their bedroom with their laptop. They have actually helped me transition to this new world of out of the box ideas and no money. I also believe it’s this new type of director that has opened the door for new revenue potential.
When our cushioned world of bigger budget videos came crashing down, we were still working with a group of filmmakers that relied on 35mm and 16mm cameras — directors who only had real exposure to the business through the help of other people giving them access to this type of equipment and support. It was also definitely a situation where the record labels were the last to understand that the formula they were used to and that their artists were expecting was not going to cut it anymore. We saw production companies and directors disappear almost overnight. At the same time I was being introduced to digital cameras by my interns who were bringing them to the office when they showed up on their first day
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