Sharknado 2 is on the horizon, and it’s just the latest b-movie to be hailed as the new generation of cult films. But is it a cult movie? And which ones are the craziest of all time?! Screen Junkies assembled a panel to get to the bottom of it. Oh hai, Mark!
Arthur Vincie discusses the implications of working with extras and stand-ins.
This happens a lot: I’m budgeting a script and I get to this crowded street scene, or a basketball game, or a really killer dance set piece. I figure out as best I can how many extras are needed, and budget all the related costs accordingly. Then I present the budget to the producer and she’s horrified. “One hundred thousand for extras? What the hell?”
Okay, so maybe I’m exaggerating, but not by much. Even if you don’t pay for extras, you have to think about them – where you need them, when you can get away without them, and how you’re going to cast, feed, clothe, and transport them. So in this article we’ll cover the basics of how to think intelligently about extras.
Extras are there to fill in the background (hence the other term, background actors) of the scene, or be part of a group that’s in the foreground. A lot of producers think that if they take away lines from a minor character in the script, that they can fill that role with an extra. This isn’t always the case, however.
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Spoilers can be infuriating because they can ruin the suspense in a piece of media. But some people like them, actually preferring to have the endings divulged. What camp are you in? Why aren’t there better guidelines regarding spoilers? PBS Idea Channel caught up with some of our favorite Youtubers at Vidcon and got their two cents…then they gave their sixth sense and we found out Bruce Willis was…
When we look at a primate’s eyes on the big screen, we are looking at ourselves.
Throughout history, we have been drawn to how much they resemble us. No other animal comes close in our anatomical, behavioral, developmental, physiological and reproductive similarities. These parallels have provoked much introspection and debate bordering on the primal and the inspired. Is it any wonder that the word “ape” has come to mean the mimicry of human action?
Non-human primates have existed on film from the art form’s inception, primarily as sideshow spectacles, most notably in King Kong (1933). Their display for our amusement is perhaps an extension of the tradition of the zoo and the circus, where such creatures are viewed more as oddities than as fellow earthly denizens.
Rarely have these creatures been viewed on their own terms. They have been human sidekicks, villains, accomplices and lab rats. They’ve drank our booze, laughed (or cringed) at our jokes, and played our sports. Even in the most thought-provoking films that feature them, rarely have we been given the benefit of their perspective. But in reality, how can we? W.G. Sebald once said that “Men and animals regard each other across a gulf of mutual incomprehension.” We cannot help but humanize creatures in which we see our resemblance so that we can relate to them.
But as time goes by, our understanding of all creatures big and small continues to grow. Non-human empathy no longer feels wrong when we start caring about what cows are fed and if chickens are caged. Animal testing on apes and other intelligent species has now become taboo. The future philosophical and ethical implications of “personhood” in all its forms only looks more and more challenging as we reconsider our evolutionary kinship. The gulf is shrinking.
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There are filmmakers we love and then there’s Michael Bay. Even if you dislike him, Bay has something valuable to teach us about visual perception. This is an exploration of “Bayhem” — his style of camera movement, composition and editing that creates something overblown, dynamic and distinct. By Tony Zhou
Season 2 of the pioneering Netflix series “House of Cards” brought a number of changes, including new Lead Colorist Laura Jans-Fazio. She spoke to Creative COW about her approach to this visually distinctive show, her remote collaboration with Executive Producer David Fincher, and her use of the Baselight grading system for fast turnarounds with the show’s 5K footage.
I’ve always been a colorist, it seems. More recently, as a freelance colorist, working around LA and around the country, doing commercials, TV work and independents. I also worked with FilmLight, training colorists new to the Baselight software. The opportunity came up to do this, so I jumped on board.
We spent two and a half months working on the show. Our delivery date was middle of January. They were long days, too. One week, somebody asked, “Is Laura really still here?” So it was super, super tight. We were here night and day, with little time in which to deliver the episodes.
It was insane. I mean, Encore looked at me and said, “How are we — you — going to do this? You’ll need to have a second colorist on board.” Good idea, but in reality I felt that it would take more time trying to get an alternate colorist on board to second me and mirror what I was doing, and that time would be better spent grading the episodes. So, I decided to just go ahead get it done.
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