Between the Scenes: Choosing Locations

Filmmakers: When choosing a location there are considerations beyond just that individual scene. Here we explore the ways in which locations work together to help the audience keep track of your story. Example from Gus Van Sant’s ‘Gerry’ (2002, THINKFilm, Miramax). Commentary by ‘Between the Scenes’ author Jeffrey Michael Bays.


Citizen Kane and the meaning of Rosebud

Citizen Kane has long been acclaimed as a work of genius and endlessly dissected by critics. But a mystery still lies at the heart of this masterpiece. On the eve of Orson Welles’s centenary, Peter Bradshaw comes up with his own theory about the film’s clinching moment.

Citizen Kane

Spitting Image once made a joke about Orson Welles – that he lived his life in reverse. The idea, effectively, is that Welles started life as a fat actor who got his first break doing TV commercials for wine, moved on to bigger character roles as fat men, but used his fees to help finance indie films which he directed himself; their modest, growing success gave him the energy and self-esteem to lose weight. Then the major Hollywood studios gave him the chance to direct big-budget pictures, over which he gained more and more artistic control until he made his culminating mature masterpiece: Citizen Kane, the story of the doomed press baron Charlie Kane – played by Welles himself, partly based on WR Hearst – and told in a dazzling series of fragments, shards, jigsaw pieces and reflected images.

Poor, poor Orson Welles: repeatedly talked about as a tragic disappointment, his achievements somehow held against him, as if he had culpably outlived his own genius. After all, he only created arguably the greatest Hollywood movie in history, only directed a string of brilliant films, only won the top prize at Cannes, only produced some of the most groundbreaking theatre on Broadway, only reinvented the mass medium of radio, and in his political speeches, only energised the progressive and anti-racist movement in postwar America. As the room service waiter in the five-star hotel said to George Best: “Where did it all go wrong?”

The Guardian | Read the Full Article

Too Many Cameras are Bad for Business

One interesting perspective available from the halls of NAB if you knew who to talk to came from the hire company/equipment rental bosses who, faced with yet more camera models and accessories to be added to their fleets, are starting to feel the strain.

Camera Choices

At some point in any field, too much choice becomes overwhelming, and that’s what currently seems to be going on in the hire and rental industry at the moment. For the consumer it’s confusing, for the people running the hire companies that supply many of the rest of us with cameras, it’s becoming a real headache.

And given that they are so important to the smooth running of the rest of the industry, their headache can swiftly affect the rest of us. Hire companies going out of business is bad for everyone.

The root problem is exactly the trend that we’ve praised at other times: modularity, both in terms of the cameras themselves and in the product line ups.

One informal discussion we had with a hire boss just before NAB laid the blame firmly at the camera companies and their evolving policy of just that, evolution. “Things were stable for a long time, but now we are seeing every manufacturer flood the market with an increasing number of models,” he said. “That’s fine, but if one or other doesn’t take off what they then do is make incremental changes and release a new version that often ends up competing with the previous one. That is confusing for the consumer and expensive for us.”

RedShark News | Read the Full Article

Finding Your First Job (Or Your Next One)

Kylee Wall explains how she landed her first job in the industry and how cold calling isn’t enough anymore.

Kylee Wall

It’s something we’re all asked all the time: how do I get the first real job in the industry? It’s almost always a question coming out of a young, wide-eyed, innocent looking baby deer of a human being who is graduating from university very soon and for the first time realizes that they’re going to have crushing student debt AND no actual plan to get from here to Oscar-worthy filmmaker.

I recognize that look of panicked curiosity because I saw it in the mirror an awful lot, not that long ago. I graduated from Indiana University in 2009, so I feel like the modern approach to getting a job in video production – an approach that includes things like websites and social media that older people didn’t have to deal with when video was in its infancy – is still very fresh in my head. I think I still look young and hip and millennial enough to be considered one of the young folk that “made it” and has experience to share.

When you ask experienced industry pros how to break in, I think a lot of people might tell you to keep knocking on doors and cold calling until you wear someone down. That was the best and only way to get in the door when video production was specialized big business that was rapidly growing. There weren’t THAT many skilled editors because getting in front of an NLE wasn’t easy.

But the reality right now is that there are a lot of people like you out there – like maybe more than ever – coming out of media programs super qualified and ready to go. Video production has matured into something more than .0005% of the population can understand. Software is accessible and hardware is affordable, so competition is high. Companies can have their choice of candidates by posting a job online and getting a thousand applications if they want, and narrow the few people that match their narrow expectations by cross referencing an internet presence. So cold calls and random emails aren’t nearly as effective as they used to be for soliciting entry level jobs – as a random person, you aren’t fulfilling a very specific need that can be met with some googling.

Creative COW | Read the Full Article

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