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Old December 21st, 2011, 10:55 AM   #1
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TV Trailer_ Front Page

I did not sign up for this challenge as I definitely could not see my way clear to tackling it, however, I did mull a story over in my mind in case things changed and an opportunity presented itself. I started messing around with a possible intro for the TV show as an exercise in AE but my rhino story just wasn’t coming together – I simply did not have appropriate footage and decided to abandon it - until Dylan threw in the trailer option, that is.

I have been following this rhino story in the news for two years now, but I still needed to do extra reading to get the facts straight. I have tried to present this in a factual, objective and non-emotional way so the 'news’ theme seemed the logical way to go for the TV show part of the entry.

I must admit it does feel a bit odd to do a factual wildlife documentary in a fictitious setting but it did give me an interesting vehicle for relating this story. I designed the newspaper front pages rather rapidly and, despite being fictitious, the headlines do reflect the spirit of the headlines we have become accustomed to seeing here. Their main function is to act as fillers for footage I simply did not have any chance of getting and I was not about to become a presenter to fill in the gaps! (Narrating is bad enough.)

As per the UWOL rules I have taken the opportunity for the first time to use two short clips from previous UWOL entries for illustrative purposes: a rhino with horns from my 'By Design' film (most rhinos around here have been de-horned) and a 3 sec aerial view from my 'Impact' film.

Besides the serious lack of footage, there is still much I could have done to finish this properly. I’m also disappointed with the stuttering that has crept into some of the transitions with the compression. Anyway these are irrelevancies the main thing is I got something in.

Just a small request: as this is a film feed-back thread, I would appreciate it if it not be used to debate emotional rhino poaching issues.
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Old December 21st, 2011, 02:32 PM   #2
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

Hi Marj,

This is what I am used to expect from you: Quality in all aspects!
I found the story really interesting, and I enjoyed watching your show.
Keep up the good work! Try sell this one.
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Old December 21st, 2011, 08:33 PM   #3
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

Very compelling subject matter. The voice over narration was excellent. Not too much righteous indignation, but factual presentation with an undercurrent of horror at the situation. The pictures of the hornless rhinos were emotionally moving. Glad you got an entry out of the material.
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Old December 21st, 2011, 09:07 PM   #4
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

I'm a big fan of your use of newspaper graphics. I really like the coherent look of all the graphics. It really tie it together for me. I also really enjoyed the disclaimer and warnings at the front and rear.

Good work!
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 12:34 AM   #5
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

It is an important story, and needs to be told. If you’re in the right place at the right time then you should tell it.

I know you said that this shouldn’t start an emotional debate about Rhinos, but I will put the importance of documenting the issue into context from my view:

Here in Uganda we had 2 species of Rhino; the Eastern Black, and the Northern White. Both went extinct in the early 80’s. I don’t suppose anyone was in a position to document it, and their disappearance went largely unnoticed until years after the fact. The Ugandan elephant population very nearly followed the rhinos into extinction, only that the elephants migrated into Tanzania, Eastern Zaire and Southern Sudan. When civil unrest flared in Zaire and Sudan, and the herds came under pressure in those countries they migrated back to Uganda and repopulated the National Parks, joining the isolated herds that had survived in the intervening years.

Friends of mine who lived in Kenya from the 60’s onwards told me how they used to see free roaming rhinos on the drive from Mombasa to Nairobi all the time, and how they would migrate from the Parks, out to wilderness areas, and into their farm. During the 70’s less and less rhino would pas through their land. In the early 80’s they saw one lone female in their farm, skittish and keeping a distance, and then no more. The free roamers disappeared, and only small mostly isolated populations remained in the National Parks (and even they were not safe from the poachers).

I used to work in Hluhluwe Reserve as a Guide, and back then the biggest issue with the vast rhino population there was the rouge male elephants that were killing them. Poachers were not really a major issue at that time. Its crazy that South Africa’s rhinos are under pressure from poachers again, and for the same insane reasons as what decimated the East African populations.

The technology the poachers use in this age are more advanced and developed, as you note. But by the same token in this internet age information is instant. With social media people can get together and get motivated to make changes, and this coupled with cameras and post production tools within easy reach of everyday people (something unheard of back in the 80's) it is now feasible to make a change before it is too late this time around.

So I think you should press on with the idea, and get it done.

As other people have mentioned your AE work is well handled - I especially like the 'newsprint' textured globe that fits in well with the 'Front Page' theme.
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Old December 22nd, 2011, 06:47 AM   #6
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

Hi Marj,

This was really interesting - I learned a lot from your entry. The newspaper titles were a neat way of tying the whole thing together and the rhino footage itself was astonishing - how on earth did you get that in the can?

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Old December 22nd, 2011, 03:00 PM   #7
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

Marj, as always, you deliver deliberate and good handwork.
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Old December 23rd, 2011, 12:44 AM   #8
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

Nice work on this one, Marj !
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Old December 23rd, 2011, 11:02 AM   #9
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

Thanks to all of you for your comments - I do appreciate your time and encouragement.

In reply to some specific comments:
Simon - According to the site 63,000 black rhinos were killed within twenty years after 1977. (This site has very interesting information including a banner that runs across the top giving the latest incidents and statistics. You will find it very interesting. The Nature blog has a very good de-horning article describing the conservationist's point of view.)

Having been a guide at Umfolozi you will no doubt have a complete appreciation of the amazing work done there in bringing the White Rhino back from the brink of extinction in the 1960's from just 50 animals! Today the number stands at 18,.000 but if history is anything to go by they have five years to extinction. They found the last Javan Rhino dead and de-horned this month - it is now an extinct species - in this day and age!

Henry, not sure if I understand your question but the rhinos that I filmed were very elusive. It took me two days to find them even in this little reserve! I was busy filming the first two from the top of a hill near a fork in the road when I spotted the other single male down the second road. He looked like a better bet but I got to him a fraction too late - I watched as he wallowed but I just couldn't get my camera up and running in time. That was the only opportunity I got to film the rhinos.
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Old December 24th, 2011, 10:37 AM   #10
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Re: TV Trailer_ Front Page

Wow, Marj...this is an amazing piece you put together in a very short amount of time. Almost information overload as I was trying to read the headlines and process what you were telling us, but it works.

I sure hope you can pursue this further so more people can be educated. Though a disturbing subject, it is one that needs as much exposure as possible. With television still such a far-reaching avenue, this exercise that Dylan chose could help the rhinos should you choose to push on.
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