Sobering look at Indy Film Future at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > The TOTEM Poll: Totally Off Topic, Everything Media

The TOTEM Poll: Totally Off Topic, Everything Media
Let's talk about anything media related.


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old June 23rd, 2008, 10:59 AM   #1
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 3,840
Sobering look at Indy Film Future

This is a must read article. Apropos of the thread 'will there be a film industry' this article takes a cold hard look at what the world market and film making are going to look like going forward.

Its full of FACTS and NUMBERS - always good to have when talking about what is really possible/probable for indy film makers.

http://www.indiewire.com/biz/2008/06...erson_fil.html
Richard Alvarez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 23rd, 2008, 01:17 PM   #2
Major Player
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Lewisburg PA
Posts: 752
Interesting article.

I really liked what he had to say about quality and maturity of subject matter being increasingly important. Markets will be expanded by quality films and shows that tell good stories.
Peter Wiley is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 24th, 2008, 08:01 PM   #3
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Posts: 8,308
Good post, good article.

I think every 24p camera sold should come with the following burned into the viewfinder:

Quote:
In the most reductionist fashion: tere's the holy trinity of structure, character and dialogue, of course; the crucial if more ephemeral notions of authenticity, voice, theme, and tone; and the imperative for originality of utterance and perception.

In the end, all of this has to add up (seamlessly if possible) to something that moves us-- to the quality of the emotional content. It doesn't matter if we're talking about thrills, laughs, tears, or an adrenaline rush. What matters is that we are engaged and, ideally, emotionally transformed and satisfied.

In a world increasingly dominated by numbers--financial, technological and most importantly the finite number of hours in a day, our very human desire for contact, meaning and emotional transformation isn't going away. It's growing. Those who remember that will survive and most probably win.
__________________
Need to rent camera gear in Vancouver BC?
Check me out at camerarentalsvancouver.com
Dylan Couper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 25th, 2008, 09:47 AM   #4
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Posts: 425
Haven't had time to follow the link, but on www.salon.com, Andrew O'Hehir has an article that sounds very similiar in tone. He quotes a business analyst that says indie films lose money 99.95 percent of the time - literally, it's a better business deal to hit Vegas with a jar full of loose change.

It's been remarked on dvinfo.net several times that when you're working on the micro budget level, you're best bet is not superb production values and special effects. If you can do it on the cheap, more power to you.

Creative DPs can do amazing shots with the camera they have, probably, if they know their equipment well.

But after that, the more 'bang for the buck' is on the writing and acting level. It always seemed to this me that film culture tended to emphasise all the cool equipment and effects, while writers are a pain in the arse, and actors are just props with arms and legs.

At this point, my first priority as a director is performance, then get good sound. After that, I just make sure I have coverage so we can make it look good in editing.
Dennis Stevens is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 26th, 2008, 11:00 PM   #5
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 2,230
I don't make films, I shoot video. I know my place.

But I think you are right that the emphasis is on equipment because it is quantifiable.

Writing and acting can not be accounted for by cost or math, they come from communication and talent.

Society is so far in the bean counter territory most do not even realize it because we are a market driven world. (talking about America mostly because this is where I know the most about)

Everything has a place and a price, not much room for creativity or dreams unless they make money.
Tim Polster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 27th, 2008, 07:56 AM   #6
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Milwaukee, WI
Posts: 1,719
Sure it may be a huge gamble and a waste of money but I would rather see creative people do this then waste their money in Vegas on slot machines. At least the film community is developing some interesting skills and the world may be a better place now because a few people took the chance to express their creative muscle. At least those people have something to show for what they spent their money on instead of just debt.

The world would truly be a sad sad place if everybody gave up on art because it wasn't a big money maker.

The same can really be said for any art form. There are a lot of people in the world that can paint or draw but sadly it is only a select few that get their own art gallery. I am really glad however that the world hasn't given up on painting and drawing.

There is a reason why the name starving artists exists.

If you want to make money become a banker.

What the world needs is a better way for film makers to sell their stuff. theaters are art galleries and one of the only forms of art left that is still really restricted to the "art gallery"
Thomas Smet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 27th, 2008, 11:26 AM   #7
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Arlington, TX
Posts: 2,230
I think the pirates have added a lot to the mess.

The digital age has scared a lot of people away from artistic business models.

The entire music industry is a perfect example.

Sink a lot of money & effort into a project and people expect it for free.
Tim Polster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 27th, 2008, 03:48 PM   #8
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Posts: 8,308
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas Smet View Post
Sure it may be a huge gamble and a waste of money but I would rather see creative people do this then waste their money in Vegas on slot machines. At least the film community is developing some interesting skills and the world may be a better place now because a few people took the chance to express their creative muscle. At least those people have something to show for what they spent their money on instead of just debt.

The world would truly be a sad sad place if everybody gave up on art because it wasn't a big money maker.

The same can really be said for any art form. There are a lot of people in the world that can paint or draw but sadly it is only a select few that get their own art gallery. I am really glad however that the world hasn't given up on painting and drawing.

There is a reason why the name starving artists exists.

If you want to make money become a banker.

What the world needs is a better way for film makers to sell their stuff. theaters are art galleries and one of the only forms of art left that is still really restricted to the "art gallery"

Thomas, you have a noble spirit, and I'd agree with you in theory... but the practical world is a much different place.

First: Excluding the time of the visionary...
Creating a painting costs about $5-$50.
Creating a film costs... and you MUST factor in the cost of a minimum crew... bare minimum $10,000 for a "no-buget" to realistically $200,000 to $2,000,000 for a low-budget/no name actors.

And don't forget... the filmmakers who create "art" that doesn't sell don't lose their money... they lose the money (and time) of those who invested in them... friends, family, investors, etc... The responsibility the people who back you comes before the responsibility to your vision, because without your backers, you have nothing.

I agree, the world needs a better way for indie filmmakers to sell their stuff (and I'm working on it!). But the truth is... there isn't a market for the amount of films out there, for what they cost to make (in North America anyway).
__________________
Need to rent camera gear in Vancouver BC?
Check me out at camerarentalsvancouver.com
Dylan Couper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28th, 2008, 07:20 PM   #9
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 212
It's never been cheaper to make a film, and it will continue that trend for the foreseeable future. With a lower barrier to entry there will be more participants and more of a crowd to stick out in. Whoever said being an artist was easy?

I'm sure the success rate of movies is similar with painting and music and most other forms of art.
__________________
Talenos Productions at http://www.talenos.com
Matt Newcomb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28th, 2008, 08:58 PM   #10
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 3,840
Most other forms of art don't require any where near the budget or time commitment from a crew of people. The only thing that comes close would be theatre.

The point of the article is that it IS so inexpensive to make films (relative to what it was a decade ago) So instead of a few people making and losing a hundred thousand dollars, you now have a hundred people losing a thousand dollars. What the article points out is the expense of MARKETING the films that are made.
Richard Alvarez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28th, 2008, 10:22 PM   #11
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 212
Well, they put it best in their own article. Good films (or art in general) market themselves. If you make something people really want to see, it will happen. On the internet it's when things go "viral".
__________________
Talenos Productions at http://www.talenos.com
Matt Newcomb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old June 28th, 2008, 10:31 PM   #12
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: San Mateo, CA
Posts: 3,840
"How do you make rabbit stew?"

First, catch a rabbit.
Richard Alvarez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 7th, 2008, 11:46 PM   #13
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Surrey BC
Posts: 259
I am only interested in dvd, home theaters, festivals,
dont really care about theatrical release at all, and the lecture didnt address that.

You are going to get a lot of crud, but that happened when masses of people had access to pencils and paper.
It was only a matter of time before technology did the same to film.

But on the bright side, you dont need to mess with split screen/matte boxes, optical printers, rear projectors, everything is much easier and cheaper.
I hate the thinking that everything must be done the old fashioned way-despite new technology.

You can do a lot with a parking lot or a piece of green fabric these days, thanks to digital.


There is much more creative freedom than ever before. You really can make something decent at a used car price. If a 14 year old kid in his bedroom can do a light saber effect better than a big studio could do in 1980, then you can do anything on the cheap and make it watchable.


If you dont have the skills yourself you can probably send the file to some kid in Argentina who can help you out with post production.

If you dont have storytelling talent, well then you are screwed but that's always been the case.
Kelly Goden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 22nd, 2008, 10:10 PM   #14
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Hollywood, CA
Posts: 128
This might be tooting my own horn a bit since I run the website, but my friend Brian made a great post in our blog about why indie filmmakers shouldn't be afraid of internet debuts, direct-to-DVD, and other markets that thus far have been shunned away by filmmakers:

Self-Distribution: Might as Well Touch the Third Rail

I share that opinion, which is that times are changing, they will be difficult, and those among us who jump on board with the changes will succeed. Those who expect to do everything Spielberg style cutting negatives in a back room when the year is 2024 are in for a real surprise.

That's another reason why I'm always shocked, and have to laugh, when I see a first-time filmmaker trying to shoot a "low-budget" festival short on 35mm, when any up-and-coming filmmaker should be utilizing the efficiency of digital.
Daniel Hollister is offline   Reply With Quote
Old August 22nd, 2008, 11:03 PM   #15
Trustee
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Sauk Rapids, MN, USA
Posts: 1,675
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Polster View Post
I don't make films, I shoot video. I know my place.
And are therefore doomed to stay there. I am striving to get into making Cinema. Video is a vehicle, not who I am. I am not a videomaker. I just happen to have access to video equipment for making my films in a cost effective manner.
__________________
Web Youtube Facebook
Cole McDonald is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > And Now, For Something Completely Different... > The TOTEM Poll: Totally Off Topic, Everything Media

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:50 AM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network