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Old November 14th, 2008, 11:04 AM   #1
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UWOL Announcements and Discussion - Talk Amongst Yourselves!

Hello players:

First, an announcement. I'm cancelling the December challenge round. Reason: I was sick for two weeks in November and am terribly behind on everything and need room to catch up. We will resume in January.

Second: I'm giving some thought to re-tooling UWOL for next year. Yes, you're right, I can't just seem to leave things alone.

My thought is on having 2 separate competitions that run side-by-side.

The regular short-form contest will go on, business as usual. The major change is that we will be offering it 4x/year instead of 6x/year.

We are also thinking of offering a separate long-form contest which would run alongside the regular contest. This would be your chance to try your hand at a sustained narrative or experimental piece, to produce something for a film festival, with a minimum length of 20 minutes (no maxiumum).

You would have one year to sign-up and complete your film. You would post 5 - minute segments 4x/year, posting a feedback thread at the same time that the regular players post, requesting feedback for a problem or set of problems that you may be trying to solve. There would be no theme announced -- the topic would be your choice, but it would have to fit the spirit of UWOL.

There will be separate judging and a "best-in-show" winner for the long-form contest. But completing, as always, would certainly be its own huge reward. And your final product, after all the great feedback from this community, would be very much better than if you tried to take on something like this alone.

I would like to see a show of hands from people who would be interested in participating in a long-form contest, such as this, to gauge interest and see if it is worth pursuing. We'll do it, or not, based on interest, and I would want a minumum of 5 participants to make it fly.

Whether or not we do the long-form contest, I'm still scaling the short-form contest back to 4x/year. One has no bearing on the other.

Let me know what you all think.
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Old November 14th, 2008, 11:31 AM   #2
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I love it...I need the focus...I need the inspiration...I want the feedback...

Both hands up!
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Old November 14th, 2008, 12:17 PM   #3
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Hi, definatley up for the long format - actually have felt a little frustrated in the three minutes a couple of times this year, this would certainly be the answer.....

Cheers!

Rob
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Old November 14th, 2008, 12:56 PM   #4
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May bee the right push!!!

You pushing hard Meryem !!!

But I am ready for a long term,may bee this is the right steep to take.
Going in to the pro-term.


Jumping into deep-wather!!!??


VJV.

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Old November 14th, 2008, 02:23 PM   #5
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well, glad to see you boys getting ready to ride the long-form train...

just to be clear, this thread is a discussion thread...a separate, actual sign-up thread will appear in January, and i will probably let it stay open for 2 or 3 weeks, while folks have time to think it over - it's a bigger commitment and will probably take a bit more consideration. once you have signed up officially, you can get started right away, however.
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Old November 14th, 2008, 02:31 PM   #6
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I'm all for a long form version.
I'll try to enter the short ones too. :)

Well, we just need one more and it'll fly. :)
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Old November 14th, 2008, 03:02 PM   #7
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one other comment - with only 4 regular short-form Challenges, there won't be any hard themes, only the "little vacation" variety....the long-form Challenge will be the hard theme substitute....

4 masochists ready to apply, only one more chirping in, and this thing could be a go, nice!
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Old November 14th, 2008, 03:42 PM   #8
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Meryem... the long one sounds good... I will probably try this one out. I’m thinking about one issue, the language… I guess that up to the player what language he/she would choose… but to get feedback on VO it’s only one way.
I’m been thinking about to coproduce a UWOL film with some other player (like Kevin and Bob) but expand it to mix different countries in one film, maybe this would work in the long competition. Just see if any one would like to make something together :)

Markus
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Old November 14th, 2008, 03:52 PM   #9
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Well, that's five in less than five hours and there's still plenty of time before the signup window opens. Whooo Hoooo!
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Old November 14th, 2008, 04:07 PM   #10
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I've thought about the language thing, too, Markus -- I think providing a Word doc of some sort with a transcript would help, just to help the players grasp the story...but as long as they can follow the action, then certainly all other aspects, like lighting, composition, cinematography, audio quality, etc...can be all worked on pretty easily. I don't think that there is a need for full on subtitling - just an uploaded Word doc should cover it.

But I want people to work in their native languages. Our world, your vision.
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Old November 14th, 2008, 04:34 PM   #11
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I really think this is an excellent step forward for UWOl because of the opportunity to work toward a professional outcome that can be entered in film festivals.

let me see if I have this straight. There would be an announcement for a "long form" contest and those of us that sign on would have dates with which to send in 5 minute clips of the product (kina like homework assignments). People would comment with helpful criticism and we would take the criticism and make adjustments accordingly. The last date we would showcase the long version of our film. One film might win "best of show".

What I love about this concept is that we would have a lot more time to work on the film which hopefully would help in producing more pro like results.

A couple of questions

1. It seems harder (at least to me) to get a good quality compression for a longer film...would we have more space to showcase the final product?

2. Would we have a chance to share our story/concept idea to the community so that we can refine that part as well? Is that even a good idea?

3. Can we get started very, very soon?

Jeff
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Old November 14th, 2008, 05:38 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeff Hendricks View Post
I really think this is an excellent step forward for UWOl because of the opportunity to work toward a professional outcome that can be entered in film festivals.

let me see if I have this straight. There would be an announcement for a "long form" contest and those of us that sign on would have dates with which to send in 5 minute clips of the product (kina like homework assignments). People would comment with helpful criticism and we would take the criticism and make adjustments accordingly. The last date we would showcase the long version of our film. One film might win "best of show".

What I love about this concept is that we would have a lot more time to work on the film which hopefully would help in producing more pro like results.

A couple of questions

1. It seems harder (at least to me) to get a good quality compression for a longer film...would we have more space to showcase the final product?

2. Would we have a chance to share our story/concept idea to the community so that we can refine that part as well? Is that even a good idea?

3. Can we get started very, very soon?

Jeff
yes, you would post 5-minute (or longer) clips right alongside the regular UWOL contest...your feedback thread would look like this UWOL LONG-FORM "My Inspired Movie" by Jeff Hendricks...

...and you would get and give feedback from/to the other players, playing alongside in the rest of the UWOL community - once again, you would be in the grist mill, learning not only from what you make, but from the feedback process as well.

Why UWOL has turned out so many great filmmakers in such a short time, in my opinion, is a function of the whole process, not just making films, but watching what others do and being in a like-minded community, commenting on each others' stuff. In my ideal world, long-form and short-form complement each other and the two combined give everyone Challenges that are appropriate to their needs. It is important to me that these two work together, at the same time, because it plays to the strength of keeping the "all in this together" community spirit.

(High School Musical, anyone?)

Let me throw another scenario out there. In theory, you could post an entire 20-minute film in your first feedback thread and spend the next 8 months massaging it. How you use your 4 feedback opportunities will be flexible. At the end, UWOL will archive your final product, but not your drafts. But while it is in progress, we will keep copies of your draft "live" for feedback.

To answer your specific questions:

1. good question - there will have to be some allowances for compression and size - Let me think about that, and I'll roundtable it with Kevin and Mat, or else throw out your thoughts.

2. I would say that you will have to share your concept/story with the community - if the open process disturbs you or you think that your idea is so good that someone would steal it, then you probably should not execute it in this context...I want to help you improve at this, not give you cause for anxiety....maybe do your second-best idea as a practice round for your best idea, which you will then have the skills and confidence to execute on your own.

3. I'm open to varying definitions of "soon" - the goal would be to have the short-form and long-form contests both post their projects by the last week in January/first week of February. This does mean that long-form would need a bit of a running start. I'll post the sign-up in the 2nd week of December, and once you sign-up, you can start. This will give early adopters a week or two of advantage, but since this is a marathon, not a sprint, I don't think it will much matter.
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Old November 14th, 2008, 07:18 PM   #13
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So, is it _A_ five minute clip of five one minute clips? :)
I just ask because I seldom have stuff strewn together until late in the game.
I doubt I could come up with a five minute sequence in January. I could certainly talk about my concept and show five minutes worth of footage and get feedback on how to craft it etc.

I already have my idea. I've been wanting to work on it for a while.
Just need to figure out what approach I want to take with it.
I guess I need to make sure it's something that can sustain an audience for 20 minutes or more.
Certainly harder than it sounds.

Looking forward to this one!
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Last edited by Kevin Railsback; November 15th, 2008 at 05:57 AM.
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Old November 14th, 2008, 07:35 PM   #14
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I'm certainly interested in both.
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Old November 14th, 2008, 10:06 PM   #15
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Good point Kevin,

will the clip have to be 5 minutes or is that the max time limit...like could we post something shorter or post various clips in a sequence?

or

will the 5 minute segments need to stand on their own as mini film within the bigger picture?

I too have something that I have been wanting to do...this will be the PERFECT venue.

I am super excited about this!

Meryem is a genius!

Jeff
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