Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Star Trek box office audience statistical analysis

This post focuses on the LA Times' box office coverage, which provides very specific audience breakdown and analysis.

The headline above is from
Gant's column on the UK box office, matching a more common downbeat view on the film's fortunes and prospects (its still on wide release), noting:
Star Trek Beyond may have suffered from director JJ Abrams’ exit into rival franchise Star Wars (he remains as producer). Or fans might have been more excited by Benedict Cumberbatch as the main villain last time around, with Beyond baddie Idris Elba less proven at the box office. And Paramount may have struggled to persuade broader audiences to see a third Star Trek film.
Critics and audiences have been highly positive, but the film has failed to crossover to a wide US or UK audience (RT)

BoxOfficeMojo provide a comparison of all 13 movies in the franchise; the current release needs a major boost from China and elsewhere to ensure the franchise will continue to ... live long and prosper

The various box office columns (global, US, UK) in the Guardian make for great reading and will teach you a lot about how the industry works, and provide very specific examples that might help you in exam and/or coursework efforts. Variety and many others also provide in-depth, highly informed analysis and commentary - you can keep an eye on these by adding RSS feeds to your own blogs.

This example is from the LA Times, which you'd expect to be highly versed in industry practice as Hollywood is in its turf. The fragment I picked out below comments on:

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Filmmaker talks STRESS and TEAMWORK

The question is not whether filmmaking is stressful. It’s how you’re going to deal with the stress when it inevitably comes your way. Stress is a physiological survival mechanism. It’s our body’s way of telling us to run away from dinosaurs and hide in a cave. But it’s also philosophical ⎯ it’s something we can overcome. Some of the most productive, well-respected filmmakers in the world deal with stress on a daily basis. And they’ve learned how to put it in its place.
“I feel stress a pretty good amount of the time,” Jonathan Bregel, director at Variable, told us. “It comes with the territory. Since filmmaking involves so many relationships and dynamics, it’s just inevitable. The trick is to be aware of it and know how to manage it.”
If I didn’t have this team, I’m certain I’d either be living in a cabin in the woods, or I’d be a completely jaded 27-year-old filmmaker.
See the musicbed blog post for more. They add in this:

Learning to manage stress is such an important skill in a creative life. It can make or break you. We love Jon’s solution: to surround himself with a diverse group of friends and collaborators, people who can share the creative weight, ground him in his life and purpose, and give him the confidence to not only overcome his stress but to push himself to new creative heights.
If you have tips on how to manage create stress, leave them in the comments section below. Hear more from Jonathan Bregel in our feature-length documentary MAKE. Watch it now on Vimeo On Demand.
Want more tips for a healthy creative life? Check out these articles, packed full of wisdom:

Saturday, 16 July 2016

SCREENPLAY 3 keys to engaging protagonist

See noFilmSchool.
Distinction, empathy and impetus are the 3 aspects picked out, with examples from commercial films, notably Drive, 40 Year-Old Virgin and Unforgiven; sample:
Let’s go back to our example characters, starting with Ryan Gosling in Drive. His desire to help his neighbor out of a violent situation, despite the fact that he’s falling in love with the man’s wife, is something we can empathize with. That sacrifice and emotional duality is what causes us to relate to him as a human being and creates a personal connection with us as an audience.

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

CINEMATOGRAPHY 7 cinematic gimbal or handheld shots

Here are the seven camera movements mentioned in the video:
  • The push in/pull out
  • The boom shot
  • The truck/dolly shot
  • The follow/lead shot
  • The orbit
  • The rotate
  • The tilt

See NoFilmSchool for more.

Thursday, 7 July 2016

Democratic digital opened up elite industry?

Tangerine dream? This iPhone-shot movie had critics raving, and is cited below as an example of why we should celebrate the passing of 35mm and its replacement with digital. (NB: the trailer features strong language) Read more at theverge.com, BBC, Techradar, Guardian and nofilmschool.

Most articles about digitisation tend to bemoan the undermining of celluloid and the 35mm film, but this one celebrates the democratising improvements it has brought about, shaking up a conservative industry with high barriers to entry.
The problem with 35mm was always the price tag – just the film itself was gougingly expensive. Movie-making was a club with lunatic entry fees. Like all such clubs, some meritocracy was long overdue. Digital unlocked the gate financially and then, in turn, creatively. 
Take a movie like Tarnation, made in 2003 for the oddly precise sum of $218 (like most numbers in film, there was small print, but the gist remains intact). Its creator, Jonathan Caouette, wasn’t a director in any conventional sense. He was a smart kid from a baroquely troubled family, and rather than write a script to tell its story, he imported old snapshots and shards of home movies on to a brightly coloured desktop iMac, tweaked them, arranged them, and turned life into art in a way that would previously have been impossible.
In the world of big-league filmmaking, ones and zeros conjured all manner of spectacle: think of the computer soul of Gravity, returning the blockbuster to a state of childlike wonder. But in the wider world, the changes were even more profound. It hardly felt like a coincidence that last year’s Tangerine – the beautifully, casually radical story of a pair of trans women in wildside LA – was shot on three iPhones. It wasn’t just that they gave the film its non-stop momentum, or that this was the kind of movie that would have been murderously tough to get financed in the past. It was that it felt like a part of the wider explosion of culture, made with a device a billion people know the feel of, a contribution from an artform not yet ready for the museum, still rudely vital.
Celluloid is strictly for nostalgists. Digital technology saved a dying medium.