Superproducer Ted Hope on...

February 11, 2012

How Technology is Influencing Storytelling and Film: an Excellent Panel from Sundance

Here's an excellent panel from this year's Sundance Film Festival, sponsored by Adobe and featuring Vincent Laforet, Rob Legato, Jacob Rosenberg, and Sharlto Copley. The 77-minute panel follows, in full, with some pulled quotes and highlights:

Here are some points and quotes I found especially worthwhile:

Vincent Laforet: "The cameras are out there, they're being used... let's move onto the next thing, and the interesting thing about technology is how filmmakers reach out to their audience, and social media, and different ways of distribution and connection."

Sharlto Copley: "Neil Blomkamp was a good example of... if you can do visual effects yourself, if you can composite, if you can do sound, if you can do everything, then you can force yourself into a position where people will notice you. You can't really worry about whether Hollywood is going to give you a crack or not."

Finally, you might have noticed that, with this website and Man-child, I've been pursuing exactly what Vincent Laforet talks about here:

You share what you do. You don't hide it, you don't horde it, we share as much of the process [as we can], because people get really interested, they learn a lot, it becomes a community, and it becomes [part of] the democratization of film... the hope is that someday, you can go back to that audience and... that it can lead to the connection at some point to help make the film better, either by donations or by people buying the film at a small price, as opposed to going begging to Hollywood, and having to adhere to their limitations, and rules, and marketing, etc. Every independent filmmaker wants to break the model -- we all want to find a way around the system.

Amen, brother.

[via FilmmakerIQ]

Your Comment

39 Comments

Word.

February 11, 2012

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McBlakewich

Thanks for posting this Koo

February 11, 2012

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One thing is for sure, modern technology didn't influence the sound recording of the panel. I find it quite annoying to have this flawed sound throughout the whole record. So I didn't watch it beyond minute 5... What a pity

February 11, 2012

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Hendrik K.

Or maybe it is exactly modern technology what introduced autogain and messed up the sound

February 11, 2012

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Hendrik K.

I started working in Hollywood in the mid 1970s. One of my first jobs was at a rental house that specialized in sound equipment and also sound transfer. And guess what, AGC and pumping was a problem back in the Dark Ages (Before Digital).

February 12, 2012

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c.d.embrey

Really, the sound was so bad that you didn't want to hear what they were actually saying and, you know, learn from it?

February 12, 2012

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Ryan Koo
Founder
Writer/Director

If you had a REAL Mac like my 17"MBP you would suffer a complete lack of volume. It is one of the many many problems with REAL Macs that make them unusable to anyone wanting to do professional work on them.

I have even suggested an inventive technical software fix for this problem, and was ignored by Woz himself.

Maybe you should stop praising Apple so much and experience their overpriced-underpowered equipment to get a real feel of what they are capable of?

February 12, 2012

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boybunny

Well, I'm not surprised. Woz doesn't work for Apple anymore. I agree that MBP's have less than desirable speakers, but this is easily mitigated with a quality pair of headphones. Something "real" Apple users and "fake" Apple users can both take advantage of :)

February 14, 2012

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Spot on. Thanks for adding this to the diatribe, man- cheers!

February 17, 2012

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SERIOUSLY. From a realist stand point they did this with a low budget because they hired these 3 people to be on a panel (these 3 people are not cheap) and probably didn't see the value of a audio engineer for a seminar. Yes even Adobe likes to save money. Also might I add almost any and if not all seminars i've been to have terrible production because it's an irrelevant quality from what's really valuable. The information. All you haters simply need to just close your eyes and pretend it's one of those youtube tutorials you watch and learn from all day instead of actually being out there in the field doing something real.

February 17, 2012

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Gordon Casey

Marvelous panel! This is such a great example of how the internet helps us grow. How else would I get to listen to such brilliant filmmakers discussing their craft? Thanks for posting.

February 12, 2012

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Haha what's up with the scarves?

February 12, 2012

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Sam

It's cold as tits in Park City, apparently

February 12, 2012

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'Shit filmmakers wear'

February 12, 2012

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Brett

Exactly. I so want to rip apart one individual on that panel, but I promised to keep my mouth shut on the negativity, and I will. (biting my scarf, I mean tongue)

February 12, 2012

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Robert T.

Just a heads up: that was negativity.

February 12, 2012

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Brett

Slight tamed negativity, perhaps.

February 13, 2012

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Robert T.

Thanks for posting this Koo. I've been sitting on my butt for the better part of a month waiting for work...
And well, while it's not really feasible as Rob Legato put it to "just go and shoot smthing", I can plan and then go shoot smthing.
Secondly, I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that I'm very inspired by what you've done with NFS and I'm taking baby steps to do smthing similar.
Many thanks. :)

February 12, 2012

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Marc

Thank you for sharing everything, Koo. I learn so much from your website.

February 12, 2012

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Ryan Lebar

Good job by the panel. Lousy job by the tech crew (was there a tech crew ???).

Using a hand held mic is an art. Watch a singer work a mic, sometimes their lips are almost touching it and sometimes it's a foot away. BTW a good boom man is as important as a sound mixer, because s/he will move the mic around just like a singer.

February 12, 2012

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c.d.embrey

I don't think a boom would be needed, three lav mics through a little reverb unit to give it some color and you're good to go.

February 12, 2012

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Angelo

Please reply to what I said, not what you think I said. Obviously you've never worked on a Pro film set and watched the magic performed by a good boom man. Which is analogous to a singer working a mic.

Instead of them giving the participants hard-to-use hand held mic, they should have used lavs like newsreaders have been using for over 40 years. Sorry I didn't add the obvious -- that they should have used lavs

February 13, 2012

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c.d.embrey

All right already. Find the boom person for the next panel, quick. Geez.

April 16, 2012

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Luge

This is just one of the best things you ever posted Koo. Thank you so much!

February 12, 2012

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waweraw

Glad it's good food for thought!

February 12, 2012

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Ryan Koo
Founder
Writer/Director

Keep rocking this stuff, Koo-- always a good read. Cheers-

February 17, 2012

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I hadn't previously been paying attention to the development of Acts of Valor. I found Jacob Rosenberg's talking the most interesting. Basically turning their back on Hollywood except for distribution in theaters. And saying the moment is now. The turning of the tide for digital is now. I am really interested in seeing their movie now. Has any theatrical release had such a dominant use of dslr footage? When he said Acts of Valor was something like 70% 5dmk2, I had a holy poop moment. A realization of the dynamic things that are going on in this industry. And that this is a big action movie that (at least to me based on the commercials) looks like it has first rate visuals. It was also really interesting that he said District 9 was a conscious model of how they were doing their movie.

Anyways, thanks for bringing this to my radar. I appreciate it Koo.

February 12, 2012

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Abersouth

Adobe cinema...new application for filmmakers!

February 12, 2012

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Eamonn McManus

Overall, a great talk. I have to say, however, that Vincent Laforet doesn't match the panel well. When he mentioned circumventing the studio system and ending up on phones and laptops... made me think of David Lynch http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKiIroiCvZ0 (strong language). It harkens back to a book, The Power of Movies: How Screen and Mind Interact by Colin McGinn, that speaks about the psychological aspect of the theater experience: how the mind shifts gears in a low light situation, how the screen becomes a window when it covers so much of your field of view, and the communal/campfire feeling of seeing a film with a crowd. Not to say that I don't like Laforet or don't respect his work, but Mr. Legato and Mr. Rosenberg just come in with so much more experience in that realm.

I agree more with Jacob Rosenberg about the fact you'll see more VOD and subscription services because home theaters are cheaper and higher quality than they were 10 or 20 years ago.

I also think you'll see a reemergence of cult cinema. In Los Angeles, Cinefamily does a wonderful job of curating classic, cult, and underground screenings at the Silent Film Theatre. In a lot of ways seeing a movie with 50 or so really excited passionate people is more enjoyable then shuffling into a megaplex.

February 12, 2012

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Angelo

I agree. He's kind of out of place although he says good things, I cant give him as much credibility... Reverie and Mobius....

February 15, 2012

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carlos

Oh, my god, the guy who did reverie and mobius talking about storytelling... And the bandito brothers guy comparing the storytelling on their "motorbikes and marines and tanks and guns and cool stuff and whatever they have done" with De Sica...

February 13, 2012

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Franc

yeah..no kidding just goes to show you how just utterly completely
dead the indie scene is now compared to the nineties. Sad sad.
Hopefully some of us here can do better.

February 17, 2012

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sammy

It truly is amazing what we can do now on our own. I just produce and distributed an action short and it only took two days! If you're interested in checking it out, here's the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_3XxJD0uKMw&feature=youtube_gdata_player

February 17, 2012

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Ian

Thanks for being Koo and creating this great sharing website where we all benefit so much.

February 17, 2012

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ED

Thanks for finding this and putting this up - really liked it

February 19, 2012

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Great video! Thanks for this

February 19, 2012

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This is a great Panel discussion!! For aspiring filmmakers and digital storytellers it's great to hear some of the stories that we can relate to! That being said, I have to say that I found the sound to fine on my Mac Book Pro. But its almost insulting to everyone that with such an experienced panel there are only 3 mics for 4 people. And the camera work is almost as equally as bad as the lighting. I understand keeping these kind of things on the cheap, but this is a bit on the ridiculous!! But the content over-shines all the bad stuff....thank GOD!!

February 20, 2012

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Craig Shamwell

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April 21, 2014

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