A year ago I asked, "Is Amazon Studios the Future of Film or is it a Bastardization of Crowdsourcing?" If you haven't heard of it, Amazon Studios is a kind-of-strange crowdsourced movie studio, wherein Amazon.com is asking not only for script submissions but also test movies (which most often take the form of animatics) as part of their ongoing contest. To me the whole enterprise is offputting, as I tend to like movies that are sui generis as opposed to movies that are voted into existence because of a popularity contest, but hey -- the film business is in need of new ideas and no one else is doing it quite like this. So, what's happened over the last year?
If there is one finding that seems to have emerged from Amazon's year-long experiment, it is this: the crowd isn't necessarily more creative than a traditional Hollywood studio. We'll have to wait till the first production hits cinemas to be sure, but based on the synopses for prize-winning scripts displayed on the site, Amazon Studios looks like a textbook case of a phenomenon observed by the influential web 2.0 critic Jaron Lanier in his book You Are Not a Gadget. "There's a rule of thumb," he writes, "you can count on in each succeeding version of the web 2.0 movement: the more radical an online social experiment is claimed to be, the more conservative, nostalgic and familiar the result will be."
This excerpt is from a longer piece at The Guardian; hit the link below for the full read.
Has anyone submitted or at least voted at Amazon Studios? Any thoughts? Also, if you're interested in submitting, there is still $162,000 up for grabs this month.