April 27, 2017

Why This Year's NAB is the Most 'Terrifying' for Filmmakers Yet [PODCAST]

What do all the advances in automated camera technology mean for the little guy?

In this special episode of Indie Film Weekly, Charles Haine, Micah Van Hove, and Jon Fusco broadcast live from the historic Plaza Hotel in downtown Las Vegas. The trio of No Film School editors come together for a moment of solace to discuss a week of non-stop coverage at the annual NAB Show. 

What we identify is a worrying trend: another year with no huge gear announcements and technological advances signals the further automation of filmmaking. As cameras and accessories get more sophisticated, it appears that some human elements of filmmaking may be in jeopardy.

It wasn't all bad, though. Whatever news was missing from the usual suspects, the emergence of some smaller start-ups we found while exploring the halls of the convention center more than made up for it.

Listen to the episode by streaming or downloading from the embedded player above, or find on iTunes here. 

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This episode of Indie Film Weekly was produced and edited by Jon Fusco.

Your Comment


It can happen. Just last year a friend who had had a stable long term career as camera operator in a TV station was replaced with a robot camera. He's now cleaning apartment buildings.

April 27, 2017 at 11:25AM


Camera jobs have been going away for a long time. No one wants to pay these union rates anymore.... If you can automate one job and save $200,000 through salary and benefits, it makes sense. The next step is being able to create editing algorithms which can edit complete features using completed projects as reference data. Probably 25 years away, but I see it coming in the future.

April 27, 2017 at 11:36AM

Walter Wallace

I can see a future time, where a room full of robots watch a TV show about robots torturing a human. One robot say to another, "hey there are no humans joining us for this screening, I wonder why???" Both robots laugh a dark, mechanical laugh.

April 27, 2017 at 10:01PM, Edited April 27, 10:01PM


After listening to the "like" first few minutes of the podcast I can't continue, although the content is "like" interesting. I'm so distracted by the "like" potty mouth of Charles Haine that I can't enjoy the content. I'm not a prude, just a professional. That kind of teenage vulgarity has no place in a professional discussion.

April 28, 2017 at 12:22AM


I'm just getting tired of the sensationalized b.s. titles. NFS should clean up its act, not only with how its contributors -- sorry, editors -- talk, but also its empty click bait article titles. "Terrifying?" Really? In this world that we live in??

April 28, 2017 at 2:03AM


Terrifying? Really. Like, guys chillax!
Seriously though, how can anyone say that a year with "no major gear announcements" is even an issue at all? I'd prefer more incremental improvements that make gear more reliable and affordable than a constant state of "look at me!" product rollouts.
Maturity, both in product development and in "reporting" is to be encouraged. Plus, the click-bait titles: can we maybe dial that down a bit too? Sure, I clicked it- but I would have anyway if it said "2017 NAB Roundup".

April 28, 2017 at 11:03AM, Edited April 28, 11:04AM

Douglas Bowker
Animation, Video, Motion-Graphics

We still got so many new products. There's been a ton of new lenses and a lot of 360 camera setups. I don't see a lack of gear this year as an issue since we got a lot last year.

April 30, 2017 at 4:40PM

Aiden H.
Independent Filmmaker

Hey guys......the NAB provides tools for film and broadcasting----not the creativity needed to use those tools. You've slipped into the concept that what you hold in your hands for film making will guarantee your success. Sorry---it's what is between your ears that makes the difference. Charles Haine, Haines, Hanes, or whatever----do you think 'shit', 'f***k', 'hell', add to your commentary? It only shows how far you have to go to be able to express yourself effectively. It appears you have a loooong way to go in achieving that.

April 30, 2017 at 1:14PM, Edited April 30, 1:16PM


In the 1990's I figured out how you could replace most of your events and studio crew cheaply, and do a feature with just one to three crew (including director). This is small budget stuff. A lot of things are automatable, and human setup monitoring and live control are involved. But if you want to film big budget hire a proper crew to make it better. A crew will give better quality on things that are not simple. Then the slogan "Filmed with Quality by Human Hands" applies on big budget. When suitable AI or VR comes to do most things in quality, the slogan can still be used. Even makeup can be done quickly and accurately repeatedly to previous appearance.

May 4, 2017 at 8:44PM

Wayne M
Director of a Life