Thread: Bold Idea to Save Film Industry!

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  1. #1 Bold Idea to Save Film Industry! 
    Senior Member Terry VerHaar's Avatar
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    Pretty much all aspects of film production could continue right now except for that key and essential part, which is actual production. Pre-production and post production can be adapted to remote collaboration but actual on-set or in-studio production is just not possible right now with the vicious virus circulating among us.

    So, I have devised an approach that could keep the film industry working for the next many months as we deal with the virus…

    What if the current owners of films (studios) were to license the existing footage of films to be re-purposed and re-cut into entire new productions; much like music has been opened up to sampling and mash-ups for new musical compositions. With modern capabilities in color grading and the potential for new voice tracks and mixing scenes from different movies and even cutting shorter pieces with different stories from existing films, the possibilities are endless. Creative people (and there are a lot of them out there) will find an endless number of ways to create new and interesting and amusing and provocative stories this way.

    (I do recall some hilarious examples of a version of this approach appearing many years ago as "simulcasts" - where a separate voice track was played on the radio while viewers watched the original movie n TV).

    Of course, such productions could then be released online and on various streaming platforms.

    Sounds crazy, I know. But it just might keep the industry vibrant (or just functioning?) during this otherwise forced period of dormancy. And, who knows, it might also spark renewed interest in any number of old films as people look into the origins of their new favorites.

    Am I crazy? (For those who actually know me, please keep your answer in context! )
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  2. #2  
    Senior Member Brian F Kobylarz's Avatar
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    ^Terry,

    If I am reading your post correctly, what you propose would not benefit "that key and essential part, which is actual production".

    Color grading and mixing scenes from different movies, cutting shorter pieces, etc. falls more within the realm of post production - which you point out can already be adapted to remote collaboration.
    Many industries are evolving into this business model - at an accelerated rate.

    While I admire thinking out of the box to keep creative people engaged as much as possible during this crisis, how would the camera operator, AC, focus puller, grip, etc fit into that model? To become engaged, they may not have the right toolbox (equipment-wise) in their homes. Not to mention all the supporting industries such as rental houses, craft services and the like.

    These are extremely challenging times - keep thinking and sharing ideas!
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  3. #3  
    Senior Member Nick Morrison's Avatar
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    As Brian said, Terry these are all post ideas. Which are great, but don't help production.

    I think production is going to become more creative than ever, because it will have to be. I think on a network level, it's going to be more Mary Tyler Moore sit-com type content, where a small cast and crew can film in one sanitized location.

    And then I think other content will also rely on small crews that go out Blair Witch Style and create stunning, new content in a different way.

    So I think we will come back to normal - but it will be a new normal. The old normal is gone for the time being. But who knows that may change quickly if new treatments and such materialize that make infection less serious.

    Every month feels like a year, so June may feel nothing like April or May.

    So yes, more ideas. More creativity. That's what the community needs so I applaud the creative thinking.
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  4. #4  
    Senior Member Terry VerHaar's Avatar
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    Hey Brian - thanks for jumping in to further the conversation. You're right, this particular scenario as I presented it, doesn't specifically help the production end but it does, at least, keep the post people busy. I spend about half my filmmaking time in each camp so I am guilty of being halfway self serving here. :-)

    I suppose I could imagine some lone shooters adding their own footage - safely shot - to the mix - a sort of relevant "stock pool" or some such, maybe just to bridge existing scenes or something. Certainly, using existing footage would lower the burden of storytelling in times like these. Can you think of other ways to involve shooters and on-set crew, safely?

    Also, I did start a bit of a discussion about the production end here (below) in case you'd want to offer up some ideas:

    http://www.reduser.net/forum/showthr...Dangerous-Time
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  5. #5  
    Senior Member Michael Hastings's Avatar
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    Might be a good time to make an underwater movie - no personal stake in that of course LOL
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  6. #6  
    Senior Member Terry VerHaar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Hastings View Post
    Might be a good time to make an underwater movie - no personal stake in that of course LOL
    Now, see... that's the kind of thinking we need. (I'm gonna have to get re-certified, I guess.)

    Would COVID-19 spread in space?
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  7. #7  
    Senior Member Simon Dunne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick Morrison View Post
    I think production is going to become more creative than ever, because it will have to be. I think on a network level, it's going to be more Mary Tyler Moore sit-com type content, where a small cast and crew can film in one sanitized location.
    Swap the on-set hazer for a sanitiser fog
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  8. #8  
    Senior Member jake blackstone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terry VerHaar View Post
    So, I have devised an approach that could keep the film industry working for the next many months as we deal with the virus…
    If only you could also devise a way for people to see these new movies in a movie theaters
    And before people start jumping in with Netflix and such, sure, may be for the smaller productions, but the big film studios need make a LOT more, than what streamers are willing and able to pay in comparison to how much those film studios can clear with the worldwide releases...
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  9. #9  
    Senior Member Terry VerHaar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jake blackstone View Post
    If only you could also devise a way for people to see these new movies in a movie theaters
    And before people start jumping in with Netflix and such, sure, may be for the smaller productions, but the big film studios need make a LOT more, than what streamers are willing and able to pay in comparison to how much those film studios can clear with the worldwide releases...
    Yeah - I think that one is pretty hard. One thing about the idea I posited - albeit, admittedly, a bit quirky - is that there really isn't much (any?) cost to the studios who already own the footage. I know this concept wouldn't replace the revenue they normally would see from theatrical release but, presumably it would be more than the zero/zilch/nada level they will otherwise be experiencing.

    Your comment does draw attention to another, maybe bigger, concern: Will the theaters ever recover from this? When, after probably many months, theaters can reopen and people are starting to be willing to congregate, will many folks have largely "gotten out of the habit" of seeing films at theaters? Will this virus accelerate the decline/demise of the theater industry that already seemed to be happening?
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  10. #10  
    Senior Member Blair S. Paulsen's Avatar
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    As I posted previously, there is one way to resume production that should pass muster with unions and public health officials.

    Seal off studio lots. Roll in RVs, mobile homes, travel trailers, etc to provide housing. Stock up on food and other necessities. Proffer contracts to cast and crew where they agree to stay on site for 90-180 days. Everyone is tested before entering and re-tested regularly.

    Cheers - #19
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