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Yesterday, I tried to provide context as to why we must change the manner we pitch our stories, films, and storyworlds. Today I am pondering what a pitch for today might be?
The question though is much bigger than that. We have to ask what is the creative process — particularly the one that can hope to have a financial payoff of some sort in the end — when we have to look in so many directions and dimensions? [...]
If you’ve been reading this blog you probably already recognize the old indie filmmaking model is obsolete. You’ve been trying to figure out how to shift from a focus on mass-market storytelling to one of niche audience world-building. You recognize that you need to build extensions, collaborations, and expansive discovery nodes into you storyworld architecture. And of course you know that the only logical response to this world of inexpensive high-production value abundance of content is to be more prolific, more ubiquitous, and thus radically collaborative. We recognize that the analogue era was about perfection and completion, but the digital one is about iterations and evolutions. You know all of this. You live it and you breathe it — but have you allowed it to truly alter your creative practice? [...]
One-off film is a fool’s errand. When the biggest challenge before filmmakers is not creating great work, or getting good work financed, but actually getting people to watch interesting and ambitious cinema, we must recognize that practices and processes must change.
As I like to stress, the only sane response to an overabundance of [...]
I am producing Lance Weiler‘s HOPE IS MISSING (with Anne Carey). It’s hard to call it just another feature film when Lance does so much more to expand the story world. In the past, I have encouraged filmmakers to make a short to demonstrate their skills or help clarify the world they want to create. Yes, Lance made a short for HopeIsMissing (aka H.i.M.), and you can watch it at the bottom of this post, but that’s just a tip of the iceberg.
When I speak about it to studio execs, most still don’t know what I mean when I say it is a transmedia project. Hopefully that will never be the case again once we make the feature. One would think that this would have already changed though by what has been done already.
Perhaps you were at Sundance and encountered the PANDEMIC. It was an installation at New Frontier. It was an online experience. It was location-based ARG. It was story R&D. Lance explains:
Last fall at PowerToThePixel I had the good fortune to be invited to partake in a ThinkTank on transmedia. They have recently published their report on the day and I encourage you to read it. Special thanks for Michael Gubbins for pulling the report together and facilitating the session.
Among the observations and recommendations:
• The business models of film and other creative industries are struggling because they are trying to dictate how customers use the media
• Creative industry needs to break free of restrictive single media practices with territorial rights and release windows
• Different media platforms are not always in competition and can cross-fertilise a brand and attract new audiences
• Value is moving away from product sales towards customer engagement with a brand