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November 1 at 8:30am

Why Don’t We Have MORE Mindblowing Movies?!!

We were promised jetpacks.

That pretty much sums up the state of culture for me. Maybe I am greedy. I have far more movies that I want to see than I have time on earth, so I shouldn’t be complaining, right?  I know that we can match people with the movies that they will respond to so much better than we do now. Everyone is in a similar boat of grand abundance. But still…  We were promised jetpacks, and have cheese spread instead.

Is it that we don’t try hard enough to create truly original work? Or is it [...]


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July 21 at 9:30am

Who Is Making The Best Short Films Out There?

If you were going to give an award to the “Best Short Film Director”, what would be the criteria? I think the director would have to have made at least three shorts. Maybe over a five year period. If a director only has made two shorts, my sense is that they aren’t doing it for the love of the short, but more for their “career”. Three shows a commitment to the form. Making one great, or even two great short films does not detract from the strength of those shorts, but again it does not show the devotion to the form.

Now, as I believe that the dominance of the feature film form is on it’s last legs, and that ending it is TGHOTFOC, I think we will see even more great short directors in the years ahead. Presently though, I am a bit at a loss to nominate multiple directors who have made three or more excellent shorts. Nonetheless, that limitation does not reduce my enthusiasm for my nomination.

I had the good fortune of being asked to be a judge at TropFest NYC this year. It was an incredible program, and in the highlights of years passed, I was reminded of how great Nash Edgerton’s short work is (I also dig his feature The Square). Can you name a filmmaker who has made three shorts stronger than these: [...]


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July 11 at 8:15am

What Is The Great Hope For The Future Of Cinema?

Or for that matter, what do you think can really change and move things forward in both the near and distant future? If we could ask five key people what they saw on our various horizons, what would they show us? Who should we ask?  One of the great things about being pointed in a direction, is that it is almost a path. Could we have walked down that road when Francis Ford Coppola predicted YouTube in 1991:

It is not easy to just boil down to one specific all the various change that is swarming over us at this point.  I see major shifts coming in so many different aspects of cinema: discovery, consideration, value/return, participation, collaboration, transitioning, immersion, and many others. [...]


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July 4 at 10:40am

Love What You Do (Waves Of Gratitude)

Mickey Smith’s “Dark Side Of The Lens” captures a passion for a life worth living, or scraping as the case may be. A cool wave of water washing over the pleasure of using your labor towards creative ends. As we chisel and nail let’s not forget that the real reward is the doing.

DARK SIDE OF THE LENS from Astray Films on Vimeo.


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February 14 at 8:18am

How To Triumph In A Contract Negotiation

This pretty much sums it all up. Thanks Mr. Cheyefsky!  Thanks Mr. Lumet! (and thanks Amanda Johnson-Zetterstrom for the tip!)

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