The Really Good Things In The Indie Film Biz 2012 by Ted Hope
- Direct distribution is really working.
- Hollywood is taking more creative risks. As Ben Affleck noted about this year in film, “, “movies that involve taking risks by the filmmakers and the financiers have been successful.“
- The film industry is moving towards proportional gender representation in front of and behind the camera.
- There is an appetite for acquisition from the distributors.
- Worldwide, the industry is asking questions if there is a better way.
- Technology is confronting the problem of our transition from an entertainment economy based on scarcity and control of content, to one recognizing the abundance of, total access to, and full distraction from that content.
- There has never been a better time to both preserve and advance the film culture I dearly love. That’s why I chose to change my life and focus not on project producing but on producing infrastructure and change. I am not going to be able to do it alone, but working with the support of the organization that launched the oldest running film festival, should hopefully prove far more fruitful than from proclaiming on high from my private soap box.
- New financing options are both here and on the horizon for independent & documentary film.
- Transactional VOD Players hit the flashpoint. VHX.tv, Vimeo PPV, Dynamo player, and many more. Whether you want an aggregator or prefer to sell on your own, it is easy and painless to do now. Just ask Louis C.K.
- We have our first VOD Superstar. You want big numbers on VOD? Just cast Kirsten Dunst. Bachelorette. Melancholia. All Good Things. She’s beautiful. She’s a good actor. She’s fascinating to watch. She’s funny. She’s scary. And she doesn’t have too many letters in her name, but just enough to stand out. Hell, if Elizabethtown premiered on Ultra VOD today, it would set records. Okay, this isn’t really the GOOD thing but just an aspect of a Good Thing. The Good Thing is that VOD is becoming more marketable and people are not treating as a lesser product. Once all media outlets start covering VOD premieres that will be an Awesome thing.
- Tech and film are talking to each other. Soon they may even speak the same language.
- The dominance of the feature film form is starting to wain. Whether it is great webisodes, a tremendous number of wonderful shorts, transmedia experiments, or just cross-platform experiments, cinema is evolving beyond it’s historic constraints.
- The two films that I helped produce this year, DARK HORSE and STARLET got great reviews in the New York Times. They also got great reviews many other places too. I can only state this here as a personal positive though. Stay tuned, as this exact same fact will also be on my “What sucked in 2012″ list too.
- While I am on that double list tip, here’s another that will repeat on tomorrows list of the big and the bad. To quote A.O. Scott of the NY Times: “By the end of this year, The New York Times will have reviewed more than 800 movies, establishing 2012, at least by one measure, as a new benchmark in the annals of cinematic abundance.” From the point of view of the audience, right now this is a beautiful thing. Conceptually speaking, we should be able to match audiences with the film that is most right for them. Audiences don’t have to compromise. There are more better movies than ever before. Unfortunately, we have to build an infrastructure to support this, but that is a rant for another day (like tomorrow).
- There is a lot of real & meaningful support for indie writers, directors, and producers working in the genres & realms traditionally supported by indie film support organizations.
- The online community that supports the effort to advance a sustainable culture where the artist & their [supporters] benefit by the work they create, works to both preserve and advance the vibrant & diverse work that ambitiously reaches further, is committed to transparency, openness, opportunity, & our communal well-being, and knows that it is a team that builds the future and thus gives back in so many ways including posting, commenting, pointing, liking, and financial contributions. I know this as I am experiencing it daily. Thank you.