Friday, April 29, 2016

NBC-Universal buys DreamWorks - nightmare for WT?

If they got a chance to co-produce this could be good news, but that's unlikely, so WT face being a smaller fish in a BIG pond with parent company NBC-U picking up DreamWorks Animation for $3.8bn (a premium on the current stock market valuation of $2.5bn).

Already demoted from block funding to a first look deal this can only mean it will get more difficult for WT to gain financial backing or distribution agreement for their productions from within NBC-U.

As they've recently produced some ambitious, big budget family/children's movies, and have franchises like Bean and Nanny McPhee, this could mean in-house competition for attention and distribution.

WT are an admirably resilient company though, one that has retained its independent spirit and operating style while taking full advantage of their vertical integration in the NBC-U big six conglomerate.

They have a long-standing relationship with StudioCanal, a fellow NBC-U subsidiary, bringing production financing and, often, European distribution. Their track record ensures that the WT brand is enough to be taken seriously by all the big six distributors and earn a hearing (chance to pitch) any new productions.

Comcast’s NBCUniversal to buy DreamWorks Animation in $3.8bn deal

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

REPRESENTATION Hollywood has no A-List Asian female stars

A row has broken out over the casting of a white actress in an anime remake

Max Landis: there are ‘no A-list female Asian celebrities’ who could have taken Scarlett Johansson’s Ghost in a Shell role

Friday, April 15, 2016

CONVERGENCE US cinema chain oks texting. sadface

I gather that after less than favourable feedback this horrible idea was binned, but multi-screen viewing is certainly a serious issue for film. And I found myself watching the latest Bourne and being very irritated at a pair to my left lighting the room with their phablets - even more than the ridiculous overuse of non-diegetic music to impress the kinetic tension on the producer-imagined dumb audience (in Aug 2016, a few months after picking up on this)

US cinema chain might introduce 'texting-friendly' screens.

Also ...
The Blue Room is being released in the UK by MUBI, first theatrically, then online. How do you feel about cinema becoming an online phenomenon?People keep saying that cinema’s about to die, but it has a way of transforming itself all the time. I never feel like saying: “It was better before.” OK, watching a film in a cinema is something different, but now people can use new tools, watch in different ways – they’re even able to watch three screens at once. That’s changing the grammar of cinema, it becomes like a mash-up or something. You have to take an interest – you have to use it all. [Mathieu Amalric: ‘Cinema has a way of transforming itself’]

Thursday, April 14, 2016

BOX OFFICE v MARKETING software predictions

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

GENDER Stats on invisible mute women and male writers

Lots of killer statistics from multiple research papers here, detailing how little dialogue women get, how few films (18%) where 2 of the 3 lead roles are female, the dominance of male writers ... even the absurd long-term proportion of women in crowd scenes (17%!).

Also a good point, echoing one I make often, about the dismissive treatment of 'chick flicks' and the lack of a binary (we don't speak of men's movies!).

Sunday, April 10, 2016

UK government report on film audience

The examples are little old, but this is still very useful: link.

The BFI, who took over the UK Film Council's role in using government funds to support the industry in 2011, publish an annual report and much more: link.

These are great sources for audience research as well as for a stronger idea on how the UK film industry operates.
a few of the 2015 reports, all freely downloadable

Saturday, April 09, 2016

TECHNOLOGY 1st 4K discs and player out

4K TV and DSLR/camcorder has been going for a while, with most video editing software also offering upgrades to work with 4K.

Now Samsung have released the 1st consumer 4k player and Fox are releasing 4K discs at £19.99 - with The Life of Pi and Kingsmen among the titles. 

A 4K disc has 16 times the data of a DVD; it's basically the bitrate used in digital cinema projection.

Convergence continues.

Life Of Pi in ultra high-definition video? No thanks