Dale (Digital Doodles/Group 42), Colleen (353 Haiku Movie Review) and Marina discuss some of the fall out from “Bridging Media“, a conference which took place over the weekend and focused on opening the lines of communication between the broadcast and digital communities.
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Thanks to organizers for putting together the fantastic event. Local blogger Rebecca Bollwitt (Miss 604) blogged all of the sessions (session 1, session 2, session 3, session 4) while local media/tech guru Robert Ouimet has audio from all four sessions here.
20 thoughts on “After the Credits Episode 17 – Bridging Media”
Fascinating podcast, soundsl ike it was a great conference.
In terms of Canadian film and distribution, I found a lot of the issues also came up at Canadian Film Fest 08 Day 2 – March 26/08. I really got a sense that the theatres wanted to show them, but if no on goes… it's not likely to keep it on the screens. Also the budgets for marketing are crazy. If I remember right the sense was US films have $1 million for advertising in Canada, whereas Canadian films have up to $30,000. Unbelievable.
Some films are doing some great innovative work to get there films seen, like touring their film instead of a three theatre release in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. One of them is Rock, Paper, Scissors: The Way of the tosser (website: http://www.wayofthetosser.com/). It's a great film!
Watched "The Nines" last night. Great movie. I will do a proper movie review that you can check on my blog (but it will take a few hours because right now I have a restaurant review of The Red Onion and I want the owners to be able to read it, so it might come up tomorrow morning.
Cool, I'll keep an eye out for it Raul. Can't wait to get all the details!
woohoo I was mentioned. 😉
I often feel bad about the number of times I bring up that movies I want to see don't show up here till months after they have been released and by that time I already have it on DVD.
I really don't like to encourage others to pirate movie (what I do is my own business) but as I've said many times I wouldn't be out looking for movies to download if I could go see it in the theatre. I know it can't be economically viable for every movie to get a wide release but there is no excuse for movies that are nominated (and even some winners) for Awards to not be released in cities of over 200,000.
On a side note I just have to say how cool my local downtown library is. I just saw a copy of Johnnie To's Exile on DVD there. If I didn't already own it I'd be bouncing off the walls right now with anticipation of watching it tonight. 😉
John – I think your comment fits right into the problem that distributors are dealing with. True, some films may not be commercially viable and I think we're all in agreement that also doesn't make any sense for all movies to get a wide distribution but it almost feels like a form of censorship because someone somewhere is deciding what we get to see and if your tastes don't fit into what some one in an office decides is worthwhile, then you're SOL. I won't begin to say I have a solution but the very fact that there is conversation around the issue will hopefully spark someone of power some where to push forward to fix the problem.
I think one of the viable solutions may be electronic distribution through sites like Jaman and iTunes and maybe even consoles like the Xbox Marketplace. I'm still scratching my head because I can't understand why the movie option isn't available to Canadian iTunes customers. It seems like such a no brainer, especially for smaller films.
I've been thinking the same thing reently Marina. I think someone really needs to do a legit live streaming something that is available in Canada (and hopefully includes Canadian Content!)
Marina: If there are barriers, they are usually legal ones, not technological ones at this point.
The internet really spurs on things, as the emphasis on the Long Tail is greater than when one had to seek out and pay for low-circulation magazines to find the off-mainstream stuff.
Day-And-Date was shot down hard though, not that they attempted it with anything higher profile than a Soderbergh Experiment and a few low-key Rom-Coms and Docs.
I'd love for them to try the Day and Date with Indy 4 or A Brave New World, or even something like Charlie Wilson's War. No one has the guts at this point.
I was just thinking how if there was a simultaneous release of movies on DVD, Internet, and Cinema all at once there would really be no tempation (other than financial which is not a real reason for me)to pirate movies.
I always try to buy or rent movies that I've seen by nefarious means but most people probably do not. You will never get everyone to not pirate but those of us who just want to watch the movies would not have to resort to pirating.
Does anyone actually know how Bubble did with its simultaneous release schedule?
Kurt – you're right. The problem isn't the technology (it's out there) but the legal issues surrounding the distribution channels. What it really boils down to is money. It's only fair that producers and distributors want to make a return on their investment and I don't begrudge them that but I do think, or it comes across this way, that they're looking to make unrealistic returns on their investments. And this goes back to the budget issues that we barely touched on.
When a budget for a film is $100M and the marketing budget is another $100M, that film has that film HAS TO make it to every nook and cranny of the world to make the type of returns that investors are looking for. And if those big budget extravaganzas can't pull it off, what's to encourage investors to put money in the pockets of artists that have something interesting to say? Especially if they're looking to make big, big box office dollar?
It seems to me like the entire system is seriously flawed. It may have been fine in the past when technology didn't allow the opportunities that it does today but when viewers KNOW the options are out there and studios/distributors aren't making use of them…I think it makes people feel abused. I certainly feel that way.
John – A few highlights on the "Bubble" experiment from this CBC story:
– Bubble took in $70,664 US opening weekend
– About 500,000 people paid to see Bubble on HDNet Movies
– Estimated that the film will generate $5 million US in revenue from various sources. HDNet Movies cable channel paid $250,000 US to license two airings of the film Friday, and 100,000 copies of the DVD, which goes on sale Tuesday, have been shipped to retailers
And for comparison, the film's budget was $1.6 millionUS
I have never worked in a theatre, so please feel free to correct me, but isn't part of the problem the film itself. In this age of tech savyness, why are we still shipping big bulky film to and from theatres. Wouldn't it be easier to just have the film stock tranfered to a digital medium.
Every year in Vancouver we have a charity screening of the movie Serenity. The film gets shipped to the theatre, and remains in its box, and they run the DVD version instead. Why even bother with the filmstock. The theatre still pays the licencing fee to run the film.
Smaller films that might otherwise have only a few copies of the filmstock available to distribute at any given time, would be able to have a larger distribution for less money. Offer the smaller films at a lower licencing cost than the tradition hollywood blockbusters. Wouldn't that make it more attractive for a theatre to open up on of its theatres for the art house films?
What am I missing here?
I can't speak for shipping but the quality on DVD is much lower than what you would get from actual film. Now I'm not sure how Blu-Ray would compare to film.
I've seen DVDs played on a big screen and it just never looks as good.
It might make it easier and cheaper – and if that's what it takes to get the movies in the theaters, then I'm all for it.
But if given the choice, I'll take the 35mm film stock any day of the week over a DVD projection. The quality is SO much nicer and more briliant (that's just me though).
Also, I don't know the ins and out of theaters, but some simply may not be capable of showing DVDs on their big screens.
So yeah, if your theater gets the true print of Serenity anyway, why in god's name would they play the DVD version?
We also ran a fan made documentary of serentity….might have been easier, but I didn't notice the difference.
I think the reason for running the DVD was because it's in better shape than the print. I'd have to check with Gayle (the local organizer of the event) to see if that was the case.
Hi Dale, Colleen and Marina,
Great podcast and summary of Bridging Media! Loved hearing your thoughts on the day! And you are right – really the day was a beginning to a lot of questions and discussions that need to be explored more in-depth. A beginning with lots more to come. We will keep you posted and in the mean time, I will be updating the site with feedback from last week's event over the next couple of days.
Glad you join us for our inaugural event!
Thanks Erica. We had a great time and the event sparked a lot of conversation! I look forward to the next one!