Right, that got your attention. I don’t know if the next 10 years will see the death of celluloid and I’m confident that even if the major studios move to digital formats, there will be certain parties who are only interested in film as a medium.
What I think more likely, however, is that the next 10 years will see the death of tape-based media.
Film, for lack of a better name, is a slow moving beast. When I first picked up a camera in 2001, home editing wasn’t quite here. Online hosting of film and video involved a 100 megabyte Quicktime file with roughly the resolution of a postage stamp, and back then it took a day to download. It wasn’t until 2005 that YouTube and streaming video as we know it came to be.
At the dawn of the do we have a name for the next decade? Did we have one for the last? Anyway, as the century heads into its teenage years, stops wanting to play with its parents and just wants to hang out with its friends in shopping centres, the question in the film industry seems to be 3D. Sky television is launching a 3D service in the new year, and monitors that won’t require you to wear the specs are on horizon, but the fact remains we’ve yet to see anything that makes use of 3D integral to the plot.
CGI is going to come a long way in the next decade, as render times decrease, the people who didn’t have the patience to wait 48 hours for a 5 second shot to render will start to experiment as we see more photorealism in the computer generated domain.
One thing is for sure, the competition is going to get much tougher. Shooting a video with your mates used to impress the papers, but I think the people who are going to make the loudest splashes in the low / no budget end of the indie spectrum are those that push what they do with sound and lighting -areas often over looked by internet productions.
We’re already starting to see the merging of television and the internet with games consoles that can pull up YouTube and BBC iPlayer on both TV and the web. People will become more accustomed to watching web content and not only will we hear fewer people moaning about not wanting to watch shows while sitting at their computer desk, but we’ll see more people willing to watch web content longer than 10 minutes.
I’d hope to see more people doing films and web series’ aimed at a niche audience. We’ve seen a lot of success with this in terms of political and environmental documentaries. If people tell a story aimed at a certain audience, like the fantastic ‘Firefly’, it’s something that won’t appeal to everyone, but the people it does appeal to will love it. The Guild managed to get a lot of recognition from appealing to gamers who relate more to its characters than they do to the traditional Hollywood nerd clichÃ©.
Unfortunately, most film makers seem to be of the opinion that they should appeal to everyone because that’s what main stream successes do, without realising that they’d be competing which the same market, one that spends tens of millions on advertising and promotion.
In 2010, specialise, don’t generalise.
â€¢ Martin Lejeune is an Exeter-based filmmaker and effects artist, he also reads palms and drinks tea leaves.
This article first appeared on the D+CFilm social network
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