Jury Coordination and Notes

Archive for July, 2015

Women in Film & Television by Brianna Hope Beaton

Monday, July 20th, 2015

wift.fl.jpgSomething that really inspires me to do all I can to help others are great organizations that strive to aid the men and woman in need. To have an association that focuses on the film industry and helping others is such a plus to so many people around the country and world.

Woman in Film & Television – Florida is an organization that strives to empower men and woman to achieve their highest professional/creative potential, and create more job opportunities throughout the state of Florida. They would like to continue to search for and retain members who have a minimum of two years experience working in the film, television and digital media industries.

Tichi Wilkerson Kassel and a group of woman representing a range of facets of the film and television business founded Woman in Film in Los Angeles in 1973. Woman in Film was created to recognize, develop and actively promote the unique visions of woman in the field of communications. The Central Florida Chapter of Women in Film (the original name) was established in 1989 by a dynamic group of independent producers looking for companionship and support. In 1999, the name was changed to Women in Film & Television – Florida (WIFT-FL) to better reflect the chapter’s membership and sponsor base. The members of WIFT-FL organization are qualified women and men from a range of job categories – performers, producers, directors, writers, agents, publicists, photographers and administrative and managerial personnel. WIFT-FL is part of an international network (Women in Film & Television International or WIFTI), which has 40 chapters around the world. WIFTI’s membership base exceeds 10,000 working professionals.

Daytona Beach, Jacksonville, Miami and Tampa are the four WIFT-FL branches. Some of the corporate members include Adrenaline Films, Central Florida Film Festival, DAVE School and Orlando Actors Headshots. WIFT-FL has more than ten sponsors including

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Production HUB, Solodev, Doverwood CENFLO and continue to grow.

Woman in Film & Television – Florida is a great organization that many people (including me) have and are grateful for. To get more information you can visit http://womeninfilmfl.org.

YouTube vs. Movies By Keefer C.Blakeslee

Sunday, July 12th, 2015

youtube_logo_detail.jpgI want you to ask yourself one question (No this is not a set up for a Clint Eastwood line). How many hours a day do you spend on Youtube? 3 hours maybe even 5. According to Youtube satistics,”Every day people watch hundreds of millions of hours on YouTube and generate billions of views. The number of hours people are watching on YouTube each month is up 50% year over year.” It’s no surprise that Youtube is huge. People go on Youtube to watch music videos, tutorials, movie reviews (*Cough KIDS FIRST! Cough), you name it. If you’re one of the many people who go on Youtube a lot, and chances are you are, then you have a favorite Youtuber that you suscribe to. For instance my favorites are ERB, Game Therory and AVbyte.  Maybe yours are Miranda Sings, Rhett and Link or Lindsey Sterling.

Suscriber after subscriber, Youtube has made these people celebrities. I did not fully realize how huge these people were until I volunteered at a gift lounge. I carried around bags full of merchandise from different vendors for people. We had an unexpected guest, Jenna Marbles. For those of you who don’t know, she is a big Youtuber who does comedy videos. I had the pleasure of escorting her throughout the gift lounge. What I did not expect was the whole room going crazy over her. Left and right, people wanted pictures with her and her autographs. This reaction showed me how much people love Youtubers. It got me thinking, which is pretty dangerous, how does a Swedish man playing video games named  Pewdiepie become as well-known as some movie stars? First, there is exposure. Youtube provides  access to many outlets for exposure – tablets, computers and smart phones. In fact (add smart phone fact): To make it even better, it’s free. This creates a large audience. A lot of the hard work goes into advertising your Youtube page. Second, is social media. People share Youtube videos on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and others. Other forms of media do the same type of method of advertising but where Youtube differs is the duration of the videos. This leads me to the third reason, attention span. People have busy schedules – work, school, family. A lot of people don’t have time to see an hour and a half film or a 22-minute television show. What people do have the time for is a 2 minute video of a cat playing a piano. If you’re like me and watch 50 minute videos of cats, you’re not the norm. Now some Youtube videos are longer but, most of them are 15 minutes at the most. While all these qualities of Youtube makes it strong, I think what makes Youtubers big is that it shows hope. I know it sounds corny but hear me out. Youtubers represent the everyday person who decided to record themselves and upload it to Youtube. When they did this, people started watching their video and generated a lot of views. People enjoy the video, urge other people to like and even subscribe to their channel. Then the person who created the video has a fan base and a reason to create more videos. Do you see where I’m going? Youtubers are fueled by fans. They create videos to please their fans. They communicate with them. This is something that Hollywood stars don’t usually do. That’s what makes them more identifiable. They are like the hometown celebrities.

Youtube is an outlet for artists. Anybody can upload their short films, music videos or comedy sketches. This does not mean you are going to be an over night star but Youtubers show that it can happen and give us hope. They are the light at the end of the tunnel.  So are Youtubers bigger than Hollywoood stars. Well I think Youtube has its own community of artists and its own set of fans. Some strive and succeed in becoming Hollywood satrs.

In the end, Youtubers and Hollywood stars have the same goal – which is to create and distribute entertainment. They just go about it in different ways. Hollywood is judged by critics and the press  while Youtubers are judged by subscribers and commentators. And, by the way, did you see my latest Youtube video?

Artists Make Art for Artists By Willie Jones

Sunday, July 5th, 2015

Artfilms_1.jpg…and for those who most appreciate it. In my last blog I explained and examined the debate between films and movies. I concluded that, because of the noticeable decline in appreciation for artful films such as The Master and the increasing demand for  box office blow ups such as Jurassic World, artists like Paul Thomas Anderson make their films for their contemporaries with the hopes that the general public may appreciate it. It is my theory, that films like The Master are created in the hopes that a general audience will appreciate it, but is truly made for movie buffs and those who appreciate artful films.

Woody Allen, my favorite writer and director, said in a recent interview “…a film opens like The Avengers and in one weekend, one weekend, it makes more money than six of my films make in ten years.” Mind you, Woody Allen makes films that deal with themes of love, death, psychology, relationships and other mature themes that will stand the test of time. Most of his movies barely break even. Whereas, films like The Avengers whose themes are recycled and predictable, out-gross 10 of Allen’s films combined. Yet,  a film such as Melinda and Melinda has more to offer a person internally. It lingers longer and more effectively but it stays in obscurity. Allen also said that “If nobody ever comes to my films, if people don’t want to give me money to make films, that will stop me. But, as long as people come from all over the world and I have an audience and I have ideas for films, I will do them for as long as I enjoy the process.” Woody Allen is certainly a director with a recognizable audience. He’s an acquired taste, per se. They are, presumably, fans of more artful films and Allen makes films FOR THEM. For the art fans, for his contemporaries like Martin Scorsese.

Now of course, I don’t mean that  filmmakers don’t make films for money. Of course they do. Filmmaking is a business too. But if filmmakers J.C. Chandor, whose films have barely broken even, if at all, continue to make movies, then money obviously isn’t the main motivation. His last three movies, Margin Call, All is Lost and A Most Violent Year, made a total of less than 20 million dollars. They have all been appreciated by critics and contemporaries alike yet, the masses don’t want to see them. J.C. Chandor is aware of this, so my theory could apply to him. He makes films hoping the masses will flock to see them, but he makes them for the likes of Richard Roeper and Peter Travers – those who are willing to appreciate the art and not skip over it to watch the latest weekend blockbuster.

So, is this good or bad? Is it anything at all? I say it is unfortunate. Why can’t the general masses and film buffs alike appreciate the same movie? Or, at least try to. The Master should be able to be Oscar nominated and gross hunWillie1.jpgdreds of millions. Films like that should be breaking box-office records. Blockbusters have their credibility. but filmmakers like J.C. Chandor shouldn’t be kept in obscurity because their films don’t have explosions or huge stars of predictable plot formulas. They should be Hollywood’s priority because their messages will stand the test of time. And they will. When all is said and done and our civilization falls, it is the films of J.C. Chandor and Paul Thomas Anderson that will be most appreciated – films with lessons in greed and themes of finding yourself, not another recycled blockbuster, no matter how entertaining it is.

We learn from art. We learn from Only Lovers Alive. We learn from it artistically, intellectually and imaginatively. We don’t learn from Age of Ultron. Artists wish to teach, not merely entertain. It’s just unfortunate that the masses don’t wish to learn.

Thank you for reading. Willie Jones.

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