Posts tagged Filmmaking
Posts tagged Filmmaking
By Scott Beggs
Think of Your Career as One Long Movie
“It’s all just one film to me. Just different chapters.”
This may be one of the most famous quotes from Altman — aside from his semi-misquoted line about no one having made a “good” movie yet — and while it’s a harrowing suggestion for a first-timer to even try to consider a gargantuan task as the first chapter, it’s also an open invitation to place Altman’s career into the context of a 60-hour feature.
No One’s Ever Made a Good Movie
That’s not exactly what he said, so Altman cleared up the comment with eloquence (in a sweet turtle neck) and a hint at what filmmakers should be striving for.
“I feel the medium of film has not yet really been explored. In other words I think that when we started film, we took it from theater, literature, and we were an extension of another art form. It’s still that way. It’s getting away from it, and I think eventually somebody will make a film that’s purely a film, and the audience can respond to as such… the only limitations are the linear ones. It has length. It has its beginning and an end and it takes a certain amount of time.”
Don’t Restrict Your Actors
From this 1983 interview
The Safe Studio System Will Never Be Safe For Original Voices
“Altman says his troubles with Fox are symptomatic of a general malaise in Hollywood. Many of the major studios are being run by people with little practical knowledge or experience about the movie industry, he says. Lacking sound instincts about what the public will buy at the box office, they try to protect their flanks by making advance sales to pay-cable systems, video disk distributors, and other markets willing to pay up front for movies not yet made. But those secondary markets are only interested in ‘safe’ projects with established stars, so it’s getting more and more difficult to float an original project or a movie starring unknowns.”
Sound familiar? Good, because it’s what Roger Ebert wrote in 1980.
After A Prairie Home Companion, Altman was asked if the movie came out the way he envisioned it. Altman dismissed the premise, saying:
“I wouldn’t know. Making a movie is like chipping away at a stone. You take a piece off here, you take a piece off there and when you’re finished, you have a sculpture. You know that there’s something in there, but you’re not sure exactly what it is until you find it.”
Don’t Take Advice From Anyone
From this interview during the Hamptons International Film Festival
There’s a strong tendency right now toward formula. Like this is how a screenplay is written: By page 30 this has to happen, your Act Two goes to page 90…That’s just horse shit. I think a badly crafted, great idea for a new film with a ton of spelling mistakes is just 100 times better than a wellcrafted stale script.
For example, Scorsese talks not about three acts in a script, but rather five sequences. Or you watch Fellini films you watch “Nights of Cabiria” or “La Dolce Vita” or “8 1/2” and you get a sense not of a three act structure, but of episodes with on character going through all these episodes. Then you get to the end of the film and there’s a sudden realization or a moment that pulls a loose string suddenly taut through the whole movie you’ve been watching up until that point.
(We need) different mental models of what a film can be, and if you pay too much attention to these books, by Syd Field and Robert McKee and I don’t know who else, they’re only presenting one cultural paradigm, and that’s really, really dangerous to the act of creation and to our cinema, which needs new ideas and new blood now more than ever. Hollywood films have become a cesspool of formula and it’s up to us to try to change it. - Alexander Payne in 1999
get shit done | a playlist to get you through your work (and help you feel like a badass)
i. sky battle ii. prologue iii. pacific rim iv. armies assemble v. hogwarts’ march vi. ithe son of flynn vii. fight on the flight deck viii. earth ix dream is collapsing x. nick fury xi. i am the doctor xii. fighting in the market xiii. main theme (extended) xiv. gotham’s reckoning xv. the black pearl xvi. courtyard apocalypse xvii. i am iron man xviii. muttations xix. the lighting of the beacons xx. black widow kicks ass xxi. flight xxii. the avengers xxiii. the battle xxiv.end titles xxv. sons of odin xxvi.the shatterdome xxvii.the end of all things xxviii. hassansin attack xxix. requiem for a dream xxx. welcome to scotland xxxi. outlands xxxii. sledgehammer v2 xxxiii. enterprising young men xxxiv. warriors on the beach xxxv. rise xxxvi. the council of elrond xxxvii. now you see me xxxviii. frost giant battle xxxix. the labyrinth xl. the sands of time
Interesting thread on screenwriting camera directions and directing from the page.
Color is a subtle tool that can transport us from our ordinary lives to extraordinary worlds of cinema. Peel back the layers of history and look at how color was first understood and implemented in the world of film.
It’s almost like a can’t not do it type of thing.
Edgar Wright: “Please enjoy the screenplay and all our copious notes.”
James Mangold knows his shit. And he wants you to look at it. He wants you look at his shit. He’s got references in every color!
Earlier this year, the “Walk the Line” and “Knight and Day” director took to Twitter to help educate his followers, many of whom were watching his feed in anticipation of comic book revelations. Could Mangold (“3:10 to Yuma”), a man of many genres who lacked “geek cred,” do justice to the X-Men’s most famous character? His way of giving people hope was the opposite of what anyone would have expected. There was no pandering to the source material. Instead, Mangold brought his film knowledge to the table, spelling out ten films — some widely classics, some deeper cuts — that informed or inspired “The Wolverine.”
It’s a ballsy move, one that promised a different kind of superhero movie. Many directors cite influences that disappear after going through the filtration process of big, studio filmmaking. Surprisingly, this isn’t the case for “The Wolverine,” that actually manages to wear its influences on its sleeve. On FILM.COM, we take a look at *how* the masters of the past seeped into one of the summer’s best blockbusters.
I can never understate how important this is. If you want to make films, if you want to write films, you have to watch films.
Also, is Mangold a Bond name or what?