Saturday, February 7, 2015

The Evolution of Texting in Cinema

This is a video from the great Tony Zhou of Every Frame a Painting. It's a fascinating look at how different films and television shows have dealt with how to visualize electronic communication in the last five or so years.

'The Lionshare' was right on the cusp of these developments in the language of cinema. While I believe the techniques shown here would have interrupted the naturalistic style of the movie, it's interesting to think about how I'd represent it today.

Check it out:

A Brief Look at Texting and the Internet in Film from Tony Zhou on Vimeo.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Two years on.

It’s been two years since the movie premiered at The Anthology Film Archives on February 23, 2009.  Seems like ages ago.
Someone once described the movie to me as a snapshot of a particular moment in time.  I think he was right.  I wonder if now, in 2011, the movie has the same “in-the-moment” feeling that it did then (dated references to Lost and Quantum of Solace aside).
In honor of our anniversary, I wanted to repost a review by Tom Russell from September 2009.  You remember in english class, when you’d read a book and the teacher would dissect and read into it and attribute intention to every last punctuation mark?  I always figured that while some stuff is surely conscious and intentional on the part of the author, a lot is projected on to the work by readers after the fact.  But Russell’s close analysis of The Lionshare is spot on with every point.  He caught it all.  He picked up on all the threads that I pained to pull together to make my point, and he got the point exactly.  Which tells me something important about the movie.  If The Lionshare was able to communicate all that to someone whom I’ve never met, who had no pre-knowledge of the movie whatsoever, then I’m confident saying that my first serious filmmaking effort was a complete success.  Do give it a read if you have a few minutes:
My current project is a series called Pioneer One, made with a lot of the same people who worked on Lionshare with me.  It’s a completely different kind of story, and it’s much more ambitious.  And The Lionshare was the preface to everything we’re working on now.  I’m immensely proud of that.
Couple tid-bits: YouTube has recently lifted the length restrictions for a lot of accounts, including mine, so I’m planning to upload the full movie in the near future.  I’d hoped to have done it by now but I haven’t been able to get to the full-rez version yet.
And lastly, there’s a very real possibility that a Lionshare series might be coming down the pipe pike. Stay tuned…


Friday, May 28, 2010

Shared Film Festival in Korea

The Lionshare will be screening at the Shared Film Festival in Korea which will take place from June 3-7, alongside Jamie King’s Steal This Film IIRiP! A remix manifestoStar Wreck, and many others.  Wish we could be there!

Release on IndieFlix

I was just notified that The Lionshare is slated for a June 8th release date on Indieflix.  From their ‘about’ page:
IndieFlix is dedicated to providing a forum for filmmakers and their audience to interact and to building a community that translates artistic vision into commercial success.
IndieFlix promises to build a fair and open market to empower filmmakers to be the engine of their achievement and audiences to be a vital part of a movie’s success.
IndieFlix is committed to encourage public opinion and power of choice while reinvesting in the independence of film, the people that craft them, and the organizations that support them.
We believe that every movie has an audience, every filmmaker has a story to tell and each story has the right to be shared.
Indieflix will be selling DVDs and digital downloads. I’m very happy to be associated with them.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Lionshare on DVD Talk, plus contest info

I recently was the guest on Cody Clarke’s DVD Talk to promote the movie.  Check it out.

To enter a contest to win a free copy of The Lionshare signed by Josh Bernhard and Cody Clarke, send anemail with a minimum of 100 words, on any subject, to with the subject DVD Contest.  Talk about anything you like as long as it’s at least 100 words.  Entry deadline is March 15.  The winning essay will be read on the next episode of DVD Talk with Cody Clarke.

Friday, February 26, 2010

'The Lionshare' is academic

My good friend Dan is currently in a screenwriting program at a university in Scotland.  One of his classes has to do with copyright issues and file sharing (first off, how cool is that?).  Last night, he sent me the following:
So in class we watched Steal This Film, a presentation from TOM by Larry Lessig called “Laws That Choke Creativity” (It’s really amazing, check it out if you haven’t seen it. It’s available here among other places.), talked about the Girl Talk documentary, RIP: A Remix Manifesto, but didn’t watch it, and of course we talked a LOT about file sharing. After the break (it’s a 3 hour class) he showed us this webpage called And as you know, SHIT! There’s The Lionshare on the mainpage on the giant screen at the front of my class. And my professor starts talking about the web site and how this is the first feature film that they’ve hosted. I told the class that the film is actually by a good friend of mine, how we graduated from the same program, told them a little bit about the film without giving too much away, and encouraged them to watch it. And remember, there it is on the giant screen in the front of the room. The coincidence was insane.
Actually I cheated just slightly with my storytelling. But don’t worry, that makes it even better. During the break (before he showed what is currently, basically a page advertising your movie to my screenwriting class), of course having a personal and professional interest in all this copyright stuff I spoke with the professor and mentioned the band Negativland because of all of their famous and infamous legal dealings on the subject. And then, of course, I mentioned The Lionshare. The craziest bit was that as soon as I mention “this film you should check out that was made by a good friend of mine.” He goes, “Oh yeah. I just downloaded that last night. I’m going to talk about the web site that’s hosting it after the break.” Insane. So minor though it was, The Lionshare was a part of the copyright and file sharing discussion during a lecture in one of my classes on my screenwriting course. In Scotland. It made my day actually.
Made my day too!  It’s certainly quite a coincidence that a person I know very well happened to go to Scotland and happened to join this program and happened to take that class that happened to be taught by that professor.  Sometimes I wonder…
Additionally, Andrew Currie, who wrote that great review on Open Attitude, followed up with another article titled Instead of “making it,” just make art.  It’s generated an interesting discussion on his Facebook page.  Here’s an excerpt from the original post where he mentions The Lionshare:
Will art suffer from a dearth of professional artists? I don’t think so — for example, The Lionshare is far more compelling a film than anything I’ve seen from Hollywood so far this year. It may well be that such grand projects are undertaken with the ultimate goal of “making it”, but what if artists were to free themselves of this antiquated notion — really just a blip of the 20th century — and concentrate instead on just making art?