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 http://vodo.net. 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?