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In a general first conversation about what is interesting to the not-yet-professional about creating films, we always get to what are the myths about movies and what are the realities. That leads to where's the truth, how the myth got accepted and then diving into the subject to know about it. There doesn't have to be an accepted order to learn about it. Because in movie-making, no matter what subject you start with, it comes around and braids with another.  Knowing about stunt people eventually gets to Knowing about Directors , to knowing about different methods to capture an accident on screen. Soon the process of making the movie becomes real. Then if the student has a particular area they are interested in, one begins to have context into which to put that interest. Since movies are such celebrities themselves, its a fascinating way to start.

While it's always good to look back and survey your work (I recently looked back at some school projects I did in 2001-2003 and thought of all the things I would have changed if I were to do it today), the extent to which the film industry is 'rehashing' the past is a little bit different. I've heard a lot of people complain that 'we are in the era of remakes.' It's not only remakes, it's sequels to long-dead films that probably should not have a sequel. The Terminator series has about run its course, and yet there was a 4th and a 5th installment in the franchise coming. Spider-Man'was rehashed after the Tobey McGuire and James Franco trilogy for two additional films that rebooted the series, and now it's being rehashed AGAIN in 2017 (I don't know the specifics but my friend Jim is an encyclopedia of comic book knowledge). I'm also not really looking forward to the new Star Wars' films, ANOTHER film based around Wolverine from the X-Men; it's getting to the point... read more

Creating documentaries is tough--not because of the funding, the talent, the crew, the possibility of distribution or no distribution, but because of the infinite number of questions that an investigative documentary can raise. Look at Bill Maher's "Religilous." To cover the entire scope of what religious people believe, it would take an entire lifetime and millions of hours of footage. Call me crazy, but it would be hard for audience to sit through that (without a few intermissions). When examining a phenomena such as energy healing or life after death, or any of the other questions that have existed practically since humankind came into being, the temptation to go 'big' is there and the leads you may get from one interview can lead in about a billion different directions. Everyone who has had an NDE has a story to tell, and a slightly different one. Everyone also has a slightly different belief because of it. Similarly, everyone who has ever performed... read more

Hi, I have over 30 years working in the entertainment production fields, mostly in film and music and mostly in Los Angeles. I am a currently working Cinematographer, Producer, Art director and Property master.   I will periodically share some of my lessons learned and general thoughts in regards to film studies and film and video production. My comments will be in regards to fiction/narrative filmmaking unless otherwise stated.   Fundamental # 1:   Films are made in Pre-Production, not the editing room.   By completing a thorough pre-production process, your film shoot will go smoother, be less expensive, require fewer creative compromises and look more like you envisioned at the outset. "Fix it in post" is what happens when impatience, lack of pre planning and inexperience rule the day. Be smart - vet your film plans in pre-production, and to the "nth" degree, leave nothing to chance, leave no stone unturned,... read more

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