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Category Archives: Media
In 2005, I was invited to a conference in Montreal called Digimart, organized by Daniel Langlois and his team at Ex-Centris. It was a very early attempt to deal with the coming convergence of entertainment technologies, and they invited a star-studded array of speakers that represented the cutting edge of that time. I met many incredible people at the event, and even more the following year, when they invited many of us back for a second time. Some of the folks I met are now good friends and collaborators.
Recently it was pointed out to me that the videos of the conference sessions were no longer on line, so I contacted the good folks at La fondation Daniel Langlois, who are now trying to restore access to those videos. They’ve put back the sessions from the 2005 event, and are trying to locate the ones from 2006. Watching these videos, it’s incredible how far ahead of the curve many of the speakers were, and equally incredible how much has changed. You can find all the 2005 videos at the Digimart site. For a quick taste, below is the panel I was on, which was called, “More Digital Cinema Networks – Alternative & Independent Spaces.” I’ll post again if and when the 2006 videos reappear.
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During Oscar season last year, as I was catching up on the films I had missed, I started tweeting my reactions to each of the films the moment they were over. It was fun trying to fit something meaningful into 140 characters, and with each tweet, I kept trying to top myself in terms of being clever. Then I got hooked. I started tweeting reviews from festivals… Sundance, then Cannes, then Toronto. Finding just the right combination of words to capture my thoughts was becoming a game. It was like writing a haiku.
About a month ago, I was sitting on an airplane, when suddenly a name popped into my head. Tweeviews. How cute. No wifi was available on this particular flight, so I had to wait until I landed before I could check out whether tweeviews.com was available. Nope, gone. How about movietweeviews.com? Got it. (more…)
Scott Kirsner just informed me that videos of many of the panels at “The Conversation,” held at Columbia University back in March, are now available on line. Below is the video of my apparently controversial opening remarks, which many people interpreted as dashing the hopes and dreams of aspiring filmmmakers everywhere. But listen carefully to what I’m saying. It’s about pragmatism, not pessimism.
The rest of the videos can be found at Scott’s site
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The following press release was meant to go out this coming September, but apparently a draft was accidentally left in a bar on Madison Avenue, and immediately found its way to the web.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 23, 2010
NEW SONY TELEVISIONS TO BE PROTECTED FROM PROBLEMATIC CONTENT
NBC UNIVERSAL PLATFORM NO LONGER SUPPORTED
Sony Corporation announced today that its new line of LCD televisions, to be introduced later this month, would have built-in protection against what it termed “problematic content.” Sir Howard Stringer, Sony’s Chairman, CEO and President said “Sony’s goal is to create an environment where consumers can trust that what they are getting is worthy of the TV set it is being played upon.” Right out of the box, all content from NBC Universal will be blocked due to what Sony is calling “its instability.”
In a lengthy public memo elaborating on the reasons for the new strategy, Stringer said, “Sony has had a long history of working with NBC. In fact, every TV we’ve ever built could get NBC programming. However, there are the issues of reliability, security and performance, and NBC’s programming fails on all three fronts. NBC’s late night schedule is just one example of why Sony has determined that the network is not a stable platform.”
In reponse to criticism that Sony is creating a “closed” platform, Stringer responded that (more…)
Part one of this story can be found here.
It was August, and after dropping a number of hints that I was unhappy being the children’s waiter, I was finally promoted to the main dining room, but as a busboy. In retrospect, I assume that my locally powerful uncle had something to do with getting me the promotion. In any case, I was glad to be rid of the spoiled brats.
It turned out that bussing the tables in the main dining room was no picnic either. The Granit, like many hotels in the Catskills at that time, was strictly Kosher. Breakfast was always a dairy meal. Lunch would alternate between meat and dairy, and dinner was always meat. One of the most popular items on the lunch menu was borscht. To this day I’ve never tasted it, but at the end of a long day, my shirt sleeves were stained red from carrying the busboxes that were half filled with sloshing leftover borsht. (more…)
In the next few week’s it’s going to be hard to avoid the fact that it has been 40 years since the Woodstock Music & Arts Festival tracked its muddy footprints into history. I’ve been speculating that the 40th anniversary needed to be a big deal because it was likely that by the 50th, there would be no one left who was there. Personally, I didn’t make it to Woodstock. But the summer of 1969 was one of the most important in my life…so much so, that I’ve been considering trying to put it in a screenplay. But given that I have many other obligations, I may have to settle for this blog. (Hey Schamus, when do you find time to write?)
In the winter of 1968-69, I was in my sophmore year of high school and my parents announced to me that we were moving from Chicago, where I had spent my formative years, (more…)
While I was at the PGA “Produced By” Conference in L.A. (which I’ll write more about shortly), I was interviewed for a podcast called “The Brand Show” which is described as being about “the growing connection between storytelling and branding.” If you are curious about the subject, my interview is below. You can find others at the Two West web site.
Get the Flash Player to see the wordTube Media Player.
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On March 25th, I participated in an event sponsored by the Producers Guild that was called, “Independent Filmmaking in the Digital World: A Conversation with Ira Deutchman.” The PGA has kindly provided the video so I can share it. It’s divided into four parts, assuming you can last that long. Let me know your thoughts.
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In the last few months, it seems to have become common wisdom that traditional print media is in its death throes. According to every expert, all media is moving to the web. Yet you wouldn’t know it by looking at me. As somebody who works in the media, I’ve always considered that part of my job is to know what is going on the world…especially and specifically in the world of pop culture. On a daily basis, I read the New York Times, Daily Variety and Hollywood Reporter. Every week, I read New York Magazine, The New Yorker, Newsweek, Weekly Variety, Entertainment Weekly, Screen International, Video Business and The New York Observer. And I also subscribe to Film Comment and several monthly tech magazines. I figure that single-handedly, I’ve killed a large number of trees in my lifetime. (more…)