There’s a real person making this film

April 6, 2011
posted by sheric

I have been doing a few speaking gigs lately at colleges with students who are either interested in filmmaking or they are film survey cinephiles. I’ve taken on the responsibility of introducing them to concepts we in the industry are talking about lately. Stuff like crowdfunding, crowdsourcing, transmedia. Not sure if you guys realize this, but those are mostly foreign concepts to the average movie goer and that is a bad thing seeing as how all of those concepts DEPEND on audience participation. I get the distinct feeling that the general public isn’t really sure who is making their entertainment. Just as most filmmakers (and certainly corporations) treat their audience like a faceless mass; a conglomeration of eyeballs; audiences have no connection to who you are as a creator. It is time you put more effort in becoming human to your audience.

Your survival as an artist is going to depend on your ability to build an audience for your work. Which also means we have to be interested in you, at least professionally. I totally uphold your need for personal privacy. I am not advocating a Lindsay Lohan-style life share across the internet, but you do have a personality, a perspective, a way of seeing the world that can be shared. Independent film is more about the personal story, the artistic vision. Tell us what draws you to that story, what your work means to you, what drives you (to drink or otherwise). While you’re at it, find some artists you admire and do all you can to support their work too. We have to survive as an interdependent community.

All of this is new both to modern artists and to modern audiences. It will take some time for the vestiges of corporate media with their constant advertising interrupting our lives and our numbness to it all to subside. Show us there is a real person creating this art. Someone we should care about and encourage. Don’t hide behind your work because that’s what corporate media does. Step out here and let us have a look at you.

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