Schwarzenegger. Prison break. See you at the theater. “All Is Lost” (Oct. 18) Robert Redford stars as a man struggling to survive after a hole is torn into the hull of his ship. J.C. Chandor (“Margin Call”) directs the film, which is expected to give the 76-year-old actor a good chance at an Oscar nomination in 2014. “Twelve Years A Slave” (Oct. 18) Chiwetel Ejiofor stars as Solomon Northup, a New York man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery in 1841. Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Paul Giamatti, Sarah Paulson and Alfre Woodard star in this new drama from “Shame” director Steve McQueen. The film is based on Northup’s acclaimed memoir. “The Counselor” (Oct. 25) Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Cameron Diaz, Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz go bad in Ridley Scott’s “The Counselor,” based on an original script by Cormac McCarthy.
IDEO Creates a Gorgeous App for Making Movies on Your iPhone
Then you can go share them.” Image: IDEO The best thing about Vine, without a doubt, is its tap-to-shoot interface. With that one ingenious interaction, the app brought the power of the cut to the smartphone-wielding masses, transforming interminable home movies into surprisingly rich little films. The worst thing about Vine is having to put stuff on Vine. The price you pay for using the incredible movie-making tool is being forced to broadcast yourself on its network. Thankfully, now we have Spark Camera , a $2 app from renowned design studio IDEO that gives you the same glorious one-finger-movie-making functionalityand some other good stuffwithout any obligation to share when youre done. The app was IDEOs answer to a straightforward question: how can we give people a simple way to make great looking videos on a smartphone? Its carefully selected feature set is all about giving you things you need to create meaningful mini-movies without slowing you down. Open the app and youre ready to shoot straight awaytheres nothing pestering you for any login credentials. In familiar Vine fashion, a finger on the screen is all you need to string together a series of shots, with a maximum length of 30 seconds. Then you can apply one of 10 filters to the clip and add a soundtrack from your phones stash of tunes. The whole thing gets saved to your camera roll in full 720p with options for sharing on all the usual suspects. Sparks clearly trying to find the sweet spot between simplicity and functionality. All three of its main componentsthe ability to easily make videos with multiple shots; the filters; and the ability to add a soundtrackare transformative enough that youll probably use them for everything you make in the app. Still, Sparks definitely more of a place to record video than edit ittheres no way to move or remove shots within a clip, for examplethough that quickly gets into unwieldy territory. One thing the app should let you do, though, is pick what part of a song you want to add to your project.
It’s true in television, where NBC tried to manage costs for a few years, saw margins decline, and lost out on some major new projects. Ifyou’re a book publisher, and you don’t compete for the biggest and most promising books, you’ll lose shelf space at Barnes & Noble, and leverage with Amazon,making itharder to get and promote future books. Big flops are inevitable. But critics don’t talk about small flops. And after add those up and you’ll see an even bigger failure. So what you see is that efforts to save on cost might improve profitability in the short run. But in the long run, you’re undermining the very essence of what builds blockbusters.Studios and publishers need help from talent and from retailers to make these big hits. And there is a trickle-down effect. Thecompanies that made the last successful blockbuster, whether it’s a book or a TV show, tend to be well-positioned to produce the next successful blockbuster. How do blockbusters beget blockbusters? If you haven’t had a hit in a long time, it’s harder to build the next one. One hit has a halo effect.
The Big Business of Big Hits: How Blockbusters Conquered Movies, TV, and Music
Physicist Sameet Sreenivasan of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York conducted a detailed data analysis of novel and unique elements in movies throughout the 20th century. Sreenivasan analyzed keywords used on the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) to observe trends. A novelty score was given based on the number of times any given keyword was used to describe another film. Films that had higher novelty scores featured a word that was rarely used to describe it. While films with lower novelty scores had a keyword used to describe a variety of them. A range from zero to one was applied as the novelty score, with the least novel being zero. To depict the evolution of film culture over time, Sreenivasan then lined up the scores chronologically. “You always hear about how the period from 1929 to 1950 was known as the Golden Age of Hollywood,” Sreenivasan said to Wired. “There were big movies with big movie stars. But if you look at novelty at that time, you see a downward trend.” After studio systems fell in the 1950s, filmmakers burst with new ideas which enhanced the movies during the 1960s. Films like Bonnie and Clyde in 1967, Breathless in 1960, and The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly in 1966 were all very well received. In addition, plot lines, novel styles and film techniques helped create the increase in Sreenivasan’s analysis of that period. The films analyzed spanned a 70-year period and the study appears in Nature Scientific Reports .