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2006 textbook part. 8 -- Career Track (p.569 --)

Stage Directions

POV

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2006 -- updates in class'06

Summary

No, I won't talk about what you need to do to market and promote your movie. You can see the endless parade of celebrities selling their movies. So do it well, some badly. It comes with the territory; you have to do it. Some movies are "packaged" good, some badly. "The Passion of the Christ" is a good case-study. You have a special public persona to do this job (this "persona" has nothing to do with what you are). You have to sell yourself first (as every sales business). Then -- the "company" (script, story, actors and so on), and only then -- the "product" (your movie). You have to know about all three stages of selling (don' confuse them, do in this order, do mexx up the "narrative"); watch how it's done on talk shows, learn the formula (you have to practice it and perfect before you can to this "big stage").

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Notes

Side-talking: 2004 TV cult "Intern" -- I would use the old word "apprentership": learn from the masters. Learn how to transform your appreciation into craft. This is why I place my favorites (Kurosawa, Bergman, Fellini) on the film directing webpages. Study them -- and "steal"!
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2004-2006 updated

Independent Films : Independent Films and Independent Film Festivals

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FILM FIVE: directing without camera

The last part, the stuff we have no time to talk about in class. Too bad. It's about what you need to do after you shot your film...

What you need to do with it. And with yourself. You have to "sell" both...

What you sell first? Your movies or youself?

Or?

Your Life After... Your life. Professional life.

If you are serious about filmmaking, of course.

Art is about learning from the masters. That's how you study the medium ... for the rest of your life. Study what you like, memorize it -- do it shot-by shot. Try to apply it to your own films. Don't worry about coping the great shots and sequences; you have to come with your own forms anyway. The "secrets" are out there, in the open!

Think about your FILMS; many, not one project. Let them compete in your mind for your time. Competition is good.

Think about your NEXT film!

Learn from your MISTAKES (better - on bad movies).

Remember, film language is a system of visula communication; if you can tell your story in some different medium, you do not have the film story.

Make your mind: are you a filmmaker, or a movie maker? This is the way to shape your plan to work on YOUSELF. Write it down, the plans. Do you keep your professional diary, notes?

Be patient; it will take you at least ten years to get to the real filmmaking (if you are lucky). I mean, if you know how to work with yourself.

Who is the most essential now? The spectator-in-you!

This is where filmmaking starts and grows. The classes are only to give you some skill, how to see, how to teach yourself...

Sistine -- Directing, click to enlarge

Well, if you indeed want to be a director you should learn "directing without camera," directing 24/7/365, directing around the clock, see everything with director's eye.

I placed Michealangelo to remind you and myself that directing is everywhere. It began long before the camera was invented, artistic mind is this director's mind. Look at the picture -- do you see the motion ready for the camera? Do you see the focal point? Do you see the shot breakdown? In fact, do the storyboard (not for a grade, for yourself). Where is the climatic point?

It's easy, as we know from the laws of the fine art (draw two diagonals from two top corners -- where do they cross? Between Adam's and God's fingers! The space ready for a touch is the CU and highest point of drama -- how do we get there? What you see is the establishing shot, what's next? Medium shot of Amad or God? If Adam's -- where is his POV?

Finish it by yourself.

I have another unfinished manuscript -- The Book of Spectator (mostly from Theatre's POV).


[ this "part 5" is not developed. I wish I could write about directing as art... but I fear to become too personal. I have to explain my own life cycle -- from for cinema film school, writing, directing... back to appreciation of film. It was too much "business" in it for me, there, in the Soviet Union, and here. I am not surpriced that filmmakers are replaced with movie-makers. All favorite directors are dead, or dead as a film directors. The era of cinema is over, the movies rule! ]

[ trailers *

PS

So, you got YOUR film. Now you have to take care of it... and yopurself. Use Mining Film directory for film festivals, grad schools and other places where to send your tape. Or go yourself.

reviews from movie-page.com *

There are more books on the market on "How to Break Into Business" than you can swallow. Read some.

Homework

Become your own manager! Director is an organizer!

Filmmaker is a hustler.

NB

This part is PS for Film directing directory. I wish I could spend more time on Spectatorship Theory: it's not an accident that the structure of Virtual Theatre happened to be the same! Everything director has to develop is in director-spectator! Insteading of ending with the public, I should start with the audience! Especially, in film, where the spectator is the most active; he is the machine that put all together, the film is his mind and heart...
Next: Classes
Fellini

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III.3. Virtual Spectator

Spectator was defined in opposition to actor, as non-performer. He was silent and frozen in space to become a PLACE of the projected action. Was Spectator a consumer of spectacle? Consumed by the spectacle? Product of the show? Was his silence the Ritual Position within the theatre spectacle?

If Spectator is a product of the show, shoudn't we see Spectacle is a product of the Public?

Spectator is the black hole, not the stage. Historically technology keeps moving theatre public into total darkness, adding more light and sound on stage to overpower us with action (film is the extreme case of this evolution). Do we even need them, the public?

Virtual Spectator? Film done it already. Viewers step into a machine of the rolling spectacle -- the movie. Film doesn't need public, because it is nothing but the public mind itself, the open process of viewing, the vision, projected on the screen spectator's mind. Yes, this journey into the Other World is prefabricated for him, but all ritual had universal structures, we made one more step -- we give you "ready-to-use" revelations and visions.

That is why Film asks for more than "identification" -- but the total immersion, full surrendering of your memory of self. [ from The Book of Spectator ]

"Scene Study" -- construct in a few shots the essense of the scene (Klimt). First, the title (your call, your interpretation). themes -- mother and child, dreams, love, peace? Where do you want to take it? Break it into formal languages (color, shapes, masses) and think how would you "translate" it into film language. Duration of the shoots? Do you hear the sounds? Listen -- and you will (if you the concept).

Remember, Aristotle rules: Action (Story), Hero (Characters) and Thought (Message, Idea).

Write a short story, or a poem expressing this painting...

This is what I call "directing without the camera"!

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Yes, yes, more homework assignments...

For your after-class learning, on your own. Klimt

Character Study (Klimt): write 5W's about this woman (Who, What, Where, When, Why -- see acting pages). What is going on in this story (title, again, many a few)? What artist tries to communicate? What is she looking at (reaction shot)? What is the shot before this shot? Write this little segment of the movie? Eximine the light arrangement, color, angle -- how to translate it all into "shooting" format? How to get the effect on the screen? How to rehearse with the actress? What will tell her? Do you know whom to cast? Extend it into ideas about primary and secondary motions? Which way do we come to this shot? If to go for a CU, what it will be?

[ see the next "Klimt's shot" -- use the Kulishev Effect to construct the story ]

Klimt Klimt, again.

So, what is the (love) story of this woman? (Give her your own name, according to YOUR story). Write your movie!

Did your read "Anna Karenina"? "Madam Bovari"? What is your favorite woman's character in literature? Did your read Ibsen, Chekhov, Williams?

Who is the composer for this story? Imagine -- you hire the dead ones, they are good, that's why they still alive.

Write her monologue (if you are not ready, find one in books and plays).

... Do you think I am overdoing it?

No, I am still talking about the training student-director needs. The training you have to arranged by yourself. Don't worry, there are many before us, who were prepating the age of cinema. Study them, when you study film language. Even if you simply want to shoot "movies" -- help yourself, my friend.

Here I have to leave you -- PS.

NTL, I work on the pages (Eisenstein, Eisen, still is not present; he was supposed to be a master-teacher). I do not know when I teach this class again -- 2005, 2006? I do not know, if I will time to work intensively on the texts, when the class is over. There are other subjects to take care of -- see BioMethod (Acting One) and the shows I have to direct next (The Taming of the Shrew, Anti-Oedipus, Pygmalion?) -- I do it online to make "creative" process transparent (observable). This is teaching, too.

See you there.

Anatoly, March 2004. [ 2007 -- ]

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