Archives for pitch

VisPop speaking at FMX

 

FMX 2012 will attract industry leaders, digital innovators and creative researchers from the animation, games and visual effects industries for four days in Stuttgart. FMX has quickly become the largest conference of its kind in Europe that reunites the industry annually to discuss the most important issues. FMX invites artists, industry leaders and decision makers to speak in the conference about the latest trends and innovative approaches featured in the year’s most influential movies, games and transmedia.”

I’m so stoked we’re doing two talks at FMX this year!  It’s such an incredible venue, and such a pleasure to be taking part.  The last time I was there was to give a talk on Charlotte’s Web.  If you’re gonna be around FMX2012, find me around the conference or drop me a line and let’s arrange to chat.

The first talk I’m giving is about the work I supervised on Hunger Games at RSP.  A link to the fmx description is HERE in the online program.

The second talk is about what we’re doing here at VisPop and how it pertains to the vfx industry.  A link is HERE.  I’m just gonna get into the state of the union of vfx, and how we’re taking our knowledge in the industry and apply our experience into the entire filmmaking business.  Now that we’re into our second year, I’ll discuss how it’s going and what we’re learning!

Here’s the details:

The state of the union in Visual Effects is well documented. You can read many articles about vfx becoming a commoditized industry on the web. Hard work, unfair conditions, low cost of entry, to unionize or not to unionize , pressure from clients in an industry with very few buyers, vendors undercutting each other and on and on. We at VisPop spent many years on the front lines, in all roles on the vfx vendor side. We fought just like everyone else to make ends meet in a low margin ball game. Sometimes we were successful, sometimes we weren’t, just like everyone else. We learned from our mistakes, we implemented processes, we got better, and we eaked out our living/existence!

So what makes VisPop different? We’re broadening our scope outside of traditional vfx. We’re teaming with independent filmmakers to push the innovation of the entire filmmaking process. We want to change the perception of where vfx and spectacle fits in the filmmaking process and parlay that into leverage in our filmmaking negotiations. We’re using our vfx backgrounds to co-produce low-med budget high spectacle films.

So can VisPop make a difference? Can a couple of long-timers from the vfx industry change the way films are financed, made, even distributed? Hopefully we can help get things rolling. If we can get more talented people from the vfx industry believing they can be involved in the entire filmmaking process then we’ll consider that a success. So just ask yourself: “are you a film-maker or a shot-maker?”

Vispop will be @ Filmart!

WE’VE DONE A NEW FOLIO OF OUR 2012 SLATE FOR FILMART HERE  (we’d love feedback!)

Hey folks…  Vispop is traveling to Hong Kong for Filmart from the 19th to the 22nd of March.  We’re looking to build relationships for our English language, High spectacle Independent films to be co-produced in Asia.  Our background comes from Hollywood blockbuster films like the Harry Potters, Terminator Salvation, Wolverine and many more.

Take a look at our newly released  2012 slate  of films and see if you’re interested!  Just drop James or myself an email (james@vispop.com & jdietz@vispop.com) if you’d like to get together and chat about us or yourselves.  We’re looking forward to all the great events at Filmart and the list of attendees looks fantastic.  We can’t wait to be back in Hong Kong!  Hope everyone has a great Show!

cheers!

(We’re gonna try and tweet quite a bit from the show, so follow us on twitter!)

VisPop@Workshop In Sydney

Dan over at Nerdi asked us to be a part of his workshop “Interesting” on Monday night in downtown Sydney.  The speakers will each get a little bit of time to chat about themselves and then there will be a Q&A.  After, the audience will breakout with the speakers and do a bit of a workshop.

I’m gonna talk about taking a film idea and turning it into a practical pitch that can be used to go out and get financing!

Since VisPop is a production company , I’m going to slant it into what we at VisPop want to see to get us excited and then involved in people’s projects.  So everything will be slanted from VisPop’s perspective of High Spectacle Low Budget Films.

During the “Interesting” Workshop we’ll make a list of the key questions you need to ask yourself/yourGroup before investing time or resources into pitching a film.  VisPop will then setup a website where the group will continue defining a pitch brief for a project the group wants to develop.  If the group is interested, VisPop will continue helping the group  work on the pitch.  If the group is STILL interested and have finished the pitch, VisPop will assess the pitch and see if we want to get involved with the project officially, or possibly we can pass on the pitch to people we know.  Then who knows, maybe the film will get made?

There are gonna be some great speakers and the guys at Nerdi are awesome, so we’re really looking forward to the night!  Come on along, the info is below.

jdietz

 

Film making for independent film makers has always been an art of love. There is such a huge wealth of creative talent out there but sadly so many of their ideas never make it to a screen.“Interesting” – a film funding and distribution workshop, endeavours to remove the inhibitions that stop these great ideas. We have assembled a group of inspiring and innovative people who will address the process of creating sustainable film making.
It all starts with an idea… Let’s make it possible to make it reality.Adam Chapnick is a principle at IndieGoGo.com and the founder of Distribber.com. Adam is a new-model film distribution specialist known for flipping Hollywood convention on its ear by employing a mix of grassroots, online and digital distribution strategies. He has overseen the theatrical, home video and grassroots distribution of dozens of documentaries since 2002.

Simon Sheikh is national director of the community advocacy group GetUp! GetUp is an independent, grass-roots community advocacy organisation giving everyday Australians opportunities to get involved and hold politicians accountable on important issues. Simon has used the medium of film to great effect for social change through GetUp!’s campaigns.

Jemima Robinson is the Australian director of the Banff Mountain Film Festival. Jemima has been running the festival for 6 years and has a unique insight into film festivals and the selection criteria. Jemima is passionate about film and adventure and regularly travels to some of the most remote locations to pursue these passions.

Gabrielle Rogers & Georgina Drury are obsessed with film, education and students. They are a Director and Producer team who have created some of the most beautiful Shakespeare interpretations to inspire students into a love affair with Shakespeare and film. They have collaborated with NIDA and the FTO to realise their dream. They have recemntly launched Shakespeare Shorts a series of 3 short films based on his enduring plays A midsummer Nights Dream, Hamlet and Sonnets.

John Dietz is the co-founder of the Fox Studios based production company VisPop. As a visual effects supervisor on films like 28 Weeks Later, Where the Wild Things Are, Terminator: Salvation and most recently The Hunger Games, John is known for leading large teams with passion and commitment, and delivering results that blow audiences away. For the past year he and his colleagues at VisPop have been drawing on this blockbuster experience to develop a slate of high concept, visual effects heavy independent films. John is determined to create original, quality content that will resonate with lovers of high spectacle films around the world.

James Cameron – Spiderman Scriptment!

This is awesome… the drawings are great, and I love the storytelling.  Complete score if you’re a fan of spiderman or Cameron!  <see the full scriptment here>

 

visual effects industry bill of rights?

43 of the top 50 films of all time are visual effects driven. Today, visual effects are the “Movie Stars” of studio tentpole pictures – that is, visual effects make contemporary movies box office hits in the same way that big name actors ensured the success of films in the past… <read the full bill of rights here>

I find this read incredibly interesting…  It directly relates to everything we stand for and all the reasons we’ve started up VisPop.

It’s well documented, the state of the union in vfx…  You can read about vfx becoming a commodity here and here.  Hard work, unfair conditions, pressure from clients in an industry with very few buyers, vendors undercutting each other and on and on…  We at VisPop spent many years on the front lines, in all roles on the vfx vendor side.  We fought and scrapped just like everyone else to make ends meet in a low margin ball game.  Sometimes we were successful, sometimes we weren’t… Just like everyone else. But we learned from our mistakes, we implemented processes, we got better, and we eaked out our living.

I like these descriptions of the  vfx industry in the VES’s bill of rights:

  • a central role in today’s feature films
  • visual effects are the “Movie Stars” of studio tentpole pictures
  • Visual effects drive the entertainment marketplace  which entertains billions of people across the globe, and earns billions of net profit dollars each year.

If those aren’t signs of potential I don’t know what are. So the question of the day then becomes, with all this potential where’s the leverage? With all this potential, where is the leverage? Repeat it a third time… With all this potential, where is the leverage. That is the question we asked when we started VisPop! I mean shit, this is the question that made us leave our good jobs in vfx, jump off the ledge, and risk everything we have on a new company.

The vfx industry is the most broadly creative department in filmmaking. When I say the word creative here, I mean true “creativity” – combining technology, problem solving, pragmatism, and heart. Some of the best artists of our age are working on vfx concept art, we have the understanding of storytelling through camera-work in previs, color theory and composition in digital lighting, performance through animation, programmers with PHD’s coding bleeding edge scientific tools… the industry creates ANYTHING imaginable, any scenario, any character – every single day! if we can create anything imaginable, we can tell any story imaginable… that’s a phenomenal concept! BUT if you ask studio filmmakers about vfx, they’ll tell you “oh yeah, they’re the guys with the chrome balls running around on set”. (To be fair, it is extremely hard to credit what you don’t understand, and vfx is a black box that very few outside the industry are able to invest the time needed to truly understand). Soooo, perception (chrome balls) isn’t matching reality (creative filmmakers).

Let’s go back to vfx being creative, techie, problem solving, pragmatic, and having ticker. Guess what folks, that’s a pretty good definition of Innovation. That’s right, we’re incredibly innovative people in an industry driven by innovation. BUT where the hell is our innovation in business models? In negotiations? In being the entrepreneurs of our projects? In management? Where are the industry’s “chrome balls” (this time I’m not talking about the ones on set). Hopefully you see where I’m going here… Where are our Film Producer skills as an industry? We have some very competent, excellent individuals in the industry that would/could/will make excellent feature film producers, but as a whole the industry is too overwhelmed with the business of innovating creativity and technology to be bothered with innovating business.

So, here we are managing %25 to in some cases %50 of a feature film’s budget and we’re not producers on the film??? Sometimes we’re credited as producers, but if %33 percent of the budget is vfx, where is the %33 percent of decision making across all the departments… casting, location, financing, distribution, production?

So what is VisPop doing about all this? We’re broadening our scope in the filmmaking process… we’re teaming with independent filmmakers to push the innovation of the entire filmmaking process. Through that we’ll change the perception of where vfx/spectacle fits into the filmmaking industry, and parlay that into leverage into more filmmaking negotiations. “We’re filmmakers not shot makers.” Scream it from the roofs!

So can a couple of dudes from VisPop make a difference? Can a couple of long-timers from the vfx industry change the way films are financed, made, distributed?? Hopefully we can help get things rolling. Hopefully we can get more people from the industry involved in the entire filmmaking process. Hopefully we can start the movement. So just ask yourself: “With all this potential, where is the leverage?”

Next time I’ll write about the difference between what VisPop is doing about it, and the many salvation cries throughout the industry of “create your own content”.

10 common nightmares

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Unpleasant as they may be, nightmares are an essential part of dreaming. While our more enjoyable dreams are spurred by wishes and desires, nightmares are a manifestation of other common feelings like stress andanxiety. However, like many dreams, nightmares are not as straight forward as they seem… <read the full story here> @ <http://health.howstuffworks.com/>

Really good info for spitballing film ideas.

art work of alexander jansson

I´m a freelance artist born in Uppsala, Sweden.
I live and work in Gothenburg.

Sleeping House is my design studio.
I specialize in cover art, illustration, character design, concept art and graphic design…  <see all his work here at his website>  <and here to check out his blog, which has some great material as well>

Great stuff…  again, love the tone and texture.  Great ideas here!  Truly original work, and between the site and the blog, the scope of the work is quite broad in a great way!  Definitely check out both links we’ve put above.

 

how the crowd is shaping the future of storytelling

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stories are the foundation of human communication, even when first relayed over campfires — an inherently social and communal setting. The storyteller can change his tale based on the expressions on the faces of his audience — speed up here, slow down there, give more background on a character. The storyteller may hear someone else retell his or her own story in a different way, and use that experience in telling new stories or iterating upon the original. The story gets stronger and more nuanced in the retelling…  <read the full story here> @ <http://mashable.com/>

reevolver inspire and entertain

I live in Guadalajara, Mexico. I’m a graduate from Cinematography and animation, and I have been working as a concept artist profesionally for around 5 years, but drawing my whole life…  <see all his work and read about him here>

Great work, really like the character designs!  Great style…

welcome to our world of imagination

Imaginary Friends Studios was founded by friends, Stanley “Artgerm” Lau, one of the top artists on Deviantart.com with close to 6 million page; Kendrick “Kunkka” Lim, a game designer who worked previously at a Tokyo-based game studio; and Kai “Ukitakumuki” Lim, who at 19 had already art directed two major game mods for Half-Life 2 including Hull Breach and Nuclear Dawn.

Imaginary is much more than a concept art, comics and illustration studio. With its “By-artists-for-artists” mantra and its small but ever-increasing cult-like online fan following, Imaginary truly represents a next-gen creative approach to the creative business by hot-housing its established and fresh new talents, delivering creative services and content to a global audience.  <read all about them, and check out their work here>

Wow, really cool vibe.  Bit of a collective of concept artists… definitely have to hook up with them!