Film and TV posters: cultural heritage

At the National Film and Sound Archive (NFSA), Itzell Tazzyman is charged with the responsibility of collating Australian film posters to preserve this part of our cultural heritage. She told Hansika Bhagani why preservation of this undervalued art should be given a higher priority.

“It’s important to prioritise this part of our creative endeavors because key art, especially of early Australian films, tells us what Australians want to know about, about what they were creating; it’s a direct connection to who we are,” said Tazzyman. Read more »

Marketing: the pragmatic art of posters

In an era where everything but the kitchen sink is moving online, is there much strength left in traditional forms of outdoor advertising? Hansika Bhagani found that the humble movie and TV poster is still very much alive.

Promotional posters may be as old as the moving image itself, but this old marketing and artistic tradition has not lost its relevance. Ahmed Salama, creative director at DLSHS Film says key art is as important as it ever was: “Besides the trailer, the poster is the primary representation a screen project has in the physical world. People think it’s just a poster, but it’s an immensely powerful thing. In some cases it can even add to the entire narrative of a film outside of the cinema”. Read more »

Co-productions: flexing the international muscle

At this year’s MIPCOM, Screen Australia launched new International Co-Production Program Guidelines. Holding Redlich’s Sonia Borella looks at the changes and what they mean for producers considering official co-production projects.

The federal agency chose one of the industry’s most cosmopolitan events to launch its new International Co-Production Program Guidelines (the “New Guidelines”), perhaps making a statement on the importance it places on the program and the changes that are now in place. Read more »

Gasland: a thirst for independent documentary

According to outspoken US director Josh Fox, while his country has put itself  in the chopping board deciding to treat itself like a third world country, Australia is treating itself as a developing nation, leasing its own resources to a huge corporation for export. And guess who will get the worst part of that deal?

The man behind Gasland told Cesar Albarran that in a world where corporate interests are taking over, filmmaking is a good way to fight back – and audiences are thirsty for independent long-form documentaries.

Read more »

Development, no guarantee for success

Filmmaker/journalist James Ricketson finally got the answers he was looking for. In this guest post, he discusses the Aurora development program with Screen NSW.

It all began with a simple interview request: ‘Would love to talk with you or whoever the relevant person is at Screen NSW about the Aurora initiative.’ I had in mind an article about the Australian film industry. It would take nine months and dozens of emails and letters… but perhaps the following questions and answers will generate some dialogue, debate, amongst filmmakers about a topic relevant to all of us: How do we develop first class screenplays that can be produced to make films that Australian audiences want to see? Read more »

All I want for Christmas… is an idea

From the looks of the contracted talent and logo at the end, this Sony Christmas campaign is part of an integrated deal with the Seven Network.

No doubt it’s been bought very cost efficiently as a result.   Read more »

Magazines’ big chance to create an awards event that matters

Friday saw Publishers Australia’s excellence awards.

Previously known as the Bell Awards, I think it’s the fifth time I’ve been along.

If you’re not familiar with them, previously they’ve  to a certain extent been the “other” magazine awards – a chance for those from the less glamorous world of B2B and niche publishing to have a moment in the spotlight instead of their glossy peers.   Read more »

Hey, BNET. I’d rather you didn’t call me a whore

An article on business website BNET by former Adweek managing editor Jim Edwards has suggested Karalee Evans got a job at Amnesia Razorfish through a “whore yourself out” social media campaign. In this guest posting, she asks for an apology.

Dear BNET and Jim,  Your article ‘6 weirdest ways to get a job in advertising’ is odd, and here’s why.   Read more »

Typewriter beats iPad

The new Washington Post iPad app may well be lovely. And it is indeed marvelous that they’re using Bob Woodward and Ben Bradlee to front it.   Read more »

AFM Diary (4): A soft market

When Luke hardiman discovers that the American Film Market still suffers from GFC symptoms, and that an iPad might not be the best business partner.

AFM has been running for 30 years, with the sale of Rambo: First Blood in 1981 putting it on the map and over the years films like The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Pulp Fiction and more recently Brokeback Mountain and The Hurt Locker coming through.  This year IM Global has made the biggest sales at AFM for years with the Reliance Big Pictures/Evergreen Films/BBC Earth project Walking with Dinosaurs 3D to Fox, on the other hand the head of Wild Bunch, the huge French sales agent says it was a “soft” market still reeling from the GFC. Read more »

US loves Mao

Mao’s Last Dancer is finishing its third month in theaters (it opened Aug. 20) despite never grossing more than $500,000 or playing on more than 140 screens on a given weekend. A slow-burn hit is an anomaly in an era in which most specialty movies either cross over or die quickly.
American critics didn’t appreciate Mao’s Last Dancer, but audiences are loving it. Read more »

Creating an Oscar-worthy character

Every year, there is a performance so powerful in independent cinema, that it becomes part of the popular culture lexicon. Cesar Albarran asked director Debra Granick how she worked with young Jennifer Lawrence to create her award-winning character in Winter’s Bone.

Think of Gabourey Sibide, who captured world audiences as Precious, or of Ellen Page and her performance in Juno, which propelled her to an Academy Award nomination in 2008. Both films portray an unglamorous face of the United States rarely shown on screen. In 2010, the torch is passed to Jennifer Lawrence, the young star of Winter’s Bone, a Sundance darling (it won the 2010 Grand Jury Prize) that has been hailed by critics as one of the most important American films of recent times. Read more »

AFM Diary (3): D-grade celebrities and night work

On Day 3 at the American Film Market, Luke Hardiman meets a bionic man and does an overnight, hotel room edit of Skyline - the new US indie alien invasion movie – content.

Today we decide to divide and conquer. My partner Melinda heads to Hydraulx studios for a few one-on-one interviews with the directors and cast of Skyline, which Hopscotch are releasing in Australia.  Skyline is a very impressive looking “epic indie” created by the Strause brothers who own and run a VFX house here in Santa Monica. Read more »

Everyday soldiers

I love this ad for Call of Duty – and 1.3m views in four days can’t be wrong.   Read more »

Rotten tomatoes…

Intriguing…   Read more »

How to get promoted in PR (with the help of social media)

In this guest posting, Burson-Marsteller intern Zack Sandor-Kerr reassesses the careers advice given by the agency’s founder nearly 50 years ago.

In April 1963, William Marsteller was asked how to get ahead in the company. In response, he issued a memo to all employees Read more »

AFM Diary (2): Schwarzenegger, bumped meetings and a man in sparkly blue

It’s day two for Luke Hardiman (Haywire Communications) at the 2010 American Film Market, where the strong Australian dollars is doing him no favours, offices follow floor level hierarchies, and and not learning anything new is actually a good thing.

Sunday is our first full day at the American Film Market. We head down to the Loews hotel.  Arnold Schwarzenegger rides past us on a pushbike.  Nobody else seems to care, so we pretend not to.

AFM takes over Santa Monica, with posters in all the shops, discounts in the restaurants, over 400 film screenings over the course of the week, that’s 30 films every session. Most of those films will have had a trailer made for them, and that’s why we’re here. Read more »

Miner wants to do “a small movie”

“At the moment they’re saying the best way to make money is romantic comedies, so there are two I’m looking at that look like being produced before the end of next year and made into a movie the year after. All up I’d be the cornerstone investor for a $20 million shoot — it’s not a blockbuster first up; I just want to do a small movie.”

Mining executive Tony Sage on his film industry plans. Read more »

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