Wednesday, July 30, 2008

TV Time is Shifting to Online, Interactive Time

And what did we do with that free time [that people are now using to make things like Wikipedia]? Well, mostly we spent it watching TV.
...every half-hour that I watched that was a half an hour I wasn't posting at my blog or editing Wikipedia or contributing to a mailing list. Now I had an ironclad excuse for not doing those things, which is none of those things existed then. I was forced into the channel of media the way it was because it was the only option. Now it's not, and that's the big surprise. However lousy it is to sit in your basement and pretend to be an elf, I can tell you from personal experience it's worse to sit in your basement and try to figure if Ginger or Mary Ann is cuter.
And I'm willing to raise that to a general principle. It's better to do something than to do nothing. Even lolcats, even cute pictures of kittens made even cuter with the addition of cute captions, hold out an invitation to participation. When you see a lolcat, one of the things it says to the viewer is, "If you have some sans-serif fonts on your computer, you can play this game, too." And that's message - I can do that, too - is a big change.
This is something that people in the media world don't understand. Media in the 20th century was run as a single race - consumption. How much can we produce? How much can you consume? Can we produce more and you'll consume more? And the answer to that question has generally been yes. But media is actually a triathlon, it's three different events. People like to consume, but they also like to produce, and they like to share.
I was having dinner with a group of friends about a month ago, and one of them was talking about sitting with his four-year-old daughter watching a DVD. And in the middle of the movie, apropos nothing, she jumps up off the couch and runs around behind the screen. That seems like a cute moment. Maybe she's going back there to see if Dora is really back there or whatever. But that wasn't what she was doing. She started rooting around in the cables. And her dad said, "What you doing?" And she stuck her head out from behind the screen and said, "Looking for the mouse."
Here's something four-year-olds know: A screen that ships without a mouse ships broken

(from herecomeseverybody.org).

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Monday, July 28, 2008

Spielberg, DreamWorks to Leave Paramount

Late last month, DreamWorks, the boutique movie studio that Mr. Spielberg co-founded in 1994, let it be known that it had found a way to exit its unhappy three-year marriage with Paramount Pictures. Reliance ADA Group, a Mumbai conglomerate, was nearing a deal to give the dream workers $550 million to form a new movie company

(from The New York Times).

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Sunday, July 27, 2008

Applause is...

Applause is an addiction like heroin or checking your email.

-Sideshow Mel in the Simpsons aired July 27, 2008

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Thursday, July 24, 2008

TV and Internet Blur Together

Part of a growing trend among electronics, internet and television industries, Sony has said ...that 90% of our electronics product categories are network-enabled and wireless-capable by spring 2011 (from Sony's press release).

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Monday, July 21, 2008

Complacency and Actors

Every time I start to get complacent I realize that bottom line, if I want it to happen, I have to make it happen myself.

-Felicia Day's Twitter

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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Dr. Horrible - Master Plan

Joss Whedon's master plan is worth reading for every actor to gain his insight into how internet entertainment can be in the present. Plus, Dr. Horrible is kind of awesome (and free through Sunday, or get Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog on iTunes anytime).

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Commercial Casting Directors Directory

I've placed some contact information I have for commercial casting directors in Los Angeles online and may periodically update it. If you have any comments, updates or suggestions, please leave a comment or contact me.

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IO West Shows Still Closed at Least Until July 24

Shows are still canceled at IO West. After a car crashed into IO West in late June, their website said shows were canceled through the 7th of July. Their site now says shows are canceled through July 24th, though I've heard they may be taking the opportunity to renovate while rebuilding and shows may stay canceled into the first week or two of August.

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Thursday, July 17, 2008

SAG Says New Media is Now

SAG writes in an email, under the headline "It's Not New Media - It's NOW Media":

In the six months since the Directors Guild of America reached a deal with the AMPTP, the landscape in digital media has dramatically shifted. The seven global conglomerates that own the motion picture studios and television networks are so confident in digital media prospects, that they are putting up huge dollars to fast track their technology deals
What some among our employers - the major global media conglomerates - insist on terming "new media" it's really "now media." It is urgent, instant and immediate. That's why achieving a fair compensation formula now, in all forms of media, and confirming jurisdiction from the first dollar of the production budget, are core objectives of the SAG national negotiating committee.

There were about 12 Billion videos viewed online in May, the month before last, by Americans. You can also read SAG's whitepaper about New Media (PDF) which after page one is a list of the major studios' online video developments since the Directors Guild deal.

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Amazon Video on Demand

Amazon.com will introduce a new online store of TV shows and movies on Thursday, called Amazon Video on Demand. Customers of Amazon's new store will be able to start watching any of 40,000 movies and television programs immediately after ordering them because they stream, just like programs on a cable video-on-demand service

(from The New York Times). Combined with iTunes being most popular online movie store, it seems the "future" of movies being online is right now.

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Success Is Not Convenient

If you want to achieve your goals, the work you have
to do will probably have to happen in that "personal time" away from your regular job, during your favorite TV show, or while other people are enjoying "happy hour."
The successful person always exhibits the following character traits:
  1. Has a vision rooted in the future.
  2. Knows that success demands a price of admission - and is eager to pay it.
  3. Has an absolute passion for new skills.
  4. Loves the game. (Successful actors seek to understand the rules, learn the strategies, and develop a "game plan.")

(from Bob Fraser).

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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Once the Contract is Done Will Things Change?

After the 2000 SAG/AFTRA commercial strike, actors started to be owed residuals for radio commercials aired online. This made streaming radio online cost far more than it had previously, and many stations stopped streaming online all together, or had to replace the ads with something else (or pay the actors). Once SAG and the AMPTP have struck a deal, will online TV commercials have a comparable streamlining or correction? Please comment with your thoughts.

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Tuesday, July 08, 2008

AFTRA Ratifies Contract

From the AFTRA web site:

The American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA) announced today that AFTRA members ratified a new three-year primetime television agreement (Exhibit A of the AFTRA Network Television Code) reached with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) by a 62.4% margin

(from aftra.com).

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SAG and AMPTP waiting for AFTRA Results

...the Screen Actors Guild seems to be understandably playing for time until the results of the AFTRA contract ratification vote are announced. The counting should be done by Tuesday evening, and an announcement could come close behind or by the latest Wednesday morning. So everyone's watching and waiting for the results that could change the entire nature of these actor-employer negotiations

(from Nikki Finke's Deadline Hollywood Daily).

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Monday, July 07, 2008

EQAL Partners with CBS

EQAL, the the social entertainment company, and CBS have a partnership:

...just announced an incredibly exciting partnership with CBS that we think is truly gamechanging for this burgeoning new medium of social entertainment. The partnership will enable us to take current and upcoming CBS TV shows (both shows on the network and shows on other networks that are produced by CBS Entertainment) and create online interactive narratives that tie directly into the TV narrative. EQAL producers and showrunners will be working with CBS producers and showrunners at the script level to create a truly seamless experience that will take viewers from the TV episode into an online, interactive narrative...

(from eqal.com).

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Tuesday, July 01, 2008

iTunes Most Popular Online Movie Store

iTunes customers are now renting and purchasing over 50,000 movies every day, making iTunes the world’s most popular online movie store

(from apple.com press release).

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