Hollywood Might Start Making Live Movies

By Gabe Toro 2014-06-09 13:28:18discussion comments
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Every year, voices proclaim that movies are dying, and every year another filmmaker answers this with a new idea or innovation that can change our cinematic landscape. And sometimes, they're just bonkers. It sounds very much like you could classify Francis Ford Coppola's statements as just that: are you ready for "live cinema"?

Speaking at the Producer's Guild Produced By conference, via Deadline, Coppola spoke of same-time worldwide streaming being granted to movies as they shoot. Coppola explains:
"Movies no longer have to be set in stone and can be composed and interpreted for different audiences that come to see it. Film has always been a recorded medium... You can do anything and you can do it live."

Coppola claims that these live cinema remixes could be "30% pre-recorded," to distinguish itself from theater. Some might recall that Coppola tried a similar technique with Twixt , his last movie, touring the film and "remixing" scenes differently for each audience, along with musical accompaniment. The man is 72, and while Spielberg and Lucas claim the industry is "dead" because they can't get funding for their latest movies, here's Francis Ford Coppola bravely, bizarrely experimenting in a way that changes what we know about filmed entertainment.

Could this catch on? Who knows? Coppola is currently working on an untitled film about an Italian-American family from the '30's to the '60's, though he volunteers himself as potentially taking this strategy on himself. It does seem pretty complex for Coppola in his later years, as Twixt was already deemed a disappointment by some. Shuttled straight to DVD in America, the film showcases a restless filmmaker interested in playing with the art form more than actually telling a story. It may have been more adventurous stylistically than Coppola's previous two films, Youth Without Youth and Tetro, but it was not more enjoyable or interesting.

Live cinema does intrigue, however, because the focus would be placed back on story and characters, and no longer on special effects or cheap gimmicks. Coppola's idea might not gain traction, but it's worth a shot so that it can live and die by its own merits. We can be inspired to try even more radical concepts. Ultimately it's about true independent filmmaking, an ideal the Godfather director strives to emulate.
"If not for independent filmmakers, all we would have would be these big industrial films. The cinema is too important to allow industry high finance to stop it. Cinema is too big to be defeated."

Truth to power, Francis.
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