Interview with the man behind controversial doc ‘Bitter Lake’

Recently I watched the outstanding documentary ‘Bitter Lake‘. Bless the BBC for broadcasting (even if only online) this important film. The film, it has to be said, is not perfect (the first 20 minutes are a bit baffling in composition!) but the content – America’s troubling relationship with Saudi Arabia and how the whole schlmozzle buggered up Afghanistan and other places – can’t help but leave you informed (and angry).

Now VICE has a great interview with the man behind the doc – Adam Curtiss – done by a favourite author of mine, Jon Ronson.

Amazing editor get nominated for Vimeo award

Maybe you’re not one of the 2.5million people who’ve watched Leonardo Dalessandri’s inspiring ‘Watchtower of Turkey’. Just in case let me tell you it’s a stunning piece of imagery.

But, since this blog is about filmmaking and not just pretty pictures I want to link in this article from FCP.co – a great site dedicated to Final Cut Pro.

The article is an in-depth look on how Dalessandri made this compelling piece. He claims to have a basic ‘ABC’ knowledge of editing, but, as you can see he made fine use of FCPX and what was available to him.

It’s always great to have real-world examples going from source footage to final edit. Enjoy!

Amazing what you can do with 8 DSLRs, 5 people and 1 green screen circular room

Stumbled on this over at PetaPixel. It’s a little behind the scenes info on the rather freaky music video “Fear and Delight” by The Correspondents.

The video is this

It shows what you can do with a little ingenuity and a bucket of green screen paint! I can’t quite figure out what they are doing, but it seems to be compositing multiple views of the same action.

The all too brief behind the scenes is here:

Listen, Filmmakers – Cory Doctorow is speaking to you

Back in 1991 or so I used to sit next to Cory Doctorow at EFF meetings in Toronto. He will have no recollection of the outrageously long haired, camouflage-wearing techie next to him, but, I do remember the interest he exhibited even then in the concepts of electronic freedom and copyright.

He has shown that passion to the world in the last few years with a number of fascinating and insightful books – like his latest, “Information Doesn’t Want to Be Free”.

Over at Salon.com they’ve got an interview with Cory where he discusses the impact of the changing marketplace and copyright. Filmmakers – ESPECIALLY independent ones – need to heed his words. We have to know a possible future of the distribution of our work.

It’s fascinating reading. You know, being a filmmaker is NOT all about the creative vision.

Feature article on ass-kicking director Lexi Alexander

She’s a former Martial Arts champion and has been a stunt woman and an actor. And then she moved on to direct some pretty heavily charged films. Oh, and speak out in DEFENSE of Pirate Bay founders.

Suffice it to say, Lexi Alexander is a slightly different breed of (female) director.

Over at Fast Company they’ve got a good interview and profile of Alexander, her past and possible up coming projects. It’s an interesting glimpse into her background, and I’m especially interested and encouraged by her stance on piracy.

Well worth the read!

6 tips for documentary filmmakers

Recently I’ve been thinking about making some documentary films. It is not an area I know much about so I started scouring the net. I came across this great article yesterday. It’s an interview with double Oscar nominee Marshall Curry in which he outlines 6 ‘tips’ for filmmakers working in documentary. Compelling reading!

Life experience and the ‘Sons of Anarchy’

There’s been some amazing TV series coming out of America recently, and Sons of Anarchy is one of them.

RollingStone has a great feature on Kurt Sutter, the SOA show runner. Sutter has a pretty amazing personal history. I am telling writers and directors all the time that they should be pouring their personal history into their work (either directly or indirectly) and this interview really underlines that.