Features

48 Hour Picture People

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At 7:00 p.m. on a Friday night, more than twenty teams of filmmakers gather at a local film center or bar. In a random drawing one member of each team picks a film genre out of a hat. Every team is then given the same character, prop, and line of dialogue they’re required to include… Read more »

The Medium is the Maker

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Filmmakers are often touted for their “vision”—their singular sense of how a movie should look, sound, and feel. But every film starts on paper, with a screenplay or even just an idea for a character or a mood. A director must partner with a cinematographer, a production designer, and others to translate that idea into… Read more »

Two Steps Back

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The Federal Communications Commission has voted to loosen media ownership laws, allowing one company to own television stations that reach forty-five percent of the American viewing audience (up from thirty-five percent). The new rules also permit cross-media ownership. Now, one corporation can own both a television station and a newspaper in the same market. On… Read more »

Counter-Currents and the Joy Quotient

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The label “experimental” has been troubling me for a while now. For too many people, the word only conjures up the films of Brakhage, Mekas, Anger, etc. So much so that the very term has calcified within the minds of hipsters and film aficionados alike—ending the canon in the seventies. Today the notion of producing… Read more »

The View from the Whitney

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Chrissie Iles is the curator of film and video at the Whitney Museum of American Art and has been curating for twenty-three years. Before joining the Whitney in 1997, she was head of exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art in Oxford. Her Whitney exhibit, Into the Light: The Projected Image in American Art 1964-1977,… Read more »

Living the Indie Life

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The notion of the starving artist is a romantic one. Sepia-toned images float through our collective minds of creative geniuses scraping together enough pennies to drink a pastis in a Boulevard Saint Germain cafe, tummies growling while masterpieces bubble up in their brains. But the reality of life in the twenty-first century requires serious cash—and… Read more »

Up to Spec for PBS

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Heather Courtney began shooting video of migrant day laborers in Texas as a graduate school thesis project, with few ideas about distribution. Los Trabajadores/The Workers eventually screened at over fifty different venues over the past year. As the film journeyed through the festival circuit and aired on PBS affiliates in Texas, Courtney never heard there… Read more »

CPB Faces Possible Budget Cuts

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President Bush’s proposed budgets for 2004 and 2005 will introduce deep cuts and radical changes for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) if they pass through Congress later this year unaltered. In addition to a tighter budget, CPB would not receive advance appropriations for 2006. Advance appropriations allow CPB and the media entities it funds,… Read more »

Independents and PBS

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The storm clouds gathering on public television’s fiscal horizon, brought on by President Bush’s 2003 proposed budget for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, have passed for the moment. After intense lobbying from public television supporters, Congress cut CPB’s 2003 budget by 0.65 percent instead of the expected three percent. But, even though the cuts weren’t… Read more »