The Entertainment Economy Is Completely Different Than It Was

Make no mistake: The Entertainment Economy can no longer be predicated on scarcity or control -- as it has been for the last 110 years.  We need to rebuild it around concept of super-abundance & access.

"YouTubers Upload 72 Hours of Video Every Minute"  That's up from 48 hours a year ago.  At what age do we reach Saturation Point?  I already have: I have identified every film I would like to see -- if I am able to maintain my maximum rate of consumption -- to carry me 5 years past my life expectancy.  The very nature of technology indicates that in less than ten years, a twenty year old cinephile will have done the same.  I expect that to happen much sooner though.  Audiences will have no "need" for the new.  We have so many cute animals and children doing silly things after all.  Who really needs an ambitious and relevant cinema?  So why do anything to preserve it (let alone advance it)?  Let's just bury our heads and try to hold onto what is left of our jobs.  Right?

I am glad there are those that know otherwise.

Recognize The Time We Are Living In

If you didn't notice this is a new year.  It is also a new age.  My resolution is to help all filmmakers and members of the film industry to understand it.  Hopefully we can also all get started on adapting for this Age too.

This is The Age of Access & Surplus.

This is no longer the Age of Control & Shortages (that was last decade).

These times require New Rules & New Emphasis:

  1. Discovery
  2. Participation
  3. Demystification

We need to conceive of both our creative and business practices in terms of how they incorporate these three elements.

When 45,000 films are made globally each year and the film work of all time is instantly available at a very attractive price point (how does free grab you?), how will your work be discovered?  How will an audience value it over all the other content competing for their attention?  Since the films of Godard and Kurosowa are far better than yours, why will someone watch yours?  It no longer is enough to be new.  It no longer is enough to simply be playing at the local theater (although that still helps a great deal).

The one thing that today's filmmakers have over all the past masters, is that the past masters are dead.  Their work is not going to change.  Today's filmmakers can build relationships with audiences and communities.  They can offer a deeper relationship with them than Stanley Kubrick can.  Audiences have changed.  Communities are not passive.  As much as people like to be directed, they also want to participate.

The truth is out there.  They may sell us a bunch of lies, but people are smart and they figure it out.  We know how the tricks are done.  We also know how art is made.  The curtain has come down and those that don't provide access to the process risk the wrath of the hungry.  Is there any reason to keep any of it hidden?