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Cinema of the United States

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Focal Press’s excellent “Film Craft” books series ( see Cinematography, Directing, Production Design ) continue with Editing, again featuring illuminating interviews and anecdotes from the very best editors working in the industry.

Some of the editors showcased include Walter Murch (The Godfather, The English Patient), Anne V. Coates ( Lawrence Of Arabia, Unfaithful ), Tim Squyres ( Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, Life Of Pi ), Michael Kahn ( most of Spielberg’s films ) and more. ( 17 in all )

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/Film reader Paul Bullock discovered an awesome television profile on 34-year-old director Steven Spielberg which was aired on Japanese television in the Christmas of 1982, and has been virtually unseen by American audiences. If you’re even half the Spielberg-fanatic that I am, you’ll need to watch the entirety of the special. The special features a tour through Steven’s early Amblin’s offices and his Los Angeles home, behind the scenes footage of Spielberg directing his segment from Twilight Zone: The Movie. We get to see interview clips featuring Spielberg’s mother Leah Adler, Melissa Matheson (screenwriter of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial) and his young secretary just turned producer Kathleen Kennedy (now the head of LucasFilm), Spielberg’s thoughts on 1980′s television (Cheers, St Elsewhere, Hill St Blues…etc), his then attestant Kathleen Switzer (later a producer on movies like Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter and Apollo 18), and many others. We get to drive with Spielberg to the studio lot with his dog on his lap, Robert Zemeckis talking with his two mentors John Milius and Spielberg while they eat eel and pumpkin pie together. We get to spend some time with Spielberg sitting at the piano with John Williams talking about their music collaborations. Interspliced with clips from his early films and even some behind the scenes b-roll footage. The special also features all the vintage commercial breaks, filled with fun Japanese commercials. Watch this now, or bookmark this link to watch later.

Cool Posts From Around the Web:

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In 2011, Emma Coats, a now-former Pixar story artist, tweeted out a series of twenty-two storytelling tips she’d picked up during her time at Pixar.

The Internet, as is wont to do, misinterpreted Coats’ tips as ‘rules.’ Innumerable major media organizations and blogs republished Coats’ tips as the “22 Rules of Pixar Storytelling,” some even going so far as to illustrate them with stills from Pixar films. The unfortunate effect of this irresponsible distortion was that the average person now believes Coats’ tweets represent some kind of definitive rulebook about Pixar’s storytelling process.

While it may be true that Pixar, in its maturity, has slumped into formulaic story structures and characters relationships, it is still a gross mischaracterization to suggest that all of the studio’s story artists use the same playbook of warmed-over story tips.

Industry veteran Mike Bonifer, a founding producer of the Disney Channel who was instrumental in the classic documentary series Disney Family Album, has written a thoughtful corrective called “Rule #23″ that addresses the creative hazards of misreading Coats’ tweets. In his piece, Mike looks at the rules through the prism of a personal friend, Joe Ranft, Pixar’s original head of story who died tragically in a 2005 car crash.

Bonifer writes eloquently about Ranft’s approach to creativity and his refusal to put himself into a box:

When it comes to Joe Ranft, he had more than 22 games or rules, or whatever you call them. It went way, way deeper than that. He was a magician, a card-carrying member at the Magic Castle in Hollywood, so he had sleight of hand games and gestural games. A gifted mimic, he had voice and impersonation games. He had a Tell it Like James Brown Would Sing It game, a Conga Line game, a Sling Blade game, a Fake Teeth game, a Boxcar Children game, he had games for losing weight, games for raising his children, games for what to do with the money he made at Pixar. He had a game for deciding which side of the street he’d walk on. He had a game for appreciating how precious water is. He even had a game whereby he’d take a sabbatical from Pixar every few years to work with his pal, Tim Burton. No one else at Pixar could’ve gotten away with that one. See, he was a rule-breaker, and he had as much game as anyone I’ve ever known. He didn’t call them games, that I know of, although he was a Groundlings alum, and surely would’ve recognized his moves as being games in the improvisation sense. Whatever you call them, they were gifts that made things better in a thousand different ways, it didn’t matter if it was storyboarding on a Pixar film or waiting in a supermarket checkout line. Joe’s participation in it guaranteed it’d be better than it would’ve been if he had not been involved.

Bonifer goes on to suggest a perfect rule #23: “There is always another Rule.” It’s worth your time to read the entire piece, which can be found on Bonifer’s site GameChangers.com.

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TRANSCENDENCE

After a couple days marked by minor teasers for Transcendence, we’ve now got a full trailer that uses actual footage rather than voiceover and stock images and illustrations.

Christopher Nolan’s longtime cinematographer Wally Pfister makes his directorial debut here, and in the cast and style of the footage there’s a very recognizable set of faces and characteristics. Johnny Depp stars as a scientist who is incarnated as a computer-housed intelligence, with anti-tech terrorists on his trail and potentially a non-human agenda of his own. Cillian Murphy, Rebecca Hall, Morgan Freeman, Kate Mara, and Paul Bettany are among the supporting cast.

Check out the footage below.

Transcendence opens on April 18.

Dr. Will Caster (Johnny Depp) is the foremost researcher in the field of Artificial Intelligence, working to create a sentient machine that combines the collective intelligence of everything ever known with the full range of human emotions. His highly controversial experiments have made him famous, but they have also made him the prime target of anti-technology extremists who will do whatever it takes to stop him. However, in their attempt to destroy Will, they inadvertently become the catalyst for him to succeed—to be a participant in his own transcendence. For his wife Evelyn (Rebecca Hall) and best friend Max Waters (Paul Bettany), both fellow researchers, the question is not if they can…but if they should. Their worst fears are realized as Will’s thirst for knowledge evolves into a seemingly omnipresent quest for power, to what end is unknown. The only thing that is becoming terrifyingly clear is there may be no way to stop him.

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So You Want to Perform in Porn – by Stoya

If you read that and thought, Why yes, I do want to perform in porn, this is for you. If not, please feel free to read along for potential entertainment value. Or, put the computer down, and go do whatever it is that people do on Fridays.

For those of you still interested, the first step to performing is deciding what kind of porn you want to do. See, porn isn’t just people with big boobs and giant schlongs in silly setups involving offices and pizza deliverymen. It also isn’t just people who are accepting of all body types/sexual orientations and strive to be as ethical as possible. Nor is it all high-gloss features, intense BDSM scenes, or content made by supposed amateurs. Before I started working in hardcore porn, I thought it was all like John Stagliano’s The Fashionistas. Stagliano shoots a very different sort of product than Digital Playground does, and while my decision to sign with DP worked out very well for me, I did spend the first few movies confused by the differences. If there is an idea in your head of the kind of porn you want to do, examine it and figure out specifically what excites or inspires you. Use it to get a more clear idea of your motivations and the level of involvement you want to have in the adult industry.

Once you’ve narrowed down what kind of scenes you want to do and what kind of performer you want to be, I recommend taking a minute to rethink the decision of actually doing it. Especially if you’re just looking to live out one specific fantasy, make quick cash, or have a few months of adventure, consider whether the porn industry is the right choice for you. Unless the whole of civilization as we know it is destroyed, any nude or sexually explicit images will remain available on the internet in some way forever. Decide whether the chance to have sex with that one particular performer or have that professionally videotaped gang bang is worth the potential that every single person you know now or ever will know in the future will see it. Your parents will find out. Your employers will find out. Your friends, acquaintances, and the people you have romantic relationships with will find out. I call this Murphy’s Law of Scandalous Behavior. If you are unable to come to terms with this, you should probably refrain from engaging in sexual activities in public or on camera… including sending racy cell phone pictures (even via Snapchat.)

Continue

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Theme from The Conversation by David Shire from The Conversation Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (1974, Intrada)

track #1

“…He’d kill us if he had the chance.”

(via jessiethejazz:)

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TIME Photo Department

TIME LightBox presents our monthly round-up of the best books, exhibitions and ways to experience photography beyond the web—from the Steve McCurry exhibition in Colorado and the 55th Venice Biennale to Roger Ballen’s ‘Portraits from South Africa’ in Los Angeles and the Belfast Photo Festival.

‘The Guide’ on LightBox will be published monthly. If you have submissions or suggestions for upcoming round-ups of the best books and exhibitions, feel free to pass them along via email before June 15. We’ll also be updating this gallery throughout the month.

See the previous editions of The Guide:

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It Never Grows Old

The 1998 music video of Sonic Youth’s ‘Sunday’ was filmed by the iconic film director Harmony Korine, starring the unforgettable star child Macaulay Culkin. 

Take a little break, sit back, and be swooned away for a few minutes. 

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James Cartwright

Childline-list

Creating a piece of animation designed to deal with the horrifying realities of child abuse is a pretty tall order, particularly when it’s for ChildLine and the people you’re attempting to communicate with are all under the age of 19. How does one go about discussing these delicate issues without intimidating your target audience and creating something that’s all-too harrowing for television? Buck and YCN Studio have recently come up with an incredibly effective solution, producing a four-minute film that gently but assertively discusses the issues facing victims of sexual abuse.

Read more

Advertise here via BSA

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