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I would call "success" in film when you've made something your audience likes.Hmm.. I disagree on that one. I would call a success in film when you've made something you like.
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Exactly. I mean, regardless if the art piece called "Piss Christ" was liked or hated by the people who saw it, the artist made an accomplishment because he produced his piece of art to his specifications. Theoretically, that's all that matters.
iggy88 wrote:I would call "success" in film when you've made something your audience likes.Hmm.. I disagree on that one. I would call a success in film when you've made something you like.
Really, I'm not joking; A lot of us get little film bits here and there, be it in front or behind the cam, pre or post production, whatever...
Of course, "success" is completely subjective. Do you want money? Do you make money? Do you care?
Honestly, I like working on my film bit by bit, as I see fit. Success is a totally benign subject to me. We should focus more on making something before thinking of something too much. Does that make sense?
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I agree with some of what you've said, Jazzmanian, but I have a few alternative opinions I'd like to share (This oar laying about needs something doing with it...)
Jazzmanian wrote:I think that film is very much like every other form of media, both old and new. I come to filmmaking from a very long background in writing and I believe they have a lot in common. James Kilpatrick is probably one of the greatest masters of the English language of our times and he has often written on the subject of "Why do we write?" From the highest level, he states that we write to get a message across to a target audience in the clearest, most effective manner possible. But he also famously notes that "... there is more than a small bit of ego involved in the creative writing process."
You don't want to simply get a clear message across or tell a story effectively so that the audience understands it. You want to do so in a fashion that will leave the reader saying, "Wow. That author really knows how to turn a phrase and paint a mental picture. I'm impressed."
I'm very, very new to the whole filmmaking thing, but I see a parallel there. Yes, I think anyone would want to make a film which they themselves would enjoy. But you can only watch your own film so many times. I think the "ego factor" (as it's called) would compel you to try to make a film that will have people leaving the screening saying, "Wow. I get it. I was moved."
If you were tasked with, for example, making a commercial about the dangers of smoking, you *could* just get a guy who looks like a doctor, wearing a lab coat, standing behind a podium saying, "Smoking is bad. If you smoke you will get horrible diseases and die." And you would, in fact, have succeeded in getting the message across. But if you came up with a concept... be it a graphic representation of sick dying people, or the children left without their parents because of lung disease, etc. etc. etc. and the audience not only got the information, but got the *image* and were truly moved to immediately go tell their children about the dangers of smoking, then you've succeeded far more than in the first case.
I think that there's "more than a small bit of ego" involved in filmmaking too. You want to have an impact on the viewers and you want them to go away knowing that *you* were the one who impacted them in that fashion. In the highly underrated movie "Leap of Faith", Steve Martin's character delivers a line to a local sherriff who is trying to shut down his traveling ministry show...
"In New York we've got Broadway shows that cost you sixty bucks a pop just to walk in the door. Sometimes you like the show and you leave whistling a tune. Sometimes you wind up kicking yourself. I give my people a good show... plenty of music and meaningful sentiment and values. And for some of them, maybe they leave with a little hope in their hearts that wasn't there before."
I think that's success in filmmaking. If the audience leaves with that imprint on them.
Oh, and millions of dollars and invitations to dozens of A list parties in Hollywood wouldn't hurt either.
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Allow me to disagree, at least under ideal circumstances. Yes, I will agree that there are certain writers who stake their claim by doing nothing more than flaunting their sesquipedalian "skills" (realizing full well the irony in using that word in this post) but lacking the art to assemble a compelling narrative. I think the real mastery comes when a writer has all those tools in their box and uses them fully while still telling a compelling, engaging story. I could write a line that says, "The homeless man ate the burger I gave him hungrily" and it gets the message across. But if I wrote, "The homeless man devoured the burger I game him ravenously" doesn't it paint a better picture and imply something more? And can't there be a parallel example in filmmaking?
CurtinParole wrote:As for imparting the message or story, I'm not a big fan of writers who write to show off their penmanship; for me it's about the final result - it's not usually about demonstrating skill, it's about concealing it. You don't want the viewer of a film saying, "oh, I loved that camera movement," or "the editing on that bit was marvellous." If the (lay) viewer is distanced from the film enough to notice excellent techniques, it could be argued that the film is merely a showcase of those techniques and a failure as a story.
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You're quite right there, it is in the deft use of writing/filmmaking skills where the story is enhanced. My point is merely that if these tools are used expertly in support of the story (rather than at its expense), then the ordinary reader won't even realise, but someone who has studied literature/film can see and admire the techniques used, the skillful use of vocabulary.
Jazzmanian wrote:I think the real mastery comes when a writer has all those tools in their box and uses them fully while still telling a compelling, engaging story. I could write a line that says, "The homeless man ate the burger I gave him hungrily" and it gets the message across. But if I wrote, "The homeless man devoured the burger I game him ravenously" doesn't it paint a better picture and imply something more? And can't there be a parallel example in filmmaking?
As far as the "ego factor" goes, you may be the exception to the rule, but I still think it's valid in all forms of art. Anyone can sing in the shower for their own amusement. However, to go and step up on the stage and belt out a tune for the (hopeful) enjoyment of strangers and, worse, face the prospect of rejection if your performance doesn't satisfy takes a fair bit of ego. Nobody would take that sort of risk without there being a substantial payoff possible in return. And that payoff is the admiration and accolades of the audience.Yes, I'll concede that one. You do need cochones(?) to put yourself out there. And your ego needs to be robust enough to weather any criticism.
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Ed Wood created works of art true to his original vision, does that make him a success?
johnny resch wrote:also, i think success is when someone thinks that they created a work of art true to their original vision.
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i just wanted to clarify that when i said "i think" after good point was not intended to convey any skepticism whatsoever. personally i believe that you and i likely have simmilar views of success.
johnny resch wrote:good point, i think. maybe what i mean is if the original vision was truly great, and what the artist creates is a piece of art true to his vision, then he has succeeded
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I won the Little Toaster AwardI think this is going to be my favorite post of the week... The little Toaster award... hehehehe.