Thursday, April 27, 2006

They Want to Review Your Movie

Filmmaking - Film Magazine

AIVF, the association of independent video
and filmmakers, wants to review your movie.

Their magazine, The Independent, seeks recent
works by AIVF members to review for the DVD
section of The Independent's July issue.

Please send your DVD to this address by May 5, 2006:

Shana Liebman
Editor in Chief
The Independent
304 Hudson St 6th fl
New York NY 10013 USA

To join AIVF, click here.

Learn about AIVF.


Monday, April 24, 2006

Be A Big Hit In Japan!

Filmmaking - Film Festival

It's time to enter the 9th Kyoto International
Student Film & Video Festival.

This is a big-time student film festival in Japan,
and they invite you to submit your best work.

They'll be showing winners 20-27 October 2006, and want
to discover student independent film masterpieces, both
in Japan and beyond.

Festival competition is open to ALL STUDENTS regardless of
age or nationality. KISFVF2006 welcomes all films of all
styles and genres, and looks forward to world-wide entries.

Entries will only be accepted until Monday 15 May 2006,
and must arrive in Japan by then.

Check out the KISFVF2006 website for details of
entry requirements.


Friday, April 21, 2006

Opt In

Filmmaking - Options

So you have a story, and you want to play the
Hollywood Game. To attract Producers, and sell
your property, for the most money you can.

Usually, somebody comes up with Option money.
Here's a quick intro - how the game is played.


Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Movie Sound

Filmmaking - Film and Video Sound.

The difference between a good indy movie
and a bad indy movie is usually its sound track.

Generally, film sound in a "real" movie is lush
and rich, and that indy video sound, well, sucks.

Doesn't have to be that way. Learn to fix it.


Monday, April 17, 2006

Ultrasonic Splicer

Filmmaking - Equipment

35mm splicer uses high-frequency sound to weld
the ends of the dense, strong polyester film.

What the Editor has welded, let no man put asunder.
Find it, use it!


Sunday, April 16, 2006

Digital Highways

Filmmaking - Quality

It's funny. You make one little comment about
digital, which, though fast and inexpensive,
isn't yet in many ways as good as film,
and the complaining starts.


Saturday, April 15, 2006

Easter Movies

Filmmaking - Easter Movies

Quick! What's the best Jesus movie in Wyler widescreen, with the ultimate chariot race?

Yes, it's "Ben-Hur," which is what I named my childhood pet, my cat Ben, after he surprised us all by having kittens.

Tomorrow's Easter, and here are
my favorite Jesus movies.

None of them feature bunnies or easter baskets, unless such are in "Jesus Christ, Superstar," or "Godspell," which I happily avoid, so I wouldn't know.

This isn't Jesus the hippie philosopher, or Jesus the singing clown, of those epics. This is Jesus the Son of God, saviour of all mankind.

Mankind seems to resist being saved, and just look at the world.
Jesus has his work cut out for him. Go Jesus!

The list is hit-or-miss, but don't miss "Ben-Hur." Enjoy the breathtaking 11-minute chariot race, watch for Betsy Hale's dad as Gaspar the friendly Wise Man, and listen for my favorite line from "Ben-Hur:"

"If Judah Ben-Hur, none of this would have happened!"
(Isn't that a great line? If only it was actually in the movie.)

"Ben-Hur" is about Jesus, they talk about Him all the time, but you never actually see His face.

If you don't know, yesterday was Good Friday, today is Good Saturday, tomorrow is Easter Sunday.

Easter commemorates a noted Jew, who was persecuted right into the ground, yet returned to have the last laugh.

Hope you are the same.

Happy Easter!


Friday, April 14, 2006

Format: 70mm

Filmmaking - 70mm

I seem to say this often, but not strongly enough - if you haven't seen 70mm, shot from 65mm film negative, you really don't know what a quality image is. You've never seen one.

Tv and digital video are just barely enough to get their information to you, and HD is better. 35mm film is the bare minimum that makes you forget you're watching a movie.

VistaVision is what it claims to be, "Motion Picture Hi-Fidelity," but 65/70mm, in all its forms, is the real deal.

I've seen many digital projection formats, at the Hollywood ETC digital theatre, and they are wonderful, but...

I saw a screening of the "do re mi" scene from "The Sound of Music," at the Academy's Hollywood's Linwood Dunn Theatre (named for my mentor, Linwood G. Dunn ASC), that blew all the other stuff right off the screen.

5 minutes later, I knew I'd never really seen "The Sound of Music." The beautiful face of a 25-year-old Julie Andrews, apparently floating inches from your own, as she sings and dances, the clarity of the image (and her skin) is absolutely flawless. No comparison, next case.

Learn about 70mm, and seek it out.
5-perf, 8-perf, Todd-AO, Dynavision, Showscan, IMAX. Do what you have to, find it where and when you can, because it is the best. Movie quality just doesn't get any better.


Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Panasonic Owes You $400

Filmmaking - Digital Cameras

Oh, that Panasonic, what players
they are! You want the new
top-of-the-line DVX-100B?

They'll pay you $400,
just for buying it.

You're welcome.


Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Free Subscription To In-Sync

Filmmaking - Equipment

Filmmaking gear of all vintages,
services of all types, and some
extremely useful tech info...

All can be had with a
free subscription to In-Sync.
Tell Robert that Sam Longoria sent you.


Monday, April 10, 2006

HDV Explained

Filmmaking - Digital Formats

Okay, there's HD on a tape, and HD on
a disc, and HD on flash memory cards.
There's even HD on a DV tape. JVC HDV.


Thursday, April 06, 2006

Eva Longoria Is Huge!

Filmmaking - Publicity

Eva getting famous has changed a few things for me.
This year has been the first time in my life I don't
have to spell my name for people.

Which is good, because I've gotten worse at it.

"Your name please."

"Sam Longoria."

"Can you spell that?"

"Yes I can."

"Will you please spell your name?"


"No, the Longoria part..."

Now, it seems Eva's publicist has figured out
a way to make Eva an even bigger star.

They made a magazine cover, with Eva on it so big,
out in the Nevada desert, that Google's Satellite-cam
can see it from space.

Here's Eva, in a bikini, from space.

Great, now horny extra-terrestrials will
come here. Fine. Just great.

I must admit, seeing my last name on a
magazine cover, viewed by a satellite,
is still a thrill.

Go, Eva! When you got it, flaunt it, baby! Flaunt it!

More info.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Happy Birthday Roger Corman!

Filmmaking - milestones

Roger Corman, the elegant "King of the Indies"
turns 80 years old today! Go Roger!

I had dinner with Roger Corman, on a boat in Seattle years
ago, and could not get over it, this elegant gentleman in a
cashmere sweater was the same man who Directed a movie
called "Bucket of Blood."

Years later, I worked at his secret Venice movie studio,
and learned a lot about making movies, perhaps the most
important thing is, Don't listen to anybody who says you can't.

Back when, Roger had a rubber stamp and a ream of typing paper
for his stationery, dressed in simple elegance, and refused
to waste a cent. He wrote the book on the subject.

Eighty years old is quite an achievement, so I send
a heartfelt (and cheap) Happy Birthday Roger Corman!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Film / Digital Comparison


I like that I can see my digital pictures right away,
email 'em right away, and do image work right away.

I love that my film pictures look better, and I can see
what I'm shooting in bright sunlight. Film camera finders
don't get all washed out in daylight, like digital screens.

I don't need batteries or computers, either.
Wherever I am, I just press the button...and Kodak
does the rest.

However, I'm tired of "film vs. digital" comparisons.

If you'll notice, it's down to a couple of lines, instead
of the pages and pages it used to be. Here's one I like,
from, of all persons, a wedding photographer.