Today's seminar, held in arctic conditions, because it's totally fashionable to dress in a full piece suit in the tropical climes of sunny Bangkok, was about "protecting your project in a digital age" or some craply aptly named thing.
Oxymoronic if you ask me.
I had a couple of questions which I didn't bother asking, and they were covered in a studio tow-the-line propagandic type of way. As you can expect of three piece suit men, clutching onto an old system, living in fear their big money lifestyles, and golden parachutes are coming to an end.
I was wondering how can 'big film business' stem piracy, when popular torrent sites (apparently the industry's biggest threat, but least broached upon subject for the day) are being shut down, yet the next day, three more pop up in their place. And why not take on an offensive attitude by putting more money into embracing a comprehensive, equitable, and universal digital distribution model, rather than spending shit loads on trying to kill off piracy, before losing what little hold traditional distributors, such as studios, have left.
And why, when a person can download a decent or watchable copy of a film, not to be released in their territory in the near future, and be able to watch said copy in the comfort of their own home, through a media server, projected onto a large screen, or a 72" plasma, would a person bother to go to the cinema, or buy a hardcopy of DVD at an overly inflated price, months later.
Especially when the majority of films being distributed are questionable, mostly regarding the quality of reductive writing and rehashed story lines, AND by assuming their audience has the intellect of a 7 year old. Because Transformers 2 was really challenging, as was the new Terminator (insert number here)
We have come to a day in age where viewers are dictating the terms of distribution, how they want it, when they want it, and what format they want it in.
Apparently the 'good' Suits in the well paid but redundant positions (mainly because they can't make the old model work anymore) are working on a solution. One which probably means a combination of sponsored ads, and paying a minimal fee for watching a film, which will be digitally distributed over the internet. But the amount of time they are doing it in… well it kind of confounds me. They say it's going to take another 5-10 years to resolve itself.
Another 5 - 10 years of them trying to retain their jobs and lifestyles in my opinion. But, that could just be my anti-the-man upbringing talking.
The film industry is clearly flailing about, while it tries to resolve how to get its product out whilst still "maximizing profit". What becomes abundantly clear is someone is going to have to pay.
My question is, why does it have to be us, the poor people? Because clearly they want it to be us, and they expect it to be us. Why should we support their hyperbolic lifestyles, which they are obviously in great fear of losing? And this starts at the above the line talent, who I think are grossly over paid and generally under skilled, following on to those *ahem* 'producer' types who take an incredible fee out for doing sweet fuck all. The under the line budget which actually gets the film made, is proportionally a lot smaller, once these tossers are paid.
Look, I understand the concept of "show business", but fuck, wake up people, like the other guy said, "the 80s are OVER".
In the end I had to agree with the independent documentary film maker who totally offended the whole panel, and all the money grubbing whores in the crowd. Maybe a $120 million dollar film's real worth is reflected in the price you would pay for an illegal copy - about $3.00. Because with the type of shit Hollywood is putting out on a regular basis, price point doesn't count. A $120 million dollar pile of shit, is still, just a pile of shit.
And yeah, maybe my take on the situation might be an oversimplified one. Sure, major piracy using hard copy counterfeited discs, probably involves a level of heavy organized crime, world wide. But a large part of it comes down to bit torrent sites, the Industry's self proclaimed biggest threat, which is what they should be focussing on. You aren't going to be able to stop people file sharing, but if you stopped being such greedy cunts, maybe you could profit from digital distribution more quickly.
I can't help but think, hurry up and revolutionize the system. Because whether they like it or not, it's being revolutionized for them.
I also bet every one of those audience members had a pirated copy of something in their collection, because in Asia, it's virtually impossible to find a real copy of anything.
Give it up people… Apple is going to kick your ass.
Edit: I think this subreddit has some valid points about internet piracy
along with some of the notions in this one: