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August 2002, Week 5


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Ron Leming <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Fri, 30 Aug 2002 12:01:57 -0500
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"As for production, I think it's far less likely you'll see a
conversion. As many filmmakers have pointed out, there's a look to film
-- the chemical nature of its process -- that simply can't be duplicated

I remember when videotape first came in use in television. I could see
the difference. Video tape had a certain look to it that, at first,
distracted. But eventually I got used to it and now, don't even notice
it. I can tell the difference between most film as opposed to shot on
digital. As of this moment, digital is far inferior to film. But the
technology will advance very rapidly until the quality is there. Will
there be a visual difference? Yes, most likely. Will it replace film?
Not for a good 30 to 40 years in my opinion, except for indy film
makers. Though, to be honest, digital opens up a whole new world for CGI
and other effects, the opportunity to do things that simply can't be
done on film, and to do them faster. This may be bad or good. Likely
once digital becomes more popular, we'll have another glut of effects
heavy films and virtual actors or recreations of dead actors. That's my
worry with it. I don't want to see dead actors recreated, and I can see
a time when you can get a movie on DVD or some other as yet undiscovered
format, and have the ability to replace the actors with any digitally
reproduced actor you choose from a list. While I get off on the
technology that can accomplish that, as a film lover, I despise the

"In the music industry there was quite a surge of electronically
produced music. Rock musicians had synthesizers that could generate
almost any kind of sound. But nowadays you see a larger return to the
basics of guitars and drums. It's a sound -- a human feeling if you will
-- that simply can't be duplicated by computer."

Actually, real instruments can be duplicated by computer. It's called
sampling and it works quite well. I know because I'm also a musician and
primarily work in midi format. In other words, computer generated music.
There is, however, no way to duplicate the sampling on the web yet. I
can only do it by recording. But there are a few, very few granted, midi
artists, myself included, who produce very high quality music and very
human music. Granted, though, most midi is crap, and those of us who do
quality work can't really put it on the web because you're talking about
files that go up to 500k, which is just far too large for a website.
By the way, electronic music is alive and well and has been since the
sixties when we called it experimental music. The aim wasn't to create
songs, as such, but environments built with sound which would engencer
emotions and reactions in the listeners. It's just that electronic music
is kind of a cult thing, known only by the fans. New age crap tried to
steal all our good shit, but ultimately it failed. The closest anyone
came was Mannheim Steamroller with their first two albums. After those
two, they descended into crap.

If I were a plant, I'd want to be a big TV-watching, pizza-eating plant.
Hey, I believe in setting realistic goals.

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