By Ray Pride Pride@moviecitynews.com

Frederick Wiseman

“I don’t like the description ‘observational cinema, because for me that suggests that you just set up the camera in the corner of the room and let it run forever. It smacks of anthropological filmmaking, which I don’t think I do. These movies are made up of hundreds and thousands of choices. So you have to observe, you have to see what’s going on, but you also have to choose what it is you’re going to shoot, the way you’re going to shoot it and the way you’re going to use it. That’s not observational. Observational, to me, is too passive a term. It’s not an exaggeration to say there are millions of choices. The toughest film to edit is always the most recent one. I’m not kidding – because that’s the one I remember best. I just finished editing one and I worked very hard on it, because each film presents a different set of editing and structural problems.”
~ Frederick Wiseman

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“Ten years ago at Telluride, I said on a panel that theatrical distribution was dying. It seemed obvious to me. I was surprised how many in the audience violently objected: ‘People will always want to go to the movies!’ That’s true, but it’s also true that theatrical cinema as we once knew it has died. Theatrical cinema is now Event Cinema, just as theatrical plays and musical performances are Events. No one just goes to a movie. It’s a planned occasion. Four types of Event Cinema remain.
1. Spectacle (IMAX-style blockbusters)
2. Family (cartoon like features)
3. Horror (teen-driven), and
4. Film Club (formerly arthouse but now anything serious).

There are isolated pockets like black cinema, romcom, girl’s-night-out, seniors, teen gross-outs, but it’s primarily those four. Everything else is TV. Now I have to go back to episode five of ‘Looming Tower.'”
~ Paul Schrader

“Because of my relative candor on Twitter regarding why I quit my day job, my DMs have overflowed with similar stories from colleagues around the globe. These peeks behind the curtains of film festivals, venues, distributors and funding bodies weren’t pretty. Certain dismal patterns recurred (and resonated): Boards who don’t engage with or even understand their organization’s artistic mission and are insensitive to the diverse neighborhood in which their organization’s venue is located; incompetent founders and/or presidents who create only obstacles, never solutions; unduly empowered, Trumpian bean counters who chip away at the taste and experiences that make organizations’ cultural offerings special; expensive PR teams that don’t bring to the table a bare-minimum familiarity with the rich subcultural art form they’re half-heartedly peddling as “product”; nonprofit arts organizations for whom art now ranks as a distant-second goal behind profit.”
~ Eric Allen Hatch