The newest chapter of the FilmShop began last week in Manhattan at the co-working space Hive at 55.
The Manhattan chapter has several seasoned members, along with an exciting batch of fresh talent. The group is an incredibly diverse group of new filmmakers, from animators to audio technicians to film marketers. There are members with backgrounds from places as far as San Francisco, Italy and Bangladesh. Some have produced work with companies like HBO, Miramax and Amazon.com and others have received funding from organizations like the Rockefeller Foundation and the Brooklyn Arts Council.
The expansion continues to grow and strengthen the overall FilmShop community and we are excited to see what the future has in store for the Manhattan chapter.
Hey fellow filmmakers,
The FilmShop is looking for new members to join our collective. We are gearing up for our Summer 2012 Season and applications are now available: CLICK HERE!
Our season will begin the the second week of June for Tuesday and Thursday chapters and run weekly for four months. Member dues for the season are $60.
Hurry up! Deadline for applications is Friday, June 8!
The first ever New York Film Festival Convergence Program concluded last weekend with plenty of transmedia panels, demos and story-hacks. For filmmakers who couldn’t make it, but are transmedia-curious or looking to use it for your next project, here are five take-aways that you’ll find useful.
1. Give ‘em something to remember you by.
Try to incorporate unique, real-world items into a transmedia project that the audience will keep. These items keep the audience remembering the experience, long after it is over. Items can be monetized as well. Try to keep the items small. Scented items are a bonus, since smell has the strongest memory recall effect out of all senses.
2. You have a new palette of emotions to paint.
As a filmmaker, you may not realize that you have a whole new batch of emotions to toy with your audience in transmedia – interactive emotions.
You can have an audience feel guilty for accidentally sending a beloved character to die. They can fall in love with a flirty character. They can trust someone – then be betrayed. These types of interactive emotions are a whole new space to creatively explore. Because the audience is interacting with the characters, these emotions can have a more substantial punch to them as well. Here’s a first person account of a death of a beloved character in Perplex City to give you an idea of how this is a whole different world of emotions.
3. UX, baby.
User experience (UX) has only been in the world of engineers and software designers – until now. Filmmakers creating transmedia will have to create a frictionless user experience by understanding how the audience will be interacting with their story. Game design is also a whole new world to us and we should at least have a basic understanding of it, even if we’re going to be collaborating with programmers who will be doing the grunt work in this area.
John Sear from Wall Four, creators of the incredibly fun game (and intriguing social experiment) Renga, personally recommends Jesse Schell‘s Art of Game Design – A Book of Lenses. And here’s nine quick tips for UX. There’s plenty of other resources for game design and UX – but go Google it yourself – we’re preaching interaction here.
4. Audiences are more committed if they work for it.
People want to watch something they discover, not something they’ve been told to watch. As a storybuilder, you will need to create easy to access “rabbit holes” or portals that your audience will discover in various places of interest. They don’t have to be much – a simple QR code, website, one minute video or even text message. But these “rabbit holes” need to set off an easy to explore chain reaction that rewards the audience for interacting and discovering more of your storyworld. These types of entry points, compared to traditional advertising, will lead to more committed and active audience members.
5. Know the Tools
As with any new type of storytelling, the best thing to do is familiarize yourself with the tools for creation and successful projects.
A starting point to build a foundation on is Andrea Phillips‘ book “A Creator’s Guide to Transmedia.” The book defines the different types of transmedia storytelling, practical tools, pitfalls to avoid and case studies.
Many transmedia tools are free or very cheap to implement. There are obvious ones like Twitter and Tumblr, but here are some that are lesser known :
Twilio – For utilizing customized, responsive phone calls and text messages into a logic system or website.
Popcorn.js – An open HTML5 framework for interactive videos on a webpage.
Moveable Feast – Blend maps and multimedia for rich, in-person experiences.
IFTTT – Allows you to create triggers and actions for most types of social media and other popular internet services. Allows for automation of some types of interaction.
Know of any other excellent tools? Share them in the comments below!