Covering Cinema From All Across The African Diaspora

Sunday Links - Pele Doc, Film Festival Cash For Filmmakers, Bitching About Bandwidth Hogs, Che Branding...

It's a scorching day here in New York City, with temperatures hovering around 95 degrees Fahrenheit (35 degrees Celsius). It was just as bad yesterday and will be even worse tomorrow! The humidity certainly doesn't help matters. It's just not a day to be outside, even though I've been out for most of the day. However, now I'm in, and I'm staying in for the rest of day, within air conditioned spaces.

Here's to cooler temps in coming days!

In the meantime...

International soccer star Pele is ready to tell his story and has commissioned a biographical documentary. Pele's life has been documented in written biographies, but the parties said this marks the first time he has granted anyone "such unparalleled access" to produce a TV documentary.

- In whatever form, whether they pay filmmakers or not, I am glad film festivals exist. Because, if nothing else, they do provide publicity to films and filmmakers. However, if revenue is generated by showing a movie, it is fair to give some of that revenue to the makers of the movie, because without their work it would be impossible to have the festival/show a movie - One indie filmmaker seeks to challenge the standard festival structure.

- If the choice is between your being able to download more movies or other video and my getting the best possible speed from my internet connection, I'm thrilled when you get kicked off. It can't happen soon enough. Speed is what I need. Take all your P2P downloads and get the hell off my internet - Billionaire Mark Cuban bitches about "bandwidth hogs" and his push for tiered broadband pricing, echoing the suggested practices of several other industry giants, like Time Warner.

- Video killed the radio star; now the internet killed the video star? - MTV shucks and jives to stay afloat.

The fact that Guevara was a communist guerrilla and Marxist ideologue is an irony of little interest to his capitalist exploiters. It has, however, become a problem for his children - Che Guevara's children denounce Che branding.

And that's news to me!


  1. albertine said...

    Hmmm... I thought a film had already been done about Pele's life, but I could be wrong.

    As a filmmaker myself, the idea of festivals sharing box office money with me is interesting but I don't know if it's really possible. I've never thought about that. Film festivals to me have always been a place for me to show my work and hopefully get exposure, not to make money. But I wonder if the writer of the article makes a good point. If the festivals are making a lot of money from the screenings of our films, even after they substract costs, then maybe there should be some kind line item deduction for payment to the filmmakers. It doesn't have to be a lot. I know the festivals want to make money too. Hmmm, now I'm actually curious how profitable the festivals are. I don't think this is something that has ever been uncovered.

    - I actually used to wonder what Che's family thought about how his image has been used commercially.

  2. The Obenson Report said...

    A quick IMDB search turned up nothing on my Pele search.

    Like you, I've never seen festivals as a potential source of income for myself, and don't think it's feasible. I believe a lot of them operate as non-profit entities, or under non-profit umbrellas, so I wouldn't expect them to share money earned from ticket sales. But you raise an interesting point about opening up and taking a look at the accounting books for some of these festivals, especially the top tier. I'd be curious to know how profitable they really are. Something for me to research. Intriguing topic though and something I've never even thought about, so I'll be following up on this.

  3. The Sujewa said...

    Hey, this is Sujewa (guy who wrote the post that you linked to re: fests & filmmaker $s; thanks for the link btw!). In your research look at all avenues of fest $s; grants, ticket sales, advertising, sponsors, government subsidies if any, film fest submission fees, merchandise sales, vedor licensing fees if any (for peeps who sell food & stuff at fests), etc. If the total fest budget is in the $100,000s to millions, setting aside $10K for screening fees to filmmakers might not be difficult. Although, at this stage, I think the fest system is used to free content, so, any reforming of that system/thinking is an uphill battle.

    But for anyone starting a new festival, add FEES TO FILMMAKERS to the budget; will make lots of filmmakers happy & your fest will stand out against the crowd. Even $100 per movie will be greatly valued by the starving filmmakers.

    - Sujewa

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