Archive for January 6th, 2009

TV’s Future in NI

6th January 2009

On Monday the 19th of January, 2009, from 6-8pm at the BBC’s Blackstaff House in Belfast, Equity is offering a free seminar on the future of television, called “Television Is Changing – Are You Ready?”

It’s open to Equity members, producers, agents, casting directors and other industry professionals.

Join Equity at this interactive seminar designed to give you the opportunity to find out about the work that Equity has been doing in response to the expansion and development of new technology in the world of television production, broadcasting and throughout the entertainment industry.

The key themes covered include:

  • TV Is Changing: The way actors work and are paid will change as a result of the revolution that is taking place in broadcasting. This campaign is part of Equity’s effort to provide you with the information you need to help you make informed choices about the implications of the coming changes.
  • Pan-Industry Negotiations: Equity has been meeting with representatives of all the major broadcasters and independent producers in the British television industry with the goal of negotiating a pan-industry agreement that will bring together the best of the many individual deals that currently exist.
  • New Media Deals: Find out about the work the union has already done in areas such as mobisodes, podcasts, internet-only productions and games.

Places are limited, so if you wish to attend you must book a place in advance: details are listed on Northern Ireland Screen’s web site.

Barry Wins Costa Prize

6th January 2009

According to The Irish Times Irish playwright, poet, and author Sebastian Barry has won the Costa Prize for fiction for his novel The Secret Scripture.

AFI’s 8 2008 Moments

6th January 2009

At the end of last year the American Film Institute (AFI) announced its 2008 Moments Of Significance: eight noteworthy events “determined to have had an impact on the world of the moving image during the calendar year 2008.”

This is a decidedly American perspective, but contains some perceptive insights into how the industry has shifted in the past year:

Slumdog Millionaire – A celebration of the global film

The AFI called the film “a monument to the possibilities of cross-cultural storytelling”, and “a signpost in America’s search for greater authenticity in its stories.” Other films deemed to reflect this cultural shift included Gran Torino, The Visitor, Australia and television’s Heroes.

Television and new technologies provide a global oracle for America’s Presidential race.

The race to the White House saw “television and web coverage played to each other’s strengths, as every nuance of the long, arduous campaigns was accessible for public celebration and scrutiny.”

NBC coverage of summer Olympics brings the world together

The AFI praised Zhang Yimou’s direction and choreography for the opening and closing ceremonies in Beijing, as well as the news coverage provided by American TV channel NBC during the Olympics.

“Age Of Anxiety” as business models for the arts evolve.

The writers’ strike and ongoing threat of an actors’ strike underscored tensions between artists and executives. “The one certainty in these uncertain times is that the film and television communities continue to redefine their business models for the digital age.”

Tina Fey – America’s First lady of laughs

Tina Fey, former Saturday Night Live head writer, and writer, producer and star of 30 Rock, returned to the SNL with her acclaimed impersonation of Vice Presidential candidate hopeful Sarah Palin.

Independent film artists face distribution crisis

Several specialty and smaller labels like Warner Independent Pictures, Picturehouse, THINKFilm, New Line and Paramount Vantage folded in 2008. “Despite the unprecedented availability of filmmaking tools and the explosion of opportunity in on-line exhibition, the challenge for independent voices in American film is perhaps greater than ever. Now, an artist outside the studio system must also master finance and distribution to have their stories told.”

Film critics lose voice

“In 2008, many of the ardent voices of film criticism were silenced. Full-time posts at Time, Newsweek, The Los Angeles Times, The Village Voice and Newsday, among others, were eliminated as the circulation of newspapers and magazines declined. As a result, writing about film has moved to the Web-a world where authority can be lost among the voice of the masses.”

Dr Horrible operates in explosion of short form

Writer-director Joss Whedon’s comedy musical, Dr Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, became an international hit after it was released online for free as three 13-minute webisodes. ” This movement was catalyzed in part by the Writers Guild strike of 2007, when artists from film and television came together in greater numbers to express themselves in the short form, an integral part of the moving-image experience since the dawn of cinema.”

3e Replaces Channel 6

6th January 2009

The Irish Times reports that Channel 6, one of the Irish television channels, has rebranded itself 3e and it claims to be focusing on offering “pure entertainment” to its viewers.

Last July TV3 bought Channel 6 in an attempt to consolidate its position as the biggest commercial broadcaster in Ireland. TV3 is also revamping its brand, and plans to offer more news coverage.

David McRedmond, chief executive of the TV3 Group, said: “Our strategy is to develop a multi-channel Irish broadcaster and that’s why we acquired Channel 6. We have put the two channels under a single programming team, which means that over the coming months, the schedules will become entirely complementary.”

Mr Redmond said programming on TV3 such as Champions League football would be offset by shows such as Sex and the City on 3e. “We will also try to air more Irish programmes and we’ll take some risks with 3e,” he added. “It’s a channel we hope will be talked about.”