Hollywood, Disrupted

Amy Senger with Melissa Rosenberg

On Monday and Tuesday, at the Film Technology and Future of Film Summits, one theme rang clear: technology is shaking Hollywood to its very core.

Relativity Media CEO Ryan Kavanaugh explained, “This is an industry born in the 1920s…and has never been given any incentive to change.”

But change, thanks to advances in technology, is exactly what’s happening in Hollywood and the film industry.

Hollywood has remained almost medieval for decades, explained David Cohen, Associate Editor of Variety, ”with power and prestige accruing to proximity to the king,” and king being the director and the studio. But this no longer applies to how movies are made today. Technology has enabled the industry to “spread out”  with digitalization, globalization and decentralization drastically altering the movie-making process. It’s making movie stars out of animated characters, like Puss in Boots and Shrek, and digital effects themselves have a prestige and celebrity all to their own.

With every major Hollywood player in attendance, from Sony to Warner Brothers to Pixar and Google, conversations ranged from financing (is Kickstarter the wave of the future?) to content distribution and discovery (will search powerhouse Google win out over the king of social, Facebook?)  Despite all the questions and uncertainty about the future of film, virtually all stake-holders agreed: there are no more sacred parameters. Technology has and will continue to open up and expand the storytelling process, with our imaginations acting as the only limitation.

Given all the barriers technology has broken down for the industry, what’s left on a filmmaker’s wish-list? One speaker replied, “Always a better story to work with.”

***Amy Senger is the co-founder of 1X57 and recently named to Washingtonian’s Tech Titans 2011 list with her partner Steven Mandzik.  She splits her time between Washington, DC and southern California, writing and consulting on web 2.0 technology and social value creation for businesses and organizations. Follow the Pacific Punch on twitter @ThePacificPunch email amy@1×57.com***

About Amy Senger:
Amy Senger is an L.A. transplant by way of Washington, DC, and co-founder of 1X57, named to Washingtonian’s Tech Titans list with her partner Steven Mandzik. Follow her on twitter @sengseng and follow the Pacific Punch @ThePacificPunch or email amy@1×57.com.
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