Sunday, November 18, 2007

Time for a new Hollywood?

Could the writers strike spark a radical shift in how the Hollywood system works? Check out this post by Marc Andreesessen on his blog. Andreesessen's a smart guy, a lot smarter than me... If you're a computer nerd - he's one of the co-author's of Mosaic, a co-founder of Netscape, was the chair of Opsware and a co-founder of Ning. If you're not a computer nerd - he's a guy who's made a truckload of cash in the Silicon Valley.

Ever since I read "The Long Tail", which I recommend reading, I've come to the realization that the Hollywood studio system is going to collapse. Well, not collapse, but fundamentally change. What would be the catalyst to shake things up? Personally, I thought it would just be time. Very slowly, bit by bit, you would see small, independent filmmakers and studios starting to make some money, by utilizing the web and it would eventually, somewhere down the road, hit critical mass and change how things work. Now that indie movies can be made for nothing - shot on DV, cut on a PC, marketed on the web, but... can you pay a mortgage with the handful of DVD's you sold on Ebay? Not likely. However, according to Andreesessen, the writers strike may just be the straw that breaks this big girl's back and pushes us to a new system.

Now, a Hollywood studio system shifts towards a system like Silicon Valley's is a really good thing for almost everyone except the studios. It'll be a very good thing for people who are into horror, specifically low-budget horror. Not only will there be a flood of it into the market, every indie horror filmmaker worth his weight in prosthetic arms will have access to venture capital, as well as distribution channels for their finished products. Who's kidding who? Much like porn, horror has always broke ground on being as cheaply produced as possible, without losing much of its audience. So, if there's a bunch of financiers running around, ready to throw money at low-budget project, you can bet that a lot of them are going to be of the horror variety.

What can I say? I'm ready for it... make sure you are, too.

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