• Big Daddy’s take on the 2016 Oscar noms

    brown,r_catonhottinroof58“What’s that smell in this room? Didn’t you notice it, Brick? Didn’t you notice a powerful and obnoxious odor of mendacity in this room?”

    As most of our readers probably know, that’s one of Big Daddy’s most memorable lines from Tennessee Williams’ CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF.  I’ve always thought it was the contrast between his hard-scrabble roots and the elegance of his vocabulary that help to define his character so specifically. 

  • Gunpowder & Sky




    Gunpowder & Sky is a recently established independent studio creating and distributing content at the intersection of traditional and online media. Its goals are to reach millennials through experimentation with new forms of storytelling across multiple genres and platforms.

  • To Present & Future Sundance Rejects

    2016_sundance_film_festival_sff_logo_color_0As we approach the announcement of yet another set of serial coronations—the list of films to premiere at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival—we’re most likely all reminded of the denouement of College Admissions Day (in my time, it was April 15th). The fortunate few who were accepted at Harvard, Yale or Stanford were cracking teen-aged versions of Veuve Cliquot, while the rest of us sweated over whether any institution of higher learning would allow us onto their far-less-hallowed campuses.

    It’s worth providing a perspective on the Sundance machine, being that Rikaroo’s mission continues to focus on discovering the neglected gems from among the swarming mass of “content.” If past years are any basis, this year’s festival has probably received no fewer than 9,000 films to consider; out of that number, perhaps 150 of those will be chosen to premiere at Park City in January, 2016. Sixteen of those will be full-length feature dramatic entries.

  • Tribeca and Lionsgate Join the Streaming Fray

    Tribeca Enterprises and Lionsgate recently joined the streaming fray with the launch of Tribeca Short List, a curated site for film lovers everywhere who are finding it increasingly difficult to find good films to watch.

    tribeca-shortlist-logo-200“We’re taking a more human approach to movie discovery for viewers who want to escape the search spiral and find a great movie fast,” said Jeff Bronikowski, President of Tribeca Short List, in a press release. “We’ve found great movies that we’re offering to subscribers as part of a high quality, highly curated movie catalog with exclusive “Shortlist” content that provides context and personal insight, like getting a recommendation from a trusted friend.” (Tubefilter)

  • FOMO & the Future of the Creative

    FOMO - fear of missing outA psychological phenomenon known as “Fear Of Missing Out” (FOMO) has currently gripped millennial culture, to the extent that it merits an entry in Wikipedia. FOMO, according to WP, is “a pervasive apprehension that others might be having rewarding experiences from which one is absent … FOMO perpetuates the fear that we have made the wrong decision on how to spend our time …”

  • Web Celebs and their Superfans

    PewDiePiewideDo the names PewDiePie, Smosh, or Jenna Marbles ring a bell? How about KSI, Ryan Higa, the Fine Brothers, Markiplier, Shane Dawson, Michelle Phan, or The Young Turks? If you’re not well below the age of twenty-five or don’t spend time with people who are, chances are you’ll be surprised to learn that these are the names of some of the top web celebs starting to give Hollywood a run for its money.

  • THE ETHICS OF “POPCORN TIME” (and others like it)


    Just as music listening evolved through an open “pirated” platform into more industry-friendly technologies like iTunes and Pandora, movies and TV seem to be headed in the same direction, nudged into a new order by anarchist pirate “torrents” like Popcorn Time, where you can watch HD versions of many recent films—for free. 

    We’re talking films that are just now reaching your video and Netflix shelves, as well as older “classics” (e.g. THE GODFATHER trilogy, a lot of Disney animation, etc.).  It’s the less pricey–and ethically problematic–alternative to the paid services offered by Netflix or on-demand streaming services (or for you few remaining Luddites, your local video store).

  • Chris Milk, VRSE, & VR Films With Heart

    VR headsetsFrom a distance, a small group of people standing in the far corner of a lounge at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival’s Spring Studios is a curious sight. They’re all wearing headphones and face masks, standing clustered together, looking every which way, moving their heads around on occasion, but otherwise immobilized and silent. They’re immersed in one of a set of VRSE’s virtual worlds of their choosing, essentially becoming voyeurs embedded in places like a TV production studio, a political rally, or a far away refugee camp.

  • Watch Your Favorites at Vessel First



    What is Vessel?
      – it’s short form video
      – by popular next generation video creators
      – targeted at millennials
      – online, on iPhones & iPads (Android soon)
      – with a $2.99/month subscription fee
      – giving subscribers early access to 135 channels

      – and free viewing with ads after a 3 day window
      – creators get 60% of sub fees, 70% of ad $$

  • Ze Frank + BuzzFeed = Streamed, Syndicated, Short & Social

    Ze Frank Portraits_Day2_011BuzzFeed’s thriving video production arm is a good barometer for the state of video distribution on the web, so Ze Frank, president of BuzzFeed Motion Pictures, is a great source if you want to take measure of the market … the majority of that market is still controlled by YouTube, Frank said … Facebook, however, is gaining ground …“It’s very, very significant … Facebook’s … decision to autoplay video in users streams is changing how BuzzFeed produces video … [no audio in the opening few seconds has]  fundamentally changed the way we think about the first five seconds of content.”  (Martin Beck, Marketing Land, February 2015).