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What I Learned From that Octopus

Published in December 4, 2020
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On the surface (ha), My Octopus Teacher is your typical man meets mollusk love story. But, in terms of film language (below the surface, as it were), there are some very interesting things going on: for starters, it’s almost 95% b-roll with voice-over.  The story is told - and we’ll get into the filmmaking aspects of that later - by Craig Foster, a filmmaker*, whose year

Pickerel Pie’s Corporate Film School Episode #6: Voice Over: Who Does Your Company Sound Like?

Published in December 1, 2020
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https://vimeo.com/486119015 As corporate communications diversifies, what should the “Voice of God” sound like?   And do we really believe that someone (anyone) can tell us the way the world works?   In this episode of Corporate Film School, we address some of the issues confronting the use of voice-over - the (typically) unseen narration heard over images - that sets the tone an

10 (surprising) Lessons Learned Producing a Large-Scale Virtual Event

Published in November 19, 2020
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My home control room! After decades of doing it live in hotel ballrooms all over the world, our client’s global meeting was now going to include 2 global live streams, 14 high-profile webcasts with VIP guest speakers hundreds of Zoom breakouts over 4 days in two time zones … what could possibly go wrong??? Spoiler Alert!  PLENTY.  And, despite – perhaps even, because of - that, it was a

Corporate Film School: Episode #5: B-Roll: the Mysterious Dark Matter of the Video Universe

Published in November 13, 2020
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In this fifth episode of Corporate Film School we look at an essential element of film language, particularly in documentary, that, despite its snappy name, gets very little attention:  B-Roll.  We propose that, in fact, B-Roll is so elemental to filmmaking and yet so invisible in the discourse around it, that it is the Dark Matter of the film universe, holding everything together and determining the shape

Pickerel Pie’s Corporate Film School Episode #4: Eyelines: You Lookin’ At Me?

Published in July 2, 2020
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Yes, I’m upset about how cavalierly many productions now treat this vital signifier - where is the person on camera looking - but, I’m not nearly as angry as Travis Bickle is about this issue so, count yourself lucky.  In this episode of Corporate Film School, we pin down the meaning and importance of eyelines. The thing is that eyelines are one of the MOST powerful aspects of a filmed pres