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Tag: filmmaking tips

The Art of Asking Questions

The Interview is one of the fundamental modes of storytelling (what can you tell me about…?) and, yet, one of the most under-rated and, thus, under-examined skills to be mastered by creative producers and directors. Charming/cajoling/extracting information or stories from someone on camera is an art - with as many possible approaches as practitioners - but there a few basic guidelines to keep in mind – particularly, if you decide (perhaps, for effect) to ignore them or do the opposite – to enhance your chances of getting good material from your interview: 1. Prepare.  You should have both a good grasp of what your subject…

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How To Make Your Videos Evergreen Or, How Did Neil Young Survive Punk Rock?

Our best clients spend substantially on video production and, with all but the most ephemeral projects, there is always the hope, if not the goal, of producing something that will deliver value for a long time. That kind of staying power is rare and worth examining. I was doing the dishes and, as is my wont, listening to the kind of mix that only Shuffle can DJ (Curated Randomness will be addressed in another post) and I was struck, both by Shuffle’s genius juxtaposition with the Buzzcock’s “Boredom” and by the repetitive eloquence of Neil Young’s guitar solos. They’re epic and irreducible and, thus, kind…

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Urgency vs. Whimsy

One of many favorite moments from Cucaracha Theater Company shows a long time ago in a Tribeca that no longer exists was a monologue by Todd Alcott in which he tells a story about falling asleep while driving cross-country. He talks about the struggle to keep awake and how, when his eyes close, going 70 miles an hour down a two-lane highway, he begins to have “the most marvelous dream”. The whimsical details of the dream, languidly drawn out in Todd’s retelling, become increasingly excruciating to hear, of course, because of the urgency (to put it mildly) of the context of the dream. I’ve never…

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