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Old 04-06-2013, 04:19 AM   #1
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EW: Peter Jackson and others weigh in on Hollywood's F/X crisis

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"In this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly, The Hobbit director Peter Jackson, a digital effects pioneer who co-founded the F/X company Weta Digital, says studios are taking advantage of an oversupply of F/X houses to drive down prices. “Competition between VFX houses, which the studios obviously use to their advantage, has resulted in VFX houses operating on tiny profit margins,” Jackson says. “And when we talk ‘profit,’ it’s not about the owners buying a Porsche at the end of a big movie — it’s about having a nest egg to ride out the slow periods.”"

http://insidemovies.ew.com/2013/04/.../#disqus_thread
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Old 04-06-2013, 02:13 PM   #2
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Here's some true gems from some of the replies :

"...or make more movies that don't rely on special effects - like more Judy Garland style movies or more westerns, more mystery thrillers"

"This outrage from Peter Jackson and the FX industry is ridiculous. It's almost as ridiculous as an article I read today about fast food workers striking in New York City and demanding $15 an hour. If you work in an industry with a surplus of people able to do the job, wages will go down. If you work in an industry with few people able to do the job, wages go up. This is common sense folks. I predict the liberals in Hollywood will soon advertise their movies as having "fair trade" FX."

"highly skilled artists" LOL.....if a guy with no high school education in a 3rd world country can do you job for pennies on a dollar, it isn't a "highly skilled" job. What we are seeing is the market readjusting itself after it realized they were being grossly overpaid."

"Maybe Hollywood should get back to making movies about real people communicating without all the hi tech crap. Make movies for adults again."

"And yet somehow Citizen Kane was able to be made without any VFX and is considered the greatest movie ever. VFX won't be missed and its absence will lead to better movies."

"It's done with fine acting and direction. Think Broadway shows. Think Black and White movies. Raymond Massey played Lincoln on film 3x, and on Broadway. No VFX. Oscars and Tonys all around."

"90% of movies are now done with 'effects' which was never about what makes a 'film' or story great. It's the people who create the story, the rest is fluff and usually annoyingly loud. That's what 'younger folk' like yourself make and want. Just because its a new era it's not necessarily better for anyone."

"The truth of the matter is that it doesn't take a rocket scientist to do CGI so they shouldn't be surprised that they can be replaced by cheap labor."

"Yup .. there's "outrage" ... Just like all the BetaMax factory workers years ago... Get a clue guys, your exclusive industry is all but dead. High-school students can now do in 20 minutes what used to take you 6 months. If you didn't see it coming, that's pretty much your fault - move on."

 
Old 04-06-2013, 03:00 PM   #3
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I like how all of these know nothings feel qualified to argue with Peter Jackson, ie, someone who actually knows what they are talking about.
 
Old 04-06-2013, 08:41 PM   #4
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No hope for people. Anyway, they can SAY all that they want about going back to making movies without all the CG, but they don't really want it. Graphics are used everywhere, even in the films none of those people would even realize it.

The highest grossing movies of all time, all of them, are graphics driven.
 
Old 04-06-2013, 08:51 PM   #5
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Every single film nominated for Best picture at the Oscars last year
had Visual Effects.
And that is including "Amour" & "Silver Linings Playbook"
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Last edited by RobertoOrtiz : 04-06-2013 at 09:04 PM.
 
Old 04-06-2013, 09:57 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vlad
Here's some true gems from some of the replies :

"...or make more movies that don't rely on special effects - like more Judy Garland style movies or more westerns, more mystery thrillers"

"This outrage from Peter Jackson and the FX industry is ridiculous. It's almost as ridiculous as an article I read today about fast food workers striking in New York City and demanding $15 an hour. If you work in an industry with a surplus of people able to do the job, wages will go down. If you work in an industry with few people able to do the job, wages go up. This is common sense folks. I predict the liberals in Hollywood will soon advertise their movies as having "fair trade" FX."

"highly skilled artists" LOL.....if a guy with no high school education in a 3rd world country can do you job for pennies on a dollar, it isn't a "highly skilled" job. What we are seeing is the market readjusting itself after it realized they were being grossly overpaid."

"Maybe Hollywood should get back to making movies about real people communicating without all the hi tech crap. Make movies for adults again."

"And yet somehow Citizen Kane was able to be made without any VFX and is considered the greatest movie ever. VFX won't be missed and its absence will lead to better movies."

"It's done with fine acting and direction. Think Broadway shows. Think Black and White movies. Raymond Massey played Lincoln on film 3x, and on Broadway. No VFX. Oscars and Tonys all around."

"90% of movies are now done with 'effects' which was never about what makes a 'film' or story great. It's the people who create the story, the rest is fluff and usually annoyingly loud. That's what 'younger folk' like yourself make and want. Just because its a new era it's not necessarily better for anyone."

"The truth of the matter is that it doesn't take a rocket scientist to do CGI so they shouldn't be surprised that they can be replaced by cheap labor."

"Yup .. there's "outrage" ... Just like all the BetaMax factory workers years ago... Get a clue guys, your exclusive industry is all but dead. High-school students can now do in 20 minutes what used to take you 6 months. If you didn't see it coming, that's pretty much your fault - move on."



No offense, you sounds like an really old guy who look down on young people because things are not what they used to be. Who the hell would pay the ticket to watch a 30s quality black & white movie in theaters now? Get a grip. Things are made to fit its era, B&W used to be the standards, that's why they were accepted, don't move back in time, nothing in history has ever truely successfully moved backward and succeeded.
 
Old 04-06-2013, 10:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krisonrik
No offense, you sounds like an really old guy who look down on young people because things are not what they used to be. Who the hell would pay the ticket to watch a 30s quality black & white movie in theaters now? Get a grip. Things are made to fit its era, B&W used to be the standards, that's why they were accepted, don't move back in time, nothing in history has ever truely successfully moved backward and succeeded.


Those were quoted replies from the blog posted by Roberto. All coming from different people. Those are not my own comments, obviously...

Last edited by vlad : 04-06-2013 at 10:36 PM.
 
Old 04-06-2013, 10:55 PM   #8
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those people making those comments would be the first to criticize a movie if it didn't look up to date.
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Old 04-06-2013, 11:22 PM   #9
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Yea, I thought all of the gratuitous effects really ruined Metropolis and King Kong. I really enjoyed the effects work in Empire of the Ants and Laserblast though. The technology was 40 years more advanced, and it really shows.

Empire of the Ants Trailer:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDK3IT29uoQ

Laserblast Trailer:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SRaXI8O1IKM

-AJ
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Old 04-07-2013, 12:52 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vlad
Here's some true gems from some of the replies :
"highly skilled artists" LOL.....if a guy with no high school education in a 3rd world country can do you job for pennies on a dollar, it isn't a "highly skilled" job. What we are seeing is the market readjusting itself after it realized they were being grossly overpaid."


'Here's a copy of Zbrush, Mari, Maya, and Nuke. I want you to learn the software over the weekend. You'll start on Monday morning. You'll be working on the shots where the giant multi-tentacled sea creature emerges from the depths of the stormy ocean and attacks our all-CG ship and crew. We're a bit tight for time so you'll have to do all the modeling, sculpting, UVs, texture painting, rigging, animation, particle effects, hair effects, and fluid/cloth dynamics yourself. Oh, and one other thing: there will be close-ups of our lead actor changing into a werewolf during the battle so there'll be a bit of live-action compositing also. See you Monday, bright and early!'
 
Old 04-07-2013, 02:08 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musashidan
'Here's a copy of Zbrush, Mari, Maya, and Nuke. I want you to learn the software over the weekend. You'll start on Monday morning. You'll be working on the shots where the giant multi-tentacled sea creature emerges from the depths of the stormy ocean and attacks our all-CG ship and crew. We're a bit tight for time so you'll have to do all the modeling, sculpting, UVs, texture painting, rigging, animation, particle effects, hair effects, and fluid/cloth dynamics yourself. Oh, and one other thing: there will be close-ups of our lead actor changing into a werewolf during the battle so there'll be a bit of live-action compositing also. See you Monday, bright and early!'


I have to add that somewhere under the sun, companies are no longer looking at hiring 4 year degree student in animation. They cost a lot but the skill is minimalistic. Maybe due to education mismatch. But they spent too much on subjects not related (like Java, PHP, etc) so the complains goes. So employers are looking at people with software certificate instead, which usually 1 year program. And since AD software are free for students, they can learn the skills much more earlier. So this certificate is just to "get it done and over with" and get a job.

I think being able to understand and realize that 3rd worlders without a diploma or a degree can do your job to a certain extent do goes a very long way. At least understand that what happened to programming/hb1 visa can also happen to your industry, you know.
 
Old 04-07-2013, 02:27 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by musashidan
'Here's a copy of Zbrush, Mari, Maya, and Nuke. I want you to learn the software over the weekend. You'll start on Monday morning. You'll be working on the shots where the giant multi-tentacled sea creature emerges from the depths of the stormy ocean and attacks our all-CG ship and crew. We're a bit tight for time so you'll have to do all the modeling, sculpting, UVs, texture painting, rigging, animation, particle effects, hair effects, and fluid/cloth dynamics yourself. Oh, and one other thing: there will be close-ups of our lead actor changing into a werewolf during the battle so there'll be a bit of live-action compositing also. See you Monday, bright and early!'

Classic. Usually people who think CG is no big deal, are the ones who really don't know much about CG. Also, saying things like third world labor is cheaper thus qualifies these special works as not high end is ludicrous. 3rd world country living cost is also lower, that's a much more complicated situation. It's also non-sense just because it's cheaper labor it means they are lessor human and by that strange logic if they can do, it's just easy work that anyone can do. The artist in those countries are not the same people who are assembling ipods.
 
Old 04-07-2013, 05:21 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krisonrik
Classic. Usually people who think CG is no big deal, are the ones who really don't know much about CG. Also, saying things like third world labor is cheaper thus qualifies these special works as not high end is ludicrous. 3rd world country living cost is also lower, that's a much more complicated situation. It's also non-sense just because it's cheaper labor it means they are lessor human and by that strange logic if they can do, it's just easy work that anyone can do. The artist in those countries are not the same people who are assembling ipods.


This is actually a good argument. Just because someone in the third world is getting paid less to do something doesn't inherently make what they are doing easy. That still doesn't mean that it explains why someone is paying you more if they can pay less for something abroad, but your argument is valid, imo.

What people don't understand is that appeal of going to a 3rd world country for labor, is not just cost, its resource related. The ability to throw more human resources at the problem to solve an issue as opposed to a highly specialized solution can be very appealing. Its not just an issue with labor, the same thing has happened to the computing industry. The world's fastest computer is a series of clustered cheap pcs strung together running linux. A far cry from the expensive highly specialized mainframes of the past. One is relatively cheap to maintain, if one of you machines goes down, you replace it with another cheap computer, quickly I may add. With highly specialized machines its more expensive and difficult to do the same. I don't see people who need this type of processing (including the cg industry) going back to highly specialized hardware anytime soon.

Having a whole factory filled with CG workers with a granular pipeline can probably be very appealing to a cg house. Especially for things like motion capture clean up, modeling, etc, where you can hire more folks. People around the country are in need of work and working in cg would be more appealing that building shoes or making iPads. Some would have already gone to the local technical school that has a deal with the studio around the area. The same thing happened to the traditional animation field, what made people think the same wouldn't happen to the 3d industry?

The same thing has happened with the programming industry. Development houses are charging the same money to develop business applications, send the workload to their office in India and pay the workers there $10 an hour and pocket the rest, and there is no shortage of local workers who have taken technical training (which at this point has gotten better in a lot of ways than what we have here in the states) who need the work around the area so you can keep wages down and turnaround high without it affecting much. So basically you get more for less.
 
Old 04-07-2013, 09:21 AM   #14
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Peter Jackson is no Orson Welles. He's no Kubrik, no Fincher, not any of that caliber of directors. And he surely is no Tarantino. In my book he's a vfx supervisor who somehow got the chance to direct the LOTR trilogy. So his opinions on this subject look kinda weird.

EDIT: Hey wait, maybe it's exactly the reaction of a director who depends so much on vfx.
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Old 04-07-2013, 09:43 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mustique
Peter Jackson is no Orson Welles. He's no Kubrik, no Fincher, not any of that caliber of directors. And he surely is no Tarantino. In my book he's a vfx supervisor who somehow got the chance to direct the LOTR trilogy. So his opinions on this subject look kinda weird.



And how wonderful that it was Jackson that got LOTR and created an epic trilogy quite perfectly. He took the grandfather of all fantasy stories and put it flawlessly onto the screen. His passion, hard work, diligence, ingenuity, and strict adherence to the original left us with a classic. If anyone should have an opinion on this, it's him; co-founder of one of the best shops in the world.
 
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