Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian
6712 Hollywood Boulevard
Hollywood, CA 90028 Map
Thu, Apr 26, 2012
7:30pm

Seminars for Filmmakers 2012
Out With The Old: Redefining Genre Filmmaking

In the United States, genre filmmaking is a staple. It has been for over a hundred years.

In the earliest years of filmmaking, burgeoning studio chiefs quickly realized that it was easier and cheaper to shoot similar content than to spend the time and money creating something new and wholly original each time out. So, if picture was a hit, sets and costumes, props and locations, actors and actresses could be recycled in similar formulas and situations. If the audience didn’t notice that the picture was essentially the same as the last time out, financial success could be equaled or quadrupled.

And so the American commercial filmmaking system was born. Westerns, Horror Films, Gangster Films, Comedies, Melodramas, Swashbucklers, Film Noirs, Action/Adventure Films, Epics and Musicals became the standards for all time.

One could say that much of the history of Hollywood cinema is one based in redefining and refining Hollywood’s classical genres: a prototype western like John Ford’s STAGECOACH (1939) gave way to a revisionist western like THE SEARCHERS (1956) which gave birth to an existential western like Altman’s McCABE AND MRS. MILLER (1971) which transformed itself into a neo-poetic western like Andrew Dominik’s THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD (2007). A prototype musical like Harry Beaumont’s THE BROADWAY MELODY (1929) gave way to Busby Berkeley’s kaleidoscopic back stager DAMES (1934), which morphed into Vincente Minnelli’s integrated masterpiece MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (1944) which eventually whipped itself into a frenzy in Baz Luhrmann’s post-modern razzle-dazzle MOULIN ROUGE! (2001).

Thanks to a rich foundation of genre reinvention, genre films are still king today and (dare we say it?) innovation within genre filmmaking is still alive!

As it was for both yesteryear’s studio moguls and America’s finest and most successful directors, understanding both the primary tenants and current trends of genre filmmaking is essential to the professional, financial and artistic success desired by most of today’s emerging filmmaker community. Moreover, real success for most emerging filmmakers means obtaining a clearer understanding of where genre filmmaking will take itself in the not so distant future.

What does the future of genre filmmaking look like?

Why is it better today to make a “neo-realist” Western or a “Science Fantasy” than the classical version?

With “torture porn” pretty much behind us, what does an “elevated” horror film look like?

Why is it a bad idea to make a romantic comedy like PRETTY WOMAN or a “gross comedy” like BRIDESMAIDS? Is there an original laugh yet to be had in comedy filmmaking?

What new foundations do today’s best action films, musicals and film noirs rest upon?

Is there a way to transcend the influences of genre filmmaking completely?

On April 26, Film Consultant and Former Director of Programming, Los Angeles Film Festival, Thomas Ethan Harris (BLUE VALENTINE, GEORGE WASHINGTON, KISSING JESSICA STEIN, THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT) further deconstructs, dissects and dismantles genre filmmaking and comes up with a modern approach to genre success!

Film clips will be used to inspire an open dialogue with the audience.

Special Ticket Prices: $12 Member, $15 Students/Seniors, $20 General.
(180 min.)
Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian • Thu, Apr 26, 2012 • 7:30pm

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Thu, Feb 16, 2012 - 7:30pm
Spielberg Theatre at the Egyptian
All New Visual Communication Seminar!
Thu, Feb 23, 2012 - 7:30pm
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Wed, Mar 7, 2012 - 7:30pm
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Thu, Mar 22, 2012 - 7:30pm
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Back By Popular Demand!
Thu, Apr 19, 2012 - 7:30pm
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Thu, May 24, 2012 - 7:30pm
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Thu, Jul 12, 2012 - 7:30pm
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Sun, Aug 26, 2012 - 6:30pm
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Sun, Sep 9, 2012 - 1:00pm
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Sat, Apr 7, 2012 - 2:00pm
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