Martini - The QuickShot Creator

UPDATE: Looks like the $99 pricing was a "Cyber Monday" sale and it's now back to $199. However, I just found the software still on sale at Digital Juice for $99. Not sure how long it will last though. Here's a link: http://www.digitaljuice.com/products/products.asp?pid=1571

I've used storyboarding software in the past from Frame Forge and Storyboard Quick, but I really don't use it that often. However today I came across this interesting quasi-storyboard software for Final Cut Pro that I might use a lot... Martini.

From their website...

Martini - The QuickShot Creator for Final Cut Pro

See into the future and visualize your upcoming shots with Martini! Now, bridging the gap between your unshot scenes and your final edit is faster and easier than ever with the shot-creating power of Martini!

Don't get blacked out! No more black slugs with text explaining what "shot goes here" - show that shot wth the dynamic power of Martini. From single shots to multi-shot sequences, Martini helps directors and editors piece together a better final film.

Loaded with hundreds of classic and unique shot styles Martini's easy-to-use interface guides you through the quick creation of frames. Select a shot style, from single person up to 5 people in a shot...everything you need from basic over-the-shoulder shots, two and three shots, close-ups as well as fight scenes, chase scenes and other pre-composed multi-shot sequences.

Select a location: choose from hundreds of pre-loaded backdrops. Interiors, exteriors and even your own digital location photos. You've already scouted your location? No problem, use the My Locations option and bring that into your shot.


Here's a direct link to their site:
http://www.martiniquickshot.com/

And here's a nice video explaining the software:
http://www.martiniquickshot.com/demo.php

If you've ever made a film, music video, commercial, etc. you know there are always missing shots and/or pickup shots needed, and this really does look like a great tool to help fill in the gap (and help you, your client, and/or your DP visualize them).

It's only $99 too, and I think you could pretty easily create larger scale storyboards if you wanted to. I have not personally tried the software yet, but plan to download the demo and give it a try.

If anyone already owns the software or has tried it, please let me know if it is good or not. Looks pretty good to me...

-Blake

P.S. And no, I am not being paid by them because my blog has the same name - although that's not a bad idea. :)

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New YouTube Channel

I started a new YouTube channel today (www.youtube.com/watchblake). Mainly because I wanted to easily upload personal videos I shoot with my iPhone 4 (it has a "Send to YouTube" button, and, it works pretty well). But I also have decided to use it to showcase my work and some behind-the-scenes stuff I'm calling "Scene This?".

Here's "My Work" Playlist (most of my trailers):



I have tons of unseen footage that's been shot on a Flip Video camera (and now a lot on an iPhone) and so I'm now going to share it (highlighting my more interesting productions and gear). So far I've got a good snippet from "Exposed" (there's a lot more coming from this show), a visual effects setup from "Continuum" and a clip from a recent commercial shoot I produced using an iKan dolly.

Here's a sample from my "Scene This?" Playlist ("Exposed" clip):



And, back to the main reason I started the page - I have a Playlist called "Diversions" where I'll upload entertaining things I do - and the first being the Roger Waters show (from last night in Dallas) doing The Wall all the way through. No David Gilmour, but it was almost Pink Floyd... Great show!

From my "Diversions" Playlist (opening of Waters show):



Anyway, I'll play to update this as much as possible along with my other six or seven YouTube accounts (not kidding!). :)

-Blake

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CONTINUUM Now on Blip.TV

I just created a Blip.tv show page for CONTINUUM and posted the trailer on there too. Nice thing is it will feed to iTunes and be available as a "podcast" there soon.



Until I decide on our exact distribution and release strategy we will continue to play with a mild version of "super syndication". The teaser is currently available on YouTube, Facebook and now Blip.

Help spread the word! :)

-Blake

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Amazon Studios?

Apparently, yes.

At first glance this seems like a good idea, but the more I read the details I'm not so sure - at least from the film side of things. The script side is more doable, but I'm not quite sure what a "test movie" is? Especially one that is "full-length".

I will say the prize money is quite large though...

Read the details here at IndieWire:
http://blogs.indiewire.com/thompsononhollywood/2010/11/16/amazon_launches_new_movie_studio_run_by_roy_price_son_of_frank/

And then check it out for yourself here:
http://studios.amazon.com/getting-started

Let me know what you think?

-Blake

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Why Studios are Betting On Web Again

Interesting article from cnet geared towards mainly Hollywood movies on the web versus original content on the web. I think both will have a profitable place online in the (near) future...

The roots of the strategy can be traced to consumers. Too many were choosing to download films illegally. Younger people who didn't go the file-sharing route ignored Blockbuster and cable and gravitated to the Internet's top video-rental store, Netflix.

Read more:
http://news.cnet.com/8301-31001_3-20022759-261.html

-Blake

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Web-to-TV Take 2

A descent Ad Age story on some recent web-to-TV success stories...

From the article:

But why move to TV what already works well for the internet? Simply put: A popular web show brings networks a built-in fan base, (comparably) cheaper talent, lower budgets and, in some cases, advertisers willing to follow a show or personality across any platform.

Read the entire piece:
http://adage.com/madisonandvine/article?article_id=146933

I think it's good that mainstream pubs like Ad Age are following this trend, and I hope it continues.

-Blake

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Robert Rodriquez New Indie Film Company

I've always been a fan of Robert Rodriguez - not necessarily of all his films - but of his mindset and the way he makes his films. Even though they are developed and produced for the most part through Hollywood, they are done in a decidedly indie fashion (he often writes, directs, shoots, edits, scores, you-name-it). So now it just makes sense that he is starting his own indie film company (Quick Draw).

Of course as I mention, his Hollywood films very often feel "indie" to me, but I assume the news ones will be much less expensive (although his films are notoriously "cheap" by Hollywood standards) and less commercial. We shall see...

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/blogs/heat-vision/robert-rodriguez-creates-new-shingle-34102

I think this is a good move on his part and a move that a lot of other Hollywood and Indiewood filmmakers might look to do in the coming years as the traditional Hollywood system changes (and in some cases falls apart).

-Blake

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Who Am I?

I'm a filmmaker who's produced & directed five feature films including the comedy SPILT MILK (available on iTunes), the new horror/thriller PHOBIA (on iTunes) and the action/thiller KILLING DOWN (which you can buy or rent at pretty much all the usual places).

I also created the Streamy and Webby award-winning web series PINK, which to date has been viewed online around 10 MILLION times at places like YouTube, Hulu, Koldcast and TheWB.com. And speaking of TheWB.com, I also produced and directed an online thriller for them called EXPOSED. It was released summer 2010. And most recently I created a new online sci-fi series called CONTINUUM, which is part of the online indie TV network JTS.tv - Just The Story and NOW available via VOD through indie platform Distrify.

Oh, and I don't shoot weddings. Thanks for asking though.

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