The Future of Making Movie Magic Is Very Bright

How tools and technology support the way filmmakers want to work.

by Adobe Communications Team

posted on 06-13-2018

“It really feels like we are in a new golden age of filmmaking,” says Van Bedient, senior business development manager at Adobe. “The way stories are told and enjoyed is changing at such a rapid pace. Never before have incredibly powerful software tools, or high-quality digital capture devices been more accessible and affordable.”

Van sees a seismic shift in the professional film industry. For the first time, he explains, we’re seeing “people on the digital vanguard using technology to push their ideas further — directors like David Fincher and Tim Miller who think more about digitally crafting every element of every frame and composing the film rather than capturing it in camera.”

But it’s not just creativity, inspiration, and passion driving this evolution. Now more than ever, teams are committed to working smarter and creating optimized workflows through effective collaboration strategies to meet the fast pace of modern filmmaking.

Supporting these shifts is a rapidly-evolving set of tools and resources. From collaboration to project management, and from video editing to motion graphics, these advancements are facilitating streamlined processes, increased mobility, and better engagement across platforms and distances — all with the benefit of being able to work the way you imagine, rather than the way the technology dictates.

Technology meets talent

“Director Sean Baker and his post-team, who created the critically-acclaimed The Florida Project, are an excellent example of next generation filmmaking,” Van explains. “The editing team told us they were never in the same room, never in the same building, never even in the same zip code during the entire editing process.”__

As filming in many locations simultaneously becomes the norm and larger editing teams are spread across locations, there is an increased need to collaborate. Fortunately, new technology, including mobile solutions, is offering new workflows for filmmakers and creative teams.

“Sean and his team used everything from film, to digital cameras, and even mobile phones on the project,” says Van. In some cases the team “…even had actors remotely recording some of the dialogue on their mobile devices and sending in the clips,” he adds.

Kicking creative up a notch

Many of the shifts in how movies are made, are born from viewers’ increasing demands for bigger, better, and more engaging entertainment. With more out-of-the-box creative content hitting the market by the minute, producers are scrambling to deliver the next hot thing. A key to providing what people want to watch is the right talent — and the right tools.

Filmmakers on VFX-heavy movie Ghost in the Shell, brought in freelance editors, quickly and easily assigning them Adobe Creative Cloud licenses so they could work on the project with the existing team.

From there, Territory Studio Creative Lead Peter Eszenyi adds, “After Effects became a go-to creative tool because we were not limited by the original idea behind the rendered pass.” In the case of this film, he notes, “We were looking for the happy accidents resulting from these experiments.” Ultimately, having the right tools on hand allowed editors to work more efficiently, explore new ventures, and achieve great results.

Being willing to shift from a “go-to” industry tool to a newer technology isn’t always easy. But professional filmmakers are seeing the positive results that come from expanding their creative arsenal. “Editing tools like Adobe Premiere Pro CC started gaining momentum in the independent film community because they mix accessibility and professionalism,” says Steven Warner, vice president of Digital Video and Audio at Adobe, “and seeing these tools make a difference in big-budget Hollywood movies and television shows has been very exciting for us.”__

These tools are just the tip of the iceberg. “Combined with the explosion of distribution outlets from social media, streaming platforms, and video portals, we are in the midst of a content revolution. It’s truly an amazing time in the industry,” Van says. “With a camera, the right tools, and a compelling story, filmmakers can express themselves and share their vision without many of the barriers and boundaries that previously existed”.

What’s next: The future of filmmaking

This push for enhanced creativity through smarter workflows and tools is just the beginning. Social media has become a launch pad for discovering talent and even building entire careers through its monetization engines. “The next generation of filmmakers are incredibly imaginative in their approach to storytelling, and their creativity isn’t bound by traditional processes,” Van says.

Young filmmakers aren’t limited by the way things have always been done. They aren’t married to a certain tool or process. “They just do,” Van notes. “They want something that looks great, sounds great, informs and entertains, and can be created as simply and seamlessly as possible.”

Due to the fast-paced nature of publishing on social media platforms, the film industry’s up and comers are often working with condensed timeframes, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Creating content, sharing, and receiving near immediate feedback is an excellent way to build an audience and hone creative skills. And many believe this mindset is a move in the right direction for the entire industry. “The younger generation knows no limits or boundaries on what methods you use to tell a story,” Van says, “and that makes the future of filmmaking very bright.”

While there’s a lot riding on these next generation filmmakers, we’re committed to staying in-step with their growth and progress. “You can see that Adobe is a company that has a unique understanding of what it is to be able to offer an end-to-end solution for professional filmmakers,” says director David Fincher. “And if you can put those tools in the hands of people who want to make it happen, there are no limits. It’s going to be about the quality of the ideas.”

Read more articles in our Working Smarter collection. You might also enjoy our latest article on fantasy UI design in film and TV.

Topics: Future of Work, Creativity, Video & Audio

Products: After Effects, Premiere Pro, Creative Cloud