The Impact of Digital Technology on the Film Industry
The purpose of this research assignment is to put forward a convincing argument in how digital technology in the last four years have completely revolutionised the whole film industry. This thesis will attempt to focus on the main disciplines of film making and the impact that technology has had on each area. Firstly, this article will look at recent changes in the pre-production area of film making followed by what new equipment and storage facilities are being used during film production. Next is arguable the biggest transformation in the film industry as a result of technology, namely the post production stage. New methods of film distribution are explored followed by the negative impact that technology has had on the film industry with the main focus being on the illegal distribution of copyrighted film footage. New ways in post-theatre film distribution is also explored and the impact that continual break-through technologies are having on the education and training of professionals working within the film industry. Finally an examination of the impact of computer generated graphics on the film industry is concluded by a brief discussion on what the future may hold for the film industry.
During the pre-production phase, digital tools and technology have transformed the script writing process by making use of digital tools and the internet. The internet is being used by scriptwriters to forward their scripts to directors and potential cast members but it also caters for peer reviews by way of online forums. There has been a significant increase in the last decade in the use of digital video cameras for low-budget film shooting along with higher definition video which is set to match and go beyond the standard 35 mm film both in the quality and flexibility (Culkin & Randle 2003, p.5). The most significant impact of technology within the industry has arguable occurred in the post production area of film making. Nowadays hand edited films are nearly non-existent as a result of the birth of non-linear technology created by Avid. This process involves taking the film and putting it together in a virtual environment where both the director and editor view the output on a screen (Culkin & Randle 2003, p.8).
Films are not only created in digital today, but the whole process has been digitalized, from the distribution all the way down to the projection of films to audiences. However, the lack of standards and commercial agreements between distributors and exhibitors has slowed down the conversion to digital technologies. For example, only 170 cinemas around the world have converted to what is known as high-end digital (Culkin & Randle 2003, p.9). Profit margins for movie studios are reported to be decreasing. However, new breakthroughs in digital production and distribution will help counter the declining profit margins. Satellite delivery of feature films to cinemas have...