Interview with Director Keith Schofield at VideoMilitia.com
This is the first edition of an interview series called 13 1/2 Questions, beginning with a Q&A with Director Keith Schofield. Keith was just recently highlighted in Saatchi & Saatchi's Annual New Directors' Showcase at this year's Cannes Lions 2008. We speak about that, the "Toe Jam" video, and advice he has to other young directors. Our line of questioning started with 13 basic puzzlers, +/- 1. Keith pointed out we should maybe revise that number but we are sticking to our guns.
there's something a tiny bit disheartening to me, if that's the right word, in one of his answers. when asked about youtube vs "cinematic craftsmanship", schofield seem to interpret said craftmanship with a "boring 35mm technocrane performance video."
im not sure these are one and the same, at all. boring performance videos tend to have no cinematic craftmanship -- it would take a high level of skill to make that stuff work. when i see a question i like, i think more about the idea of "one joke cheepies" verses films with well executed narrative and emotional content.
the confusion in the question/answer itself is the kind of thing that concerns me about our current cultures taste for all things film/video. anyone else know what i mean?
you can't knock any one person for liking the quirky fun stuff over the serious dramatic stuff- it's different strokes for different folks.
The quirky fun stuff is on top right now because the way people watch videos has changed- from tv to internet. Of course funny viral stuff is going to become a bigger focus for record labels.
If you're a wannabe glazer, the game just got a lot tougher!
no no, im not knocking him at all. and certainly not knocking him for liking one thing or the other.
i dislike po-faced slick performance videos as much as the next guy.
i am pointing out that he is using the phrase "cinematic craftmanship" to denote that kind of aesthetic, and aesthetic which might better be called "boring, soulless, etc etc".
its in that equation that im finding something interesting. like in the way that maybe the original punk rock musicians despised everything commercial and epicly produced, as if the intent, the craftmanship, and the intent were all one.
as someone with a vested interest in the aesthetics of film, i thought it was worth pointing out this equation and seeing how anyone else might respond to it.
ps i really like a lot of Schofield's work, this is not meant to be knocking him in any sense.
er, i think you're reading too much into it and slightly twisting his interpretation of the question...
cinematic craftmanship is a bit of a poncy term anyway. I doubt many music video directors would know what to do with a technocrane if it came up and offered them a blowjob*...now THATs not a diss, it's a reality of the BUDGETS these days!!!
(* apologies if i offended any technocranes by implying they partake in slutty behaviour)
Me thinks, it's all about different styles of direction. KS is kinda nerdy viral guy, who knows pretty much everything about desktop-post-production. Today, this is an enormous skill and compared with narrative directors or crane-lovin' dps, KS will be able to drop treatments, which are much more viral orientated and labels will prefer this.
bah. and so i gather this boy graduated from nyu to youtube videos and viral shit.
thats a little harsh, legion. I hardly think his BPA or Supergrass videos are just for YouTube...both are original and inovative...and thats what will get you ahead these days...i'd much rather see a good idea, even if it was filmed on sellotape...
legion: fuck dude, you're like the assigned hater on the 'ville. what do you like?
@senilitynow: 'assigned hater', whats this in internet lingo? to know whether i should care or not (dont bother retorting, it was rhetorical)
@ scooper: i'd rather see an epic performance video shot on 3-perf 35 mm, with lots of technocranes and tracking shots, than some viral bullshit shot with the cellphone. fuck ideas, it's all about style. let's see some narrative, girls getting liquored up and running into foxes at night, not a bunch of boys running on treadmills.
but maybe i aint in the write place, cuz i expect too much from mv's, their directors or their budgets.
anyways, i aint holding no grudge against this schofieldl guy - i never heard of him before - but it's his answers that piss me off:
'KS: nah. Cinematic craftsmanship is overrated. I'd rather watch a funny, compelling video shot on DV then some boring 35mm technocrane performance video. Look at the OK GO Treadmills video.'
Fuck, dude. And the whole bunch of ok go treadmills funny shits.
"fuck ideas, it's all about style". what a dumb comment, without an idea you have nothing. And ideas are what capture people's interest and get you work.
i think you are definitely on the wrong site, man. Maybe there's a forum for Usher videos out there?
Oh, and why 3-perf 35mm? Surely if a video is gonna spunk money up the wall, they wouldn't bother trying to save money on film stock now would they??
I do respect your opinion as everyone has a right to that, i just think you're unnecessarily rude about other people's work.
woooohaaaa. it got all feisty up in here suddenly...
- narrative = good, style = good, virally comedy = good, liquored girls and foxes = good, all in their own places and when properly done
- low budgets = bad.
- everyone entitled to their own opinion on this site.
personally, i think Schofield is a dude. judge a man by his work and not by his words... unless he's being offensive and nasty... which he ain't.
i think its a great interview and worth paying attention too if you're a new director wanting to make a splash
legion: you're on the right site, just on the wrong post.
i am on the wrong post, and you're late. so we're even.