Tuesday, 25 January 2011

The Story Beyond The Still

Film-makers have always performed independent projects with a select team of friends and associates, realising their ideas into film form that will hopefully interest and inspire others.

But I've always thought about film-making as a community. Is it possible for separate stranger teams of film-makers to collaborate a large scale project where each team produces a chapter that flows seamlessly as a singular narrative vessel when compiled together?

Canon USA has allowed photographers to become film-makers where they get to reproduce what they see beyond the still in the form of a short video. The Story Beyond The Still, the first user-generated HD video contest jointly organised by Canon USA and Vimeo.

Every chapter begins with a photo still and ends with another. The ending still of the previous chapter is also the beginning still of the next. Talented photographers are allowed to fill in what they imagine to be between the opening and closing stills, clearly derivative of their creativity that is showcased through their video clip submissions.

Vincent Laforet, one of the most influential photographers around, started the ball rolling by coming up with the first chapter. The subsequent six chapters will then be filled up by periodic winning chapter submissions, where the final chapter (Chapter 8) will then be interpreted and produced by Laforet in collaboration with all six chapter winners.

Check out all seven winning chapters as well as the conclusive 8th chapter by Vincent Laforet below:
(Highly recommended to be viewed in HD fullscreen)

Final Collaborative Film
By Vincent Laforet

Behind the Scenes
By Vincent Laforet

It allows all the different vision and style of various film-makers to churn out endless possibilies of cinematic excellence and potential. Notice how the story steers towards directions in some chapters that are totally out of expectation. This has made the video contest one that is exhilarating to watch.

Unfortunately the contest is regionally limited only to US residents. I do hope that Canon Asia will be able to organise similar within the Asia Pacific region as there is truly a vast pool of talented independent and industrial video photographers who can showcase their optimal capabilities with film-making dSLRs such as Canon's 7D and 5D Mark II.

It will further promote and propel our regional and local film industry scene, which is a dream that I will like to see realised.

Check out all the submissions and more details here.


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