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How filmmaking is becoming creatively productive during the lockdown

May 14, 2020, 13:00 IST
Taj Ali Naqvi, Director Films & Production, IsobarIsobar
  • The Covid-19 lockdown has led to a complete standstill for the film and entertainment industry, with all shooting brought to a halt.
  • However, this hasn't stopped filmmaker from coming up with innovative content, primarily shot from home.
  • Taj Ali Naqvi, Director Films & Production, Isobar writes about how filmmaking is adapting itself to changing times, with more and more people experimenting with different ways of telling stories.
The Covid-19 pandemic repercussions are turning out to be disastrous for the film and entertainment industry. However, this has led to an increase in consumption of films in India and around the globe. Every industry across the province has had to make adjustments during COVID-19 to ensure the safety of employees and the public. And, the film industry is no different. During the lockdown, TV, gaming, digital and OTT platforms are seeing a growth in consumption.

Right now, the first role of content marketers and producers is to listen. Find out what their audiences are worried about, and what they need. Then put it first. It’s the best way to develop relationships that are built on trust — and relationships that are built to last.

The outdoor consumption models such as film shoots on locations, studios, sound studios etc are witnessing a dramatic fall with social distancing norms in place. But the myriad possibilities that film-making offers is coming to the rescue, especially in creating short films. Another sector which is set to bloom and make its way is animation and graphic-oriented films for storytelling. Animators, unlike live-video producers, can create from the safety of their own homes and bring any story to life. Motion graphics can take on a huge variety of styles and topics. It is particularly useful for different brands and their internal projects as well since it easily allows data visualization, icons, and illustrations of complex or abstract topics.
In these times, we have got access to a lot of people and talents, who are ready to work from their own small pocket studios and homes and still entertain the audience with their presence, creating content for their prospects/existing customer base in the form of virtual peer groups, podcasts/talk shows, webinars, or town halls. That’s what has made it easier to unite film-makers from around the world, creating a community of optimism in these dark times.

I believe in the power of stories. Storytellers can keep everyone hopeful, entertained and help us make sense of the world. Covid, in many ways, is offering opportunities for the kind of work which is possible in limited resources and limitations for filmmakers. Years ago, the idea of shooting short movies on your camera phone wasn’t possible. But today it is! I personally believe that our role didn’t become redundant in these times, especially with digital film-making, but rather video production teams have become creatively productive with the help of the limited equipment they have in hand. Our phones have become larger, more powerful and evermore like mini media centers. Mobile filmmaking using tablets, phablets and phones has become a popular way to make short films and content and has turned the tables around for the narratives. Mobile filmmaking is a great way to experiment with sculpting a narrative on the fly. As a video professional, you’re used to having access to a studio and filming people in person, but the way that you conduct your day-to-day has changed significantly.

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