Stream is a new magazine devoted to filmmakers who want to exploit new technologies in producing, promoting and distributing their work. It’s not as complicated as it sounds: We wish simply to be enablers. Filmmaking is the cultural phenomenon of our times, in the way that rock n roll was a generation or two (or three) ago. Once upon a time, any kid could pick up a cheap guitar and make their own noise. Now that cheap guitar is a cheap video camera, and they’re not making noise, they’re making cinema. And they don’t necessarily have to be kids, either. Stream Magazine is devoted to them and their efforts, helping them make the most of their creative potential and keep up with ever-quickening pace of change in the commercial and technological landscape….
The heart of the Stream operation will be a daily blog written by Eric Kohn. He’s a graduate of New York University, where he majored in cinema studies, and he now works in Brooklyn as a film journalist and critic. His writing regularly appears in the New York Press, indieWIRE and The Hollywood Reporter. For the blog, Eric will scour the indie landscape to find compelling new developments for digitally-oriented filmmakers; he’ll also be reporting on coverage by the mainstream media, breaking it down and analyzing its significance for the solo practitioner.
In addition to Kohn, the site is boasting great contributors whose names will be very familiar to Filmmaker readers. Jamie Stuart promises a “tools and technology” column called “The Accidental Auteur.” By clicking to a section called “Rights and Revenue” you go to an interview with Ira Deutchman. Lance Weiler will be contributing pieces shortly. And a section called “The Stream 17” takes you to the site’s picks for the best directors of online video. And “The Feed” takes you a blog about things happening in the film world. Here’s an excerpt of Kohn on SXSW:
Without a doubt, many of the unsuspectingly strong narrative features in the festival this year won’t get recognized until they premiere. The documentaries, however, sound immensely appealing. It’s this genre where low budget tactics and shoddy camera work are easily forgiven so long as the nonfiction hook is a good one. We Are the Wizards, which takes a look at Harry Potter obsessives, sounds like Trekkies for the fantasy crowd. Sex Positive investigates the radical life of Richard Berkovitz, the former hustler who became an AIDS activist in the 1980s. Super High Me, meanwhile, follows the exploits of comedian Doug Benson, as he attempts two month-long periods of nonstop toking. Yes, you can learn a lot about American culture at SXSW. It feels honest.
The site, by the way, is the sister site of Wonderland, which bills itself as a “talent-seeking engine which filters the best filmmakers online.”
Stream just launched about ten days ago, and I look forward to checking it out — and linking back to it — as it grows in the weeks ahead.