In an 11.28 Brooks Barnes piece titled “Hollywood’s Obituary, the Sequel. Now Streaming,” producer-director J.J. Abrams explains the difference between movies and TV: “Television is the child and the audience is the parent. It’s smaller than you. You can control it by changing the channel. With movies, the roles are reversed. You are the small one. You’re supposed to look up at them.
“I think going to a theater is like going to church and watching a movie at home is like praying at home,” Abrams adds. “It’s not that you can’t do it. But the experience is wholly different.”
Key Barnes paragraph: “In the 110-year history of the American film industry, never has so much upheaval arrived so fast and on so many fronts, leaving many writers, directors, studio executives, agents and other movie workers disoriented and demoralized — wandering in ‘complete darkness,’ as one longtime female producer told me.
Photo by Philip Cheung for The New York Times .
Barnes: “These are melodramatic people by nature, but talk to enough of them and you will get the strong sense that their fear is real this time.”
“Cinema as an art form is not going to die,” said Michael Shamberg, the producing force behind films like Erin Brockovich, The Big Chill and, rather appropriately, Contagion. “But the tradition of cinema that we all grew up on, falling in love with movies in a theater, is over.
“Cinema needs to be redefined so that it doesn’t matter where you see it,” Shamberg says. “A lot of people, sadly, don’t seem to be ready to admit that.”
In other words, Barnes explains, “the art may live on, but the myth of big screens as the be-all and end-all is being dismantled in a fundamental and perhaps irreversible manner.”
“No wonder Hollywood has been experiencing, as the trade newsletter The Ankler recently put it, ‘a heart attack wrapped inside a nervous breakdown.’”
posted by yours truly on 4.7.18.