Director and Audience: Changing Tastes in America

The plaintive cry “Why don’t the make them like they used to?,” is addressed from the point of view of the independent feature film director. The changing nature of audience sensibilities and taste is one part of the dialect, the other is the shift in film aesthetics and style, particularly in terms of violence and sex. The difficulties in getting projects produced, the problems sometimes involved in remakes, marketing and distribution, and the evolution and changes in filmic literacy and knowledge are all major aspects of this questions. Independent feature production often represents alternative choices, but how is it constrained and influenced by these realities? “Art” films used to be at the cutting edge of those works which took risks and pushed against a very conservative aesthetic. Is this still the case, or has the situation changed? Finally, how do these questions relate back to the original issue creative freedom, the aesthetic cornerstone of independent filmmaking? Critics and directors will discuss all aspects of this fascinating inquiry during those panel, sponsored by the Directors Guild of America.


Todd McCarthy
Gary Walkow
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