Thursday, June 2, 2011

Editorial - Looking to the Future

I have this time machine here, see?  I've had it since I was a kid back in 1977, and I've played with it quite a bit over the years (Though I must deny all involvement regarding created alternate timelines, per legal counsel).  Sometimes I use it to look at the future, to see how things are going and where they will go.  The other night I was feeling a bit bored, so I had a look at a broadcast of Entertainment Tonight from 2023:

"So here we are tonight talking to the hottest new director in Hollywood, McPhat, about this summer's biggest movie, Green Lantern 5:  The PosterTrailer.  Tell us all about it, McPhat!"

"Well, Tom, we knew we'd pushed the limits pretty far with GL4: A Ton of CGI Shit, so where do you go from that?  WHERE do you go, I ask?  What I've made here is, I truly believe, the first genuinely post-modern cinematic experience.  GL5: The PosterTrailer is an epic, broadband, cross-marketable masterpiece that combines the latest in modern technology with cloud-based virtualization of the hottest intellectual property trademarks to provide the ultimate mass media, multi-pronged consumer experience."

"What's this film about, McPhat?"

"Film?  No, no, you Philistines are missing the point!  There's no FILM here.  Our test markets all tell us that audiences today are concerned with just two things, a movie's poster and its trailer.  Put out a great poster and an FX-showcase trailer and they'll eat it up and talk about it on the internet for months.  Beyond that, GL5 will be an avalanche of multimedia crossover - There's the MMORPG, multiple console games, an Angry Birds/Green Lantern mashup game for the iPad 7, the soundtrack, the Mauve-Ray 3D virtual experience...  Green Lantern fans are going to LOVE it, and the general public will too!"

"So...  There is no actual movie?"

"You HAVE to stop thinking so Twentieth Century, Tom.  Plot, characters, story - These are all passé, the modern audience is SO beyond these things now.  Who has time to watch a two hour movie?  In fact, our marketing department is even telling us we'll need to cut our trailer runtime for GL6: Send us your money again for the same goddamn thing because today's movie-watching public just can't spare that full 5 minutes - Even with an image strobe-flashing every .26 seconds, surveys tell us the consumer's mind starts to drift after 3.7 minutes.  And I am SO not about boring movies, man.  The name McPhat stands for EXCITEMENT!"

"But your movie has a 400 million dollar budget.  What does the money go for, if it's not an actual film?"

"Tom, Tom, the shareholders deserve their profits from what the movie will make, don't you agree?  You're not a communist, are you?  And also, there's the director to pay!"

"Ummm...  So can you tell us anything about the tie-in videogame?"

"Absolutely.  It will be a 3D FPS, where the player will run, fly and drive around levels trying to shoot enemies with his green power ring before they can shoot him.  I'm overseeing the whole thing.  It will be a revolution in gaming!  Also, there are cutscenes."

"And what is your next project going to be, McPhat?"

"An all-CGI remake of It's a Wonderful Life starring our full-body scans of Megan Fox as every character.  Right now, our best FX team is working on a staggering 49,300 special effects shots for the three minute trailer, including an extra $59 million dollar budget dedicated to the flying digital shark battle alone.  It will be epic."

"Thank you for your time, Mister McPhat.  This summer sure sounds exciting to me!"

And that's why I don't use my time machine to look into the future very often.