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ÉCU-The European Independent Film Festival


ÉCU - The European Independent Film Festival is dedicated to the discovery and advancement of the very best independent films from around the world. We are a festival who believes in our independent filmmakers and their artistic talents. ÉCU proudly provides a unique platform that brings together diverse audiences who are hungry for something other than major studio productions and original and innovative filmmakers. 

 
The 16th edition of ÉCU - The European Independent Film Festival will take place on 9th-11th April 2021. Now open for submissions!

 

 

 

For more details regarding the festival, please visit our website at www.ecufilmfestival.com

 

 


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MTV VIDEO MUSIC AWARDS: THE BEGINNING

 by Robert Barry

The competition was stiff. Amongst the other nominees were Herbie Hancock’s ‘Rockit’, Cyndi Lauper’s ‘Girls Just Wanna Have Fun’, the Tobe Hooper-directed clip for Billy Idol’s ‘Dancing With Myself’, and the epic $500,000 mini-movie of Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’. But the first ever MTV Video Music Award for Video of the Year went to the number 7 hit, ‘You Might Think’ from Bostonian new-wavers, The Cars.

Opening in a computer-generated apartment with black walls and an ominously cloudy ‘real’ sky visible through the window, a scantily clad brunette lounging on a bright blue bed. Suddenly, gravity evaporates and everything starts floating upwards before switching into an assortment of curiously mundane objects (a car door, a hammer) which then fall into a hall opened up in singer Ric Ocasek’s head.

Ocasek’s dour mien, clad in black shades and sullen expresion, subsequently turns up in a series of improbable blue-screened situations – popping out of a lipstick, holding a road drill to the girl’s mouth, in a submarine in her bathtub, and so forth – in an increasingly desperate attempt to catch the attention of our negligéd heroine until he finally gives up, unscrews his own face and lets a waterfall pour out. The clip ends with the words “The End” vomiting themselves up onto the screen in the kind of slime font familiar from children’s television.

Considering what it was up against, and how very badly the (then pioneering) visual effects have aged, the panel’s choice might be considered ill-judged. Such are the benefits of hindsight. But at the same time, The Cars’ video is bang on the 1984 zeitgeist.

In the year William Gibson wrote Neuromancer and first developed the term ‘cyberspace’ as a “consensual hallucination”, ‘You Might Think’ shows us a computer-generated virtual world in which the line between real and fake objects is constantly transgressed, and any kind of screen – mirrors, windows, etc. – can be a door into another reality. In the year Fredric Jameson first elaborated his thesis of postmodernism as “the cultural logic of late capitalism”, The Cars offer an ironic play of referents from films and popular culture with the logic of a Magritte painting; a pop art collage of decontextualised signifiers without signification, somewhere between a Pynchon novel and a Las Vegas strip mall.

Corny as ‘You Might Think’ looks now – and revered as ‘Thriller’ undoubtedly deserves to be – it’s nonetheless easy to see which was the nostalgic tribute to a lost past and which was grasping towards some dimly visible future; which was borrowing its forms from other art forms and which was trying, no matter how clumsily, to create a distinctive aesthetic for music videos sui generis.

Read the article in French, Italian or German here: http://www.ecufilmfestival.com/en/2012/01/mtvmusic/

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About ÉCU-The European Independent Film Festival

Hillier Scott
(ECU)

 

 

Scott Hillier, Founder and President of ÉCU - The European Independent Film Festival
 
Scott Hillier is a director, cinematographer, and screenwriter, based in Paris, France. In the last 20 years, Hillier has gained international recognition from his strong and incredible cinematography, editing, writing, producing and directing portfolio in both the television and film industries.  
 
Scott began his career in the television industry in Australia. In 1988, he moved to London getting a job with the BBC who then set him to Baghdad. This opportunity led him to 10 years of traveling around world for the BBC, mainly in war zones like Somalia, Bosnia, Tchetcheynia, Kashmir, and Lebanon. After a near fatal encounter with a Russian bomber in Tchechnyia, Hillier gave up his war coverage and began in a new direction. 
 

He moved to New York City in 1998.  He directed and photographed eight one-hour documentaries for National Geographic and The Discovery Channel. Based on his war knowledge and experience, Hillier wrote and directed a short film titled, “Behind the Eyes of War!" The film was awarded “Best Short Dramatic Film” at the New York Independent Film and TV Festival in 1999. From that he served as Supervising Producer and Director for the critically acclaimed CBS 42 part reality series, "The Bravest” in 2002 and wrote and directed a stage play called, "Deadman’s Mai l," which ran at Le Théâtre du Moulin de la Galette in Paris during the summer of 2004. He then became the Director of Photography on a documentary titled, “Twin Towers." This was yet another life changing experience for Hillier. The riveting documentary won an Academy Award for "Best Documentary Short Subject" in 2003. In 2004, Hillier changed continents again, spending three months in Ethiopia. He produced “Worlds Apart,” a pilot for ABC America / True Entertainment / Endemol. As you can see, Hillier was and is always in constant movement and enjoys working in a number of diverse creative areas including documentaries, music videos, commercials, feature and short films.

 
Scott studied film at New York University and The London Film and Television School. He also studied literary non-fiction writing at Columbia University. Hillier's regular clients include the BBC, Microsoft, ABC, PBS and National Geographic. Between filming assignments, he used to teach film, a Masters Degree course in Screenwriting at the Eicar International Film School in Paris, France and journalism at the Formation des Journalistes Français in Paris, France. 
 

 


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