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Masterclass Richard Jobson (11/22/2008)




Scottish filmmaker, scriptwriter and producer Richard Jobson discussed the advantages of digital video in relation to film in his Masterclass on the 22nd of November in the Pavlos Zannas theatre. Jobson directed New Town Killers, showcased in the Special Screenings section of the 49th TIFF. Jobson, who works exclusively with digital, has already shot 4 low budget features. "A small budget is actually an advantage, as it allows you to experiment, try out your ideas. In conventional filmmaking, many directors make one film and that's where it ends for them". Like in the music industry, if a film doesn't do well, its director might not make another one; in my opinion, that's very sad". Jobson used to be the front man of the punk band The Skids, as well as a TV presenter, before he became involved with filmmaking. He noted that he is angered by the fact that in the UK filmmaking is a rich man's hobby; however, he himself uses this anger in a creative manner and does not allow himself to become bitter. Jobson then discussed his method of working. "I started in 2003 and I make a film every year and a half. My first one, Sixteen Years Of Alcohol, cost about 400.000 British pounds and the second one, The Purifiers, cost so little that I cant even remember the amount; it must have been 50 pence! I then shot A Woman In Winter with 300.000 British pounds and New Town Killers is the most expensive one so far, with a budget of 1 million. I always know the budget beforehand and never exceed that amount. Digital technology allows you to be in control of the costs". Jobson also defended the aesthetics of digital cinema, stressing that high definition technology provided a depth of field that was not previously there. He said that he likes digital images because of their speed, as well as the possibilities for post-production work, digital special effects, etc. Jobson, who loves kung fu movies, uses a lot of action and martial arts in his films and believes that, in his case, sound design and image are more important than the script. "Dialogue doesn't play such a big part in my films. I don't like dialogue-based dramas, where people sit in a coffee shop and chat; that is fitting for TV, but not cinema. I am keen on visual language, music and sounds. For my cinema is a way out and for this reason, I don't like realist cinema; I prefer a film that places me in a different, mysterious world". Jobson said that 35mm film will soon eclipse and that the digital revolution started 15-20 years ago, but it is today that we can really see its results. According to the Scottish filmmaker, digital technology is also very helpful in providing an alternative method of distribution, apart from movie theatres and DVDs. Sony will create a videogame based on my short film, I Am Digital, and I am having discussions with Apple about the creation of a platform that will allow the screening and buying of digital films in the web". Jobson founded the Jobson Digital Film School in 2007 and concluded his Masterclass by providing advice to new filmmakers: "In my Film School, I try to help students develop script ideas deriving from the possibilities that digital provides. In punk music, you just need three chords to say something; it's the same with digital filmmaking. A first time filmmaker needs to have clear ideas about the film he wants to make and use images, instead of investing too much on dialogue. He will have to find ambitious actors and post-production collaborators; and to always look for creative solutions to whatever problems that may arise".

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About Thessaloniki

Mcmahon Vanessa

Vanessa McMahon Covered the 13th and 14th, and 16th edition.
Catherine Esway has covered the 12th edition of Thessaloniki Documentary Festival
Cécile Rittweger covered the  11th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival

Christine Marik's reported from 49th Thessaloniki International Film Festival
Past coverage from the 10th Thessaloniki Documentary Festival by Bruno Chatelin.

Through its tributes, it focuses both on discovering filmmakers with a unique cinematic point of view, and on the internationally recognized for their contribution to documentary.

Contributions from Buno Chatelin



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