Friday, September 27, 2013

Sleep No More

Tribeca Films Storyscapes Festival was last April.  Tribeca Films, and other traditional film organizations such as the IFP and Sundance Films are moving towards supporting transmedia project.

The clip above is from the Storyscapes Festival.  Ingrid Kopp from Tribeca describes the projects as:
Insomniacs are both spectators and actors in this large, interactive project that combines accounts of sleepless nights from across the world. In many countries, at any time, at least one in three people have problems sleeping. New Yorkers are no strangers to this affliction, familiar with the anxiety and pressures that keep us up at night. The talented team at NFB Interactive have been collecting stories via video, text and drawing online since fall 2012, and in this second phase of the project, they will share answers to questions like, what is your relationship with your alarm clock? What is out of your control? What scares you?  In the Storyscapes space, A Journal of Insomnia will take you into a different zone. Share your own stories of sleepless nights and discover what other people get up to in the wee hours by entering a bedroom space in this fully immersive, contemplative installation. 
Here are some other examples from PC Magazine 
The NY Times on April 12th, 2013 pulbished an article:  As You Watch. Invasion of Platforms 
Visitors to “A Journal of Insomnia,” part of the Storyscapes section of the forthcoming Tribeca Film Festival, will set up an appointment and, at the agreed-upon hour, receive a phone call. They will then presumably stumble sleepless to their computers, click on the “Insomnia” Web site and interact with one of four characters featured in the festival’s foray into transmedia: the crazy-quilt crossroads of new technology, uncertain expectations and audience participation.

Here are some transmedia examples from the festival:

Robots in Residence - While films are premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival, some of the tiniest attendees are making their own movie. The BlabDroids are small cardboard-bodied robots with the voice of a 7-year-old. Their disarming nature lures people into answering their 17 questions, including "Who do you love most in the world?" and "What is the worst thing you have ever done to someone?" The BlabDroids were Alex Reben's thesis at MIT, part of which concerned theELIZA effect. Reben said each of the BlabDroids costs about $800 and three days to build. After interviewing Tribeca Film Festival attendees, the BlabDroids will make their own documentary and screen it on April 21st.

This Exquisite Forest - Games played by surrealists were never of the board or boring variety. They would instead assemble word or picture collages from their collective imaginations in the game known as Exquisite Corpse. Music video director and photographer Chris Milk and digital media artist Aaron Koblin have made a globe-spanning digital version of the game re-named with This Exquisite Forest. The collaborative art project features artists from the Tate Modern including Bill Woodrow, Mark Titchner, and Dryden Goodwin, who planted the seeds of the forest and worked with Google in growing the forest online. It's built using HTML5, JavaScript, and the Google App Engine and uses Google Cloud storage.

Star Wars Uncut - Plenty of Star Wars fans dress up as favorite characters when they go see the movies, but Star Wars Uncut gives them a chance to be in the movies. The project is the work of web developer Casey Pugh, who diced up The Empire Strikes Back into 480 segments of 15 seconds each and asked fans to remake them in whichever way they chose. So far they've featured everything from Han Solo getting frozen in the style of A-HA's "Take On Me" video to Claymation Boba Fett. All the segments are on view in the Storyscapes installation, and the final product will be released as a director's cut, as was Pugh's earlier work A New Hope Uncut.

A Journal of Insomnia - In a black box with a low-ceilinged entrance a computer glows red. Visitors enter the structure to pass into the world of the insomniac, donning headphones and answering on-screen questions about their relationship to sleep. The installation's creators said that rather than taking a clinical approach to the widespread condition of insomnia, they took a personal, anthropological one. Visitors to the site can watch insomniacs tell their stories and make an (after-dark) appointment to be woken up and experience firsthand struggles with sleep. A Journal of Insomnia is the work of the National Film Board of Canada.

Sandy Storyline is a video chronicle of Hurricane Sandy's effects. On the project site, those affected by the storm can share written, audio, video, or photographic accounts. The installation is set inside high walls, with a television askew on a pile of debris playing documentary footage. One great irony of Sandy Storyline is that you can charge your mobile device in the installation, something so many were scrambling to do for weeks after the storm.

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