Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Anatomy of a Shambles

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  • Peter Cox,

    And while we're briefly on the subject of screen-writers, someone just facebooked this to me, so here it is:

    '17 Reasons Your Screenplay Got Rejected'

    (An old rejection letter from a production company that made Charlie Chaplin movies):

    http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=130812644

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 310 posts Report Reply

  • nzlemming,

    Kudos to Sacha for "Te Hobbit"

    Waikanae • Since Nov 2006 • 1701 posts Report Reply

  • Jaymax,

    I would shoot the Hobbit in the face

    The hobbit, of course, would prefer to shoot itself in the foot.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 25 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    Should really be Te Hopita then.

    Oma hopiti, oma hopiti,
    Oma, oma, oma

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 838 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    The hobbit, of course, would prefer to shoot itself in the foot.

    (not for the last time).

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8015 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    Andre Alessi - nice one!

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Petra,

    lol

    I often wake up with an 'earworm' each morning. Now I think Oma hopiti will be my morning earworm for the next few years.


    Damn you, Andre Alessi! Damn you to earworm hell! *shakes fist*

    Rotorua • Since Mar 2007 • 317 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Te Hobbit

    Thanks, Mark. Be interesting to see how it plays more broadly, Peter.

    And nice one, Andre.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 15714 posts Report Reply

  • rodgerd,

    What are TV broadcast fees like for major films?

    Getting worse as more people head to the torrentmobile, I expect.

    (I hope no-one carping about actors' residuals would be undermining the business model they depend on in such a way!)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • Pat Hackett,

    In other news, John Minto has finally found a protest rally he was ashamed of.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 95 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    Budgets are going DOWN. No two ways about it.

    Its the potential massive return on the back end (if the film is any good, and of course populous film makers think their projects are worthy of massive acclaim) that will always suck people in.

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1149 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    3 - TV pretty much meets basic standards anyway, at least in terms of upfront costs (residuals probably need some negotiation, if it's true Robyn Malcolm got precisely nothing from the DVDs). So no real direct budgetary pressure there.

    OF is really in an unusual position in potentially attracting viable residuals income though -- it's really not an issue with most NZ TV productions. Barney's contention is that the residuals are covered in the OF actors' pay, but he kinda would say that.

    Question: would residuals be calculated before or after the NZ On Air clawback?

    I'll tell you one thing that does p**s me off though: the MEAA trying to get MEAA conditions in NZ local production, but not accepting SAG standards in Australian local production. Hypocritical at all?

    Way back when Global Rule One was introduced, the MEAA objected loudly to it -- but then did a deal and everything changed.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 17938 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    Barney's contention is that the residuals are covered in the OF actors' pay, but he kinda would say that.

    Pretty much.

    Question: would residuals be calculated before or after the NZ On Air clawback?

    Hmm... good question. Depends on whether it's net or gross in the individual contract itself I'd imagine. Good luck getting anything net though...

    Way back when Global Rule One was introduced, the MEAA objected loudly to it -- but then did a deal and everything changed.

    Well, natch. ;)

    All in all, it's just patently daft to have an Australian Guild negotiating here for Australian rates as it would in the film industry. There's nothing wrong with Global Rule One, if NZ AE were negotiating their own conditions within the 'eco-system' of the local NZ Industry, but it ought to be obvious trying to shove MEAA rates carte-blanche in NZ should be something that's obviously going to make the rest of the industry pretty furious.

    Having said all that, that's what AE seem to be doing with SPADA now, so all power to them.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 310 posts Report Reply

  • Jonathan King,

    >Budgets are going DOWN. No two ways about it.

    Its the potential massive return on the back end (if the film is any good, and of course populous film makers think their projects are worthy of massive acclaim) that will always suck people in.

    I was talking about NZ films. Massive return on back end? Uh-uh.

    Since Sep 2010 • 170 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    I was talking about NZ films. Massive return on back end? Uh-uh.

    What?! Oh, NOW you tell me...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 310 posts Report Reply

  • Pat Hackett,

    New York times today:

    Mr. Whipp said his repeated offers to talk with Warner executives and those producing the films had been ignored. “I would have thought, as a simpleton, that if you have a problem, talking would be one way to solve it.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/26/business/media/26hobbit.html

    Of course he is rewriting history here (and being a prick about it). The copies of the letters sent in August and afterwards to 3 Foot 7 were not an invite to have a chat. They were threatening a global boycott if a collective MEAA contract was not put in place. They were an ultimatum that was followed through with.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 95 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    They were threatening a global boycott if a collective MEAA contract was not put in place.

    Actually, just from those letters on the MEAA website, it rather looks to me like the boycott was instituted well BEFORE those first letters requesting a meeting were even sent...

    There may be letters to 3'7 before that but I've never heard of any specific reference to those, much less seen any evidence of them.

    It does seem very odd to institute a global boycott on the Hobbit and not tell the Producers about it for a couple of months, but... that's certainly the way it looks from the publicly available documents.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 310 posts Report Reply

  • Andre Alessi,

    “I would have thought, as a simpleton..."

    Well then.

    Devonport, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 838 posts Report Reply

  • Sam F,

    Would seem to explain rather a lot.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 1549 posts Report Reply

  • Pat Hackett,

    These were the original letters - from:

    http://www.alliance.org.au/documents/100922_hobbit_factsheet.pdf

    On 17 August the General Secretary and President of FIA wrote the production company which will produce the film asking that they make contact with the Alliance. A copy of that letter is available here
    http://www.alliance.org.au/documents/letter1.pdf

    On 20 August the English speaking unions in FIA wrote a joint letter to the producers of the film advising that they were adhering to the FIA position set out in the 17 August letter. A copy of that letter is
    available here
    http://www.alliance.org.au/documents/letter2.pdf

    On 31 August the Alliance wrote to the studios behind the film, MGM and New Line. A copy of that letter is available here http://www.alliance.org.au/documents/letter3.pdf

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 95 posts Report Reply

  • Pat Hackett,

    Actually, just from those letters on the MEAA website, it rather looks to me like the boycott was instituted well BEFORE those first letters requesting a meeting were even sent...

    Yes you are right. When you read the first letter, they had already passed a resolution for the boycott.

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 95 posts Report Reply

  • Peter Cox,

    Yes, so not so much an ultimatum: 'negotiate a collective agreement with us or else'; so much as 'we've got you by the balls, waddya gonna do about it?'

    It's not so much a threat as... what is the word when you carry out the threat in advance and then say you'll stop doing it only when they do what you say?

    The FIA meeting where the resolution was passed was in July or so. Not sure if AE was at it or not.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 310 posts Report Reply

  • rodgerd,

    It's not so much a threat as... what do you carry out the threat in advance and then say you'll stop do it only when they do what you say?

    "Dat wuz a nice store you had. Pity somethin' already happened to it. Maybe you should pay us some insurance money for burning it down."

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 512 posts Report Reply

  • Jaymax,

    The FIA meeting where it was passed was in July or so.

    25th of June most likely.

    http://www.fia-actors.com/en/meetings.html

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 25 posts Report Reply

  • Pat Hackett,

    No wonder Warners are worried. The same people who said "There was never a boycott" and "We never asked for Collective Agreement" are now giving promises not to strike during the production. Credibility Alert!

    Auckland • Since Oct 2010 • 95 posts Report Reply

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