Category Archives: Technology

Photoshop for Dialogue

By | Behind The Scenes, Creative, Technology | No Comments

Adobe is working on a new technology that will allow for voice dialogue to be edited and even created. VoCo — or Voice Conversion — uses a long sample of an actor’s speech to capture all of the components of the sound — the phonemes. Once that data has been captured the software allows for direct editing of dialogue as well as the creation of new words and even complete lines.

Sound is a critical part of any film, so this tool could be handy to have, however it could be abused readily. For example, any person could use the tool on a sample of a famous actor’s (or politician’s) speech and then form new dialogue in that voice. Also, voiceover for animation could become a less “live” endeavor if an actor is replaced by his phonemes and this software. On the bright side though, if we had this technology some time ago we might still have the real Fred Flintstone and the real Winnie the Pooh.

The Story

By | Creative, Technology, Video Marketing | No Comments

Every DSLR-toting filmmaker will tell you that the story is more important that the technical details. But that statement is a little too simplistic. Of course the story rules all — that is a given. How it is presented though — which must include some technicals — drives how well the story is understood and enjoyed by viewers. Even the best story will fail if it is presented in a way that is bland or off-putting to viewers. This is especially true now that (some) humans appear to have the attention span of a small amphibian.

This short, Le Gouffre, is a great example. The story is beautiful, enchanting even, but it is the visual presentation that elicits that enchantment. Presented in a more generic style, or in any manner short of its correct and final presentation, it would be much less effective — less enveloping, less engaging, and less enjoyable.

When you decide to create your own visual presence, contact L7 Original. Our team here in San Diego can put your company — your ideas and stories — into a viewable, short film experience that will enchant and entertain viewers.

Le Gouffre from Lightning Boy Studio on Vimeo.

Film — The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

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Mostly the ugly in this case. Tarantino’s roadshow production of the Hateful Eight sounded like a great idea to me. Present the film in 70mm projected glory, complete with an intermission and — best of all — no pre-show commercials. Many film insiders snapped up the tickets for this very limited run.

As it turned out though, there were problems. Some were purely artistic, as some complained that 70mm was wasted on the story, which takes place largely on one indoor set. Many other problems were technical though. This blog details many tweets complaining of projection problems, including focus, broken film, and in one extreme case, a theatre substituting the digital version when the film did not work out.

Could this be the last stand for film? That seems unlikely. Another blockbuster — numbered seven rather than a Hateful Eight — also was shot on film recently, and it is doing pretty well.

Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut’s New ‘BlockBuster Box’ Creates a Buzz

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Pizza Hut has revolutionized the concept of a ‘night in’ by combining two classic favorites: dinner and a movie. By joining forces with Ogilvy & Mather Group Hong Kong, the pizza giant has created a pizza box that doubles as a movie projector.

Included in the box is a “pizza saver” disc located in the center of the pie, which can be removed and placed on the side of the box. Once the lens is in place, short films can be projected through the user’s smartphone by using an app.

In conjunction with the goals of the client, chief creative officer of Ogilvy & Mather Hong Kong, Reed Collins, aimed to grab consumers attention and get them talking about the product. This creative and dual-purpose contraption sparked buzz from techies everywhere, and marketers and pizza connoisseurs are reacting positively.

To appeal to a wide audience, illustrators created artwork on the boxes including sci-fi, action, and even romance scenes to set the movie mood. One of the most memorable pieces from this buzz-worthy box is it’s ability to be re-used as a projector for other content from their phones such as YouTube videos, personal video clips, or photo slideshows. Watch the video tutorial here.

Not only has Pizza Hut gained the PR it wanted, but it has branded itself apart from it’s competitors as a trailblazer in the digital world. People will not necessarily be running to their cabinets to retrieve their month old, grease stained pizza box projector next friday night. However, this box has successfully increased Pizza Hut’s brand equity by merging a product with an experience!


Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality and the Challenges in Advertising

By | Technology, Trends, Video Marketing | No Comments

There has been a lot hype about Virtual Reality in the marketing world, but is it a possibility that VR holds more problems than benefits for brands?

Virtual Reality is a new and enticing medium that has gained a lot of attention from major brands like Mountain Dew and Volvo. However, there are some setbacks that are stalling the implementation of Virtual Reality as a mainstream campaign tool:

  1. Brands are finding it difficult to find ways to promote their products with VR.
  2. Cost of production is a challenge. Each video can run more than $1 million, and brands are finding it hard to justify the steep cost with the uncertainty of its success.

While these challenges are slowing down the progress of Virtual Reality, the possibilities of 3-D video are ‘virtually’ endless! It will just take some warming up from brands and their consumers in order for Virtual Reality to have a successful takeoff.