We're seeing all sorts of new and innovative ways to get shorts, TV shows and feature films made these days. That said, we also continue to see the same old ways of creating the content that goes into them.
Adaptations remain very popular and many shorts and TV shows originate with an idea before proceeding through traditional development channels. Unfortunately, there has not been the same pace of change on this side of shows than on the production side and ideas continue to be pitched in the hope they will be picked up.
What if you were able to steadily grow something from an idea and ultimately be able to create a feature film instead?
Say you create a GIF with a funny little character (such as Brianne Drouhard's delightful Banana Cat above), then you make more GIFs and become popular enough to undertake a short. That short blows up YouTube and you get to make a series. The only place to go after that is a feature, which you duly accomplish.
Could such a scenario be possible in today's hyper-connected media landscape? If so, why aren’t we seeing more experimentation with it? Everyone should be creating GIFs of all sorts in the hope that they can grow something out of it. Heck, Cyanide and Happiness have managed to grow a web series out of a comic strip, who's to say you can’t do the same with GIFs?
Charles Kenny writes prolifically on his own blog, The Animation Anomaly.