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NELSON CARVAJAL: Film is dead but filmmaking is very much alive

For the longest time, I’ve struggled with labeling myself a “filmmaker.” Maybe it’s a feeling of guilt that I have. The fact of the matter is I’ve never made a movie on film, on celluloid. Actually, I can’t think of a single reason for me to ever shoot on film. It’s ridiculously expensive, requires a slew of extra manpower in order to operate those bulky 35mm cameras and then on top of all that, exhibiting a movie through traditional film projection is becoming less of a reality for independent filmmakers. Thus, I always refer to myself as a “digital filmmaker.” Yes, I make movies (albeit short films, usually containing appropriated mixed media) but they’re all pieces of content that exist because of the streamlined workflow provided by digital production tools. “Filmmaking” is something I do and with as much fervor as any 35mm director has to offer but the big difference is that I am willing to embrace the time I live in. That time is an era where I can say out loud that film is dead. It’s dead to me as an artist. Yes, I love the cinema. I love going to movie art houses and listening to reels of films roar from the creaky projection booth. But for me to also say that I want to follow that route of physical creation makes about as much sense as a person going to a museum and saying they want to give the caveman era a crack at it himself or herself.
  • By Nelson Carvajal
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  • February 7, 2012 5:34 AM
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  • 16 Comments

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