July 6, 2010
Tel Aviv/L.A. Film Confab Broadens Musical Horizons
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For independent documentary filmmaker Maital Guttman, who also blogs for jewishjournal.com, being able to interact with other professionals in the industry and really collaborate was the best part. “You share ideas, and then you each gain by having more ideas and more creativity and you get to hear from other people’s experiences,” she said. “We show each other our work. We give and get feedback, and we get the chance to potentially work together. I’m here for a year, and it’s been a great entry into Israel, because now I have these 15 wonderful friends who are here in the industry.”
Last year at the master class, Tassler pointed out the terrible economy’s silver lining: Television shows in a small country like Israel, where production costs are naturally much lower, have better chances of being picked up by major American television networks than ever before. She cited the Israeli-created “In Treatment” as a good example.
This year, according to Schnur, the economic shift in the gaming industry also has a silver lining.
“What the recession did was change the way the industry looked at the potential for games, but what it did here is make people realize there is an entire different, additional industry.” After all, social-media games also need music. And for composers who know how to promote themselves, that’s good news.
Beyond imparting career advice and insider knowledge about how music works within the gaming industry, Schnur also took the time to set up several collaborations. “I already spoke to two or three of the folks that were in our class for the last couple of days. I’m going to have them work on some projects and demos for me. I think two or three of them exceeded what I came here with.”
On a broader note, Schnur also met with one of the members of his all-time favorite Israeli band, HaDag Nachash, to ask if they would re-record one of the songs from their new album in Simlish for “The Sims” — one of the most popular video game series ever made. “That pretty much guarantees me, as a huge fan, that everybody around the world will hear them and not necessarily be held back by the Hebrew language,” Schnur said. “This is a band that I’m destined and determined to make sure everybody knows.”
Jonathan Littman, president of Bruckheimer Television, attended the event for the first time this year. Others attendees included Danny Sussman, manager, Brillstein Entertaiment Partners; writer/producer Ed Redlich; and producer Sarah Timberman. Littman said he was impressed and surprised by what he saw during the week. “It’s a smaller industry here, and much more personal, so everyone really knows each other,” he said. “It’s much more of a nascent business, but with so much creative power and drive. I was not expecting the sheer amount of talent and hunger here.”
Littman said he hopes that the relationships forged over the week will lead to future collaborations between Israel and the United States.
“The last four days we progressed,” Schnur said excitedly. “The folks who were here are much better prepared to go out and attack Hollywood and share their talents verbally, musically and creatively. Their ideas were much more advanced and bigger by the end than they were when they started. It’s phenomenal to see that kind of A-to-Z result.”
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