Monthly Archives: June 2017

This Force Awakened John Williams

Did you know yesterday’s blog post, “An Eternal Rey of Light,” was going to have a sequel?

Like most sequels, this blog post will be heavy on the action.

Continuing on the legacy of famed composer John Williams, specifically concerning his track titled, “Rey’s Theme” from The Force Awakens soundtrack, it seems prudent to show a brief interview with Rey herself:

Actress Daisy Ridley.

In this interivew, Ms. Ridley discusses her reaction to her theme song and, more importantly, the man who came up with said theme.

And here’s a bonus clip of John Williams discussing The Force Awakens and Rey.

That’s what you call being pitch perfect.

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An Eternal Rey of Light

YouTube is nothing but goofy videos, like cats that open doors, dogs that rap and a gerbil with a lightsaber.

That presumption is only partly correct (But c’mon…a gerbil with a lightsaber!).

Despite the preconveived notions about YouTube’s content, the videos that can be discovered while exploring the popular website are actually infinitely diverse. There are ridiculously silly and absurd videos, yes, but there are also amazing feats captured for millions (even billions) to see for an eye-opening surprise.

John Williams is a movie soundtrack legend. Mr. Williams has written and composed some of the most iconic scores in movie and cultural history.

  • Jaws (1975)
  • Star Wars (Beginning in 1977-Present)
  • Superman (1978)
  • Indiana Jones (Beginning in 1981-Present)
  • E.T. (1982)
  • Home Alone (1990)
  • Hook (1991)
  • Jurassic Park (1993)

In addition, what’s equally noteworthy of the past legacy of John Williams is the future legacy of John Williams. Returning to compose The Force Awakens (Star Wars: Episode VII) in 2015, one of the best instrumentals on the soundtrack is “Rey’s Theme.” And it sounds like YouTube user Chelsea Comeau is quite the good student in the John Williams school of brilliant character themes, with just a piano.

Now compare to the genius John Williams version, complete with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at his disposal. And, of course, let’s not forget that John Williams came up with this beautiful instrumental from his imagination.

Amazing.

It’s pretty great what you can find on YouTube, isn’t it?

Or what you can be inspired by on YouTube…

P.S. You’re welcome.

Setting the Stage for 20/3D Vision

Allow me to set the scene.

It’s December 8, 2011 and the 5th season and 11th episode (“The Speckerman Recurrence”) of The Big Bang Theory. Below is a portion of dialogue between the guys (Leonard, Sheldon, Raj and Howard) and Leonard’s childhood bully, Jimmy.

Jimmy: Okay, here it is. I have this great money-making idea. I just need a gear head to get it to the finish line.

Sheldon: Technically, Howard’s the gear head. Leonard’s just a dime store laser jockey.

Leonard: What’s the idea?

Jimmy: This is just between us, right?

Leonard: Right.

Jimmy: Okay. What do you think about a pair of glasses that makes any movie you want into 3D?

Raj: That sounds amazing. First movie I’m watching, Annie.

Howard: How exactly would these glasses work?

Jimmy: How the hell should I know? That’s why I need a nerd.

Leonard: I don’t think something like that’s even possible.

Jimmy: Aw, come on, you can figure it out. You’re like the smartest guy I’ve ever known.

Sheldon: The smartest? All right, you know, I may not have a firm grasp on sarcasm, but even I know that was a doozy. Leonard, you can’t live in fear of this man forever.

Leonard: Sheldon, I got this.

You know who does “got this,” to some degree?

James Cameron, apparently.

“I’m going to push. Not only for better tools, workflow, high dynamic range (HDR) and high frame rates (HFR) — the things we are working toward. I’m still very bullish on 3D, but we need brighter projection, and ultimately I think it can happen — with no glasses. We’ll get there.”
–Avatar Director James Cameron

Mr. Cameron was being honored at the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers. Mr. Cameron was receiving his membership to this organization.

Imagining 3D movies without the necessity for 3D glasses is something that people have been thinking about and hoping for. The next step after watching 3D movies without 3D glasses would, naturally, be allowing moviegoers to watch any film in either 3D or 2D. This is where the dialogue above from The Big Bang Theory comes into play. This venture would combine the technology James Cameron is projecting and then incorporate interested (key term) movie directors to take that subsequent giant leap in innovation (not in existence…right now). The next question is whether movie directors would want to film a movie this way, if it becomes possible? This part of the equation is still in the countless questions phase, but it doesn’t seem completely impossible after Mr. Cameron’s statement/implied progress above.

That notion, even if just a notion at this point, is still encouraging.

For the geniuses (cough cough the writers and scientific advisors) on The Big Bang Theory, the insanely cool leap in 3D technology was seen as practically impossible back in 2011. While this surreal tech doesn’t yet exist today, it may be available in some version in the future. Incredibly, Mr. Cameron just may have revealed that he’s discovered the “secret sauce” for the mind-blowing innovative feat of enjoying 3D movies sans 3D glasses. Despite the fact this invention may still be a few years off from reality, that near future time table is exciting nonetheless.

After all, some of the greatest inventions in human history started with the wildest, craziest ideas imaginable.

And we can’t wait to see this one.

Literally.

2049 Will Be Here Before You Know It

Science fiction was redefined with Ridley Scott’s 1982 cinematic benchmark Blade Runner.

Later this year, in October of 2017 (or 2049 in movie years), the highly-anticipated sequel will arrive in movie theaters. Blade Runner 2049s trailers have revealed that Harrison Ford will return to be a prominent player in the new story. Mr. Ford’s portrayal as Rick Deckard is iconic. In the overarching movie universe, Rick Deckard doesn’t receive equal fandom to Han Solo or Indiana Jones. To be fair, Han Solo and Indiana Jones are simply on a higher level. That’s a fact. However, in science fiction circles, Rick Deckard is not only a household name, but a beloved character among fans.

That’s also a fact. With past generations and new generations expected to buy tickets to the sequel this October, Rick Deckard’s cultural influence will only grow with Blade Runner 2049.

The original Blade Runner is a strange, entertainingly wild and curious journey into a world that has inspired science fiction films throughout the past few decades. And yet its stunning visuals and dark city setting in a dystopian future remains distinctly original. Thankfully, the practical effects (when possible) appear to be the storytelling preference for director Denis Villeneuve and his team. Interestingly, Warner Bros. Pictures decided that, in an effort to promote Blade Runner 2049, they would create a nearly 4-minute video that takes fans inside the making of this film.

A recent “making of” video with cast and production team interviews, plus bonus footage, released months before the theatrical release?

What?

The old rules for marketing films has, for sometime now (as explored many times on Jimmy’s Daily Planet), been increasingly dissolved in favor of teasing disclosures and a long, long train of intrigue. Thus far, this extended promotional strategy appears to have worked for recent blockbusters (Interstellar, Jurassic World, Star Wars, etc.). This “Time to Live” featurette for Blade Runner 2049 is, even in the “nothing is private anymore” era, pushing the envelope for cinematic marketing.

Judge for yourself.

Maybe it’s just me, but I feel very strongly about the following:

I want that Frank Sinatra singing hologram machine!

Oh, and Blade Runner 2049 (yes, I’ll say it alongside cast member Dave Bautista) looks better than the original.

Only the future will tell in 2049 on October 6, 2017.