2020 Industry Predictions

Every year IMAGINE collects predictions for the New Year from Industry Leaders. Enjoy these for 2020. pub

Don Packer, Founder and Video Editor – Engine Room Edit, Brewhouse VFX and Conductor Productions

First, I predict that I will seriously enjoy my second
year of career of watching things from afar. At the start of this year I did something that I didn’t imagine when
I opened EngineRoomEdit thirteen years prior and that is, sold it. Certainly, didn’t predict that but, I could have.

I predict that small companies in the advertising business will continue to win the battle across the board. They have been for a while. With low overhead and massive amounts of freelance talent lying about as the big agencies continue to thrash about, why not. I’m not saying the big agency model is dead, it’s just that there is a LOT more chances for smaller agencies than ever before.

I predict that even if you know how to run the gear and can afford the ever-lowering price, nothing changes. The greatest software remains the human brain. Without
the smarts and the creative talent, you simply have a lot of nice gear.

I predict that the fi lm tax incentive in Massachusetts will finally have the Sunset Clause removed because frankly, even the state doesn’t want to kill this cash cow. The amount of work we have had and continue to have, and the amount of work that wants to come here is enormous. No study will

show anything but the upside if it’s a fair one. And by the way, every state that has killed their tax credits is giving themselves a hard look over their past erroneous decision to do it, (Hello North Carolina).

I predict (and this isn’t a hard one) that with 5G coming the chance to send larger, more complete fi les video fi les will drive everyone in editorial and visual effects nuts as they struggle to perform a level of visual acceptability to their client in round one of approval that used to be expected in the final round.

That voiceover records will be better than ever. With 5G it will sound like the talent is standing right next to you even on a regular cell phone. This is going to be huge because even with a phone patch, we are missing some of the nuances of a person’s voice vs. recording in a studio sound booth.

I also predict that our 5G system in America will suck for some time, compared to China’s version. But we’ll come around.

I predict that clients who are shall we say, uninformed, will remain so. Yes, things CAN be done cheaper and there are many opportunities to cut corners. But in the end, the money you put in is directly proportional to thelook of the end product. Saving twenty grand on a shoot doesn’t mean you’re smart. It simply means you saved twenty grand and probably lost an opportunity to look that much better in the end.

Oh yes, a recession is coming. That’s not hard to predict. Hang on to your hats. I always liked a good little recession. People spend more dollars on advertising. Just
don’t make it a big one.

And finally, an easy one: The Red Line will continue to breakdown at the most in-opportune times.

Jan Waldman. Photo by Dina K Photography

Jan Waldman, Actor, TV Host and Producer

Asia’s role in Financing Films in 2020 China has become the driving force behind big budget films. The issue with this is that not all American films translate well in the
Asian market. Action/Adventure movies do well there, but the comedies, romances, or quirky movies with an American theme literally get lost in translation and this
factors in to which films the Asian market will finance, since the American market is dealing with a much smaller budget, this can be a mitigating factor in dictating which big budget movies are being financed. My prediction is that the large budget independent films will need to take the lead on the more unusual type films
and hope for recognition during the awards
season.

Netflix and Amazon Prime are both investing millions in their programing and it is paying off for both them and the consumer. The streaming services are producing excellent movies, mini-series and television shows that are drawing in all types of viewers, unlike the movie theater industry which is being hamstrung by finances.

One more factor is the convenience viewers have while watching their favorite shows/ movies from the comfort of their homes with TV’s that far surpass the quality of a movie theater screen.

My hope for the movie theater industry (AMC, Cinemark, Cineworld) would be to upgrade their viewing screens. Poor screen quality in movie theaters is another factor in loss of revenue.

My belief is that the movie theater attendance would increase greatly if the screen quality was updated and improved with larger screens making for a more enjoyable viewing experience. Who doesn’t love a movie night out?

Andy Liebman, Founder & Chief Strategy Officer at EditShare

Broadcast and content creation agencies are beginning to decouple their workflows from proprietary systems. We are seeing more facilities beginning to adopt a ‘best of breed’ approach, choosing the right vendor with the right solution for their part of the workflow puzzle. EditShare is a proven choice for these facilities, offering creative agnostic freedom through openness in its entire
ecosystem. Our Flow media management solution throws a blanket across all creative and delivery platforms, working as the digital glue to connect everything together.

Content is the most valuable asset a facility owns. A facility needs to curate the content and deliver the story to their clients, whether it’s a broadcaster or an OTT provider. The facility curating the content needs to make sure they keep that content secure and mitigate the risk of theft. We’ve all seen the stories about movies or valuable programming appearing on the web prior to its release, causing major loss of revenue and job losses through the industry. With EditShare EFS Auditing, we are bringing extreme accountability to facilities dealing
with high value content by tracking every file interaction inception through to delivery. The five W’s of file security are constantly watched— “Who did What to Which file When and Where?”

This data is constantly logged in real time, enabling every footprint to be traced. Additionally, this capability meets new media and entertainment security guidelines
which are quickly becoming mandatory for doing business with high profile content providers.

Cloud is also a major part of the production story as it enables facilities to bring costs down by utilizing cloud technologies. EditShare has been working diligently
with cloud providers over the past four years to bridge facilities and develop an on-ramp to cloud workflows.

While on-premise will have a place in the production chain for many years to come, cloud will become more important as we enter a new production world. With EditShare, clients can feel assured that their investment
today in on-premise solutions will be fully “migratable” to the cloud when and where it suits the customer.

Alecia Orsini, President of Women in Film and Video of New England

I have big hopes for 2020! I predict more productions
coming to our region and blossoming! It would be wonderful to see another TV series establish itself in New England for multiple seasons. More productions in New England will lead to the substantial growth of our rental facilities and post-production houses.

I hope our college students will stay in New England rather than jet off to other states for jobs, and that we can help them thrive right here. The mood in the region is hopeful as we all row in the same direction, supporting the voices of our local filmmakers and sharing our talents with the rest of the world!

Women in Film and Video of New England has that same sense of hope. We’ve had growth in membership and connectivity, and will continue this trend into 2020 as people rally to the cause! We are capturing this energy with mentorships as we connect women with mentors across the film community, ever more supporting their
voices. Nationally, we see small changes taking hold on how women are viewed and treated in the film industry. There is a long way to go, we see the effort being made,
and we are hopeful that more is on the horizon.

As we round out the decade, I think about how far we have come and the wonderful people who have made and will continue to make our industry so rich. I am thankful for the opportunity to be here doing what I love with this community. Here is to more great films, stories and memories to come in 2020.

elaine victoria grey

Elaine Grey: SAG/AFTRA Actress/Director/Writer

My first 2020 prediction is, that I believe that the Entertainment Industry will be seeing another Castle
Rock production, right here in Massachusetts. An outstanding Series 2, 2019, kept viewers on the edge of their seats, and looking for more of Stephen King’s suspenseful thrillers. Watch for Castle Rock, Series 3 to
announce its plans.

While the number of television Series (i.e. Castle Rock and City on a Hill) and others have been on the rise, in New England, I predict that we will see an explosion of new projects, in development, over the coming year.

SAG/AFTRA New England will make great strides this year, with incoming President Andrea Lyman at the helm.

Following in the footsteps of her successful predecessor, Michele Proude, Andrea Lyman will lead her fellow Officers, Board Members and Staff to new horizons. They will continue to support peer organizations and their membership with the ongoing mission to fight for Retention of MA Film Tax Credits and Elimination of the Sunset Clause. I see Andrea Lyman and her team working on developing the Growth of Commercial Contracts; Membership & Program Development, along
with a myriad of other existing and new projects, and bringing them to new heights during the coming year.

IMAGINE Magazine will continue to be the first and foremost provider of Entertainment News in our Industry, here in New England and beyond. IMAGINE’s Publisher and Editor, Carol Patton will also remain a promoter of the Arts, forging ahead, as usual, to ensure
that we retain our Film Tax Credits and put an end to the Sunset Clause.

I predict that, during the coming year, the film Industry, particularly Scriptwriters, will have more of a focus on Inter-generational projects, ones that features the over-50 generation of “Baby Boomers” (1946-1964), “GenX,” (1965-1979),”Millenials” (1980-2000), and the upcoming “Gen Z,” working together, side by side, and fi lling the age Gap across the board, with feisty drama, laughter, revelation and lots of sizzle. How awesome!

All in All, 2020 should prove to be a remarkable year.

Vinca Liane Jarrett, Esq., FilmPro Finance

More channels such as Disney will emerge, and people will subscribe to what they like, but still keep Netflix, which has a jumpstart of more than twenty years on all of them, so the big fear that Netflix will disappear or the prediction that Disney will own the OTT space is just plain wishful thinking without basis in reality.

More heartfelt movies based in true stories will be made and distributed than ever, because it’s what the public worldwide needs to watch to escape the political turmoil and chaos caused by politicians who care more about money than the people or our planet.

Steve McGrath, Editor/Writer of IMAGINE’s Tech Edge and Sales Engineer for Zixi AI

Computing Becomes Mainstream – I love the idea of AI computing. Right now, it’s used in task oriented workflows like file conversions and black detections.
But next year, I think AI will blow up where it won’t only do task oriented computing, but content quality computing as well. Making sure colors are accurate, making sure there is no pixelization.

From there, the possibilities are endless. I think AI could replace “workflow foibles”. We all have them and we all know what they are. They are the goofy, unnatural things you do in your workflows to just get things out
the door. I am hopeful that AI can learn and improve such foibles.

Do I think a reality show could someday be edited by a machine? Absolutely. Can AI compete with a Scorsese film and make a creative masterpiece? Absolutely not.

Judy Laster, Executive Director of the Woods Hole Film Festival

2020 will see an increase in independent film production, both feature and short film series. The need for content will be beneficial for aspiring filmmakers and crew in Massachusetts.

Film Festivals will play an increasingly important
role in the life cycle of independent films, especially if studios are allowed to own theaters again if the Paramount consent decree is lifted.

The Woods Hole Film Festival will host its 29th edition!

Frank Imbergamo

Frankie Imbergamo, Actor, SAG-AFTRA Boston

I think 2020 is going to be a great year in our state of Massachusetts for the movie Industry.

The tax incentive for movies to be filmed here has been stable so I think a lot of the production companies have
their eyes on Massachusetts again.

As it has in the past. Why wouldn’t you? Our state has it all! The past year 2019 we have had a good amount of movies as well as TV series filmed here. I as an actor would love all the movies to be filmed here as so many
other actors from Massachusetts would –keeping us very busy! I know in the past we lost a lot of movies to Georgia but I think we will now be getting them back. 2020 will be a blockbuster year for us here in
Massachusetts.

Thanks to IMAGINE Magazine and Carol Patton for going the extra mile for all of us actors and production people from Massachusetts.

Steven Feinberg, Executive Director of the Rhode Island Film & TV Office

This will be Rhode Island’s best year yet for film and
television productions!

There will be a prestigious production which will have a powerful impact on our creative community as well as our tourism industry! Oscar winner of THE GREEN BOOK and Rhode Island native, Peter Farrelly, will be a presenter at this year’s Academy Awards!

THE IRISHMAN, which was executive produced by Rhode Islander, Chad Verdi, will receive several nominations during the awards season.

There will be a big surprise when a local film director begins production on a new feature! Another television series will commence in the fall of 2020! Several top notch actors will be in Rhode Island this year and at least one will purchase a home in Newport!

The Rhode Island International Film Festival will once again select their Grand Prize winner which will go on to win the Academy Award for “Best Short Film”.

A Rhode Island made production will be box office gold! Those are my predictions for the year. Looking forward to a healthy and happy New Year for all of our friends and families! Enjoy the world!

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