The modifications to come during the production aspects of filmmaking at any level from now into the near and/or distant future are changes that will alter the landscape of cinema and television in ways that could permanently affect not only the way content is shot, but taught, in film schools. Socially distanced filmmaking? It’s definitely a paradigm shift in thinking, when it comes to conceiving a world where it’s possible or impossible to make films under challenging circumstances. Imagine all of the films and shows you love that had scenes with crowds, scenes of intimacy, scenes of combat and war – what creative methods will filmmakers need to concoct in order to create the illusion for these sequences?
At its essence, and in its core, making movies is a manipulative art form, regardless. It may or may not be that difficult to fathom an environment where artists and craftsmen alike, have elevated and/or evolved different methods and styles of making motion pictures, major or independent. Most movies have scenes with crowds and intimacy, action and adventure, where actors must make tactile contact with one another, in order to carry out a scene during production. Perhaps, filmmaking wizards like Robert Rodriguez and James Cameron are on-deck, ready to step inside the batters box and take swings for the fences, because they’ve already implemented uber-creative filmmaking styles that are mind bending and innovative. On Sin City (2005) Robert Rodriguez shot scenes of an actor on one day, and edited them with scenes shot with a different actor, on a separate day, and created the illusion that they were in the same room during production.
On any given film set, wide varieties of cast and crew are cramped up with each other behind the camera at incredibly close proximities. How are hair & make-up artists going to creatively execute their magnificent art form while social distancing, and wearing masks? Obviously, stringent testing methods will and have been employed. But, how accurate are these tests, anyway? Elon Musk, the super genius inventor of Tesla and Space X recently tweeted, “Something extremely bogus is going on. Was tested for covid four times today. Two tests came back negative, two came back positive. Same machine, same test, same nurse. Rapid antigen test from BD.” Somebody could have a false positive and be mistakenly quarantined, and the opposite, a false negative, and spreading the virus. Cast and crew will be tested, probably weekly and/or daily, and masks will be removed or mandated, and a bubble will be created like the 2020 NBA season, where not a single player obtained a positive diagnosis for the infamous virus overtaking the world. Glass screens will probably become the norm, where they’re built all over the place, separating directors from cast, assistant directors from crew, et cetera.
The magic of filmmaking will only evolve and enhance, through more trickery and deception. Computer-generated images will continue to thrive, and apparently scenes of intimacy will have actors’ love partners-in-reality stepping in as stand-ins and/or body doubles. Perhaps, production shoots will have to move to different states and countries, where rules aren’t implemented with strict oversight. Nevertheless, it does seem as though, at least for a temporary interim, or a permanent reality, filmmaking styles will become even more magical, creating the illusion that something is happening on-screen, when in fact, it wasn’t happening at all. We love making movies, and we love watching them. There’s definitely a will; which means we’ll find a way.