The Motion Picture Academy‘s new, and wide-ranging, weekly series of short videos talks about filmmaking of many kinds. Already, shorts posted on the two-month-old YouTube channel feature notables such as Mike White, Seth Rogen and Dustin Lance Black, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Jurassic Park and a video portrait of inner-city filmmakers.
“It’s an opportunity to really further inspire people about filmmaking and viewing film,” said Josh Spector, the Academy’s Managing Director of Digital Media and Marketing. “We really look at movies from a broad spectrum. We’re not locked in, we’re not sponsored, there are no ads. That frees you from conventional wisdom about what videos can be. People refer to them more as short films or mini-docs.”
The videos since the site launched in late May have been three to 10 minutes long, the sweet spot for length when it comes to online watching, and the topics have included some surprises, such as one on how blind people “watch,” and enjoy, films.
The series is the Academy’s first original digital series, and is being created by Spector’s in-house video-production team. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Spector’s team has access to lots of Hollywood’s top filmmakers, and lots of suggestions from filmmakers about what to do next.
“Our members are this collection of thousands of the most creative people in the world,” Spector said. “It definitely keeps us busy” keeping up with their ideas for more shorts. New ones will be posted every Monday on both the Academy’s own website and on a new YouTube channel, .