Prof.- Dr. Jon Hyde
Class: Tues./Thurs. 11:30-1:05
The Media Lab--JM 288

Contact Info:
email: jhyde2@smcvt.edu
Phone: (802) 654-2258

THE COURSE:  Analysis-->Production-->STORYTELLING

This course is an introduction to the development, distribution, production and consumption of digital film and television.  Throughout the course we will be exploring  these areas of Digital Film/TV in two complementary ways. 

Analysis
:  First and foremost, this course is about cinematic STORYTELLING.  Throughout the term, we will be taking a critical look at a wide range of film and television productions with an eye towards  storytelling and the visual (and audio) techniques used to convey strong, engaging stories.  Along the way, we'll be asking fundamental questions, such as:  What makes a great  film and/or TV story? How can you tell an excellent film story from one which is ok or merely decent?  What techniques are used to thread together a truly captivating film or TV program?  What does it mean to be "creative" or innovative within a visual culture that so often relies upon sequels, clichés, and stereotypes?  What are the differences between stories told in print, for the stage, via radio and those presented on film/TV?  How does writing fit into the creative processes of film or TV scripts?  What has the digital revolution really done to film and television production, economics, distribution, exhibition?  Has anything really changed? What kinds of stories translate well on Film/TV?  What kinds don’t?  These are some of the central questions we will be exploring. 

Production:  Second, and equally important, this is also an intensive Film/TV production course.  We will be producing a variety of digital Film/TV projects over the course of the term.  Each project will involve scripting, staging, acting, lighting, recording, shooting, editing, and last but not least, the posting/streaming of your final projects to the Web.  (Is that all?).  Film/TV production is labor-intensive.  You will need to become familiar with (and skilled) at ALL aspects of production.   Additionally, you will be presenting your own work and constructively critiquing other people’s projects to help them create better work throughout the term. 

EVALUATION & PROJECTS

Attendance, Participation, Collaboration, Critiques, & Discussions  u 20%
This requirement refers to (1) Attendance--Don't miss this class.  After one absence, your grade will be affected. (2) Participation refers to how much you contribute verbally to discussions and how well you contribute to the constructive critiques of other’s work; and (3) how well prepared you are for class (i.e., readings, in class projects, presentations, collaborations, etc.).

Projects, Assignments, Scripts, & Presentations  u 40%
There will be 3 major film projects and several shorter WIPs and script/critique assignments due for the course.  These projects/assignments  will involve  both written and film production work.  Guidelines for each project/presentation will be handed out in advance.  PLEASE NOTE:  All projects must be polished and handed in on time.  I will evaluate both the exteriors and interiors  of your projects. Late projects will be penalized. 

Final Digital DVD Portfolio  u 15%
A final digital  (DVD) portfolio of your work will be due at the end of the semester.

Exams  u 25%
There will be two exams for the course.  Exams will be comprehensive and cover all readings, screenings, discussions and lectures.

REQUIRED EQUIPMENT

1 External Hard Drive 7200RPM (Firewire/USB- 3).  For this course you will need to purchase an external Firewire400/800/USB2 or USB3 hard drive. It should preferably be a 7200 RPM drive. You will be storing and editing your films off of this drive throughout the semester.   Your drive should have at least 200GB of memory.  But even with this amount of memory, it will go quick, so you'll have to manage your files (and your tape footage) efficiently. 

1-2 32GB Class 10 SDCards 60-90mb/s+—You will need one or two 16GB or 32GB Class 10 SD cards.  This card needs to be a 60mb/s card.  Lexar UDMA or SanDisk Extreme III  are the preferred cards. 

Tripod—You will need to shoot ALL of your projects using a tripod. You may want to purchase your own. There are some excellent ones currently available. However, you may check one out at the library for each of your shoots as well (6hr time limit).

DVD-R Discs—How many depends on you and your DVD creation finesse.  I recommend a minimum of 2 DVD-Rs (4.7 GB)