By SAE Institute
As life returns to what feels somewhat “normal,” it is up for question what parts of our old reality will remain from this last year and a half. As surreal as it sounds to say that anyone has benefitted from this time of uncertainty, there are plenty of opportunities surfacing as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many companies have found ways to capitalize on the modifications they made during the pandemic and incorporate them into the future plans of the business. The film industry is no different.
Directors found efficiency
One major breakthrough was overall efficiency for directors. When the pandemic pushed more work-from-home operations into effect, directors found it much easier to manage multiple projects at once. Technology played a major hand in this transition. It was a matter of switching between tabs on a computer instead of traveling between sets. It became possible for directors to be in multiple locations at once, thus more productivity and efficiency.
Even voice-over actors during this time could work from home, creating less of a need to be in person. This process became easy for everyone, and we might see this becoming a permanent work from home option for those in this industry.
Animation had a comeback
Animation is also on the rise. In the past, it was tedious and often expensive given the amount of time that went into production. It took about a week to adequately shoot 2 seconds of content out of an entire film. Not to mention the costs associated with everything that went into it. The process felt outdated to some and it was not a preferred method of filmmaking.
However, animation became a safer option for social distancing purposes, forcing producers to use it and look for more possibilities within the industry. Utilizing virtual production animation led to improvements such as faster production times, lower costs, and the rebirth of an entire industry. With innovation and technology, producers were able to extend weekly outputs to 20 seconds of content per week. Creating a method to be more cost and time efficient is making animation a more appealing sector of filmmaking, making it likely that the new and improved process will outlast the pandemic.
A changing audience
One major advantage that COVID-19 gave us was the ability to put more of our attention on social and environmental issues. In the last year and a half people were able to reflect on what was important to them. Because of this, audiences for TV shows and movies are changing. People want to see more overall awareness for issues going on and feel a sense of purpose and representation.
Another change we can expect from the producers of TV shows is shorter episodes. Many producers are finding that making the change from hour long episodes to 30 minute episodes is working right now. Typically you would only see this with comedy shows but this is becoming more popular with other genres as well. This is because it requires less time commitment and a series becomes easier to get through.
Making these episodes shorter is actually helping the audience’s retention to their commitment of longer running series.
It comes as no surprise that we see new opportunities springing up as we return to normal life. Over the past year and a half nearly all production companies were faced with having to rethink their strategies in order to remain profitable. Like many other sectors of our economy, the new ideas surfacing will help to propel each industry forward beyond life after the pandemic. It would be silly to miss out on these opportunities that we are already beginning to capitalize on.