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Independent Film making takes centre stage at Edinburgh

Machinima brings movie making to the masses

June 2005: Following a strong presence at last year's Sundance Film Festival, the growing art of Machinima is set to take centre stage at this year's Edinburgh Interactive Entertainment Festival http://www.eief.co.uk The Festival, will bring the cream of the Interactive Entertainment industry together under one roof at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) from 10th - 14th August 2005.

Paul Marino, author of 3D Game-based film-making: The Art of Machinima and Hugh Hancock, a leading Machinima producer and owner of http://www.machinima.com will be hosting a conference session for industry insiders as part of the Festival. The session will examine the foundations and history of the medium and examine how it is being applied away from Computer gaming as an avenue for independent film-makers.

Machinima puts film making within the grasp of the masses by using PCs and computer game technology to create films and special effects sequences without expensive camera equipment or crippling 3D packages. Machinima was used to develop the running storyboards for Spielberg's AI and George Lucas' Star Wars: Episode 1. The craft has found fans in the Computer and Video games Industry where it has been used widely to create mini movies with a big budget look. Once the movies have been created they can be uploaded to the internet and made available to an audience of millions.

The Industry conference session will be repeated for the general public as a Game Screening session and a series of 10 workshops as part of the Festival's Go Play Games feature. 15 people per workshop will be given the chance to create a complete Machinima film in a 2 hour session.

Channel 4's IDEASFACTORY Scotland has embraced Machinima and will be running features and a competition on its site that offers visitors the chance to take part in Machinima workshops, and have their films fine tuned by Marino and Hancock. Four winning films will be selected from the workshops for screening at Edinburgh's Cabaret Voltaire on 15 September, at a Whatever Works event hosted by Richard Baker of the Edinburgh International Film Festival. An overall winner will also have their film featured on the IDEASFACTORY Scotland website, and will also win Machinima-making software, and a master class with Hancock's machinima studio, Strange Company. Details of the competition are available at www.channel4.com/ideasfactoryscotland

Rebecca Thompson, Commissioning Editor, IDEASFACTORY Scotland, Channel 4 comments: "Machinima is a fascinating new development in filmmaking that is really changing the way that people are able to create and design film. What's really great about it is that it's inexpensive and accessible, meaning that anyone with a computer and an idea can create a slick piece of film from their bedroom. IDEASFACTORY is really delighted to be working with EIEF on this project, and especially pleased that top names in Machinima are also getting involved. We expect to see some really innovative films coming out of the sessions."

The Festival's Machinima programme is being produced by Aleks Krotoski, Interactive Entertainment specialist and Guardian technology journalist who comments: "Machinima is an exciting new avenue for independent film makers to test their ideas within affordable budgets. It represents an exciting and innovative crossover between the film and interactive media. Embraced by designers, artists, directors, storytellers and animators, the culture of Machinima represents a unique and forward-thinking approach to modern technology's role across the entertainment spectrum."

Members of BAFTA, PACT, ELSPA, TIGA, DCF, BSAC, IGDA and ESA can take advantage of 'early bird' booking for delegate places at the Machinima conference session. Full conference details and booking information are available at www.eief.com.

Tickets to the Game Screening and Machinima workshop sessions open to the public are £3.00* and will be available to book online from 1st July 2005, 24/7 at www.ticketweb.co.uk or via 08700 600 100. *Advance tickets - add 10% of face value. No extra charge for collection at box office at EICC or cash purchases. Add £1.50 per transaction for postal delivery.


For further information please contact Taylor Herring Brand Communications

Andrew Campbell-Edie T: 020 8206 5151


Naomi Segal T: 020 8206 5157


Notes to Editors

  • The Edinburgh Interactive Entertainment Festival is a jointly owned venture between the Independent Game Developers Association (TIGA) www.tiga.org and the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers Association (ELSPA) www.elspa.com. Scottish Enterprise Edinburgh and Lothian supports the Festival as part of its backing of the creative and digital industries, which are key sectors for Scotland.
  • The Edinburgh Interactive Entertainment Festival's aim is to increase the awareness and understanding of interactive entertainment and its place at the heart of popular culture, highlighting the growing bond between video games and other entertainment industries notably music, literature, television and film.
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