What’s Killing Creativity In Cinema?

Denis Mardesich, A&E Editor

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In television and film the creativity of those involved in the creative process is perhaps the most important part of the project as a whole, however, many studios tend to limit the creativity of an artist for their own gain and it can often lead to massive failures.

An artist involved in the creation of a project, which could be anyone from the directr, writers, and cinematographers that play an important role in the creation of a show or film. These people are the sole reason that something can become great, especially if the original vision of creators is grown upon in a way that makes it better. However when a studio does the opposite a film becomes worse, and it can make the experience of creating a TV show or movie horrible for those involved.

Creativity is something that can be limited in more than just studios, though. In fact, censorship is often a limit to many avenues of creativity, and creative works that include some kind of “inappropriate” content are often times unable to be put out into the public eye. This can keep artists from getting the notoriety that they deserve, and can keep amazing films and shows from being seen by those that would appreciate them. However, studios still are the predominant cause for limits to creativity.

One example of a television show that was ruined by a studio is the television adaptation of The Walking Dead. The Walking Dead was a show that had a great start, in fact it’s first season received quite a lot of praise, this was mostly due to amazingly realistic makeup effects on zombies, accuracy to the original comic books due to close work with writer Robert Kirkman, and the work of director Frank Darabont. The first season of the show, although not perfect, was a great start for what was seemingly an accurate and good show. However, the channel airing the show at the time, ABC, had different plans for the second season of the show. The studio not only heavily cut down the budget of the show, they also removed Darabont from the show and replaced him with a different person. Because of all this, season 2 of The Walking Dead was a massive drop in quality, and many characters had to be written out of the show due to actors disagreeing with the studio. The makeup effects on the show were also much worse, and because of this, less and less zombies appeared in new episodes. An important thing to learn from the many issues in The Walking Dead had is that giving a show what it needs to succeed is a key component in it’s quality.

Another problem that studio’s often have with creators is disagreements between studios, and changes they think could be made conflicting with what creators really want. This is something that happened quite a lot in the creation of the 2014 remake of Robocop. Originally, the director of the reboot, Jose Padilha, intended for the film to have a dark and satirical version of the film. However Sony felt it was more fitting for the film to have a more comical tone that would be seen in your typical action film. Because of this the film resulted in many awkward performances across the board, however given the very little that the actors had to work with, it’s understandable. Overall, the film turned out to be a forgettable action film with below average critical response. Thinking about what the film could’ve been, there was a lot of wasted potential that was abandoned during the creation of Robocop, and it could’ve been a very refreshing film in the current action industry. An important thing to learn from this film’s failures is that a creative vision is often times the only thing that can cause a film to be great.

Creativity can and does show up nearly anywhere in the many aspects of filmmaking, and can lead to unique characteristics in a director’s work, like Martin Scorsese’s gritty tones and Wes Anderson’s beautiful symmetrical shots.

From these projects and their individual issues, it’s obvious that the respect of creativity is something important in films. Studios that do respect creativity, like A24, often have successful and renowned films like Hereditary, Green Room, and The Lobster, all of which are known for their interesting and creative concepts. On top of this, a good studio usually provides what is needed, and base the needs of the film based off the needs of the creator. When a studio does this they end up assisting in the creation of a film that is at least confident in itself, unlike many films that end up being failures.