Thursday, August 12, 2010

Jurassic Park Slope on PSFK

Today I'm interviewed for PSFK's blog, which is pretty darn spiffy. Check out the article and its insights into Transmedia, Hipsters and of course, details about Jurassic Park Slope.

via PSFK:
Jurassic Park Slope involves some hilarious commentary on hipster culture- as do many blogs, sites, photo pools, and books (many of which you link to from your JPS feeds). What do you think makes hipsters such a rich source of entertainment?
I think the fact that being a hipster is not something that many people are willing to own up to is a big part of what makes it hilarious. I have yet to meet someone who sincerely has committed themselves to being a hipster in real life, and I have thrown parties in Brooklyn for years. Hipness is never in the eye of the beholder and the hipster aesthetic is very much about ridiculousness. Whether it’s putting on a thrillingly tacky pair of sunglasses or trying to make the most cuttingly witty remark about someone’s tight jeans there’s an aspect of the entire subculture that is about performance. At our last shoot we were wondering aloud just how many people had dressed up for film shoots today and the answer was “When you’re a hipster, every day is a film shoot.”

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Gamasutra: No Female Heroes at Activision?

Leigh Alexander is laying it down over at Gamasutra, and also at SexyVideoGameLand, her personal blog, about female characters in games, and specifically, Activision.

Set your controversy meters to STUNNED.

 I'm just going to say this on this subject, the fewer characters that are considered in detail in your story, the less interesting it is. The less interesting your story is, the less people will remember it. If you are just trotting out the same tired stereotypes over and over, people will get bored and you will be forgotten.
[Gamasutra's Leigh Alexander looks at the apparent recasting of a female protagonist to male in what would become Activision's True Crime 3, asking whether this is symptomatic of larger issues around focus testing and female character representation in the industry.]

Games with female leads don't sell. At least that's what Activision believes, looking at top software sellers in any given year for evidence and choosing only projects that go with the trend, sources claim.

In 2007, we're told the publisher even went so far as to change the protagonist in a new concept -- the project that would become True Crime 3 -- from a female to a male, on the rationale that the female wouldn't move software units.

Numerous former employees of the company's studios tell Gamasutra that Activision relies on focus tests to a contentious extent -- and the result is that according to our research, the only titles published by Activision since 2005 that feature female leads are licenses, like Barbie and Dora.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The Obsession with Sita and Sight

This is phenomenal and you must read it. At a friend's baby shower recently, I met a fascinating dancer (don't you love it when your awesome friends have awesome friends?) and today I sat down and finally checked out her blog. Then! like a shot from above, a four part series about Sita, Mythology, Dance, Interpretation...Well, if you're reading my blog you are probably already sold.

I'd personally been drafting a post about Sita Sings the Blues for a bit, and I may still, the movie is great and the ballsy distribution strategy warms my heart. I'm definitely a mythology junkie, and this whole series on Dance, Sanskrit and Other Amazing Things is worth reading.

The entire legend of Sita is so steeped in ideas of virtue, motherhood, wife-hood, marriage, commitment, not to mention action packed ogre-slaying, and it still has so much to say about and to women today. What myths do you, dear readers, see influencing modern dialogues about womanhood? How are they being portrayed? and What would you like to see?

Also, taking note of "the ridiculous amount of performances/artwork obsessed with retelling stories, particularly from a female perspective", maybe Western Creators should take a good hard look at Asia and see what they can learn from some timeless female heroines.

The Obsession with Sita and Sight, Part 1

"What was this artistic obsession with giving women a voice through art? Where was it coming from?"

The Obsession with Sita and Sight, Part 2: Global Trends and Feminism

 "The fact that the female dominated dances are the only performing arts form that have taken steps in portraying the feminist point of view is a direct result of being one of the only female dominated profession in India."

The Obsession with Sita and Sight, Part 3: The Backlash and Traditional Values

"Why do so many of these reinterpretations deal with the Ramayana?. The reason for this is more than its popularity and lies in an inherent backlash against Sita. Sita, who threw herself into a fire when her husband questioned her purity. Sita, whose image could have been pointed to when a connection was needed to sati. Sita, whose image was pointed to when a woman decided to speak up in order to silence her. Sita, for all she was supposed to be an ideal of women, was in fact an oppressor during the independence movement. How can females of this age not blame her for so much of what happened to them during the independence movement?"

The Obsession with Sita and Sight, Part 4: The Indian Interpretation

"Interestingly enough, just as we rewrite the stories for our day and age, the people who rewrote Valmiki’s Ramayana also changed the story and storytelling aspects around completely to reflect the attitude of the time. With each rewrite, Ram’s character slowly evolved from man to demi God and Sita became less and less truculent."