Art & Marketing \ An e-mail exchange.

Added on by Chris WHITE.
I just read your blog post about exposition. I have to disagree that most movies tell us everything in clever ways. Most of them tell too much and thus do not challenge the viewer. They write down to us. Don't be afraid to challenge your viewers. They're smarter than you think.

Most "easy" movies do, indeed spoon-feed their audience. TAKEN IN does not...even if i wanted it to.

My caution stems from the fact I've been involved in many independent film and theatre productions that didn't "write down" to anyone. And most of them have been considered...difficult.

I would agree that some viewers are smarter than we may give them credit for. But experience has taught me that most viewers (and indeed, I know the names of about 200 people who will see TAKEN IN...most qualify as "mosts") are used to, comfortable with very straightforward film narratives. It's not that these people don't like being challenged or disdain difficult movies, it's just that they don't expect something to be hard...narratively. And often (myself included), when left to their own devices, they will tune out a film that starts hard.

If I want these backers (and others) to love TAKEN IN, I need to be patient with them. Especially in the first two or three minutes. The film plays out in a very strange way...especially the first act. Just want to make sure people give it a chance.

I think they will, of course. Not planning anything rash...just considering a couple of lines for Sauce's character that may settle the narrative a bit...or at least give the viewer something reassuring as they decide whether or not they will really, truly engage with it.

All I'm saying is you should stay true to your vision as an artist and not cater to the needs of others. Otherwise, you aren't an artist, you're a marketer. And nobody takes marketers seriously except other marketers.