Disrupting Hollywood ⇒

I missed this piece from Watts Martin earlier this week:

I’m quite skeptical of the notion that the way the Internet will disrupt Hollywood is by giving everyone the tools to make their own media. Everyone does have the tools to make their own media, to be sure; at least on the Mac, you can do some pretty high-grade stuff just with Garage Band and iMovie if you learn how to use them. However, a lot of what Hollywood produces still requires Hollywood resources. A garage filmmaker could spring for Final Cut Pro, but the box does not include a polished script, professional matte and CGI illustrators, makeup and costume artists, and Katee Sackhoff as the tough but sensitive female lead.

What can be disrupted this way, though, is anything that really doesn’t require that kind of crew and special effects budget. Things like talk shows, especially audio-only.

He comes to the same conclusion I did when breaking down the niche news blitz around John Gruber’s 5by5 split: that new media outlets can garner audiences as loyal and vociferous, if not as big, as their terrestrial forbears.

Where I disagree with Martin is the notion that Hollywood is somehow impenetrable because of their vast resources. I’ve seen plenty of big hits that have had terrible scripts, some that have even made a billion dollars, so I’m not sure that’s the secret sauce in Hollywood.

Garage filmmakers may not be able to make blockbusters, but I do think they can hold their own otherwise if they take the medium as seriously as top-tier podcasters do. That’s a big if, though.