CATEGORIES Comedy, Independent, Romance, DIY/Filmmaking, Steven Spielberg, Cinematical Indie, Movie News, CinematicalThe user-generated movie Faintheart begins shooting in the UK this week, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The first of its kind, Faintheart was put together via MySpace as the previously announced "MySpace Movie Mashup"; the writer, director, cast and other members of the production were apparently found via calls on the film's MySpace page. Some, such as writer David Lemon and director Vito Rocco, won competitions voted on by members of the networking site and a celeb jury, which included Sienna Miller and Anthony Minghella. Other positions, such as storyboard artist, could be acquired through job postings on the film's MySpace blog. The movie does feature some professional stars, though, including Jessica Hynes (you know her as Shaun of the Dead and Spaced's Jessica Stevenson -- she recently changed her stage name), Trainspotting's Ewan Bremner and Eddie Marsan, who will be making up for this by appearing in Mike Leigh's next film. Now the movie, a romantic comedy centered on the world of Viking battle re-enactments, which is being produced by Vertigo Films and FilmFour, with backing from the UK Film Council and Screen VM, is ready to go.
If we've learned anything from ideas like Project Greenlight and Spielberg's On the Lot, we can assume that the mainstream reception of Faintheart will not be too favorable. After all, the public likes its movies made by executives, businessmen, lucky "talents" and really talented people who have put in their time without success before breaking out. The same thing has been learned with the music business. Just because a person wins American Idol, that doesn't mean he or she is going to have a #1 album (nor does it mean he/she would make a good movie). Sure, the internet has possibly been helpful in suggesting things to filmmakers here and there, but overall, we can't trust people who live on the internet to make important decisions. Can we? There have been other internet-based film competitions, including two involving Spike Lee -- Babelgum's Online Film Festival and LiveMansion: The Movie (which seems to be competing with MySpace for the "first online-community-made" tag -- but obviously MySpace has them all beat with brand recognition. But then I wonder, will Faintheart even use a "MySpace Presents" banner? Regardless of the brand recognition, some people are sure to think such a connection is silly.