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The Big Picture

The Fight for the Future of Movies
By: Ben Fritz
Narrated by: Timothy Andrés Pabon
Length: 9 hrs and 44 mins
Categories: Arts & Entertainment, Art
4.5 out of 5 stars (35 ratings)

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Summary

The stunning metamorphosis of twenty-first-century Hollywood and what lies ahead for the art and commerce of film

In the past decade, Hollywood has endured a cataclysm on a par with the end of silent film and the demise of the studio system. Stars and directors have seen their power dwindle, while writers and producers lift their best techniques from TV, comic books, and the toy biz. The future of Hollywood is being written by powerful corporate brands like Marvel, Amazon, Netflix, and Lego, as well as censors in China.

Ben Fritz chronicles this dramatic shakeup with unmatched skill, bringing equal fluency to both the financial and entertainment aspects of Hollywood. He dives deeply into the fruits of the Sony hack to show how the previous model, long a creative and commercial success, lost its way. And he looks ahead through interviews with dozens of key players at Disney, Marvel, Netflix, Amazon, Imax, and others to discover how they have reinvented the business. He shows us, for instance, how Marvel replaced stars with “universes”, and how Disney remade itself in Apple’s image and reaped enormous profits.

But despite the destruction of the studios’ traditional playbook, Fritz argues that these seismic shifts signal the dawn of a new heyday for film. The Big Picture shows the first glimmers of this new golden age through the eyes of the creative mavericks who are defining what our movies will look like in the new era.

©2018 Ben Fritz (P)2018 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.
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The best summary of the modern state of Hollywood

A really interesting and comprehensive look at the state of modern Hollywood - if you have any interest in how and why the movies we see are made, this is for you

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Amy pascal biography

This is seriously just a biography of Amy pascal and Sony pictures. Misleading title. Very narrow approach, not a big picture at all.

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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting topic marred by annoying narration

The narrator has seemingly never had to read words in a foreign language or heard anyone pronounce Warner Brothers. The mispronunciation of Warner Brothers really started to gate the further I got into the book

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I Don’t Like Change

Nutshell: Ben Fritz has a very specific notion of what Films are and now that reality is drifting away from that, he is scared.

It is clear Fritz has been seduced by the Hollywood Producers he studied for writing this book (Amy Pascal in particular). He conveys most things Hollywood from their point of view, which is as interesting as it is irritating.

It is clear Fritz has very little respect for Writers, TV, Comic Book Movies, and a variety of other popular genres and feels like there is a massive crisis because things he doesn’t like are popular.

He talks at length in the final summation of the great power of Cinematic visuals in a conventional Cinema, but is blissfully unaware most Cinemas no longer have a projectionist and the only fundamental difference between watching a movie at home or in a Cinema is the Price and the size of the screen. He thinks it’s important to sit a room full of people you don’t talk to and will never talk to, because of Cinema’s conventions. He ignores the fact that social watching occurs on Social Media, but then he doesn’t like social media very much either.

In short, there are some very interesting ideas here, but it’s also drowned out by the Writer’s constant fear of change.

The reader reads the entire Novel like it’s a children’s book. So if you enjoy being patronised for hours on end, this will be right up your street.

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  • Joshua C.
  • 01-11-18

And now you know!

Loved the insight, and the perspective on modern Hollywood. Also enjoyed the author's choice of material from the Sony hack.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Lori Plager
  • 19-11-19

Who is overseeing the audio part of this project?

Are you kidding me? How is it possible that a wonderfully-written book, read with an interesting voice, is so poorly produced? How is it possible that NO ONE has corrected the MULTIPLE mispronunciations of characters names, titles, locations, etc. It's incomprehensible. I had to LOOK UP Arad because I didn't know that the VO actor was referring to Avi Arad. It's not AIR-EDD; it's AH-RAHD. What about Menahem Golan? He pronounces his first name "MEN-AY-HEMM". OMG. These are just two of the examples.

Every heard of due diligence?

Cringe-worthy.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-04-19

Seems like the audiobook was rushed

Content of the book is very good and informative. I will say that Ben Fritz can be overly dismissive of things he doesnt like (Adam Sandler films did well on dvd because of fraternity brothers and stoners, a pretty dismissive view of the Chinese, and constantly reminding us that one of the big Netflix guys started as a college dropout managing a video store).
Tim Pabon is only ok. I have no problem with him referring to Warner Brothers as Warner Brothers, Warners, and Warner Bros. Which are used interchangeably. Dont know why people have jumped on that. It does seem like they should have used some more takes (a pause before the reading of a difficult last name like its the first time hes reading it, last names changing [Pascall becomes Pascull a couple times], words mispronounced, and a couple chuckles while reading that dont fit what he is saying. It comes off at times as a first read through instead of a polished piece.
Great book, ok audiobook.

1 person found this helpful

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  • KIRAN J PHILIP
  • 06-08-18

A modern history book of movies

Amazing book.
Very well researched and written
Unique perspective of modern day TV and movies
Highly recommend to anyone with an interest in the movie business

1 person found this helpful

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  • Carl
  • 07-07-18

Best book I have heard in a while.

I loved it. The only issue I had was that every mention of "Warner Bros" was pronounced just like that... Warner Bros rather than Warner Brothers. Made it sound like hipsters rather than a legendary movie studio. Otherwise a stellar book and an amazing performance.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Tiger
  • 11-03-20

Excellent and informative

This book is an entertaining primer on the motion picture industry. I may very well give it a second listen—it’s that good.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Michael Stradford
  • 04-02-20

Could have been great

This review is largely about the production of the audiobook. The content of the book is fascinating, with an incisive, thoughtful look at the motion picture industry in the 2010s. The impact of streaming and franchises are examined in depth and provide a listener with information that clearly informs the challenge of transition that the film biz has been going through for the past several years.

However, if the reader is someone with little or no knowledge of the film industry, it would behoove Audible to hire a a 'prooflistener', similar to a proofreader. It was frustrating hearing the reader mangle the pronunciation of names, whether it was calling Idris Elba 'Eye-dris' or Yair Landau 'Yeir' instead of Yah-ear' or the Cannes Festival 'Cans' instead of 'Kon'. But the most annoying error was the constant naming of Warner Bros. 'Warner Bros.' instead of 'Warner Brothers'. These errors continually took me out of the book and compromised my ability to fully enjoy a well written report.

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  • Collins A. Ezeanyim
  • 08-01-20

A great read for those who care about movies.

I love reading Box Office figures every weekend. It's because I love movies and box office determines what movies we ultimately see... This book - appropriately - presents the big picture of where cinema is heading as we enter the 2020s. It's a little sad but also full of potential depending of what the audience writ large decides they want to see.

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  • Joshua Ogaldez
  • 23-10-19

Fascinating!

A thorough, engaging record of the evolutions of the film industry... This is an Insightful book for artists, movie lovers and business people. Highly recommend both the physical book and audiobook. I have both!

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  • Sean May
  • 19-08-19

Good book, distracting narration

Overall, the book is a good look at the current state of Hollywood along with an interesting peek at the changes being brought about with the Chinese influence over the industry, both in more Hollywood movies making huge sums of their box office in China, but perhaps even more critically, the influence of Chinese companies investing in Hollywood films.

My main issue with the book was the narrator. While his voice is as professional and smooth as other pro narrators, he mispronounces so many words and names that it can be distracting. Nobody calls the studio 'Warner Bros' even though it's written that way. Cameron Diaz is pronounced as "die-az" which I've never heard, and when referring to the Sony game series Uncharted, the narrator calls it 'Unchartered' at least twice. The narrator also has a strange habit of straining odd parts of sentences that can be a little distracting as well.