Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Camera Bazooka by elliotturner.us 1 (Created with @Magisto



Professional  Camera Bazooka
(with 100mm / 75mm Hi Hat Riser included) for ALL industry standard Doorway Dollies 
(Doorway Dolly NOT included)

Our NEW product allows for a wide variety of creative camera options. The PRIMA BAZOOKA mounts on a camera dolly and adjusts up and down. The custom mount cap allows for camera to rotate in a continuous 360 degree turn. The PRIMA BAZOOKA offers a wide range of camera configuration options at a reasonable price.

100mm / 75mm bowl  6" Riser attachment 

Half sphere Camera setup 

Adjustable height ~ 25 to 37"

Aluminum and steel construction

5 piece assembly:
Aluminum -  Mount adapter, Adjustable height pedestal,  100mm / 75mm 6" Riser
Steel Material - Mount cap, Flange platform spacer

Mounts directly to Dolly platform
(Doorway Dolly NOT included)

OO
O

Camera Bazooka by elliotturner.us 1 (Created with @Magisto



Professional  Camera Bazooka
(with 100mm / 75mm Hi Hat Riser included) for ALL industry standard Doorway Dollies 
(Doorway Dolly NOT included)

Our NEW product allows for a wide variety of creative camera options. The PRIMA BAZOOKA mounts on a camera dolly and adjusts up and down. The custom mount cap allows for camera to rotate in a continuous 360 degree turn. The PRIMA BAZOOKA offers a wide range of camera configuration options at a reasonable price.

100mm / 75mm bowl  6" Riser attachment 

Half sphere Camera setup 

Adjustable height ~ 25 to 37"

Aluminum and steel construction

5 piece assembly:
Aluminum -  Mount adapter, Adjustable height pedestal,  100mm / 75mm 6" Riser
Steel Material - Mount cap, Flange platform spacer

Mounts directly to Dolly platform
(Doorway Dolly NOT included)

OO
O

Black Black Friday at elliotturner.us (Created with @Magis



Elliot Turner Enerrprises Inc. (ET) is a leader in manufacturing high quality equipment used for professional film and video production. ET prides itself on providing superior quality products at budget saving prices. ET has been in business over ten (10) years providiing quality on ebay (elliotturner) with a customer satisfaction rate of 99.3% and we pride ourselves in providing great customer service, expedited shipping and quality products. Our engineers are focused on creating innovative designs and technological strategies that lead to highly effective film and video production equipment.

TRACK WHEELS FOR DOORWAY DOLLY 4 (Created with @Magisto)



Professional Track Wheels Hot Button Style- 360 Swivel Doorway Dolly Film Video

Condition: New

Professional Track Wheels - 360 degree Swivel (rotating type) Similar to the industry standard Hot Buttons for Doorway Dollies

Used on Doorway Dolly to film Rapper TI's Music Video "I'm Flexin" (see picture)

16 Wheels Total - 4 per assembly
Can be used with 5/8" and 3/4" dolly axles
Remove Doorway Dolly Wheels to install

Steering Spindles by elliotturner.us (Created with @Magist



#pimpmydolly
The Low Profile Camera Kit allows any industry standard Doorway Dolly to achieve a low angle camera shot close to ground level. The 6" Riser is compatible to cameras with a 75mm or 100mm bowl setup. With the module attachment, the 6" Riser and Camera can be placed in the rotating elbow arm. The elbow arm can adjust to various positions for the Camera as it can swing back and forth. The Robin Adapter gives even more flexibility to mount the camera in 4 additional positions on the sides of the dolly. An additional 2 more camera positions directly on the dolly platform giving 6 different positions in total to place the camera with or without the elbow arm.

iNCLUDED WITH KIT:
Robin Adapter, Low Profile Arm, Riser Module and 6" Riser (black & red)
(Doorway Dolly NOT included)

ORDER ONLINE: www.elliotturner.us

videoseries2



#pimpmydolly
The Low Profile Camera Kit allows any industry standard Doorway Dolly to achieve a low angle camera shot close to ground level. The 6" Riser is compatible to cameras with a 75mm or 100mm bowl setup. With the module attachment, the 6" Riser and Camera can be placed in the rotating elbow arm. The elbow arm can adjust to various positions for the Camera as it can swing back and forth. The Robin Adapter gives even more flexibility to mount the camera in 4 additional positions on the sides of the dolly. An additional 2 more camera positions directly on the dolly platform giving 6 different positions in total to place the camera with or without the elbow arm.

iNCLUDED WITH KIT:
Robin Adapter, Low Profile Arm, Riser Module and 6" Riser (black & red)
(Doorway Dolly NOT included)

ORDER ONLINE: www.elliotturner.us

Steering Spindles by www.elliotturner.us 3 (Created with @



If you are REPAIRING your GO KART or BUILDING one from scratch, we manufacture jig welded STEERING SPINDLES. We can custom build spindles to your specs. Heavy duty 5/8" and 3/4" axle diameter. We also offer 2 1/2" height spinldes. See our website for details.

ORDER ONLINE: http://elliotturner.us/steering-spindles

Friday, November 14, 2014

Build Your Own Camera Dolly

#pimpmydolly

Get Camera Dolly enhancements at www.elliotturner.us

#pimpmydolly



IT'S POPCORN TIME! KICKSTARTER PROJECT



November 13, 2014

PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

IT’S POPCORN TIME! KICKSTARTER
FAMILY FUN IN THE COMMUNITY

Noel Booker dba Media Net USA has started a Kickstarter campaign to fund IT’S POPCORN TIME!, special events concessions. With the Kickstarter campaign, the community has the opportunity to share the benefits of delicious popcorn and at the same time assist a small business start-up a special events concessions operation.

Kickstarter has a successful track record of funding start-up projects. Kickstarter provides a platform on which entrepreneurs and other creatives can get projects off the ground by offering those who support a campaign increasing levels of rewards to match the money pledged. IT’S POPCORN TIME! hopes to reach its Kickstarter goal and contribute to family fun in the community with its generous rewards.

Backers of the IT’S POPCORN TIME! project on Kickstarter get UNLIMITED popcorn at festivals and fairs throughout Georgia. Backers also can have large popcorn tins delivered to their home. Imagine going to your favorite festival and having V.I.P. treatment with unlimited popcorn for you and your party.

To support a good cause and have family fun, please support IT’S POPCORN TIME! on Kickstarter. Go to the link below and choose a reward that fits your level of support.


Contact:
Noel A. Booker Sr.
(404) 981-5046


Saturday, October 11, 2014

Amazon Is Opening A Brick-And-Mortar Store
October 11, 2014
http://www.WebProNews.com
Amazon Is Opening A Brick-And-Mortar Store

By: Chris Crum | Staff Writer

The biggest shopping site on the web has its sights set on the physical world, and while that might not have a major impact on smaller businesses in the immediate future, it could have a major impact down the road.

Are you concerned about Amazon setting up shop in the physical world?
Let us know in the comments
.


Amazon will soon open a new brick-and-mortar store across the street from the Empire State Building, and on the same street as Macy's flagship store. This is according to The Wall Street Journal, which says Amazon is testing this physical location concept. If it proves successful, expect to see Amazon stores in more cities. If it doesn't, then don't.

When envisioning what an Amazon store could look like, any number of images could come to mind. This is, after all, the largest online retailer, which offers just about anything you could want to buy and then some. Don't expect a Walmart-like store, however (at least for now). This store is reportedly more about customer service and Amazon-branded items.
According to the report, the store will function as a "mini warehouse, with limited inventory for same-day delivery within New York, products returns and exchanges, and pickups of online orders."

It says: "The Manhattan location is meant primarily to be a place for customers to pick up orders they've made online, but will also serve as a distribution center for couriers and likely one day will feature Amazon devices like Kindle e-readers, Fire smartphones and Fire TV set-top boxes, according to people familiar with the company's thinking."

If the experiment goes well, and Amazon expands into other locations, it's probably not out of the realm of possibility that we'll see the stores offer more and more types of items and grow in size. The company has already expanded its online services to include groceries (in multiple capacities). A more Walmart-like store from the company doesn't seem incredibly far-fetched.

Amazon has operated pop-up stores for its Kindle and Zappos brands in the past, so brick-and-mortar isn't an entirely new idea for Amazon, but a true Amazon store is something we've yet to see. As the company looks to sell more of its hardware, even something as simple as this initial experiment could prove very important for the company. Some stores have already stopped carrying Kindle devices in retaliation to the competitive threat of Amazon.

Amazon hasn't officially commented on the new store yet. A spokesperson for the company even went so far as to state that the company has "made no announcements about a location in Manhattan," though the Journal's report seems pretty sure that it's happening - in time for the holidays even.

Some are already freaking out over the potential for the company to come into the world of the physical storefront. New Republic says, "Amazon must be stopped," and calls it a monopoly. That notion is being heavily debated, but the first two paragraphs of that article do a pretty good job of summing up Amazon's power (which would only be added to in the physical realm) whether or not you agree with the monopoly premise:

Before we speak ill of Amazon, let us kneel down before it. Twenty years ago, the company began with the stated goal of creating a bookstore as comprehensive as the great Library of Alexandria, and then quickly managed to make even that grandiloquent ambition look puny. Amazon could soon conjure the full text of almost any volume onto a phone in less time than a yawn. Its warehouses are filled with an unabridged catalogue of items that comes damn close to serving every human need, both basic and esoteric—a mere click away, speedily delivered, and as cheap as capitalism permits.

Rather than pocketing the profits from this creation, Amazon has plowed revenue into bettering itself—into the construction of well-placed fulfillment centers that further hasten the arrival of its packages, into technologies that attempt to read our acquisitive minds and aptly suggest our next purchase. Shopping on Amazon has so ingrained itself in modern American life that it has become something close to our unthinking habit, and the company has achieved a level of dominance that merits the application of a very old label: monopoly.

It goes on to put Amazon in the company of Walmart and Google with the "monopoly" label. It also talks about how Amazon has left "competitors undercut" and "suppliers squeezed," and brings up the recent dispute with publisher Hachette.

It's a long and interesting article that's worth reading, but some have taken issue with it.

Vox, for example, writes:

The simple fact of the matter, however, is that Amazon doesn't have any kind of monopoly. In the sale of physical objects it faces fierce competition from the likes of Walmart (whose market capitalization is still worth about $100 billion more than Amazon's), Target, Home Depot, Ikea, the Gap, and other major retail chains. In the sale of digital goods it faces fierce competition from Apple and Google. It is true that in some of these markets Amazon has a rather dominant market share. But having a lot of the market is not the same as having a monopoly. A monopoly needs to involve a lack of choice and some kind of barrier to entry. Everyone gets their e-books from Amazon because they're just as cheap as Apple's e-books, but they work on a much broader range of devices. But if Amazon started offering an inferior e-book product to Apple's, then customers could and would switch.

One important hint about Amazon's non-monopoly status can be found in its quarterly financial reports. That's where you find out about a company's profits. In its most recent quarter, for example, Amazon lost $126 million. Losing money is pretty typical for Amazon, which is not really a profitable company. If you'd like to know more about that, I published 5,000 words on the subject in January. But suffice it to say that "low and often non-existent profits" and "monopoly" are not really concepts that go together.

New York Magazine similarly disputes the notion that Amazon is a monopoly, saying:

Amazon is a fearsome competitor forcing other retailers to compete or die, to be sure. It also might be a bad actor, and its harassment of Hachette might necessitate a legal, regulatory, or even legislative response. But it is hard to see how it is a monopoly.

Amazon does have something like a monopoly over the books market, and that monopoly has become harmful, as evidenced by its deplorable treatment of Hachette. But this is cherry-picking. Books are Amazon's oldest business, and the one where it controls the biggest market share.


Regardless of how one views the situation, an expansion by Amazon into the brick-and-mortar world (especially if it starts hurting established offline retailers significantly) is going to do little to quell the notion that it is a monopoly by those who perceive it to be.

A lot of people don't see Google as a monopoly, but that hasn't stopped huge government probes, in some cases requiring changes to the company's business.

At least players like Walmart have the resources to take the company on. It's the small businesses like those who were already hurt by the Walmarts of the world in the past, who may really be concerned, should Amazon stores start popping up everywhere like Walmarts have. On the other hand, at least Amazon enables third-party businesses to sell things too, so there could be some opportunities for the little guys as well.

Obviously it's way to early to know how things will play our or even if this becomes a concern. First, Amazon has to open a store, and then it has to be successful enough for the company to expand the project.

Do you think Amazon is a monopoly or will become one? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Monday, October 6, 2014

How To Change Your Tire Alone







How To Change Your #TireAlone  

Then come to A Used & NEW TIRES #specialist   and get a new or used tire for your car. Our #autotechnician  get you in and out quickly because they #value your #time . We have tires at #reasonable  rates and provide #quality   #tires .

Check the #website   and hit us on your favorite social media outlet. 
www.ausedtires.com

A USED & NEW TIRES SPECIALISTS
911 DONALD LEE HOLLOWELL PKWY NW
ATLANTA, GA 30318
404-992-2490

#usedtires   #atlantafalcons   #atlanta  

Sunday, October 5, 2014

DON'T BE LIKE HER


DON'T BE LIKE HER. Her #tires had normal #wear and #tare.. She knew she had to do something. But she was #busy and the #time pasted. Then one #afternoon her tire had a#blowout. Only an #hour before picking up the #kids from #school. ONLY if she had #called A USED & NEW TIRES SPECIALISTS, 911 Donald Lee Hollowell Pkwy NW, #Atlanta#Georgia 30318
www.ausedtires.com
(404) 992-2490

GOOGLE US
https://plus.google.com/+Ausedtires/
#usedtires #newtires #autorepair #wheels

Monday, September 22, 2014

Media Net USA: September 22, 2014PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE REL...

Media Net USA: September 22, 2014
PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE REL...
: September 22, 2014 PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE COMMUNITY ENHANCEMENTS IN THE BLUFF DUE TO NEW ATLANTA FALCONS STADIUM...
September 22, 2014

PRESS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

COMMUNITY ENHANCEMENTS IN THE BLUFF
DUE TO NEW ATLANTA FALCONS STADIUM CONSTRUCTION

A USED & NEW TIRES SPECIALISTS, INC. (AUSEDTIRES) seek growth opportunities with the construction of the new Atlanta Falcons stadium. The area slated for improvement falls within the address of A Used & New Tires Specialists, Inc. located at the corner of Donald Lee Hollowell Pkwy NW & Joseph E. Lowery Blvd NW, 911 Donald Lee Hollowell Pkwy NW, Atlanta, GA 30318. AUSEDTIRES is a family owned and operated business and has been in the community close to 20 years.

The owner of AUSEDTIRES plans to beautify the community by completing renovations of the store fronts of the tire shop and the building attached. A major gas station sits on the same corner with other community businesses that should benefit from the neighborhood enhancements. Community enhancements are expected in the area including Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. where Walmart has recently opened and other establishments seem to be thriving.

AUSEDTIRES has a new website, www.ausedtires.com and will begin documenting its progress in the upcoming community enhancement projects. The owner says he will help spread the information to the community about financial opportunities to improve property in the area. Stay tuned to the website and its social media outlets for community improvement progress reports and special deals at AUSEDTIRES. A positive community member of The Bluff for years, AUSEDTIRES seeks to improve the standard of life in our community.

A Used & New Tires Specialists, Inc.
911 Donald Lee Hollowell Pkwy NW, Atlanta, GA 30314
(404) 922-2490 - www.ausedtires.com

Contact:
Noel A. Booker Sr.
(404) 981-5046




Sunday, September 21, 2014

Top Ten Tire Safety Tips

Top Ten Tire Safety Tips



1. Check tire pressures and adjust at least once a month.
According to studies conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration  (NHTSA) on tire-related crashes, the leading cause of tire failure is underinflation.
Underinflation can have many causes, including a gradual loss of pressure through membranes in the tire itself. It is typical for pressure to drop approximately 1 psi per month and 1 psi for each 8-degree loss in ambient temperature.
Underinflation has immediate effects on vehicle handling (as well as fuel consumption), but its potential impact on overall safety and tire life are even greater. It results in premature and uneven tread wear on the outer edges. Underinflation also increases stress on the carcass itself, through flexing and overheating, which can lead to structural failures such as tread separation.
That's why it is imperative to check and adjust tire pressure at least once a month and before every long trip (over 250 miles). Recommended pressures are printed on a label located on the driver's doorframe or in the glove box.
2. Inspect tires regularly for abnormal wear or damage.
To ensure maximum tire life and safety, give your tires a visual inspection at least once a month and before long trips. This is easily done at the same time you check pressures.
Look for:
  • Excessive or uneven tread wear, which may indicate improper inflation or steering and suspension misalignment;
  • Cracks or bulges on the sidewalls or tread;
  • Chunking of the tread or any indication of tread separation from the carcass;
  • Signs of puncture, or nails, screws, glass, pieces of stone or any foreign object imbedded in the tire.
If you detect any of these conditions, take the vehicle in for further diagnosis immediately. In most cases, punctures can be repaired if their size is not excessive.
In general, external "plugs" are not recommended. Repairs should be made from the inside, and a complete inspection made while the tire is off the rim. Sealing compounds and other emergency aids should be treated only as a means of moving the vehicle to a safe location for repair.
If abnormal tire pressure loss occurs, check the valve stems for leakage, as well as the tire itself.
3. Rotate tires every 6,000 miles or according to owner's manual.
Tire rotation is essential to achieve even tread wear and maximum tread life. On front-wheel-drive cars, for example, most of the braking, steering and driving forces are carried by the front tires, which inevitably wear much faster.
A "cross-rotation pattern"—that is, moving the left-front tire to the right-rear axle, the right-front tire to the left-rear axle, etc.—can best balance tread wear and maximize tire life. That sequence can be performed on any vehicle equipped with four non-unidirectional tires. Designated by an arrow on the sidewall, unidirectional tires must be rotated only front to rear and rear to front, on the same side of the vehicle, so their direction of revolution does not change.
All-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive vehicles are best suited to a lateral rotation—left to right and right to left—at the same end of the vehicle.
4. Maintain tires in proper balance.
Out-of-balance tires can not only cause uneven tread wear and an uncomfortable ride but also excessive wear on the suspension and other components. An out-of-balance tire can be detected by a severe thumping, usually most pronounced at highway speeds.
If such a condition occurs, have your tires dynamically balanced as soon as possible. An experienced technician can usually determine which tire is out-of-balance by driving the car.
Tire balancing involves placing weights in appropriate places on the bead or inner circumference of the wheel. Tires should always be balanced when first installed, and whenever they are remounted.
5. Maintain steering and suspension in proper alignment.
Misalignment of the steering and suspension, either front or rear, can not only adversely affect the steering feel and stability of a vehicle, but also cause rapid and uneven tire wear. If not corrected, this misalignment can ruin a tire in a short time and distance.
If you feel the steering "pulling" in one direction or another when traveling straight ahead on a flat road with no crosswind, or if you notice uneven wear on the tires, particularly front tires, you should have the alignment checked and adjusted as soon as possible.
Alignment should also be checked after a vehicle has been involved in a collision or if it is used continuously on rough roads, particularly those with large potholes.
6. Never overload a tire.
Overloading is the second leading cause of tire failure, next to underinflation.
All tires are designed to operate within a maximum load range designated by a code on the tire sidewall. Exceeding this can result in both excessive wear and reduced tire life due to structural damage, including the potential for sudden failure.
In most vehicles, the maximum passenger and cargo load for which the vehicle and tires are designed is printed on the same label that designates recommended tire pressures. That load, particularly in the case of trucks and SUVs, may be substantially less than the vehicle is physically able to contain. It is critical that the maximum allowable load never be exceeded.
When determining the actual load in your vehicle, don't overlook the tongue-weight of a trailer if you are trailer towing, since it also acts directly on the vehicle's tires.
7. Avoid overheating tires.
Heat, like load, is the enemy of tire life. The higher the heat it is subjected to, the shorter the tire's life—in terms of both tread wear and structural resistance.
High speeds, high loads, underinflation, coarse pavement or concrete, and aggressive driving, including high cornering loads and hard braking, all contribute to high tire temperatures. Combined with high ambient temperatures and continuous use, they can create extreme circumstances and cause sudden tire failure.
To maximize tire life and safety, therefore, it is important to minimize the simultaneous occurrence of such conditions. Be particularly vigilant at high temperatures and adjust your driving style to consider its effect on tire life and performance.
8. Replace tires when required.
Your vehicle's tires should be replaced if:
  • Any portion of the tread is worn to the "wear indicator bars"—lateral bars molded into the tire grooves at about 20 percent of their new tread depth—or to a depth, as measured in a groove, of 1/16th inch or less.
  • Tread wear is severely uneven (in which case have the wheel alignment checked) or the center is worn much more than the edges (be more vigilant about tire pressures).
  • The tire sidewalls are severely cracked or there are bulges anywhere on the tire.
  • There is any indication of tread separation from the tire carcass.
  • The tire has been punctured and cannot be satisfactorily repaired.
There are other reasons you may need new tires, as well. If you have been running on winter tires, then a change is in order in the spring. Using snow tires on dry roads accelerates their wear significantly and diminishes both traction and handling ability.
9. Install tires in matched pairs or complete sets.
Installing different tires on the left and right sides can significantly upset the handling balance of a vehicle—not to mention its ABS operation. For that reason, it is imperative that tires be installed in front or rear pairs, or complete sets.
Those pairs should be the same construction, size, brand and type, with approximately the same tread wear. In most cases, if you have to buy one new tire, you should buy a pair. It is essential that side-to-side pairs be the same and highly desirable that front and rear pairs also be matched, except in cases such as high-performance cars with larger tires in the rear.
If you replace only two, the new tires should generally go on the rear wheels, regardless of whether the vehicle is FWD, RWD, or AWD. It is important to maintain maximum traction at the rear wheels to ensure stability. Putting new tires on the front and nearly worn-out tires on the rear wheels of any vehicle is a recipe for instability. It is thus very important to avoid dramatic differences in tread wear, front-to-rear.
Under no circumstances should you have tires of different construction (radial and bias ply) or different classification (all-season and winter) on opposite ends or sides, since handling can be adversely affected.
10. Select the right tires for your vehicle and driving environment.
Recent improvements in "all-season" tires have substantially advanced the concept of one-tire-for-all-needs. On the other hand, more specialized tires than ever are now available for high performance, rain, snow, ice, off-road and touring. Some are even uni-directional, "run-flat" and even "green."
Most drivers are happy just to know they have "all-season" tires, and that is the way most new vehicles are equipped. These are a benign compromise, sacrificing exceptional capability in any one area of performance for acceptable capability in all.
Within that premise, however, there are huge variations in actual performance. Unfortunately, factors that improve one tire characteristic tend to diminish another. For example:
  • A hard tread compound may enhance tread life and fuel economy but detract from both wet and dry traction;
  • Short, stiff sidewall construction may enhance cornering power and directional stability but detract from ride quality;
  • A wide tread with minimal grooving may enhance dry grip but detract from traction in wet and snowy conditions;
  • An aggressive, open tread may enhance snow traction but aggravate tire noise and sacrifice tread life on pavement.
In addition to dry asphalt, tires may be expected to function on mud, snow, ice, sand or gravel, in temperatures from above 140°F to below -40°F. You get some idea of the multiple tradeoffs designers have to make.
Just consider that exceptional virtues are probably achieved at the expense of others. Determine what your primary needs are, and narrow your choices accordingly. Then, if possible, drive a similar vehicle equipped with the tires you are considering.
Canadian auto journalist Gerry Malloy is a regular contributor to Sympatico / MSN Autos Canada .
 A USED TIRES

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Africans, camera, action: 'Nollywood' catches world's eye

By , Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

Hurtling out of his chair into the faces of two actors, a top Nigerian movie director yells, "Cut, cut! That's not good acting. It's terrible."
It's 6 p.m. on the set of Adim Williams's new political thriller. No one has had lunch. The crew is cranky. The actors keep flubbing the scene.
With its $40,000 budget and two-week shoot, this movie is typical of "Nollywood," Nigeria's slapdash industry, where quantity has long trumped quality. But Mr. Williams's films are increasingly being seen worldwide, and he's adamant this one be top-notch. Lunch can wait.
Recommended: Could you pass a US citizenship test?
After years as the snickered-at stepchild of global movie industries, Nollywood is blossoming. Bringing in as much as $100 million a year, it's third behind Hollywood and India's Bollywood in revenues. But more important, Nollywood's rise represents a unique cultural moment, people here say: African stories are finally being told by Africans themselves.
"These are our stories about Africa, not someone else's," exults Joke Silva, doyenne of Nollywood actors.
She cites 1997's "Amistad" as typical of Hollywood's handling of Africa: "It was a really strong story with a slave actually being the catalyst for his freedom, but somehow the Anthony Hopkins character [who played John Quincy Adams] ends up being the hero," she laments. "That was unforgivable."
Likewise, the run of Africa-oriented movies in US theaters recently - mostly notably "Hotel Rwanda" - have featured American stars or characters in lead roles.
But with Nollywood films being appreciated more widely, changes are afoot:
• Nollywood directors such as Williams are in demand across Africa. He recently got $5,000 - and red-carpet and motorcade treatment - just to schmoozein Uganda.
• Americans are also intrigued. Wesley Snipes scouted dealmaking opportunities here in September. And a team of independent American marketers sealed a deal recently with Williams for his first US release, "Joshua," a comedy that will come out on DVD this month.
• Works by Tunde Kelani, the Francis Ford Coppola of Nollywood, and others, are increasingly touring international film festivals. The Montreal, Berlin, and Cannes festivals had Nollywood events and screenings this year.
• Hot young director Jeta Amata just finished his first 35 millimeter, theater-quality movie, a historical epic called "Amazing Grace" about the iconic song, the tune of which apparently originated in Africa. Mr. Amata and investors are confident the film will be a cross-over hit with both Western and African audiences. He has a South African distributor, NuMetro, and is currently in talks with an American distributor.
• Nollywood's influence is so strong across Africa that there's been a backlash against Nigerian movies in nearby Ghana, where police have reportedly been raiding shops selling Nollywood videos, though it's not clear what laws have been breached. "They're struggling not to be colonized by Nigerian movies," Williams says, laughing. Other countries are just hustling to copy Nigeria: Uganda is trying to jumpstart "Ugandawood."
The basic Nollywood formula is that cheaply made films are rushed straight to videotapes and DVDs - then often pirated endlessly. Producers and directors don't see much of the money their films make, which causes much hand-wringing - and calls for more-secure distribution channels.
The films themselves often involve zany plots designed to teach a lesson, with many including black magic and dire consequences for evildoers.
Nollywood's stories are "very black and white" compared with Hollywood, Ms. Silva says - and that explains their appeal across Africa, where religion-based moralistic strains are popular. A "Hallelujah" sub-genre even involves timely interventions by Jesus Christ in daily affairs.
But Nollywood is tackling tough social and political issues, too.
Williams's film centers on a power play between a president and vice president - who, shockingly, discover they have the same mother, which helps bridge the divide between them. Coincidentally, there's currently a real-life power struggle between Nigeria's president and vice president over 2007 elections. "No relevance at all" to current events, says Williams with a smile.
And there's the recent "Women's Cot," starring Ms. Silva, which centers on a cultural practice whereby a man's family grabs all his property when he dies, leaving his widow destitute. Silva's character and other widows form a powerful group to prevent the practice. But they become corrupt.
The message: Traditional norms may be flawed, "but be wary of women if they get too much power," Silva says. It's part of Nigeria's national debate over tradition versus modernity, which resonates across Africa.
Even as Nollywood gains global respect, though, it has much further to go, says Mr. Amata, sipping a drink at a ritzy Lagos hotel. He's riled up about the side-show treatment that Africa's film industry got at Cannes this year.
With Hollywood facing declining box-office revenues, Nollywood can teach it some lessons, he insists, such as how to make cheaper films.
He also speaks of the benefits of the less-rigid, more improvisational style employed by Nollywood directors.
"We have things to learn from them, but there's a lot they can learn from us."

Monday, September 1, 2014

International Film Festivals

Baidu's Video Website Taps International Film Festivals for Home Growth

In its quest to compete with Youku Tudou for the attention of China’s 618 million Internet users, Baidu’s IQiyi video website is tapping global movie festivals to satisfy Chinese viewers’ curiosity for foreign cinema.
In an initiative called Online Festival Screening, the Beijing-based site seeks to secure the right to stream directly from the festivals, a move enabling the company to shorten negotiation time with producers overseas and circumvent China’s quota system restricting foreign film imports because the system doesn’t apply to online distribution.
“It’s important that we have as many movies as possible but it’s difficult for us to buy movies overseas. We think the international festivals are a big opportunity,” said IQiyi founder and CEO Gong Yu.
IQiyi, which has yet to make a profit, is now streaming new releases from the Venice Film Festival, where it is also one of the main sponsors.  The site has imported 30 titles including this year’s winner, Greek director Pantelis Voulgaris’ “Little England,” a romantic drama so popular in China that IQiyi is now trying to arrange a theatrical release.
IQiyi is catching up fast with Youku Tudou. The site is now tied with the New York-listed company, which has secured a $1. 22 billion investment led by Jack Ma’s Alibaba Group, in terms of monthly visitor number and viewing time, according to Internet consultant IResearch. Last year, IQiyi ranked 4th in the Chinese online video market before Baidu acquired another online video platform, PPS TV, for $370 million and sought to merge the two to create the largest video website in China.
IQiyi is now on the hunt for long-term partnerships with film festivals worldwide. The site has also worked with the Shanghai Film Festival in June and the 67th Cannes Film Festival. Its newly launched film production unit, IQiyi Motion Pictures, aims to co-produce seven domestic and one Hollywood film within the next year.
Within three years, IQiyi could hold an initial public offering with a valuation that would surpass Youku Tudou’s, Gong said in April. “We want to have the largest market share and revenue share in the industry,” he told Bloomberg. “By the time of the IPO, if our market share and revenue are both larger than Youku, we should have a bigger valuation than it does.”