AceShowbiz - Moviemaker Richard Linklater fears independent cinema is "gone with the wind." The director, best known for "Before Sunrise" and "Boyhood", has shared his worries that indie and arthouse movies aren't valued in the same way any more and he puts it down to changes in Hollywood as well as with viewers themselves, questioning whether cinema-goers truly value quality filmmaking any more.
He told The Hollywood Reporter, "It feels like it's [independent cinema] gone with the wind - or gone with the algorithm. Sometimes I'll talk to some of my contemporaries who I came up with during the 1990s, and we'll go: 'Oh my God, we could never get that done today.' So, on the one hand, selfishly, you think: 'I guess I was born at the right time. I was able to participate in what always feels like the last good era for filmmaking.' And then you hope for a better day. But, man, the way distribution has fallen off. Sadly, it’s mostly just the audience. Is there a new generation that really values cinema anymore? That’s the dark thought."
Linklater founded the Austin Film Society to create opportunities for aspiring moviemakers and he often meets young arthouse enthusiasts through the organisation, but he worries they are becoming a very small segment of the cinema-going public as a whole. He is also convinced the way films are consumed has changed because of how modern life has evolved.
The director added, "I think we could feel it coming on when they started calling films 'content' - but that's what happens when you let tech people take over your industry. It's hard to imagine indie cinema in particular having the cultural relevance that it did. It's hard to imagine the whole culture is going to be on the same page about anything, much less filmmaking. We can be self-absorbed and say it's just about cinema, but it's really all of our modern cultural life. You could say the same things about reading books. A lot of young people can't really read a book, because they're just on their phones."