*NEW* Pinball Documentary

Started 2 years ago by IndianaPwns in forum All PinballAll Pinball.


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*NEW* Pinball Documentary


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  • Started 2 years ago by IndianaPwns
  • 38 Pinsiders participating in this thread.
  • Latest reply from pzy

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    2 years ago
    #

    I work as a Cinematographer for a Commercial Studio in North Carolina. I have the skills, education, & means to make a High-end documentary.

    I'm entertaining the idea of making a pinball short (or possibly feature). Trying to narrow the specifics down:

    - A video portrait of a pinball expert and his road to glory or defeat (Similar to "The King of Kong")?

    - A take on what could be the resurgence of the Pinball industry?

    or

    - A look at the incredible diversity of players across the country (rich, poor, millionaires, mechanics, black, white...etc.) and the common bond (Pinball) that brings them together.

    I'm just curious what you Pinsiders think about the idea, or if there are any other subjects you think would be more interesting?

    -------------------------------------

    **04/19/12 UPDATE**

    Wow, what fantastic comments and ideas! You guys are great. I'll say, it's definitely going to be more about the people & the hobby and less about the machines. However, I will say - the machines you own tell a lot about you.

    It will start as a short documentary. I want to follow two pinsiders who have made pinball an integral part of their lives. I've already got permission from one, and have yet to talk to the other.

    I've done a couple of documentary portraits like this. There is a fantastic mini-doc online entitled "Ray: A Life Underwater" with a visual style I really admire. Pickup the tempo a bit and add a little more humor and try to imagine something like this:

    » Vimeo video

    I'll keep you guys updated. Might start a kickstarter - don't know yet.


    2 years ago
    #

    A documentary on JJP and the whole WOZ process from start to finish would be interesting to watch.
    Doug


    2 years ago
    #
    dug said:

    A documentary on JJP and the whole WOZ process from start to finish would be interesting to watch.
    Doug

    +1 on this idea. So much riding on this company, and so much content for a great storyline. The timing seems perfect.


    2 years ago
    #

    Not that there are an overwhelming amount of pinball documentaries out there but they all seem to be similar (with maybe the exception of Pinball 2000 The Fight To Save Pinball).
    That said - I’d love to see one dedicated to the history of the gambling pin games. (No one has ever bother to make a film one these wonders). These things evolved into most complex game machines ever built. The closer you look into them the more you’ll realize how ingeniously deep and well thought out they truly are.
    (Plus -I know a bunch of people that’d buy it)


    2 years ago
    #

    I think he's a bit late for that, considering the game is just about built.

    dug said:

    A documentary on JJP and the whole WOZ process from start to finish would be interesting to watch.
    Doug


    2 years ago
    #

    A documentary on Chris at high end pins would cool


    2 years ago
    #

    make b_r a celebrity. he has enough connections and is quasi local.


    2 years ago
    #

    Although it would have limited appeal (only those already into pinball would enjoy it a lot), I would love to see a documentary that covers the top 10 machines (yeah...that's subjective) from each decade since the 1930's done in the style of Chris Bucci's "My Pinball Collection" DVDs, plus some overhead papa-style gameplay footage of each title.

    It would cover why each machine is special from a market perspective and from a player's perspective.

    Let's face it, the older machines are going to disappear from history unless they get properly documented. IPDB is nice, but video would have a lot more impact for future generations.


    2 years ago
    #
    dug said:

    A documentary on JJP and the whole WOZ process from start to finish would be interesting to watch.
    Doug

    Naaah. Everything told and documented twice already

    My suggestion. Go to one of the big competitions and make vibrant footage from high level playing. Use that cross cut with some interviews of players. Edit along archive footage and music.

    Like the PAPA segment in Special When Lit. Only better.


    2 years ago
    #

    - A look at the incredible diversity of players across the country (rich, poor, millionaires, mechanics, black, white...etc.) and the common bond (Pinball) that brings them together.

    ^^ this gets my vote by far.

    I think the quirkiness that makes us all similar yet so different would make for a good documentary.


    2 years ago
    #

    Come on man! The machines are cool and why we are into this but the people are far more interesting! I wanna know why people love what they do and the stories of why they may have decided to make this their profesion. Do we know the story of a person say like Steve Ritchie?


    2 years ago
    #

    I think you should do a documentary on where pinball is at now. Do interviews with all the new companies? Show some footage from pinball shows? Show some footage from a pinball auction? Have interviews with fans and collectors? Show some tournament footage with pro players? Show some restoration footage? Name the documentary "Pinball is not Dead"(The rise and fall and rise of pinball).


    2 years ago
    #
    vster23 said:

    "Pinball is not Dead"(The Evolution of Pinball).

    Changed it a bit.


    2 years ago
    #

    Just make sure it has a cohesive story to tell so it doesn't end up like the "Special when lit" Trainwreck.


    2 years ago
    #

    Call it... Pinball Therapy. Play On.

    Go for it.


    2 years ago
    #
    IndianaPwns said:

    I work as a Cinematographer for a Commercial Studio in North Carolina. I have the skills, education, & means to make a High-end documentary.
    I'm entertaining the idea of making a pinball short (or possibly feature). Trying to narrow the specifics down:
    - A video portrait of a pinball expert and his road to glory or defeat (Similar to "The King of Kong")?
    - A take on what could be the resurgence of the Pinball industry?
    or
    - A look at the incredible diversity of players across the country (rich, poor, millionaires, mechanics, black, white...etc.) and the common bond (Pinball) that brings them together.
    I'm just curious what you Pinsiders think about the idea, or if there are any other subjects you think would be more interesting?

    How about a combo of:

    - A take on what could be the resurgence of the Pinball industry?
    or
    - A look at the incredible diversity of players across the country (rich, poor, millionaires, mechanics, black, white...etc.) and the common bond (Pinball) that brings them together.
    I'm just curious what you Pinsiders think about the idea, or if there are any other subjects you think would be more interesting?


    2 years ago
    #

    How about a shot of you playing your IJ, telling your experience? This would be a cool amendment to a "King of Kong" story. Perhaps a set that reflects where you first played T2 in that small gameroom, using exact words from your recent thread about it.


    2 years ago
    #

    I think the most potentially helpful subject with respect to promoting our hobby to the outside world would be to follow competitors and show off the growing competitive side of the hobby. Indeed, perhaps like King of Kong without the marginalization of the hobbyists. The story of competition is compelling to everyone, but ideally you should present the people and pinball as identifiable. It would also be cool if the actual skill involved could be emphasized in a way that perhaps "demystifies" the playing of pinball to the average person who just thinks of a ball bouncing around randomly.

    My dream would be to one day have tournament appeal reach a level akin to WPT, where we could watch it on TV. Maybe pinball could then be saved after all.

    Shawn


    2 years ago
    #

    I think that this is a cool idea.

    I have always wondered if you took one machine, perhaps one that is not too deep.

    Show a segment with that machine trying to demonstrate the rules; that pinball is not just about hitting the ball with the flippers (to keep it alive), but to complete something to get somewhere and obtain points, light show, etc.

    I think one of the barriers to new people getting interested in pinball, is that they don't understand what it's about.

    So if you showed how a machine is developed, designed, themed, mechanics built, software integrated, rules made; then what I have said above is the culmination of all of that effort...and why that machine was built and why it is unique, fun and worth seeking out to play.

    Robert


    2 years ago
    #
    MrSanRamon said:

    I think that this is a cool idea.
    I have always wondered if you took one machine, perhaps one that is not too deep.
    Show a segment with that machine trying to demonstrate the rules; that pinball is not just about hitting the ball with the flippers (to keep it alive), but to complete something to get somewhere and obtain points, light show, etc.
    I think one of the barriers to new people getting interested in pinball, is that they don't understand what it's about.
    So if you showed how a machine is developed, designed, themed, mechanics built, software integrated, rules made; then what I have said above is the culmination of all of that effort...and why that machine was built and why it is unique, fun and worth seeking out to play.
    Robert

    Ok forget my post, you hit it right on the head with that idea. Demonstrate to the public what pinball is truly about. Your main goal should be to convince someone who would normally play a 45 second game and walk away to try again, practice, and discover the fun and adrenaline of getting multiball, massive points, and easing your way towards the wizard mode. People like THAT are what the hobby needs.


    2 years ago
    #

    My vote is people, not machines....Why do you think reality shows are so popular? People want to see people and their good, their bad, their successes and their failures. We want a hero to worship, an underdog to cheer for and a villain to vilify. The theme that ties all those together with pinball is a documentary on the people aspect of the hobby. And I think the most interesting group is the professional players.

    While I respect the suggestions on machines being developed, designed, themed, etc., much of that's been done...I think there is even a "how do they do that" episode on Stern. But I haven't seen a recent anything on the state of the professional players circuit....Where do they play....Types of prize money...Rivalries and Feuds.....Techniques and practice routines....Personality quirks. Sort of an Inside the NFL approach but with pinball. Just my 2c


    2 years ago
    #

    You are welcome to come to my 40th anniversary party and do some filming.

    Not knowing which direction you go, you may want to accumulate footage now and sort out later.

    LTG


    2 years ago
    #

    I like where robertmee is going there. With how I watch the PAPA vids as soon as they post up, its just as much a spectator sport as it is fun to play. A sports documentary style could be interesting, but focusing on a person may be more boring, you may just want to focus on tournaments in general.


    2 years ago
    #
    davewth said:

    make b_r a celebrity.

    +1 I love that idea.


    2 years ago
    #
    davewth said:

    make b_r a celebrity. he has enough connections and is quasi local.

    Why do I see 'Dawg the Bounty Hunter' written all over this....Only B_R the Pinball Hunter


    2 years ago
    #
    IndianaPwns said:

    I work as a Cinematographer for a Commercial Studio in North Carolina. I have the skills, education, & means to make a High-end documentary.
    I'm entertaining the idea of making a pinball short (or possibly feature). Trying to narrow the specifics down:
    - A video portrait of a pinball expert and his road to glory or defeat (Similar to "The King of Kong")?
    - A take on what could be the resurgence of the Pinball industry?
    or
    - A look at the incredible diversity of players across the country (rich, poor, millionaires, mechanics, black, white...etc.) and the common bond (Pinball) that brings them together.
    I'm just curious what you Pinsiders think about the idea, or if there are any other subjects you think would be more interesting?

    I think a mixture of the last 2 ideas would be great.


    2 years ago
    #

    If you need any help just let me know. i'm a graphic artist and i don't live that far from you.


    2 years ago
    #

    Real pinballers will eat up any pinball documentary u make and happily hand over $20. Your looking at a giant audience right here. But, try to be different than the others, and do your best to make it current because the last 1-2 years has been nuts.


    JWS64

    Pinball addict
    1,090,300 2
    2 years ago
    #

    Indiana,

    I think your ideas are spot on.

    You do know that you have within your reach a treasure trove of material in NC,
    BR (yes, the man and not the pin), Lost Ark in RTP, Flippers on the NC Coast area,
    Lots more pinball players and collectors, The Banker ( his collection alone is worth
    a visit). There's Shanetastic, BR's running buddy and Technobarn, another one
    of BR's friends. Right there is enough to get you hours worth of footage.

    Marco's Specialties is located in SC, could be a road trip for you to go interview
    that business and everyone there. In Charlotte NC is Brady Distribution, they've
    been selling pins for a long time.

    Then you have the guy from High-end Pins that does full restorations.
    That visit alone would give you alot of material seeing his process.

    I hope I've given you somethings to think about. I'm in NC also, about
    45 minute drive from BR's house.

    The pinball hobby needs more great and entertaining documentaries.
    I hope you take your idea and bring the project into completion.

    I will buy a DVD copy, if you do.

    Spending 1 day with BR and I knew someone could do a pinball reality show on his life.
    He is without a doubt a character, entertaining, opinions, and he's always falling into
    More and more pins every month. He changes pins more than people change the oil in their
    cars.


    2 years ago
    #

    In keeping with the competition story, I would suggest that you profile 4-6 competitors and follow them through a major tournament (PAPA, etc). Ideally picking a diverse group with broad collective appeal.

    Suggestions:

    1: First-timer. ideally an "all-American" type dude rather than some creepy, pathetic nerd
    2: Female with serious pinball skills. preferably one that female viewers would identify/connect with
    3. Young player with serious skills. not sure at what age kids are allowed to compete, but the younger/more skilled the better. (again trying to pull in new blood)
    4. Veteran pinball wizard. perhaps a defending champion
    5. Up-and-coming challenger. or perhaps more than one in the hopes that at least one of them advances far enough to create some drama
    6. insert your ideas here

    Shawn


    2 years ago
    #
    alveolus said:

    3. Young player with serious skills. not sure at what age kids are allowed to compete, but the younger/more skilled the better. (again trying to pull in new blood)

    Shawn

    WE got one round these parts for sure.


    2 years ago
    #

    I think something that brings to light , the fun of owning pins , expanding this as a hobby , would be interesting to many. Most people are completely unaware of this. It's only been in the last two years that I realized, possibility and fun regarding collecting pins. The people that I have been privileged to meet, such as BR, Jack, Chad , Trident, Darren, Buddy, ect, have enabled me to enjoy this pinball adventure. The general public, outside this community, would enjoy this if they new more about it.


    2 years ago
    #

    I like the idea of a documentary on pinball owners. I like to see others collections from the large to the small.


    2 years ago
    #

    I think you need to compare/contrast all the different types of people in the hobby. Some of the other documentaries have made us all out to look like freaks. Some of us are, some of us aren't.


    2 years ago
    #
    davewth said:

    make b_r a celebrity.

    I thought B R is a celebrity already.

    At least on Pinside


    2 years ago
    #

    Where'd you go Alex? We need your input!


    2 years ago
    #

    How about a super hero movie staring Molly Atkinson from Pins and Needles in LA???


    2 years ago
    #
    alveolus said:

    In keeping with the competition story, I would suggest that you profile 4-6 competitors and follow them through a major tournament (PAPA, etc). Ideally picking a diverse group with broad collective appeal.

    I could see competitive pinball as a televised sport. There are certainly enough tournaments around the country and enough of the top players attend most of those tournaments that they'd probably develop a fanbase. I don't know... It would be cool though...

    alveolus said:

    1: First-timer. ideally an "all-American" type dude rather than some creepy, pathetic nerd

    Always first timers at most tournaments, shouldn't be hard to find.

    alveolus said:

    2: Female with serious pinball skills. preferably one that female viewers would identify/connect with

    Julie Gray is ranked 49th in the US. Phoebe Smith and Molly Atkinson are fairly well known in the hobby and compete.

    alveolus said:

    3. Young player with serious skills.

    Josh Henderson - at age 15 or maybe 16 by now, he's ranked 10th in the US. Although I did witness 1 episode of unsportsman like conduct a couple of years ago, I believe it was an isolated incident. A very talented young player indeed.

    alveolus said:

    4. Veteran pinball wizard. perhaps a defending champion

    Man, there's a bunch. Just look at the top 20 or 30 ranked players in the US. Keith, Cayle, Trent, Zach, Josh, Bowen and the list goes on and on.


    2 years ago
    #
    JWS64 said:

    There's Shanetastic, BR's running buddy and Technobarn, another one
    of BR's friends. Right there is enough to get you hours worth of footage.

    Banker said:

    The people that I have been privileged to meet, such as BR, Jack, Chad , Trident, Darren, Buddy, ect,

    Thanks for the good words fellows, recent events have slowed/marred my pinball participation level ($$$) but I'm not out yet........


    2 years ago
    #

    Wow, what fantastic comments and ideas! You guys are great. I'll say, it's definitely going to be more about the people & the hobby and less about the machines. However, I will say - the machines you own tell a lot about you.

    It will start as a short documentary. I want to follow two pinsiders who have made pinball an integral part of their lives. I've already got permission from one, and have yet to talk to the other.

    I've done a couple of documentary portraits like this. There is a fantastic mini-doc online entitled "Ray: A Life Underwater" with a visual style I really admire. Pickup the tempo a bit and add a little more humor and try to imagine something like this:

    » Vimeo video

    I'll keep you guys updated. Might start a kickstarter - don't know yet.


    2 years ago
    #

    I missed this thread and just coincidentally posted another. While you've decided on your documentary intent, I'd encourage you to look at this topic for your second.

    http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/in-defense-of-gary-stern-documentary

    I'm personally less interested in seeing everyone's collections and more about the hero, villain, passionate people keeping the industry alive - their motivations, drama, and perspectives (Stern, JJP, JPOP and Predator guys). Weave in collectors and it's interesting. Otherwise, you might just be doing a remake of the King of Kong.


    2 years ago
    #
    badbilly27 said:

    I missed this thread and just coincidentally posted another. While you've decided on your documentary intent, I'd encourage you to look at this topic for your second.
    http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/in-defense-of-gary-stern-documentary
    I'm personally less interested in seeing everyone's collections and more about the hero, villain, passionate people keeping the industry alive - their motivations, drama, and perspectives (Stern, JJP, JPOP and Predator guys). Weave in collectors and it's interesting. Otherwise, you might just be doing a remake of the King of Kong.

    I'll consider the Gary Stern idea - but because of time and resources (in this case Cash) it's going to have to be something more local...Central N.C. to be exact. While we all love to see big collections, it's going to focus more on the people of pinball as opposed to the machines themselves.


    2 years ago
    #
    IndianaPwns said:

    Wow, what fantastic comments and ideas! You guys are great. I'll say, it's definitely going to be more about the people & the hobby and less about the machines. However, I will say - the machines you own tell a lot about you.
    It will start as a short documentary. I want to follow two pinsiders who have made pinball an integral part of their lives. I've already got permission from one, and have yet to talk to the other.
    I've done a couple of documentary portraits like this. There is a fantastic mini-doc online entitled "Ray: A Life Underwater" with a visual style I really admire. Pickup the tempo a bit and add a little more humor and try to imagine something like this:
    » Vimeo video
    I'll keep you guys updated. Might start a kickstarter - don't know yet.

    badbilly27 said:

    I missed this thread and just coincidentally posted another. While you've decided on your documentary intent, I'd encourage you to look at this topic for your second.
    http://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/in-defense-of-gary-stern-documentary
    I'm personally less interested in seeing everyone's collections and more about the hero, villain, passionate people keeping the industry alive - their motivations, drama, and perspectives (Stern, JJP, JPOP and Predator guys). Weave in collectors and it's interesting. Otherwise, you might just be doing a remake of the King of Kong.

    As an enthusiast, I would be all over both of these films. However, I do hope someone films a doc about the tournaments which I do believe would have a broader appeal to the non-enthusiast and would be most likely to draw new blood into the hobby, particularly if competitors are profiled with whom common folks can identify.


    2 years ago
    #

    People's stories are always a blast to listen to, I'd focus on that. Part of the fun of pinball showd is talking to other enthusiasts. Probably why some of the podcasts do well.

    I love the one story on the pinball podcast where a guy was selling a broken arcade game, but would let him look at it to see if it was fixable. Sure enough after an hour he found the problem and the guy doubled his sell price. "well its working now, it's worth more". Yea, cuz I just fixed it". He argued with him, at least pay md for fixing it. Guy refused, so he put it back to the broken state it was in when he started and walked away from it.


    2 years ago
    #

    make b_r a celebrity. he has enough connections and is quasi local.

    quasi ,, , where's my Dictionary ..

    davewth said:make b_r a celebrity. he has enough connections and is quasi local.
    Why do I see 'Dawg the Bounty Hunter' written all over this....Only B_R the Pinball Hunter

    I heard that !!!!!

    Indiana,

    I think your ideas are spot on.

    You do know that you have within your reach a treasure trove of material in NC,
    BR (yes, the man and not the pin), Lost Ark in RTP, Flippers on the NC Coast area,
    Lots more pinball players and collectors, The Banker ( his collection alone is worth
    a visit). There's Shanetastic, BR's running buddy and Technobarn, another one
    of BR's friends. Right there is enough to get you hours worth of footage.

    Marco's Specialties is located in SC, could be a road trip for you to go interview
    that business and everyone there. In Charlotte NC is Brady Distribution, they've
    been selling pins for a long time.

    Another Good Idea ..... So you want to Focus on the People of Pinball . I could steer you to Several Local member's of a 100 mile radius of Us in the Triad.. If you want me to be part of Yr Documentary , It would be a Pleasure .. Chris & Melissa ( CoinTaker ) are Fly-n down to visit me this summer ( sometyme ) in Their Personal Airplane ,, They would be Great to interview..


    2 years ago
    #

    Come on! Give the people what they want! With the success of The Hunger Games....20 people are attached to 20 Pinball Machines. One by one they get killed by the machines in various ways...only one person (the winner) survives! PINBALL IS NOT DEAD...YOU ARE! (Copyright Pending)


    2 years ago
    #

    Actually this started as a joke....now I'm thinking of actually writing up a storyline.


    2 years ago
    #

    Actually!


    2 years ago
    #

    Please put B_R in your documentary.


    2 years ago
    #

    Agreed!



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