Emory Report
December 3, 2007
Volume 60, Number 13

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December 3, 2007
Von Mueller's 'Life of the Mind' lecture to explore how new technologies reshape cinema

from staff reports

Something strange is happening to American cinema. Since the mid-1990s, the accelerating application of various digital imaging technologies have radically altered not only the way motion pictures are made, but also how they are seen, sold — and even how they are understood.

Film studies lecturer Eddy Von Mueller will address these developments in cinema the next Life of the Mind lecture on Wednesday, Dec. 5.

Von Mueller said the lecture will focus on how the practice of filmmaking is changing in the 21st century, “shifting from artisanal, localized and material craftwork to a global, fully industrialized, fundamentally alienated mode of production in which movies are engineered and assembled from parts made in disparate time and places.” He will also discuss the aesthetic, economic and ethical implications of this new, digitally dependent cinema.

Von Mueller has published extensively in the popular press as a commentator and film critic and recently completed his first book, “The Acme Aesthetic: the Impact of Animation on Contemporary Cinema.” He has also worked as an illustrator and animator, and continues to direct, produce and write for television and film. In 2008, he will helm the Department of Film Studies’ first course in fiction film production.

The free lecture, titled “The Empty Set: Labor, Technology, and the Transmogrification of 21st-Century Cinema,” begins at noon in the Jones Room of the Woodruff Library. The Life of the Mind lecture series will continue into the spring semester, beginning with professor Martha Fineman, a leading authority on family law and feminist jurisprudence.