I’m very much into dystopian stories.  1984, A Handmaid’s Tale, Brave New World, and so forth.


By chance, I ran across  Tennyson E. Stead, a friendly, well-spoken guy who also happens to be the founder of 8 Sided Films, one of the many film companies springing up in an attempt to try new forms of funding new movies.


He’s trained in theater, and he’s capable of holding a very entertaining conversation.  Overall, I’m impressed at what I perceive about his ability to balance the artistic side of film and the business that goes along with it.


Amongst many of the sorts of tangents that can only occur between two mind-bending horror fanatics, I found some fantastic points regarding the changing environment for film, partly demonstrated by last year’s success of Paranormal Activity.  Like the music industry, the film industry is undergoing radical changes due to not only technology, but also the attitudes of the consumers. 



Not only has simple information become more accessible, but the individuals involved in production feel much more accessible to the general public, as well.  Thanks, Facebook and Twitter.  Personality and (perceived) charisma are more important than ever.  For a prime example, Tennyson cites Joss Whedon and his army of fans.  How many people will check out pretty much anything if that man’s name is attached to it?  A lot.  And those projects get discussed over the Internet and in person amongst enthusiasts until everyone is blue in the face.  Or…fingers.  Or however that expression would work with typing.


As a result, he’s  designed 8 Sided Films as a repertory film company, which, as the name suggests, relies on reputation developed by a group of people instead of giving creative control to a single financial backer.  He defines the difference between his model and the traditional film company model in more detail here; the description also once more highlights his theater background.


There are two very interesting projects currently on the table, and I suggest everyone give each of them a chance.  They take a lot of psychological elements and create questions surrounding their source, causes, and how they affect real human reactions.  An example from another film – in one film, a man sees that his wife is about to be attacked by zombies, and he has a choice between heroically making what will obviously be a useless attempt to save her, resulting in both of their deaths, or he can make a run for it.  Picking Option B seems much more realistic in considering human nature.  Expect more extreme explorations of how humans would actually react from 8 Sided’s projects.


Keep an eye on this fellow, and keep an eye on what he does.