12th April – Friday Filmmaking

14 Dan's Friday Filmmaking Creative Tips & Wonders


In this week’s blog, we dive into the exciting world of VR filmmaking and explore how its integration with AI technology could reshape the landscape of filmmaking and video games. Then, we delve into some of my all-time favourite movie sequels, highlighting the ones that have left a lasting impression on audiences worldwide. Finally, we turn our attention to the latest BBC drama ‘This Town,’ created by Steven Knight, the mastermind behind ‘Peaky Blinders.’

VR Future Filmmaking & AI


VR filmmaking is the latest trend that is redefining the landscape of storytelling, offering audiences a whole new dimension of immersive experiences. With virtual reality, filmmakers can transport viewers into intricately crafted worlds where they’re not just spectators, but active participants. Every scene becomes an adventure, every moment a journey, as users engage with the narrative on a deeply personal level.

As this technology continues to evolve, the possibilities for VR filmmaking and AI integration are endless. With AI, the VR experience would transcend mere visual engagement, using algorithms to analyse user interactions in real-time, adapting narratives to individual preferences and ensuring a personalised and dynamic viewing experience. This innovation would extend beyond filmmaking to video games, where narratives could dynamically evolve in real-time, shaped by players’ choices and actions. This level of creative freedom promises a personalised experience for each individual, ensuring that every player or viewer embarks on a unique journey tailored to their decisions.

This fusion of VR and AI would not only transform storytelling but also revolutionise interactive entertainment where the boundaries of the imagination are limited only by the depths of human creativity and technological innovation. In an intriguing video posted by ‘It’s Just Jack’, he highlights some current and future uses of VR within the film industry, showcasing its effectiveness in VFX and the post-production stages, with Steven Spielberg having already utilised the technology when directing ‘Ready Player One’ to pre-visualise complex visual effects sequences within the film on set.


The Best Movie Sequels


Movie sequels often carry the weight of high expectations, tasked with the challenge of living up to the success of their original predecessors. There are few that never reach the same level as the originals, often leaving us disappointed and wishing they had never been made in the first place. However, amidst the sea of disappointments, there are a select few that not only match but even exceed the brilliance of their predecessors.

These exceptional movie sequels are remembered not just for their financial success, but for their ability to deepen characters, expand worlds, and deliver unforgettable storytelling. Below, is a list of some of my personal favourite movie sequels of all time.

‘Aliens’ (1986) took Ridley Scott’s horror-infused sci-fi classic and transformed it into a pulse-pounding action extravaganza. Sigourney Weaver’s iconic performance as Ellen Ripley, coupled with Cameron’s masterful blend of suspense and spectacle, makes this sequel a standout in the annals of science fiction.



‘The Godfather Part II’ (1974) stands as an incredible achievement in filmmaking, seamlessly weaving together the past and present of the Corleone family saga. Francis Ford Coppola’s masterful direction and Al Pacino’s unforgettable performance as Michael Corleone elevate this sequel to a level of unparalleled sophistication and depth.



Christopher Nolan’s ‘The Dark Knight’ (2008) redefined the superhero genre, delivering a gripping tale of chaos and morality. Heath Ledger’s iconic portrayal of the Joker, coupled with Nolan’s bold storytelling and stunning visuals, makes this sequel a cinematic triumph that continues to resonate with audiences worldwide.



‘Terminator 2: Judgment Day’ (1991) took the action-packed premise of its predecessor and elevated it to new heights. James Cameron’s visionary direction, groundbreaking visual effects, and Linda Hamilton’s fierce portrayal of Sarah Connor combine to create an adrenaline-fueled experience that remains unparalleled in the realm of science fiction.


New Birmingham BBC Drama ‘This Town.’


The new drama ‘This Town’ on BBC from ‘Peaky Blinders’ creator Steven Knight, tells the story of an extended family fighting to choose their own paths amidst an iconic music scene in 80s Coventry and Birmingham. Starring Downton Abbey’s Michelle Dockery alongside Levi Brown, Ben Rose, Eve Austin and Nicholas Pinnock, the series opens in 1981 and focuses on four young people and their families who seek a second chance through music.

Set against the backdrop of the ska scene, which united black, white and Asian youths, viewers see the group of youngsters trying to forge their own paths in life. The thrilling saga tells the story of a band’s formation against a backdrop of violence, capturing how creative genius can emerge from a time of madness.

Producer Steven Knight also drew from his own experiences growing up in the ’80s in Birmingham and the Midlands.

“All the stuff in it that’s most weird is the most true, like the bit with the spacesuit was real. The setting and backdrop for This Town is 1981, Birmingham and Coventry. ’81 was a time of turmoil and change in every sense – in society, in politics, but in music as well. This series opens with a riot and I hope the sense of ‘riot’ continues throughout the whole thing. The riot was a real thing, it happened in Handsworth, Birmingham, and I’ve used that to introduce four very different characters who will come together.

You might say it’s about music or it’s about people who are drawn to a certain type of music, but I’ve tried not to do that. I didn’t really want to do a thing about people who form a band, which is part of what it is, I wanted to create a group people who have no choice other than to form a band because all the other options are so bleak.



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