I used a dumb GoT reference to draw you in.
Kung Fury has absolutely pummelled its way through social media and confidently positioned itself as one of 2015’s most viral moments.
For the uninitiated; Kung Fury is a Swedish short-film written and directed by David Sandberg. It was a crowd-funded project that managed to raise $640,000, it’s worth noting that the original asking price was $200,000. It’s super loud and super fun and a total celebration of narrative absurdity. The trailer is only a click-away so I’ve decided to spare a synopsis. Instead, admire this picture of Triceracop.
Internet virality is a modern-day cultural phenomena. In layman (less boring) terms, it’s something that people really, really want to know about. It spreads like wildfire and creates a gigantic collective-appetite. I think the whole ritual of it all is pretty fun and most of the time it’s quite a disposable product (a picture of Kim K’s arse or something).
Believe It or not though, there’s more substance to Kung Fury than there is Kim K’s backside. And by that I mean a lot of the discussion taking place is centred on the future of film and the internet, as opposed to superficial babble over celebrity culture.
But some of the articles I’ve read, mainly the ones that cater towards more business-minded readers, irrationally bug me. And ultimately, I think it’s because of the way they frame the topic. They’ll state how ‘Kung Fury represents a new undiscovered market, one that can be monetised and regulated to the benefit of everyone with the right policies put in place’, and follow it up with aggregated statistics on viewership.
It’s just too corporate for me. I’m sure the intention of said articles isn’t to detract from the content’s artistic merit, but those guys are going to think of a way to solidly capitalise on that route of distribution, and I can only imagine that the scales will be slanted in their favour. This always happens (see Spotify VS Artists). It’s something I’d like to pay more attention too but it can be quite exhausting and… well… boring.
We’re all grateful for how affordable filmmaking has become and it’s important that we keep pushing those boundaries forward, but bugger me, it can still cost a serious amount of money. Thankfully, the dominant perspective surrounding Kung Fury is one that celebrates independent filmmaking and intuitive creatives.
Whatever the future brings for independent filmmaking on the internet, let’s just hope it keeps the individual creatives at the heart of its economics.