The Views of Filmmakers

Filmmakers are a big impact in the world today. They create films for entertainment and movies, TV shows, and videos on the internet are one of the main sources of entertainment. You see several people going to the movie theater when a movie is just released, you see people watching their favorite TV show in their free time, waiting rooms have TV’s playing TV shows, we see this everywhere and this is all possible because of the filmmakers.

An example of an inspiring filmmaker, in my opinion, is Devin Graham, a YouTuber. I have been a fan of Graham’s work for a long time, for he has been in the YouTube industry for about five years at this point. Graham grew up in Utah, he studied film at Brigham Young University but discontinued his education when he started making YouTube videos.

devin graham


One of my favorite videos filmed by Graham is the very first video I saw of his. Assassin’s Creed Meets Parkour in Real Life, I have seen this video over a dozen times, I was very intrigued by his visual effects, at 0:17 there is a special effect he did using the green screen that I only found out by watching his behind the scenes, which I also find very interesting. Another aspect in this video that I found very interesting was the main character, he jumps off the walls, does a bunch of crazy flips, this person is Graham’s personal friend named Rodney Shalvis. Shalvis is a stuntman, which is why he is performing in Devin Graham’s videos and helping him produce a well written short video. I have also found that he performs in some of his other films and they work together, likely to help each other gain viewers and business.

Assassin’s Creed Meets Parkour in Real Life:

Graham is expressed in the popular culture media because he has viewers. He reflects the people in the world by having these people watch his videos. Graham started making his videos with the equipment he had and the people he knew, the more viewers he got, the more popular he became. He had companies asking him to sponsor for them, an example of that is a granola bar company called Bear Naked. He has made a couple videos sponsoring Bear Naked, an example is his video called Human Bowling – Bear Naked, he shows their label and their products throughout the video and deliberately puts their name at the end of the video:

bear naked

Therefore, by being an excellent filmmaker, he is noticed by growing companies such as Bear Naked who ask him to sponsor for them, which leads his viewers, such as myself, to be introduced to these new products that we may want to buy.

Personally, I think Devin Graham is am amazing filmmaker, I love the material he shoots, I love his editing style, and I am truly inspired by his work. Soon after I started watching Graham’s videos, I found myself attempting to create videos with this style, I experimented with the equipment he used for his films and I learned a lot from watching and attempting to recreate it. By watching his videos it made me feel inspired and like I could accomplish and build a career like he has.

Another inspiring filmmaker I have discovered is Ryan Higa. Ryan Higa is well known on the internet, he creates short comedy skits and posts them on this YouTube channel: nigahiga. He also has another channel named HigaTV that he uses to post his behind the scenes, other short videos, and vlogs.

Higa’s main channel:

Higa’s second channel:

Higa has over fifteen million subscribers, and 2 billion views. He has been a member of YouTube for nine years. He started with short low quality videos that he filmed just to goof around and for his family to watch. More than just his family watched, and his videos took off. Higa has since then dedicated his life to making YouTube videos for his fans and viewers. Higa writes his own stories and has several friends who help him produce them. He also acts in his own films which is how his fans know him so well and how he has become such an internet sensation.

niga higa

When I started looking into Higa’s work this term, I thought he was a genuine person who wanted to make videos for his fans just because he had a good heart and wanted to keep them updated. But as I gathered more information, I saw that Higa sold merchandise that had his name, logo, or catchphrase on it. He also made his own app called the TEEHEE app that was released in the Apple App Store, and Google Play store. However, I have not seen him advertise for a different company, but he does allow ads to be shown during and before his videos, although this is a feature that most YouTubers will have.

In my opinion, I think Higa is very funny and creative. I like the way he organizes his videos, I like how he posts on a weekly basis to keep his viewers satisfied, and I like how dedicated he has been to his career since he started. Over the years I have seen many changes and when I look back at the big picture, it is inspires me and makes me think about how many things are possible over time.

Ryan Higa is well known on the web, he makes his videos about his life and beliefs which can be reflected to his fans and viewers. He has made stereotypical jokes, especially about his own race, admittedly they make me laugh and I’m sure several other as well, but this is how he reflects the media in popular culture.

And lastly, I used a film called The Visit as another one of my examples to represent filmmakers. This film helps me represent the way the media represents filmmakers.

the visit

This movie is about two kids who document their trip to their grandparents’ house whom they have never met before. The young girl in the movie likes to make films and she wanted to document this experience to show her mother, she gives her younger brother a camera too so they can both gather footage. The movie portrays the older sister as a “director,” she likes to look for certain camera lighting and angles and she tries to get her brother to act at some points.

Movie trailer:

Some things I found surprising in this film is how to characters acted. The young girl in the movie who likes to film reminded me a lot of myself when I was younger and wanted to make short films. I also have younger siblings who I would include in my videos and I would try to make home videos such as what she is trying to do. I believe the media did a good job representing how a young filmmaker would be portrayed in the real world.

I also think it was a good idea to make the film basically as I would like to call it “first person,” because it allows the viewer to feel more involved, especially as a thriller/horror film, the point is to make the audience feel scared, and by feeling like we are experiencing this, or that this has really happened, brings the viewer the sense that this is real.

Overall, filmmakers have a large impact in the world, and are expressed and shown in several ways. I have used two really great filmmakers as examples to show how they represent themselves in the media, and a film written to be as though we are in the kids’ position, being that all the camera shots are shot from the camera they are holding. I have learned several things from this project such as being conscious of a filmmakers’ advertising, I learned more about the examples that I used, and I was also inspired to do more research on filmmakers myself just to gain more knowledge about them.


This entry was posted in Fall 2015 by Laurena. Bookmark the permalink.

About Laurena

I am from and live in Hood River, Oregon. I like filming, editing, and taking pictures, I am more interested in film but also find photography very interesting. I also like cats, they are my favorite house pet.

3 thoughts on “The Views of Filmmakers

  1. Laurena-

    I found your essay about filmmakers very intriguing. Most people today focus on the actors and actresses in movies, but you look at films from a different perspective. I think its interesting how you looked into the aspect of advertising in filmmaking. The most interesting to me was Higa, and how he advertises his own products, not necessarily promoting other products or companies. It is a very smart marketing strategy.

  2. As someone who has been making films for fun and commission, I found your essay interesting. I like that you chose to look at filmmakers who aren’t the ones making big blockbusters in Hollywood, but instead, people who have risen to fame from making quality content on YouTube with minimal budgets. It is always great to be able see someone rise from nothing. YouTube has especially shown this trend throughout its decade of being around. The earlier YouTube videos were low quality, where lighting and sound were not an issue. Now we are finding stuff that belongs at film festivals being made with a YouTube audience in mind.

  3. For someone who doesn’t know much about film making business you really were clear about what it is and the complexity of it. Like maddy said, it is easy to to forget about them because it is hard to see past the actors and actresses. I think its cool that with social media, people like Devin Graham can go from just a film with friends into working with companies like Bear Naked.

Comments are closed.