Once upon a moment is a project evolved from various experiments in the field of interactive film, photography and story telling. It is conceived as a convergence between traditional disciplines and new media, that should grant a surplus value of interactivity to the final outcome of the project: interactive film. Before linear film was developed, the base of early cinema were loops. As we are standing at the beginnings of interactive cinema, and facing the same problems of storage (and output) capacity as the early media, loops are re-entering the stage, again. They are build of a respectively small amount of data, but can contain a complex narrative. A loop is theoretically never-ending, what allows constant dynamics in the output: the duration of the film is very flexible, it can last as long as a linear film would last (if the viewer chooses his next step by seeing the loop only one time), it can be extended until a day, or compressed until exclusively choice-moments… in each case, the image will keep moving. The ‘next’ frame, during the viewing, isn’t defined by the director, as in traditional film. Viewer can benefit from the repetitive nature of a loop to learn more about an event, for during repetition of the same 5 seconds-piece, he can ‘see’ and remember a larger amount of information than during 5 seconds of a linear film. With Once Upon a Moment, we aim at avoiding ‘choice-moments’, where the movement of the image stops and the viewer is asked to make a decision about the development of the story. By integrating photographical and filmic-elements in the context of interaction, we try not to ‘tear the viewer loose’ from the fabula, but allow him to navigate transparently through the events. Filmic choice-moments are made possible by the usage of loops and Photographic-Interactive-Parallel-Sequence (PIPS), an example of interactive photography, where the sequences don’t evolve in time but in space, allowing the viewer to steer through the moment. Content of Once Upon a Moment is a short science-fiction story created for a loop-based film. It emerged from the study of usage of rhythm and repetition in formulaic narratives. The story has a linear structure build of various episodes, whose ‘organisation’ in time isn’t strictly fixed. Narrative ‘mystery’ is here shifted into a ‘collage’ of patterns, allowing the existence of ‘association’ space. The usual plot-development from introduction through conflict to solution is in the story shifted into a more ‘life-like’ experience, built of routinized cycles with a few tense moments of action in between, moments where many narratives converge and one is forced to make, often unconsciously, a decision and steer the future of the story. The viewer should learn to interact with the narrative as if it were a physical body: it can follow or fight his decisions, seduce him to follow a path, or keep mourning the same sentence until he decides to take an action.
- Maja Kuzmanovic (Croatia). Born 20th September 1973 in Pula, Croatia, Kuzmonovic is currently finishing her Master of Arts in Interactive Multimedia at the Utrecht School of the Arts, specializing in interactive storytelling. During my study at the Academy of Fine Arts in Venice and fashion department of the Utrecht School of the Arts, I worked on integration of old and new media within multimedia, audio-visual performances, fashion shows and print-media. As a graduated trend-forecaster, I concentrate on developing and visualising content and its structure for interactive multimedia, video and theatre productions. Recently participated at MILIA ’96 in Cannes with the forecasting CD-ROM Isaw Project; International Theatre Festival PUF’96 in Croatia with a lecture about new media and performing arts; Doors of Perception 96 Conference in Amsterdam with the installation waiting for reply. . ; Lumiere On-Line Festival for Interactive Film and Storytelling with the Creation of Change web-site; International Film Festival in Rotterdam with the presentation of the digital trend book Creation of Change; Dramaturgy Debate in Utrecht with a lecture about future of stories within new media; European Media Master of Arts Forum in Stuttgart with the presentation of Once Upon a Moment…
- Keez Duyves (Netherlands, born 1971 in Alkmaar) studied Industrial design at the Technical University in Delft and interaction Design at The Faculty of Art, Media and Technology in Hilversum; presently following the Master of Arts in Interactive Multimedia course, specialising in interactive film.
- Stije Hallema, Krien Soeting, Remco Verveer & Ivar van Hoorn, Netherlands