Thoughts on "No Cameras Allowed"

I'm really intrigued to see the No Cameras Allowed movie, honestly. 

At first when I saw the trailer I was just intensely jealous of this guy's circumstances like, "BRO YOU GOT TO LIVE MY DREAM, LIKE FUCK YOU." 

 But then I realized what irked me so much about the trailer. 

First of all, the documentary is being distributed by MTV. So there's one red flag. There's no way that MTV is involved in this without exploiting James Marcus Haney's story and talent. And he has talent. I'm not denying that. He's a great photographer and a great filmmaker (he's directed a few music videos since he started cheating the system). 

But why did MTV choose to tell this story? This guy's unbelievable and one-in-a-million story? They could have chosen to tell the story of the average concert photographer that does it the old-fashioned-non-cheat-your-way-into-Coachella way. It seems like they did it for their own gain, to make the music industry look like this fantasy land where everything works out all the time and there's not a fuckton of fine print and legal shit and labels don't rob artists out of most of the money they deserve. MTV is using this guy to overshadow all that.

The biggest problem I have is that young people are going to get a false idea of what the life of a concert photographer is like. For every James Marcus Haney there are hundreds of people working their asses off and NOT getting asked to come on tour with Mumford and Sons. I'm not saying that what I do and what my friends do isn't awesome and that I don't love the perks of being a music photographer, but it's still hard work and there are a lot of hoops you have to jump through to get the proper credentials. And most of us don't get paid. We do it because we love it and we want to support the artists around us.

Young people are going to think that it's so easy to get into these festivals with fake wristbands and become friends with famous people, and eventually become famous themselves.

Also I don't buy the story 100% because of continuity issues in the trailer. He was carrying around a film camera but the video footage he got was super HD DSLR quality. At all the festivals I've shot and attended, you need extra permission to shoot video, let alone shooting from the damn stage. Granted, I've taken a couple stealthy shots with my 7D in the past, but he had a damn Super 8 camera, and that ain't stealthy at all. You can't sneak those in under your jacket or in your pocket.

I am still going to see the film out of curiosity when it airs on MTV, but I still feel a bit icky about MTV's involvement at all.

What are your thoughts on the trailer? I know some people in LA saw it when they had a college screening tour, so if you have, please let me know if I'm completely out of line. I'm skeptical, but I want to be open-minded.

All the more reason I want to make my own documentary about touring with an indie band. Just gotta get the guys all on board.

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