What is maybe most exciting about the big budget project is that the director is a 26-year-old first timer, Josh Trank. Complex has an interview in which the director discusses the far-reaching influence of videogames on his filmmaking method:
The choice of having Andrew figure out how to move the camera around him without holding it, and having it float around him, is a really clever way to keep the POV style but also open it up and get more coverage and depth in scenes-the camera and shots aren’t always so on-his-shoulder, like they are in most movies of this kind. Did that idea come to you right when you decided to shoot Chronicle as found-footage?
Yeah, it was one of the first things that popped into my mind. There’s as much movie influence in this film as there is video game influence, and without ever commenting on it in the film. I play a lot of video games, and in third-person action games, you’re a character and you’re controlling a camera that’s following you around, and you’re controlling it with the right stick, whether you’re using an Xbox controller or a Playstation controller.
If Andrew is 17-years-old in 2012, this is a kid who grew up playing games in a three-dimensional platform space, from Nintendo 64 on, so it’s instinctive when you pick up those games and play them that you know how to control that camera, as if the camera is embedded into your brain. So if Andrew was doing this in real life, and he had a camera following him around, at a certain point he wouldn’t even have to think about it. At the end of the film, there’s this ease and effortless to the way the camera is following him, and I always thought of it, and I would share this with the actors, that they were playing a video game.
Sure, we have seen Scott Pilgrim, but what Trank expresses here about his history with gaming is quite a bit more profound: the camera’s position within the film mimics gameplay while also demonstrating that videogames are shaping the way people make and experience film and other forms.