Letters

5 minute read
TIME

Every year we like to lift our eyes from the present to peer further ahead at the trends on the horizon. Our exploration this time sparked a lively debate on the merits of digital moviemaking:

TIME’s article on George Lucas and the new digital age in moviemaking was especially poignant for me [March 20]. My father worked as a technician at Technicolor for more than 30 years and helped with the production of several Disney animated movies. Now my daughter (an avid Star Wars fan) is helping digitally restore the Disney films her grandfather worked on. When I was growing up, I was so proud to see the Technicolor logo on the screen. And today when I see my daughter’s name in the credits, I am just as proud. I don’t understand Hollywood’s reluctance to go digital. Perhaps younger producers will embrace Lucas’ vision.
Diana Robertson
Laguna Niguel, California, U.S.

Your headline asked, “Can This Man Save the Movies? (Again?),” and I would say no. Not that Lucas isn’t capable of doing almost anything with the art form, but very few people in a theater care about the process that was used to shoot the movie they’re watching. They just want a good story. It is important for the talented people behind the camera to come up with better techniques, but I would strongly suggest that they start a major hunt for some good writers who have new ideas.
Harper Paul Williams
Alpharetta, Georgia, U.S.

Those who prefer film over digital images should awaken from their chemically induced haze! Digital is faster, cleaner, more versatile and incredibly fun to work with. In the hands of a true cinematographer, digital moviemaking exhibits all the soul, humanity and feeling of a production shot on film. None of those attributes are inherent in film alone but are rather created by the person whose eye is at the viewfinder. Would we believe for a minute that Ansel Adams was sad the day he was able to stop lugging around glass plates in favor of film?
William C. Simone
Lebanon, Pennsylvania, U.S.

Lessons for the Boss
Re “Why Your Boss May Start Sweating the Small Stuff” [March 20], on sensitivity training at the office: As an expert on the prevention of workplace violence, I know that managers and supervisors set the tone in the workplace. If they are arrogant, dismissive and intimidating, then one shouldn’t be surprised if the employees behave likewise with one another. The result is reduced morale, high turnover, low productivity and, sometimes, threatening or violent behavior. After all, if employees feel they have lost their dignity, they may also feel they have nothing left to lose. If only managers could lead by the Golden Rule, the workplace would be a much better and safer place to be.
Richard Sem
President, Sem Security Management
Trevor, Wisconsin, U.S.

Clinton in 2008?
“Can Hillary Join the Club?” [March 20] stated that Senator Clinton is “known to misread a crowd sometimes” and claimed that at a Kennedy Center benefit for AIDS last fall, “she harangued an audience already deeply engaged with the epidemic with an awkward demand that they do even more.” As the event’s organizer, I can tell you that about half the audience of 500 was not in any way “engaged with the epidemic.” They were invited to the event in an effort to get them involved. Clinton eloquently called on the corporate and government leaders in the room to work harder, and her speech was punctuated by applause. With more than 25 million people dead from AIDS and 40 million currently infected with HIV, one can hardly argue with the fact that far more needs to be done.
Trevor Neilson
Executive Director, Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS
New York City

A Man in Demand
Re “Can He Make Peace Bloom?” [March 20]: It is crucial that U.S. ambassador to Iraq Zalmay Khalilzad succeeds in persuading Iraq’s sectarian leaders to revive the political process so the new government can focus on rebuilding the country. The Iraqi people are losing patience with the lack of security and stability. Right now they are without a functioning government, one that can provide public services. Khalilzad must keep the pressure on Abdel Aziz al-Hakim, the man who heads the coalition of Shiite parties. Al-Hakim currently seems more concerned with unifying Iraq’s Shiites with those in Iran. That goes against the Sunni and Kurdish interests as well as the wishes of Iraq’s other neighboring countries. Khalilzad must insist that al-Hakim use his influence on behalf of the interests of all Iraqi people, the region and the world.
Alex Ohan
Toronto

Harvard in a New Light
As a medical student very much intent on going to Harvard Medical School, I read with interest Nicholas Lemann’s Essay on how lite American universities serve faculty better than students [March 6]. In Nigeria, where I study, there is a great dichotomy between students and lecturers that is aggravated when the latter are given preferential treatment, no matter what their flaws. Even though Harvard’s lecturers might be highly qualified scholars, I had to re-evaluate my expectation of enjoying a better relationship with them after reading Lemann’s Essay. It was enlightening news that I very much appreciate.
Bata Yahaya Mshelia
Borno, Nigeria

Setting the Record Straight
Number problems

Our March 20 Milestone on the death of Minnesota Twins outfielder Kirby Puckett said he led the team to World Series titles in 1991 and 1994. The correct years were 1987 and 1991. We also misstated the number of home runs Puckett hit in Game 6 of the 1991 Series; it was one, not two.

More Must-Reads from TIME

Contact us at letters@time.com