In what ways does your media Product use, develop or Challenge forms and conventions Of real media products?
Our product definitely exerts qualities similar to any other box office movie. As a film itself trying to gain profit from the capital invested, the promotion and marketing side is vital which is why our magazine cover and poster coincide perfectly with the film to authenticate these conventions which we hoped to portray. With regards to the film itself we tried to make it obvious what genre the film conformed to by fast editing, clear action scenes, characters in distress, a concern of money, a safe (to signify the heist) the type of film (poker) and the character conventions also.. The film trailer shows cards being dealt and characters playing the game (which will make it unabashed what genre the audience are in stall for) along with the characters themselves who's conventions are also made obvious through relevant scenes. For example Mavericksscenes always keep him central (which in reference to mise-en-scene keeps him as the main focus and main character in the big picture) and obviously by playing against Chasemakes him the opposite in the equation therefore the evil character. This is typical of an action genre to do this.. By showing scenes of running, fighting and torture, we have shown to the audience the complications in the story that make it interesting yet it is in some respects similar to other films (particularly those we focused on and researched – Oceans 11..) which is why they will be compelled to watch the film! These sorts of conventions are intended to make the characters’ roles obvious to the audience as well as giving them a name
By using the music of AC DC (an 80’s rock/metal band) we thought this would also go with the typical conventions of an action film, which is why film trailers like 300 or the Terminator trailer use rock music to reflect the action scene, however we did debate whether to use a song that was different to the trailers mood like Lock Stock And Two Smoking Barrels which uses The Stone Roses to show its quirkiness.. Our film is in no way a comedy which is why our music was kept serious and with the lyrics adding to the songs image, we thought of lyrics reflecting the film to benefit our film!
The way all the characters dress code conforms to a typical ‘conservative’ image is typical of a casino/gambling film as shown by Casino (top left) and Casino Royale (middle left). Not only by using clothing and ‘blood’ substitutes for effect, we also incorporated many other visual elements that would affect the audience. The way we actors (whom weren’t trained or had any experience in acting) were directed to show a level of emotion, for example the character of Maverick would show that he was in pain or that he was speaking to his friends about serious matters, whilst Manion would show anger and Riggy would show worry.. These emotions will worry and audience to the point of pondering the situation they are in and what will happen! In our picture to the left we do challenge the conventions of a real media product as the characters smirk slightly in some pictures rather than keeping very serious in reflection of the genre.
When thinking of the action genre in terms of films the general thought is explosions, guns, fighting, arguing, forms of confrontation other extreme situations.. With our media product we used all but one (being explosions due to safety and cost issues) We even incorporated a torture scene in our trailer to show the intense scenes we have in our film as well as showing the characteristics of Harris – the chaotic head of security in Elite Casino. There are aspects which we have imitated such as the Snatch trailer and the Lock Stock And Two Smoking Barrels trailer which use the title names for the actual characters rather than the actual actors names as credits The film is fast paced which is why we used fast editing techniques for the trailer as well as quick sound editing. These conform to the typical images you would expect from an action film, similar to the Terminator: Salvation trailer which uses a slow ‘heartbeat style’ sound at the start that imitates the theme tune. We used the heartbeat to correlate with what is shown on screen to create a suspenseful effect. When considering structure of a story, when taking into account the general expectation of a storyline, its
The struggle (where the audience believes the film might have a sad ending)
And then the coda where the ending is shown the audience (generally where good prevails and the audience are pleased with the result, however it can be left as a cliff-hanger on occasion)
Our film does admittedly conform to this structure, like most media products and most films of this genre.
We did challenge the typical style of an action/casino film with the storyline and storyboard process, developing a film that guarantee’s success for the ‘Good’ characters. Since the storyline (as shown on the blog) is about a Poker player who lost his brother in a game he won, but yearns the revenge of his brother, he challenges Chase to a Executive game, with just the two of them. But in the process friends of Maverick are stealing from the vault so that whatever the outcome, the characters win from the vault or the game! This storyline, even though different, does conform to the archetypal action storyline of confliction between a ‘Goody’ and a ‘Baddy’ but after the confusion in the middle and the struggle from either side to eliminate the other, the ending generally ends happily.. As does our piece. Technical From a technical point of view we used the software most professionals would use such as Photoshop, Premiere Pro and we even used Audacity at certain points to edit the song. We challenged the conventions of a real media product by the lack of sound effects in the trailer. Normally, action trailers incorporate external sounds but we didn’t use FX due to constrictions in recording our own, downloading ‘symphs’ but mainly the whole standard of sounds for effects would be lacking.
How effective is the Combination of your main product and Ancillary texts?
The title font was very rugged and reminded us of an old metal-type finish which is why we thought by using it, it would make our poster look more brutal and create the effect we wanted on our audience. The text reminded us of Maverick in a sense as it was growing old, yet it was still as strong as it used to be, still vigilant and ready for another attack. The tagline was brightened in the editing process so that it was clear to the same extent of the title, since the tagline is similarly important as the title. We used effects to show off the title and the tagline including shadow works and outer-glow.. The colours are representative in their own right, the red signifies the colour of the diamond, which is the winning hand in this film, and it also represents blood/death, reminiscent of Maverick’s dead brother Marco.
The headline and logo for the magazine was developed to look authentic which was why we styled it on the Empire magazine logo. We chose the slogan since the meaning reflected what the magazine is all about. The colours were used to stand out on the background and make it clear for the public to see, whilst the colours were purposefully chosen to relate to the film and poster.. The feature articles we advertised are genuine box office releases for the summer which is why we thought that promoting them alongside our film would be a good idea. The yellow font was used to stand out as its a special edition (Poker edition) we wanted to highlight this in relevance to the Diamond Flush centerfold. The gritty style of text/font worked well as they were similar to the style of text used in the trailer.
The ancillary texts With the poster for Enigma magazine (a film magazine for fanatics) we used the same ‘Diamond Flush’ font which was called HARD ROCK font. this font is what we have used in the poster and the film so that people can recognise it easily.The way Manion dressed was strictly to avoid any colour conflictions and to make him stand out to carry the vibe we wanted, which is to look very suave. This cover perfectly depicts the character and looks superbly suitable for the type of magazine and audience. First of all, the critics reviews and star ratings make give the film some recognition in order to make the film stand out to those ever unsure whether to watch a film, the ratings and comments literally reassure the public. The cards give away the genre whilst the characters are susceptible to character conventions. Out of the people me and Greg have asked, 7 people out of 10 guessed the characters roles correctly. The red writing was a bit of mise-en-scene taking both Diamond cards and blood into consideration, but also because of the colour of title words in the film for character names. By using a magazine to promote the film and an inside look to what one of the actors has said about the film, the target audience (being literally of all age groups above that of 12+) will be excited to watch the film, especially in this issue where we thought by mentioning other stimulating films, people would be enticed to read it! Also with the poster people get a good look into what the films about and with a cool tagline like ‘Losing is not an option’ it makes the film a lot more serious and interesting.
When asked the question of how effective the combination was between our ancillary texts and our film trailer, we both thought that we made tremendous progress together, that the 3 elements of our coursework went hand in hand with each other, and from a business perspective the marketing side of the trailer would prove to do justice. We did how ever consider making different films posters of individual characters for a bit of variety. However the effort for this would have been immense but we thought that the poster and its entirety are unique and especially with the tagline making it stand out so there would be no need to make the extra effort.
How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?
Media Technologies By using Adobe Photoshop for the artwork aspects and Adobe Premiere for the video editing, a lot of time was put into sorting the effects and overall craftsmanship. With Photoshop, there we’re many elements that confused us. With regards to the software itself; we adapted to it very quick considering the space of time we had to finish the products. To capture the pictures we used both cameras to the right, the digital Samsung camera 14mp to take research pictures and observational pictures and the Nikon SLR for focused stills with the lighting gear, an example is for the media photo shoot which is on the blog and also in the DVD cover/Film poster.. We never really used this sort of camera before, which was why we needed help at times to set up the lighting and the exposures, the different angles to capture the right light, and all the technical aspects that go with taking the picture. The lens on the Nikon significantly changed the focus and quality of the pictures allowing us to edit the pictures without any pixilation to make it harder! The Samsung was fairly easy to use – although we weren’t used to some settings. However the camera was simply used for research and blog photography. Nikon Samsung
Adobe Premiere Pro The editing involved in Premiere was straightforward thanks to our As coursework, nevertheless we had some complications with the software to parts that were different to last year. You can see on the picture to the left a part of the trailer we discovered how to do this year. (split screening and cropping images to create the layered effect). We used this effect to synchronise with the music and to make the trailer a bit more interesting, it seems like a glamorised approach to the trailer. Soundbooth/Audacity The sound editing in Adobe Soundbooth and Audacity was a fairly easy element to alter. We only had little things to change but the software's became very useful when we had crackling problems and general problems with the sound quality where would need a DE-ESSER tool and other tools to decrease the exterior sound. We also clipped the sound to fit the heartbeat at the start and then to reduce the sound were people spoke. We also used some of the audio features within the Premiere software. Windows Media Player We only used this feature to listen to the songs but obviously came in handy for quick burning to CD’s when me and Greg were conferring song choices and research videos to each other.. Google/YouTube When we were planning and researching Google was the only search engine we used but was one of the best possible tools to use as it gave us the information we needed. It gave us the pictures to make our storyboard and to plan what scenes and plots we were thinking of, acting as a mind map or, a place to plot our entire film. It also linked us into YouTube which was the place to watch trailers, and just get a general idea of what our film should be about, what our film should say to the audience. YouTube was where we got a variety of ideas for our trailer. (The trailers that influenced our film are on the bibliography slide)
What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why?
When we were in the research and the development stages, we did put consideration into what kind of audience we would aim for and what institution we would possibly use it distribute it. We thought that FilmFour would be a good idea as they generally produce fairly low budget films, nevertheless very strong hearted, powerful films. With our genre, the film might not necessarily fit FilmFour’s criteria, however we found some British/Independent films that reflect the Action Stereotypes similar to our film. The film (if it were regulated by BBFC) would possibly issue a 12A just from the trailer and making first impressions of what certificate suits best. If the film was watched all the way through however the BBFC would potentially give it a 15 since we planned the film to use strong language and some scenes of a violent nature; hence the ‘bloody scene’ with Riggy on the doorstep dying. Overall the film would get a 12A particularly for the cinema viewing due to images of violence, bloody scenes, and string language. If gambling is taken into account then that would also be a factor influencing the certificate. If the film proved successful it would be shown and issued into larger digital cinemas, however the film would either be shown in Art houses or just go straight to a DVD/BluRay release.
Who would be the audience for your media product?
Our audience would most likely be Teenagers and Young adults. We concluded this query when researching films of the same type and same genre at www.pearlanddean.com where we saw films such as:
All these films had a categorical dominance of viewers, orientated in males ages 15-21, which is what our film was aiming at coincidently. With all the research and decision-making we thought a survey of film watchers (obviously those who has seen our film) thought about Diamond Flush and what certificate and audience they thought it deserved. 14 out 20 people ticked the box of 15-21 age group, whilst the other 6 voted otherwise. The other part of the survey had the choice of male/female watchers... 12 viewers chose male whilst 8 chose female. This research proved to us that the 20 variant viewers believed the same as us, even thought the survey was fairly conducted between all ages and sexes. The characters in our Trailer of Diamond Flush are typical for the stereotype of this sort of film, consisting of a tough guy, a ‘nerdy’ type that opens the safes (very technical) and the main goody and baddy. These sorts of character would prove beneficial to our film as audiences generally like this structure to a film.