British cinema since 1990 (2)

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Introduction to British Film

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British cinema since 1990 (2)

  1. 1. Contemporary British Cinema Unit 2735 Media Issues & Debates
  2. 2. LEARNING OBJECTIVE <ul><li>To question the role and purpose of British Cinema </li></ul><ul><li>To develop an understanding of what makes a film “British” </li></ul><ul><li>ANSWER THE QUESTIONS: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What makes a film British? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What is the purpose of British Films? </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><ul><li>USE : www.imdb.com to help. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Story and plot </li></ul><ul><li>Actors </li></ul><ul><li>Director </li></ul><ul><li>Style </li></ul><ul><li>Genre </li></ul><ul><li>Production Company </li></ul><ul><li>Distribution </li></ul><ul><li>Exhibition </li></ul>HOW IS YOUR FILM BRITISH?
  4. 4. What is British Cinema For? <ul><li>There are two positions within this debate about the aims and purposes of British Cinema: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>British Cinema should be a resolutely national cinema, representing British culture to British audiences. To do this British films need to be publicly funded. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>British Cinema should be profitable, competing in the international marketplace, particularly Hollywood, by attracting a wide audience. </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. The UK Film Council <ul><li>Set up in 2000 to centralise ways of public support for film </li></ul><ul><li>Took over the Arts Council and production dept of the BFI. </li></ul>
  6. 6. The UK Film Council <ul><li>Funding now targets different aspects of the British film industry: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>DEVELOPMENT FUND Aims to raise the quality of screenplays produced </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PREMIERE FUND Supports bigger budget films & established talent </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>NEW CINEMA FUND Supports shorts & features; aims to encourage diversity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>REGIONAL INVESTMENT FUND FOR ENGLAND Supports nine regional screen agencies which promote filmmaking skills, education & understanding of local/regional cinemas. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. The UK Film Council <ul><li>Some people believe that British cinema should not receive any public money. </li></ul><ul><li>Before the film council £100m of lottery money was spent on 200 films. Only £6m was returned. </li></ul><ul><li>UFC invested £13m in 20 films and generated £125m at the box office between 2000 and 2003. </li></ul>
  8. 8. The UK Film Council <ul><li>Complete worksheet 3: the role of the UK Film Council. </li></ul><ul><li>Check out the website for further information: </li></ul><ul><li>www.ukfilmcouncil.co.uk </li></ul>
  9. 9. British Film Abroad <ul><li>A problem facing British Cinema is if it addresses a domestic audience about culturally specific themes, it is likely to find wider distribution more difficult. </li></ul><ul><li>It is argued that a national cinema should also be an international one. </li></ul><ul><li>Bend it Like Beckham – is set in Hounslow, London but themes are universal. </li></ul>
  10. 10. British Cinema & Hollywood <ul><li>British film production companies have co-production and distribution deals with Hollywood studios (ie Working title) </li></ul><ul><li>“ British” films can be funded and distributed by US companies – ie The Full Monty by Fox Searchlight. </li></ul><ul><li>Hollywood studios film in British locations and with British technical crews. (ie Harry Potter, Troy, Alfie ) </li></ul>
  11. 11. British Cinema & Hollywood <ul><li>Hollywood studios have often used the UK for post-production and special effects. </li></ul><ul><li>British actors work in US films; American stars are used by UK producers to widen the appeal. </li></ul><ul><li>British audiences’ taste in films is strongly influenced by watching Hollywood films. </li></ul>
  12. 12. British Cinema & Hollywood <ul><li>Distribution costs can be 3 times the budget of making a film, but without marketing it can be a flop. </li></ul><ul><li>This is one reason why using a big star can draw in the audience abroad – consider Hugh Grant. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Hugh Grant Star Persona <ul><li>Complete the following tasks: </li></ul><ul><li>1 Research the Hugh Grant filmography using a website such as www.imdb.com. Do the films have anything in common (for example, in terms of their genre, institution, budget etc)? </li></ul><ul><li>2 a. Choose three films and describe the characters he plays in each one. Are any similarities evident? Consider: nationality, class background, work, relationships (family, friends), appearance, and function in the plot. </li></ul><ul><li>b. Are any repeated characteristics or mannerisms evident in the performances? If so, why? </li></ul><ul><li>3 What do you know about Hugh Grant’s life? How did you acquire this information? How reliable are your sources? </li></ul><ul><li>4 What representation of masculinity is constructed in Hugh Grant’s star persona? </li></ul>
  14. 14. Discussion <ul><li>Does the persona draw on any stereotypes of British identity? </li></ul><ul><li>If so, which? </li></ul><ul><li>Does it modify or reinforce these stereotypes? </li></ul><ul><li>Are these aimed at a British or an American audience? </li></ul>
  15. 15. Useful Websites <ul><li>www.bbc.co.uk </li></ul><ul><li>www.bfi.org.uk </li></ul><ul><li>www.channel4.com </li></ul><ul><li>www.filmunlimited.co.uk </li></ul><ul><li>www.launchingfilms.com </li></ul><ul><li>www.screenonline.org.uk </li></ul><ul><li>www.ukfilmcouncil.org.uk </li></ul>

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