Key Problems in the British FilmIndustryAIMS:Understand and be able toindicate some of thedifficulties faced by producersin the British Film Industry.
The British Film IndustryInvestment FinancingFilmStudioProductionCinemaDVD/BDExhibition
Timeline – 1900-1940sEarly 1900s bringsexperimentation -A Daring daylightRobbery pioneersthe chase genre1930s sees aboom in ‘quotaquickies’ andrising attendances– on thedownside, amassive ‘brain-drain’ toHollywood(Chaplin et al)World War II seessurge in anti-Nazipropaganda filmswhich showcasesthe massiveimportance offilm in shapingnational culture
Timeline – 1900-1940sThe 1950s sees the Rank organisation exporting British film to theworld; Hammer begin making horror films. In the 1960s, ‘SwingingLondon’ and James Bond boost profile of industry1970s – American studios stopfinancing British productions andindustry begins decline. In 1980s,home videos boom, cinemas failEarly 1990s recession seems to signalend of British Film industry…
Why is financing a problem?• Government subsidies (withdrawn)• Dependent on American film industry (fickle)• Track record (disproportionate number of‘failures’)• Complicated process• Lack of a national talent academy (futuresuccess is chance)
Why is production a problem?• Studios owned by Hollywood or second-rate• Brain drain to Hollywood• British star prices?• Companies are not vertically-integrated(expensive)• Companies have been purchased by Americanconglomerates (creative freedom)
Why is distribution a problem?• Cinema chains (Odeon, Vue, Cineworld)• Centrally-controlled• Few arthouse cinemas; lack of funding• Short lifespan of films• Relatively expensive costs of distribution dueto non-vertically-integrated companies
‘Commercial Viability’• Government unprepared to invest, but wantsthe success• http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-16495095• Copycat – Kidulthood is a success, so 20 copiesare made (distilling the brand)
TASKCreate a presentation that addresses thefollowing:• How it was financed – by whom? how much?• How it was produced – Film studio? starpower? Director?• How it was exhibited – Cinema (how manyscreens), DVD, Box OfficeFigures, reviews, was it successful abroad?Try to comment on why you think these things happened. Why was the budget what itwas? Why did it get released how it was released (ie, number of screens or straight toDVD)
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