Conglomerates will try to use synergy within sectors of the corporation to maximise profit.
For example a soundtrack album could be produced by the record company, a novel could be produced by the publishing house, a video game could be produced within the computer software division etc.
Synergy is where multiple products and services are created on the basis of a successful brand within the same corporation. Every ‘spin off’ product or service helps create interest in the film, hopefully improving box office receipts and DVD sales.
More money is spent upon marketing and advertising a major studio film than was previously the case.
Press junkets are organised by distributors to generate press interest.
For a major blockbuster the marketing and advertising budget may will exceed production costs in order to stimulate demand and get people into the cinemas/buy DVDs. This would have been unthinkable during the studio era.
Big Budget Films are normally released across a large number of screens simultaneously.
‘ High concept’ films are usually given what is called a saturation or blanket release, this is where a film is released across a huge number of cinemas simultaneously in order to meet expected demand.
This is because ‘high concept’ films are expected to attract a ‘mass’ audience.
Most Hollywood films are released widely as they try and cash in upon the huge amount of investment put into producing and distributing them.
Most of the money made through theatrical exhibition comes through multiplexes .
Low budget independent films are often given a very limited release initially, usually in art house cinemas in major cities where there is an audience for more specialist films. This is called platforming.
If a film proves popular then it may be put out on a wider release. Because the advertising budget for art house films is usually very small; word of mouth , favourable reviews and award nominations are very important in order to create a ‘buzz’.
Expectations for indie films are much lower than those financed and distributed by the major studios, it is a niche market and exhibition strategies reflect that.
Many indie films never even make it to the cinema, either going straight to DVD or never reaching a wider audience at all.
Events were films are premiered to journalists, distributors and other interested parties as well as the general public. For independent productions this often provides an important opportunity to access distribution.
An approach to filmmaking which prioritises a films marketability, usually emphasising spectacle, action and stars and using genre in ‘loose’ way.
An ‘independent’ traditionally refers to any company that operates outside of the major studios. This term has become problematic in recent years as independent companies have been taken over by conglomerates, or major studios have set up their own ‘indie’ divisions. In this context the term ‘independent’ is often used to describe a film that is different in its content compared with mainstream productions.
Where direct competitors within the same industry merge. This reduce competition and costs.
Where a film studio diversifies into a different industry or merges with a company in a different industry. Recently it is seen as a way in which conglomerates can create synergy e.g AOL/Time Warner merger in 2001
Where the rights to produce a 'spin off product or service are agreed with another company
The overall strategy by which a studio attempts to ‘sell’ a film. This will include advertising , but will also include audience research, test screenings, previews, press junkets and interviews.
An exhibition centre that houses multiple screens under one roof. Usually part of a larger ‘entertainment’ complex.
A niche audience or market is one which is narrower than a mass audience. Independent films often target an audience bored by mainstream films and more interested in character or mood driven films (this audience is often targeted by platforming a film in art house cinemas located in large cities).
A state of limited competition that exists when a small number of companies control an industry.
The process of ‘selling’ an idea for a film to a studio in return for investment and distribution.