MediaFilmExchange.co.uk Powerpoint

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MediaFilmExchange.co.uk Powerpoint

  1. 1. Cult Film Stars A Case Study: James Dean
  2. 2. Cult Film Stars <ul><li>Film Fans may seek out movies starring a particular star – therefore cult movie stars are useful to TPTB </li></ul><ul><li>Some e.g’s of Cult Movie Stars would be - Bruce Lee, James Dean, Pam Grier, Pee Wee Herman </li></ul><ul><li>They can be mainstream e.g. John Wayne or peripheral to the mainstream e.g. Cheech and Chong or crossover into the mainstream e.g. Divine </li></ul>
  3. 3. Cult Film Stars <ul><li>Like Cult Films, Stars are ‘claimed’ /taken over by their Fans – and in some cases passed down to successive generations e.g. Marilyn Monroe </li></ul><ul><li>Cult Film Stars/Films are used by Fans for their own gratification and pleasure – they become something larger than the film going experience – in the process they gain a cultural significance </li></ul>
  4. 4. James Dean <ul><li>Only made three films: </li></ul><ul><li>Rebel Without A Cause (1955) </li></ul><ul><li>East of Eden (1955) </li></ul><ul><li>Giant (1956) </li></ul><ul><li>Yet these three films still generate huge amounts of money for Warner Brothers (DVDs, TV, Special Screenings etc) – who also own the licence for his image (posters, pictures in magazines etc) – generates over £5 million per year – every year!! </li></ul>
  5. 5. James Dean Fandom <ul><li>1000’s of active James Dean Fan Sites keep his image and an appreciation of his work ‘alive’ for The Studios </li></ul><ul><li>His name is mentioned in 100’s of songs e.g. ‘Vogue’ by Madonna, Lou Reed’s ‘Walk On The Wild Side’, ‘American Pie’ by Don McLean – more publicity. </li></ul><ul><li>Fictional film accounts of his life promote his work e.g. ‘The James Dean Story’ </li></ul><ul><li>100’s of documentaries have explored his life and work </li></ul><ul><li>Posters, photographs etc circulate visual reminders of his image </li></ul>
  6. 6. ICONIC <ul><li>James Dean has historical and contemporary cultural currency (Bordieu) and this accounts for his ‘cult status’ </li></ul><ul><li>Represented the Archetypal American Teenager </li></ul><ul><li>Represents ‘The Outsider’ – He who doesn’t ‘fit in’ </li></ul><ul><li>Air of androgyny – both women and men find him good looking </li></ul><ul><li>Dean's &quot;loving tenderness towards the besotted Sal Mineo in ‘Rebel’ Without A Cause’ continues to touch and excite gay audiences by its honesty </li></ul>
  7. 7. ICONIC <ul><li>Played a part in the creation of Rock and Roll as a cultural phenomenon </li></ul><ul><li>Sexual ambiguity in his ‘real’ life – appearance and reality are at odds with each other </li></ul><ul><li>He died young and left a ‘beautiful’ corpse </li></ul>
  8. 8. Useful!!! <ul><li>So Cult Films and Cult Film Stars are very important to TPTB even though they may appear not to be mainstream, but are transgressive and challenge the cultural hegemony. </li></ul><ul><li>TPTB are happy to create Cult status around certain stars and films – particularly those that didn’t do well at the Box Office first time around e.g. ‘Showgirls’, ‘Mommie Dearest’. </li></ul><ul><li>Who are your top five Cult Film Stars and your top five Cult Films? </li></ul>

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