Media Ownership• It’s essential that you are able to debate and explore the advantages and disadvantages of large conglomerates and smaller independent film companies.• Film London Microwave , Film London’s micro-budget feature film- BBC Films produced Ill Manors. What are the advantages/disadvantages of this independence?• Sony and MGM produced ‘Skyfall’, and Sony is a large international conglomerate. What are the advantages/disadvantages of this ownership?
KEY POINT• The film industry is dominated by major Hollywood studios• They are 20th Century Fox, Warner Bros., Paramount, Columbia, Universal, and Walt Disney Studios.• This is known as an oligopoly.• A major ﬁlm studio is a movie production and distribution company that releases a substantial number of ﬁlms annually and consistently commands a signiﬁcant share of box-ofﬁce revenues in a given market.•• They command approximately 90 percent of the U.S. box ofﬁce.
• What is an oligopoly?• Who are the 6 majors?• What is a major?
Advantages of a big conglomerate in production and distribution• PRODUCTION• Will be able to take risks when making films• Wont need to collaborate to secure funding• Can be more ambitious with film get bigger stars, have more special effects, travel to better locations• DISTRIBUTION• Sheer size and power in the industry - more money and better links to related companies ie Sony Pictures Entertainment (production company) and Sony Pictures (distributors) and Sony platforms to exhibit film,• Can use synergy and cross promote via games, music, toys etc
Advantages of conglomerates (big companies)• These humongous-sized mammoths are able to use their size and ownership of a wide range of media to cross promote their films (games, toys, CDs) across their wide media empires.• The success of Skyfall was ensured when the film achieved critical acclaim, since it had the backing of a company that was able to use cross media convergence as it owns companies within a range of industries.• The synergies of cross-promotion that can be created by these media organisations is mind-boggling.• For Sony’s Skyfall it resulted in a huge amount of word-of-mouth for a big budget film and helped the film become a blockbuster. Such are the benefits of cross-media ownership by these giant institutions.
DISADVANTAGES - production and exhibition• Films often have to satisfy a mass market and creatively film makers cannot take as many risks as so many large companies to satisfy and revenue to achieve.• The film has to do well at the box office
What are....• the advantages and disadvantages of a conglomerate in producing, distributing and exhibiting a film?
How do smaller companies market smaller films like ‘Ill Manors’ in distribution?• There are difficulties faced by smaller companies with relatively small marketing budgets and few easy opportunities for synergy• Ill Manors has received largely positive reviews from critics and fans alike, with a current 80% "fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on twenty-five different reviews.• Its budget was £100,000. It’s made £453,570 at the UK Box office.• at the
Advantages and disadvantages of an independent company• PRODUCTION• Less budget so film will be less ambitious, with smaller scale cast, locations and special effects.• Often have to secure extra funding and finance• DISTRIBUTION• Has to be targeted as less money to spend on distribution campaign.• The film is expected to make less revenue at the box office• Cant withstand losses with box office returns
Independent companies• In the film industry it is difficult to make progress and create films that get attention and in turn get exhibited in cinemas unless you are already a large company.• Smaller companies and the majority of British Film are given a back seat because of the vast amount of American Blockbusters.• Ill Manors is an example of a film that tried to push the boundaries though and received relative success, compared to its budget.• It was made through a micro-budget feature film-making scheme. Aimed at commissioning the next generation of film-making talent in the capital,• Because it wasnt part of a huge conglomerate it could take more risks in terms of subject matter. A bigger company may not be able to do this.
What are....• the advantages and disadvantages of a British independent film company in producing, distributing and exhibiting a film?
How do Independent companies compete?• Viral Marketing helped Ill manors make money, overcoming the mass American film industry; for example their website gave the audience easy access to information about the film, was packed with Video clips, trailers, pictures and downloads which make the audience feel more involved in the film.• http://www.illmanors.com/#scene-0• The downloads are a way of free advertising, for example if someone has the background on their phone or a ringtone friends might ask where it was from and it would help spread information about the film through word of mouth.
Ill Manors and media ownership• It had a small budget of £100,000 but made nearly 5 times this at the UK Box Ofice• The challenge was to attract a core niche audience, with such a low budget, unknown stars, and low production values.• Its not a big conglomerate so cannot withstand losses• It had to be financed by the Film London, BBC Films and supported by Skillset, the UK Film Council and the Mayor of London• Its advertising (distribution) campaign had to be targetted at specific niche audiences: check whether adverts appeared on digital radio station Kiss FM, digital satellite channel Dave, and Comedy Central, and the Sun / News of the World.
Attack the Block and media ownership• How do low budget film making schemes like Film London’s Microwave and BBC Films, AND distributors like Revolver Entertainment compete with conglomerates, in relation to production and distribution?• What key terminology can you use to answer this?• What kind of company is Big Talk Pictures?
Sony Pictures• With distribution, Sony can use its status as a conglomerate. It had a very broad appeal and blanket advertising and publicity were used.• It can use synergy -Tom Ford clothes, CD, Omega watches, Aston Martin cars, Coca- cola,• jewellry from Swarovski.•
Sony• http://www.skyfall-movie.com/site/• A big conglomerate such as Sony has much more power than a small independent and it can use viral marketing (digital marketing) in a bigger way - with its online website. It was more far reaching and not as targetted in a niche way like Ill Manors.• It had story plots,• “videos” with trailers of the film,• extended film clips and exclusive video featurettes that go into the movie’s plot and locations.• There were wallpapers, facebook cover photos, Twitter skins• Stills from the film can be found in the “Gallery”
Sony and distribution• http://www.sonypictures.com/movies/skyfall/part ners/• Advertising and cross media promotion was used featuring all the partners to Skyfall.• Targeted a primary male audience and a secondary female audience with a broad 15-55 age - across a broad demographic of classes
Sony and distribution• Publicity- started early because the company could afford to do this.• The publicity hype started well before the ﬁlm was released - even a year beforehand• Ofﬁcial photos of the characters were released - Tie ins were announced• Sony can afford huge publicity• It used synergy. Sony can utilise this as it is such a huge conglomerate - it can use synergy to promote the ﬁlm with other institutions•• What other company can provide this vast scale of publicity? - it is because Sony is such a huge company - one of the 6 majors.• the premiere generated a huge amount of TV, press and online interest.
Skyfall and media ownership• What are the beneﬁts of having Sony involved in production and distribution?• What key terminology can you use to answer this?• What kind of company is Sony?
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