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Audiences and Institutions - DARK KNIGHT CASE STUDY


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Audiences and Institutions - DARK KNIGHT CASE STUDY

  1. 1. The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan, 2008, US)
  2. 2. The Dark knight is a film that exists as part of the Batman Universe. The Character of Batman was created by Bob Kane in 1939 for DC Comics and has become on of the most successful franchise properties of all time. The character has existed in a number of different mediums and had many different incarnations ranging from a handsome superhero in comics, to a camp billionaire played by Adam West on 1960s TV. In 1989, director Tim Burton introduced Batman as a dark, troubled character to much acclaim. A successful sequel followed in 1992 and continued with this theme. By 1997, after Burton left the franchise, Joel Schumacher had created a further two sequels, however these were poorly received by both critics and audiences who claimed they were too camp and reminiscent of the Adam West era of Batman. There were no more Batman films until 2005 when British director, Christopher Nolan, re-launched the film franchise by re-writing Batman’s origin story and creating, much like Burton, a dark world of violence for the character to exist within. He would title this, Batman Begins. The film would be lauded by critics and audiences alike, grossing $374Million Worldwide and three years later, delivering a sequel….
  3. 3. The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan, 2008, US) Batman and Officer James Gordon join forces with Gotham's new District Attorney, Harvey Dent, to take on a psychotic bank robber known as The Joker, whilst other forces plot against them, and Joker's crimes grow more and more deadly.
  4. 4. On July 31st 2006 Warner Brother pictures announced that the sequel to the hugely successful, Batman Begins had gone into production. They gave only one other piece of information – The title of the film. The film was given a budget of $185million dollars and would again be produced by the creative team behind Batman Begins: Director: Christopher Nolan Writers: Christopher Nolan, Jonathan Nolan, David S Goyer Producers: Christopher Nolan, Emma Thomas, Charles Roven. The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan, 2008, US) How the film was devised, financed and produced
  5. 5. The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan, 2008, US) The story for The Dark Knight was loosely established at the end of Batman Begins with the introduction of the character, THE JOKER. Christopher Nolan and his frequent collaborators, David S. Goyer (with whom he wrote Batman Begins) and brother, Jonathan Nolan went about writing The Dark Knight in the Winter of 2005. By October 2006 pre- production location scouting was already in place for a March 2007 start date for principle photography. The entire shoot would last 16 weeks and take place in China, UK, Chicago and California (USA). How the film was devised, financed and produced Christopher Nolan
  6. 6. The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan, 2008, US) How the film was devised, financed and produced? The film was financed by LEGENDARY PICTURES and WARNER BROTHERS, that later of whom owns the exclusive rights to the Batman Character. Warner Brothers has produced every Batman film since Tim Burton’s Batman in 1989 and had at this point earned over $2billion from the film franchise ( Legendary pictures was established by Thomas Tull in 2004. The company was responsible for co-financing Batman Begins with Warner Bro’s in 2005 and by the end of that year had signed a seven year deal with Warner Bro’s to co-produce and co-finance over 40 pictures. ( In addition to The Dark Knight, Legendary pictures has produced Superman Returns (2006), 300 (2007), Watchmen (2009), The Hangover (2009), Where the Wild Things are (2009), Clash of the Titans (2010), Inception (2010), The Town (2010) and The Hangover part 2 (2011), amongst many others…. Which studio(s) were involved? Who are these studios?
  7. 7. Marketing The Dark Knight
  8. 8. Christopher Nolan Interview The Dark Knight Merchandising The Dark Knight Premiere I am Legend IMAX prologue Meet the Cast First Review HBO First LookFilm Trailer
  9. 9. Marketing The Dark Knight •A pre-sold film (DC comics, graphic novels, cartoons, television series, franchise (it is the sixth film), computer games…) •Bankable stars (Heath Ledger’s performance and untimely death) •Trailers (Teaser, theatrical, TV spots) •Merchandising (Toys – Mattel) •Reviews (Variety ‘Showbiz’ magazine) •The premieres •Shooting with IMAX cameras •The internet (YouTube, official and unofficial websites, fan sites, viral marketing)
  10. 10. BOX OFFICE The Dark knight was released on July 16th 2008 in the US & Canada on 4,366 screens. It premiered in the UK just one week later on July 24th on 502 screens. There were over 3000 midnight screenings of the film in both countries and all IMAX screenings were sold out for the opening weekend. US Opening weekend Gross: $158,411,483 UK Opening weekend Gross: £11,191,824
  11. 11. BOX OFFICE As of March 1st 2009, The Dark Knight has grossed $533,316,061 in the US and £48,685,166 in the UK. It’s total worldwide gross has been estimated at: $1,001,921,825 (Dec 2010) It was the highest grossing film of 2008
  12. 12. Audience The Dark Knight was released in July around the world. This is the Summer blockbuster market and is the most important time of the year for film studios. During this time younger audiences are not in school and have more time and money to go to the cinema. Batman appeals to this demographic (age of people) because he is already established as a comic book character and as an action superhero. Due to his long history he is also well known to older generations and therefore has a large audience.
  13. 13. DVD/Blu Ray The Dark knight was released by Warner Bros. on DVD, Blu Ray and digital formats on December 9th 2008. In the UK the film sold 513,000 units in one day and it holds the record for the most DVDs sold globally in one day – 3 million. ( In March 2011, The Dark Knight became the first film available for rental on a social media website when Warner Bros. teamed with Facebook.
  14. 14. The Dark Knight Rises Filming began on the sequel to The Dark Knight on May 6th 2011. With an estimated budget of $250million the film will be released on July 20th 2012. It features all of the principle producers and actors from The Dark Knight and, in keeping with the release techniques from that film, has already had a teaser trailer, poster, viral campaign and will receive an IMAX-only prologue this December in front of Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol