Section B Institutions and Audiences A case study of the Film industry 1 Exam Question - 45 minutes
the issues raised by media ownership in contemporary media practice; the importance of cross media convergence and synergy inproduction, distribution and marketing; the technologies that have been introduced in recent years at the levels ofproduction, distribution, marketing and exchange; the significance of proliferation in hardware and content for institutions andaudiences; the importance of technological convergence for institutions and audiences; the issues raised in the targeting of national and local audiences(specifically, British) by international or global institutions; the ways in which the candidates’ own experiences of media consumptionillustrate wider patterns and trends of audience behaviour.
Of these seven key areas, one will be thefocus of the exam question. For example:“Discuss the issues raised by an institutionsneed to target specific audiences within amedia industry which you have studied.”
To be successful in the exam you must beable to confidently discuss any of the sevenkey areas. You must make clear references to realexamples offilms, directors, studios, productioncompanies, distributors and exhibitors. You will be expected to show a good overallknowledge of the Film Industry.
The first three things you will need to knowabout are: Production Distribution Exhibition With your partner – discuss which aspectsof the film industry you think these termsrefer to.
Refers to the making of the film: Finding the idea Writing the script Pitching it to a studio Setting a budget Casting stars and employing a crew Filming Editing
For a film to go into production it needsinvestors to provide the necessary funding. However, Box office is success is never certainand so investors try to reduce the risk oflosing their money by becoming involved inimportant decisions
Key questions that they will ask are: Is the film’s storyline similar to other films thathave made money recently? Does it offer easy selling points? Are there obvious marketing spin offs to giveadded publicity? Is the star popular? Had the director had previous successes?
If the answer to any of theses questions is no thenchanges will be made to the “package” (the details ofthe film) to make sure all the answers are yes!Otherwise the investors will take their money elsewhere.
Before a director can start filming a film hasto be “greenlit”. At this stage a project will generally be fullyfinanced and have most of the key elementssuch as principal cast, director andcinematographer in place, as well as ascreenplay which is satisfactory to all thefinanciers. If it is not “greenlit” it can not go ahead.
www.launchingfilms.com/releaseschedule Choose a film that has either been releasedthis week or is just about to be released. Create a PowerPoint presentation that coversas much about the marketing strategy forthat film as possible Make a note of whether your chosen film isBritish or America Record the name of the distribution company
In starting to plan a marketing campaign, thefilm distributor has to decide how it will presenta film to a potential audience. They need to decide what sets this film apartfrom all the other films that are released – theylook for a film’s ‘unique selling point’ (USP). If, for example, the distributor is handling anadventure film, they will need to look for aspectsof the film which set it aside from the otheraction adventure films.
After this they will look at such things as whostars in the film, are there new andspectacular special effects in the film andwho is the director? Taking all of these into consideration, thedistributor will then decide which elements tostress in the marketing campaign(posters, trailers, etc.) i.e. how to position thefilm in the market place.
From the information you are given could yousay what you think is the USP of each film? The Kings Speech Shaun of the Dead TheAvengers Go on imdb and find a print of hand out thatgoes with them with three films
Marketing is one of the most important aspectsof a film’s distribution and there are manydifferent ways to market a film. Make a list of the different the ways you canmarket a film. Posters Trailers Online and mobile content Special Screenings/Premieres Interviews/ articles Merchandising Festivals/ Awards
When we refer to “film exhibition” we are talkingabout cinema. The cinema release of a film marks the final stage ofone part of a film’s journey from idea to audience. Italso marks the beginning of a new journey from cinema tosmall screen. After its cinema release the film will then be available on payTV, free to airTV, as well astelevision. Each of these “exhibitions” of the filmoffers the possibility of generating profits for both the film’sdistributor and producers.