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SOC309H5 (17)


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University of Toronto Mississauga
Ivanka Knezevic

Class Outline [email protected] Course SOC309H5F BLACKFISH-whale doc Lecture 06/06/2013 Topic: Film – production, content and reception Key educational goals/outcomes for today: Understand the interplay of economic and aesthetic / fashion considerations in film (as in other entertainment industries). Understand that many aesthetic changes in film history have been products of economic consideration. Understand that wider social changes, as well as the changes in entertainment technology and production, influence development of film. Consider influence of television on reception of film, and the film industry’s efforts to counteract this influence. Readings Baumann, Shyon. 2001. “Intellectualization andArt World Development: Film in the United States”, American Sociological Review, vol. 66, no. 3. 404-426. Hirsch, Paul M. 1972. “Processing Fads and Fashions:An Organization-SetAnalysis of Cultural Industry Systems”, American Journal of Sociology, vol. 77. 639-659. Questions to guide the reading/to think about ahead of time for students Hirsch views the mass media as an “institutional regulator of innovation”. What does this mean? What consequences does this have for the media content transmitted to audiences? What kinds of innovation are likely to get lost on their way from creators to audiences? What were the external and internal factors influencing establishment ofAmerican film as art? Why was film industry favouring this change? How did appearance of television open an “opportunity space” for establishment of film as art? Compare this process to that of establishment of theatre as art in the late 19 c. A GENDA FOR CLASS Introduction We continue our discussion of entertainment by looking at the history and economics of North American film. We shall consider how the conditions of production influenced film content, and how the industry fought to establish formal or informal control over distribution channels. The film industry’s competition, first against television and then against other home media carriers, which ended in their successful co-optation, will also be discussed, because of its importance for profitability of film. The main concepts for today Film Production  Procedure Development (1y) production (3y), sale and distribution (1y)  Film production by media conglomerate-branches out such as Disney into several  Eg walt Disney company  Disney media networks—ABC,ESPN,Disney Channel, walt Disney parks&Recs, Walt Disney Studios-Disney Studios motion pic-distributor, pictures-pixar ect, Disney Consumer, Disney Interactive Film industry as a field  Bourdieus concept of field  Afield film comes into being whenfilm production begins to enjoy autonomy from other existing fields in the type of capital particulary Film industry as a system  Hirschs concept of system  Input and output boundaries  Managerial and technical subsyetm (close supervision of production, decrease risk for production and managerial subsystem (bureaucratic of distribution  Institutional subsystem –mass media eing the gatekeeper of the diffusion of fadds and fashion  Societal subsystem Film industry as a network of organization  Overproduction differential promotion MANAGERIAL SYSTEM>>>CONTACT MEN COOPTATION>>>>INSTITUTIONAL SUBSYSTEM>>>>SOCIETAL SUBSYSTEN>>>CONTACT MEN>>>MANAGERIAL SYSTEM  Studio system to indid films  Application of mass production principles to film. The studio system  By the ‘20’s film technology has advanced to enable production of feature length films  This si only possible with a large # of workers and high investment in production  This leads to oligopolisation  1920s-1930s central producer system-1 producer oversees all important dec including creative and supervises the entire production of a studio  40’s unit producer system each producer specializes in a genre and supervises fewer films at a time. Aproducer is more knowledgeable and more interest in creative success  Studio system and the star system are ways to min uncertainty th  Addresses both output and input. Big 5 paramount, loews MGM FOX or 20 cent fox and Warner and RKO  Vertical integration: eac owned a large studio worldwide nework of distribution offices and cinema chains  Other large studio Universal, Columbia united artists  8 studios produced 75% ofAmerican films collected 90% rev Block booking Block booking is a system of selling multiple films to a theater as a unit. Block booking was the prevailing practice among Hollywood's major studiosfrom the turn of the 1930s until it was outlawed by the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in United States v. Paramount Pictures, Inc. (1948). Un
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