Lecture 9 Feb 9.docx

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St. Michael's College Courses
Francesco Guardiani

SMC219- Lecture Wednesday February 9, 2011 Biagi – Ch. 7 “Film” Film is a hybrid medium, both capitalizes on both attributes of mechanical media (typographic) and electronic - TV- totally electronic Thus different identities for TV and film = TV is cool and Film is hotter 1877- Eadweard Muybridge catches motion on film when he uses 12 cameras to photograph a horse’s movements for Leiand Stanford in Palo Alto, California 1915- Director D. W. Griffith introduces the concept of the movie spectacular with The Bird of a Nation 1916- Brothers Noble and George Johnson launch Lincoln Films, 1 company to produce movies called “race films” = serious narrative movies for African American audiences 1919- Oscar Micheaux releases Within Our Gates a response to D. W. Griffith’s controversial, anti-black epic The Birth of a Nation 1927- The Jazz Singer, the first feature length motion picture with sound, opens in NYC 1930- The Motion Picture Producers and Distributors Association adopts a production code to control movie content 1947- The Hollywood Ten are called to testify before the House Un-American Activities Committee 1948- The U.S Supreme Court breaks up the large studio’s control of Hollywood via decision in case of U.S v. Paramount Pictures, Inc. saying that studies are a monopoly 1966- The Motion Picture Association of America introduces a voluntary content ratings system for movies 1994- David Gefffen, Steven Speilberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg launch DreamWorks SKG, 1 st new independent movie studio created in U.S since United Artists 2001- to attempt to stop movie piracy, the Motion Picture Association of America challenges the availability of recordable DVD technology, but eventually DVD-Rs are allowed to be sold 2005- DreamWorks sold to Viacom, Inc. leaving U.S without a major independent movie studio Today- movie theatres collect ~1 billion tickets a year, but more people see movies on video than in movie theatres. The market for American movies continues to grow overseas. Movie downloads are expanding source of revenue. Movie distribution companies plan to send their movies by satellite to satellite dishes on top of theatres and directly to consumers’ homes via subscription services. - French rivalry = silent film Whenever new medium imposes self – the availabilities are so immense = vacuum – what content fills the active vacuum? – it is the previous medium! (stories, images, that become the content) So film comes out of the new medium from literature, theatre European films- first ones were literary, Italy – Dante’s Inferno Most discussed video – Birth of a Nation– being America, this film was about the war between North and South, consequences, difficult reconciliation Early movies also were race-based, race movies/films, minority films (black films, black produces/ actors/ theatres) Early 19 century still mechanical and changes come slowly From 1877 silent movie – sound movie comes much later – 1927 when sound movie comes (after radio) – first full length motion picture with sound 1927 – the Jazz Singer Independence in old medium- book literature Studios controlled entire industry from beginning to end of movie production First system- know difference between studio system (realization that films had to be consumed quickly, so when film received sound, every theatre would have at least 2 films per week= real need for supplying) not all films could be masterpieces though so producers made contracts with theatre operators  Studio system = an early method of hiring a stable of salaried stars and production people under exclusive contracts to a specific studio  Star system = promoting popular movie personalities to lure audiences 5 important events in 1920s transformed movie industry 1. move to California 2. adoption of block booking 3. formation of United Artists 4. the industry’s efforts at self-regulation 5. the introduction of sound  block booking= the practice of requiring theatres to take a package of movies instead of showing the movies individually - Box Office hurt in 1930s as Depression settled, 1 innovation that survived: the double feature (2 movies for price of one - Depression also = labour unions - 19370 National Labour Relations Board held an election designating Screen Actors Guild to bargain for wages, working conditions and overtime - 1938: Screen Writers Guild certified (before Directors) - union agreements introduced professionalism - movies glitter during Golden Age  Blacklisting: studio owners’ refusal to hire someone who was suspected of taking part in subversive activities  blind booking: the practice of renting films to exhibitors without letting them see the films first - Actors have not always been treated the same in terms of pay - Films used to be filmed in Cuba (sunny locations), prior to Hollywood - Independent Producers – United Artists – what is the difference between independent artist and un-independent? - The real independent have no access to theatres (small ones) – starting with Robert Redford - Independent- United Artists and Dream Works  Ancillary Rights- marketing opportunities related to a movie, in addition to direct income from the movie itself Movie industry revenue= 48% TV and in flight programming, 38% Home Video, 14% Box Office New digital technologies affect 3 aspects of today’s movie business: 1) Production 2) Distribution 3) Exhibition Replace traditional film projector with digital- digital projectors can show movies via satellite, cheaper to distribute movies this way, shown on more screens or removed quickly Today’s movie industry is undergoing 2 major changes= 1) global ownership and global marketing 2) merging of the movie industry with TV industry Motion Picture America – greatest success in 30s and 40s 1946: year in which there were more people watching movies than ever before – after we get TV, before we had radio 1946- the day the war ended (need to do something recreational) Industry needed to self-regulate self or risk being abandoned – 1920s reaction by Catholic Regional announcing movie boycott – as a result there was the creation of a rating system and an overreaction over obscene films The rating system is still used today- another value (commercial) if movie is restricted, the younger generation Huge impact after the war- Cold War exploded, entire Western world pitted against Russia, fear of Communists – highly evident in film industry (Writers, travellers, those who know the world) th Pg. 144 Big 5* (Warner Bros, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Paramou
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