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FS 103 lecture week #9.docx

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Film Studies
Sandra Annett

FS 103- Week #9 Lecture: Cult films: the Room, Clerks and the Cult Film: This week’s key element: Avant-garde style  How is narrative structure different from that of a Classical Hollywood film? Doyou notice innovative shots/cinematography/transitions in editing? The Studio System:  Studio system was the major system for producing, marketing, and distributing films in the Golden Age/Classical Period of Hollywood (1927- early 60s)  Eight studios:  Big five: Fox Film (Twentieth Century Fox), MGM, Paramount Pictures, RKO Radio Pictures, Warner Bros.  Little Three: United Artists, Columbia Picture, Universal Pictures How Studio System Worked:  Studios placed stars under long term exclusive contracts. Contracts dictated the stars’ roles, appearance and public behaviour  Studios kept a stable of creative talent including directors, writers, and crew who worked on the lot  Vertical Integration: Big 5 had their own distribution companies and theatre chains  Block booking: studios forced theatres to book films in groups that included shorts and cheap B- movies along with big-budget A-movies Breakdown of the Studio System:  May 4 1948: a federal law suit known as the Paramount Decree was filled against the Big Five accusing them of monopolizing the filmmaking market (ten years of fighting then studios lost)  After 1948, studios were no longer allowed to run theatre chains or to practice block-booking on a large scale (5 at a time vs. 16)  The end of the studio system led to the rise of independent producers and actors as free agents working under a package-unit system.  Package unit system: producer gets together necessary components to make film Independent Producers and Independent Films:  Independent producers today can choose to work with a major studio and make a mainstream Holllywood film or form their own production company and make an indeoendent film by themselves  Independent films: films produced outside of a major film studio. They are distributed by the producer or by a major studio’s smaller scale subsidiary (eg. Fox Searchlight)  Some become “Hollywoodized” while others, like Kevin Smith’s “View Askew” series, stay independent and become cult films The Star Sys
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