History of Cinema Lecture

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Florida State University
Motion Picture Arts
FIL 2001
Brandon Foster

History of Cinema 1960’s - Present Day 1960’s Top 5 Films (1) The Sound of Music (1965) (2) 101 Dalmatians (1961) (3) The Jungle Book (1967) (4) Doctor Zhivago (1965) (5) The Graduate (1967) DECLINE OF THE STUDIO SYSTEM Financial Struggles • Mostly caused by the new domination of Television in the market place Studios such as UA and Hal Roach were forced to sell off their backlots as valuable • California realestate • MGM began selling various film artifacts -- including Judy Garland’s ruby slippers from The Wizard of Oz (1939) • Universal began giving backlot studio tours (1964) • Walt Disney Productions decides to build a new theme park -- Walt Disney World (1965) • Hoping to appeal to more audiences, the average movie ticket dropped to $1 ($7.42 in 2013), forcing the average film budget to be around $1.5 million (11.1 million in 2013) • LA Chamber of Commerce created the “Hollywood Walk of Fame” (1960) to generate more interest and buzz around the movie industry Studio Take Overs because of their financial difficulties many studios were bought and taken over by multi- national companies 1966 Gulf+Western Industries bought Paramount • • 1967 Bank of America absorbed United Artists • 1967 Jack Warner, one of the founders of Warner Bros. sold his controlling interest of Warner Bros. to Seven Arts • 1969 MGM was acquired by hotel financier and airline mogul Kirk Kerkorian Times Had Just Changed • Studio bound “contract stars” and directors no longer existed • Most of the directors from the “Golden Age” of Hollywood were either dead or retired • How bad had they Changed? 1963 was the worst year in film production history with only 121 films released -- to further illustrate, in 1964 the US had the largest foreign film release with 361 foreign films released versus 141 domestic films released BRITISH INFLUENCES Increase of Production Overseas • With high production cost of making films in Hollywood and the decrease in studio size, most studios decreased their internal production and increased movie making outside of the country • Britain was one of the most used countries for foreign film making because of the economical advantages that were provided when shooting there Angry Young Men Films • Increased production in Britain led to “Angry Young Men” Films, or more commonly known as kitchen sink films • These films usually took place in Britain and depicted the lives of working class heroes with plenty of profanity, alcohol, sex, and drugs • They were sometimes called “Angry Young Men” films because their main character was usually a male protagonist attempting to break free from society and its expectations, Peeping Tom (1960) CLEOPATRA DISASTER Cost • Illustrates the demise of the sweeping historical epics which were being phased out due to their high production costs • Cleopatra cost $44 million to make in 1963, the equivalent of $320 million dollars today -- side note, Elizabeth Taylor was eventually paid $7 million in total to complete the film, the equivalent of $42 million today • The film almost bankrupt 20th Century Fox Length • Was, at the time, the longest commercially made American film released at 4 hours and 3 minutes (Joseph L. Mankiewicz fought the studio for a six hour length) ALSO IN 1960’S First Regular In-Flight Movie • 1961, TWA airlines began showing By Love Possessed (1961) in first class during flights between NYC and LA Birth of the Multi-Plex • Stanley H. Durwood became the father of the ‘multiplex’ movie theater in 1963 when he opened the first-ever mall multiplex, composed of two side-by-side theatres with 700 seats in Kansas City • In 1966, he built the first four-plex and in 1969, he built the six-plex with automated projection booths • Durwood would lated head AMC Entertainment and make it the third largest movie theatre chain in the nation New Rating System • The Motion Picture Production Code was replaced by new voluntary ratings code to be administered by the MPAA, which we now have today Birth of Bond • the first six James Bond films of the Bond franchise were released Dr. No (1962), From Russia With Love (1963), Goldfinger (1964), Thunderball (1965), You Only Live Twice (1967), and On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969) 1970’s Top 5 Films (1) Star Wars (1977) (2) Jaws (1975) (3) The Exorcist (1973) (4) Grease (1978) (5) The Sting (1973) SEARCH FOR THE BLOCKBUSTER Renaissance of Hollywood • With restrictions on language, adult content, sexuality, and violent loosened, these elements became more widespread • the counter culture of the time influenced Hollywood and encouraged them to take risks with young and new alternative film makers • this renaissance was primarily based upon traditional film genres of its successful past with bigger blockbuster films Bankrolled Films • Instead of creating many films, studios began to produce only a handful of bankroll films in hopes that one or two of them would succeed profitably and off set those that did not • Two of the most success of these were Jaws (1975) -- $9 million to make; and Star Wars (1977) and gave birth to what we now view as summer “blockbuster” movies the two highest grossing films in history at the time and the first films to earn more than $100 million in rentals • Average film budget was $5 million in 1978 and by 1980 was $11 million due to rising costs and inflation NEW MARKET’S FOR HOLLYWOOD PRODUCTS Cable Television • the first pay/premium television channel, Home Box Office (HBO), was founded in 1972; in 1975, HBO demonstrated the popularity of its programming and became the first in the television industry to use satellites for regular transmission of programming • pay cable television was able to allow profanity and sex beyond what could be offered on commercial network television - outrageous comedian George Carlin's first comedy special was aired on HBO as On Location: George Carlin at USC (1977) Television Advertising • Hollywood realized that it could increase its profits by advertising its new releases on television • first shown to be successful with the massive TV marketing campaign (of $700,000) for Jaws (1975) -- the film was also booked into almost 500 theatres for its opening weekend - a record! Changes in Exhibition • to maximize profits from weekend audiences, the industry decided to move major film openings from mid-week to Fridays, in 1973 multi-plex theaters - the proliferation of multi-screen chain theaters in suburban areas, • replacing big movie palaces, meant that more movies could be shown to smaller audiences; the world's largest cineplex (with 18 theaters) opened in Toronto in 1979 THE HOME VIDEO REVOLUTION Better and Cheaper Technology • The first Video Casette Recorder (VCR) came out in 1969 and was available for $30,000 the equivalent of almost $200,000 today • the appearance of Sony's Betamax (the first home VCR or videocassette recorder) in 1975 offered a cheaper sales price of $2,000 ($8,600 today) and recording time up to one hour; this led to a boom in sales • in 1977, RCA introduced the first VCRs in the United States based on JVC's system, capable of recording up to four hours on 1/2" videotape Sales and Rentals • video sales - the first films on videotape were released by the Magnetic Video Corporation (a company founded in 1968 by Andre Blay in Detroit, Michigan, the first video distribution company) - it licensed fifty films for release from 20th Century Fox for $300,000 in October, 1977; it began to license, market and distribute half-inch videotape cassettes (both Betamax and VHS) to consumers; it was the first company to sell pre-recorded videos; M*A*S*H (1970) was Magnetic's most popular title • video rentals - in 1977, George Atkinson of Los Angeles began to advertise the rental of 50 Magnetic Video titles of his own collection in the Los Angeles Times, and launched the first video rental store, Video Station, on Wilshire Boulevard, renting videos for $10/day; within 5 years, he franchised more than 400 Video Station stores across the country THE MOVIE BRATS The established Hollywood movie studios (except for Universal and Walt Disney's Buena Vista) no longer directly controlled production. Although studios still dominated film distribution, other areas including production, filming and financing (in whole or part) were increasingly in the hands of independent studios, producers, and/or agents With more power now in the hands of producers, directors, and actors, new directors emerged, many o
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