Wednesday, 16 December 2015

AS Foundation Portfolio Brief


Print

Preliminary exercise: using DTP and an image manipulation program, produce the front page of a new school/college magazine, featuring a photograph of a student in medium close-up plus some appropriately laid-out text and a masthead. 

Additionally candidates must produce a DTP mock-up of the layout of the contents page to demonstrate their grasp of the program.

Main task: the front page, contents and double page spread of a new music magazine.


All images and text used must be original, produced by the candidate, minimum of FOUR images per candidate.

Monday, 14 December 2015

Christmas 50: Textual Analysis And Representation



Your Christmas 50 homework consists of the following:



Answer these:



Discuss the ways in which the extract constructs the representation of ethnicity using the following:
  • Camera shots, angles, movement and composition
  • Editing
  • Sound
  • Mise en scene
50 marks

EAA: Explanation, analysis, argument-20 marks
EG: Use of example-20 marks
T: Terminology-10 marks


 

Discuss the ways in which the extract constructs the representation of gender using the following: 

  • Camera shots, angles, movement and composition 
  • Editing 
  • Sound 
  • Mise en scène 
50 marks

EAA: Explanation, analysis, argument-20 marks
EG: Use of example-20 marks
T: Terminology-10 marks

Distribution - Ex Machina, Mad Max and Kill List

Now you understand distribution you need to find information about our three films.

Licencing
Who licensed Ex Machina in the UK and how much did it cost?
Who licensed Ex Machina in the US and how much did it cost?
Was Ex Machina an example of vertical or horizontal integration?
Who licensed Mad Max Fury Road in the UK and how much did it cost?
Who licensed Mad Max Fury Road in the US and how much did it cost?
Was Kill List an example of vertical or horizontal integration?
Who licensed Kill List in the UK and how much did it cost?
Who licensed Kill List in the US and how much did it cost?
Was Kill List an example of vertical or horizontal integration?

Marketing
What was the release date for Ex Machina in the UK?
Which major films appear in its UK release window?
What was the release date for Ex Machina in the US?
Which major films appear in its US release window?
What was the release date for Mad Max Fury Road in the UK?
Which major films appear in its UK release window?
What was the release date for Mad Max Fury Road in the US?
Which major films appear in its US release window?
What was the release date for Kill List in the UK?
Which major films appear in its UK release window?
What was the release date for Kill List in the US?
Which major films appear in its US release window?

Distribution
How many screens was Ex Machina released on in the UK?
How many screens was Ex Machina released on in the US?
When did Ex Machina screen at the Phoenix Leicester?
How long was its theatrical run in the UK?
How many screens was Mad Max Fury Road released on in the UK?
How many screens was Mad Max Fury Road released on in the US?
When did Mad Max Fury Road screen at the Phoenix Leicester? 
How long was its theatrical run in the UK?
How many screens was Kill List released on in the UK?
How many screens was Kill List released on in the US?
When did Kill List screen at the Phoenix Leicester? 
How long was its theatrical run in the UK?

Thursday, 10 December 2015

What impact does media ownership have upon the range of products available to audiences in the media area you have studied?

All media is owned by a company or conglomerate, a media conglomerate is a multinational firm that distributes media products in the industry, six conglomerates hold 90% of what we read, listen to and watch therefore the public is easily manipulated without them knowing through the use of the hypodermic needle theory. Moreover these conglomerates tend to provide a variety of products to audiences to promote their brand or film through synergy. Walt Disney pioneered synergy; it is the promotion of a media product through numerous media platforms in the hope of attracting audiences, therefore making a large profit.

Big six companies such as Time Warner produce media to make a profit therefore they are given large sums of start-up capital and in return they expect large profits. With the large market share they have they can force their product onto audiences without they realising.
“The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug” was produced by Warner Brothers a subsidiary of Time Warner and is owned by Wingnut Films and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer two giants in the media ownership market, therefore it was expected that their product would make a large profit ($735.4 million) with the pre-existing fan base from the previous Lord of The Rings Trilogy. “The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug” commits audiences to continue to watch the films as they have made it into a three part trilogy therefore making large profits and completing a successful synergistic production. Gratification Theory, realising that the audience is much more complex in modern times, the audience selects media products that best suits their needs and ambitions; “The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug” entices the audience as they too desire treks across ancient lands and battles with bloodthirsty orcs and enchanting elves. This captivation bodes well with Warner Brothers as with their games division they can produce videogames which further the experience viewers witness in cinemas.

On the other hand “12 Years A Slave,” produced by Fox Search Light, PlanB, River Roads Entertainment and Film4, does not have the funds that a Big 6 company would, it had $22 million to make the film, moreover it was originally made for a small film festival where viewers would pay to watch a screening of a film which they knew nothing about. Despite its content, the film's critical success has assisted its domestic distribution by Fox Searchlight that began with a limited released aimed primarily towards art house and African-American patrons. The film's release was slowly widened in subsequent weeks, similarly to how films such as Black Swan and The Descendants had done in previous years. In a clever marketing stunt the international release dates for 12 Years a Slave were largely delayed to early 2014 in order to take advantage of the attention created by awards seasons. This paid off as 12 Years made an astonishing $187.7 million at the box office. This is due to the actors and producers who evolved the production as Brad Pitt and Benedict Cumberbatch (actors) played key roles in advertising through the use of trailers therefore grasping the audience’s attention as they are ‘A listers.’ Furthermore the influence of Kanye West and Chris Rock proved imperative as 12 Years A Slave made it to the big screen eventually.

Big 6 companies tend to use over the line promotion stunts for example “The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug” released the trailers 3 month before the film was released therefore allowing fans to anticipate the release. Moreover a face book page was established allowing fans to communicate before the big release whilst adverts trolled the webpage promoting the film. The Cinema release promoted the film in 3D and widescreen HD creating an experience for cinema goers. Moreover using synergy to their advantage Time Warner made a deal with Lego allowing their characters to be present in the new release therefore the production was promoted and Lego receives greater revenue. Moreover synergy played a part in the production of a Lego Hobbit game. A tie in game was also made further promoting the film. As the Hobbit was originally a book the companies decided to renew the cover of the book and create an audiobook giving the rights to the audio book to iTunes and Amazon Prime. This creates problems such as Piracy as with media conglomerates they overprice products to create the greatest profits possible therefore hackers manage to publish online illegal versions of the film meaning revenue is lost by the larger companies. The producers decided to burn the tape to Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D and then created a new cover once it received an Oscar.
On the other hand as 12 Years a Slave had little range of products as it was originally a novel. This novel was reproduced after 12 Years won numerous awards, the book was branded with the same images as on the DVD’s which were distributed. Moreover with the new title the book was concentrated into an audiobook where the dates of the release of the film were imprinted on the title. This continued before the release of the film in national cinemas. Moreover the film was advertised online through social networks and in trailer form displaying sneak peeks and interviews with the characters. Therefore attracting fans. The film rights where given to Amazon Prime where piracy was a threat. Small figurines were released after the film’s success however its main products where the DVD with multiple covers after awards season and the audio book.


Audiences were given every opportunity to receive products from both cases, some other products from other productions such as Battle ship failed in the promotion with a tie in game however the small production costs and minimum advertising has worked in 12 years favour as it was promoted as a work of art rather than a multimillion explosive Peter Jackson production. Products attract audiences and small children however many people now see big 6 companies as producing media products for the sake of profit.

12W & 12X: Work To Do (2nd-10th December)


Do the following:


Make a plan to answer this:

What impact does media ownership have upon the range of products available to audiences in the media area you have studied?


50 marks

20 marks Evidence, Analysis, Argument
20 marks Examples
10 marks Terminology

Refer to Ex Machina, Mad Max: Fury Road and Kill List in your answer.

For Mad Max: Fury Road you need to research the production companies Village Roadshow PicturesRatpac- Dune Entertainment and the distributor Warner Bros.

For Ex Machina you need to research the production companies DNA Films, Film4 Productions, Scott Rudin and the distributor Universal Studios

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Representation of Sexuality-The Street



Discuss the ways in which the extract constructs the representation of  sexuality using the following:

• Camera shots, angles, movement and composition
• Editing
• Sound
• Mise en scène
[Total 50]

EAA: Explanation, analysis, argument-20 marks
EG: Use of example-20 marks
T: Terminology-10 marks

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Digital Distribution

Towards the end of 2005, the UK distribution and exhibition sectors were starting to move towards digital distribution and exhibition. For exhibitors, digital projection, especially when married to the increasing use digital formats in production, can now replicate - if not surpass - the image quality of conventional 35mm cinema presentation. And, of course, digital sound systems have been used in cinemas for some time.
In distribution terms, the advantages of digital technology are even clearer, though perhaps longer term. Digital technology is seen to offer a more cost effective and logistics-light alternative to the tried and trusted, but unwieldy model of 35mm print distribution described above. It will, eventually, be cheaper and much less stressful to send films as computer files to cinemas across the UK, than to transport 20-25kg tins of film in the back of a van.
Digital distribution and exhibition on a large scale has started to appear in certain parts of the world, notably China and Brazil, where conventional logistics cannot, for one reason or another, efficiently bring together supply and demand. In the UK, digital technology has been embraced by the non-theatrical sector, in film societies and schools, where the use of DVD and mid-range digital projection has replaced 16mm.
The force of this change, coupled with the new capacity of technology to replicate 35mm imaging, has led the UK Film Council to establish a digital distribution and exhibition programme for the theatrical sector at the end of 2005. Entitled the Digital Screen Network (DSN), it will eventually support new facilities in 211 screens across the country (out of a total of just over 3,300 screens in the UK), and is seen as a small but important step change towards full digital cinema.
The DSN will initially work with files transferred from a high definition digital master (either HDD5, or HD Cam). The compressed and encrypted files will be sent directly to cinemas to be downloaded, de-encrypted (unlocked) and opened as files for screening with digital projection equipment. In principle, digital distribution will, in time, change the paradigm of 35mm print logistics. It will be possible for the distributor to send feature film files electronically, via broadband networks, thus eliminating dependence on transportation.
There is little doubt that the advent of digital distribution has the potential radically to alter the modus operandi of distributors around the world. The comparatively low cost of film copies and additional logistical effectiveness of digital distribution provide the distributor with greater flexibility. It will be less expensive in the coming years to offer a wide theatrical opening with many copies, and also conversely, to screen a film for just one performance at any cinema. In theory at least, it will be possible for both distributors and exhibitors to respond more precisely to audience demand.
All this suggests that in the future, more titles, both mainstream and specialised, will receive wide theatrical openings, and that this broadening of access at the point of release will dramatically reduce the overall theatrical period from 3-6 months to perhaps 1-3 months. Thereafter, films will enter into a second-run and repertory programming market aided by lower costs.

The shortened first-run period will in turn bring forward the distributor's release of the DVD. And there's the rub. The adoption of digital technologies offers greater opportunities for distributors to create joined-up campaigns for theatrical and DVD releases, in which, increasingly, the theatrical opening is used as a way of providing a loss-leading marketing platform for the highly lucrative DVD leg.

Logistics

The distributor will enter into an agreement with the cinema to screen the film on certain 'play-dates'. It is the responsibility of the distributor to arrange the transportation of the film to the cinema, as part of its wider coordination of print use across the UK. Logistics represents the phase of distribution at its most basic - supplying and circulating copies of the film to theatres, of tapes and DVDs to shops and video rental stores, and managing the effectiveness of the supply. The showing of films in cinemas is a time-pressured activity. Cinemas spend their money publicising film play-dates and times in local papers or through published programmes. There's an imperative for the distributor to deliver the film on time.
For UK theatrical exhibition, the distributor typically handles 35mm film prints. Each print can cost around £1,000 - or twice that if subtitled - so a degree of care is required of everyone involved in handling the print. In the UK, prints are generally broken down for ease of handling into smaller reels, each lasting around 18-20 mins when run through a projector at 24 frames per second. So a feature print, in its physical form, will usually be 5 or 6 reels, stored and supplied in a single hard case, weighing in at 20-25kgs. Prints are hired by the exhibitor for the duration of their play-dates, and therefore each print is made for repeat use. It's easy to see from this that, during the course of even a short theatrical release period, any single print needs to be moved many times from the main print warehouse, onto a delivery van, to the cinema, onto an assembly bench, through the projector and then back through the process and onto the next cinema.

35mm theatrical prints invariably suffer cumulative damage as they pass through different projectors, and the hands of various projectionists. There are also overheads incurred by the distributor for the storage of prints at the UK's central print warehouse in West London. For these reasons, each theatrical print has a finite lifespan. Distributor will invest in sufficient prints to provide optimum coverage through the first period of theatrical release, usually lasting up to 6 months. From this point on, many of the now used release prints will be destroyed, leaving only a small number to be used for second-run and repertory theatrical bookings through the remainder of the film's licenced period.

Marketing - Prints And Adverts

The key elements of Prints and Advertising (P&A) that a distributor must consider at this stage are:
The quantity and production of release prints and trailers:
Specialised films will often be released with fewer than 10 prints into key independent cinemas, with these prints subsequently 'toured' over a 6-month period to all parts of the UK. On the other hand, commercial mainstream films will often open on over 200 prints, simultaneously screening in all major UK towns and cities.
Press materials, clips reels, images, press previews, screener tapes:
For the majority of releases, favourable press response is a key factor in developing the profile and desirability of a film. Distributors consider both the quality and breadth of coverage, and this is often inscribed into the nature and scale of a press campaign.
The design and printing of posters and other promotional artwork:
The cinema poster - in the UK this means the standard 30" x 40" 'quad' format - is still the cornerstone of theatrical release campaigns. Numerous recent examples indicate that the poster design is highly effective in 'packaging' the key attributes of a film for potential audiences. Distributors will also consider other poster campaigns, ranging from Underground advertising to billboards.
Advertising campaign - locations, ad size and frequency:
Advertising in magazines, national and local newspapers works in tandem with press editorial coverage to raise awareness of a release. Press advertising campaign for specialised films will judiciously select publications and spaces close to relevant editorial. For mainstream films, scale and high visibility is the key. The cost of print advertising in the UK is comparatively high, and is seen as making distribution in the UK a riskier business than in most other countries. In order to extend the reach of advertising and develop more effective communication with audiences at low cost, distributors are looking increasingly to 'viral marketing' - different forms of electronic word-of-mouth via the internet, email and mobile phones.
Press campaign / contracting a PR agency:
Many independent distributors in particular do not have press departments, and will consequently hire a press agency to run a pre-release campaign. This is especially the case if the distributor brings over key talent for press interviews to support the release.
Arranging visit by talent from the film:
The use of talent - usually the director and/or lead actors - wins significant editorial coverage to support a release. The volume of coverage can far outweigh the cost of talent visits.
Other preview screenings:

A distributor will consider the use of advance public screenings to create word-of-mouth and advance 'buzz' around a film.

Marketing

The marketing of a film release revolves around two key questions: 'When?' and 'How?'
In the UK, new films are released theatrically on Fridays. The schedule for forthcoming releases is coordinated and published by the Film Distributors Association. A distributor will assess this schedule to identify a Friday release date where there are only a few films scheduled for release. Finding a 'light' week will ensure that there will be both screen space and adequate review column inches in the press allocated to any potential release. A further consideration for scheduling a release is the seasonality of the film. For example, it is widely assumed within the industry that specialised films have the greatest potential to reach audiences during the academic year. Finally, the distributor will try to position the film distinctively and avoid a release date occupied by other films with similar traits (story, subject, country of origin). In recent years in the UK, these two aspects of release planning have become increasingly difficult, as the release schedule has regularly featured over 10 new releases in a week.
After setting a release date, the distributor works towards the theatrical release, investing in the materials and the marketing campaign to support it.

The costs of theatrical distribution, met by local distributors, are often referred to as 'P&A', or Prints and Advertising. P&A are the nuts and bolts of marketing and distributing films into cinemas, the tools used by the distributor to create a public for its film. P&A also represent the bulk of the distributor's investment, after paying the initial fee for rights, and can range from less than £1,000 to over £1 million for the release of a film in the UK.

Licencing

Licensing is the process by which a distributor acquires the legal right to exploit a film. In distribution, licensing itself can take place on two levels.
International distribution ensures that films find their way to the 90+ market 'territories' around the world. The major US studios generally have their own distribution offices in all the major territories. By contrast, independent producers have to sell their films to different distributors in each territory. Independent production companies are usually small concerns, sometimes set up for one film and often lacking the necessary knowledge or contacts of each of the territories around the world. Instead of doing this themselves, they might choose to hire a specialist sales agent, whose function is to understand the value of a film in many different markets. The sales agent will then set up stall at the film markets that take place throughout the year.
Then there is 'local' distribution, which involves the distributor acquiring the licence to release and exploit the film in a particular country. The distributor will usually pay the producer a minimum guarantee for the licence. This fee will vary depending on the status and perceived commercial potential of the film, and on the range of rights that the distributor chooses to exploit. A distributor will usually be offered theatrical rights, for showing the film in cinemas; video rights, for video and DVD exploitation; and TV rights, if the distributor is able to sell the film to a broadcaster.
In addition to paying a fee to secure the film, the licence will stipulate that the distributor will also pay royalties to the producer, taken from the profits that the film generates. A local distributor will conventionally share profits equally with the producer for the theatrical leg, pay back higher royalties for broadcast rights, and lower for video/DVD.
Once the licence has been agreed, it is then the distributor's job to launch the film. In the UK, feature films are released initially theatrically (in cinemas). A theatrical opening is seen as the most effective way to create interest in a new film. The big screen is still the optimum setting for a film for both audiences and the filmmakers.

Some months following the theatrical release, a film will be packaged and released on DVD and VHS video, then on various forms of pay television and eventually, two years after opening in cinemas, on free-to-air television. The value of the film built up by its theatrical release reaps dividends throughout its release cycle, influencing the audiences and commercial value it subsequently commands.At every stage, the successful distributor must have an in-depth knowledge of the marketplace - which cinemas, video outlets and broadcasters can best draw an audience for its films - and of the variable marketing costs involved in releasing a film in that territory. The trick is to weigh up the two factors, to invest as much as is needed in promoting the film to draw out the maximum returns.

What Is Distribution?

The history of film is usually related through the achievements of producers, directors, writers and performers. Making films, production, has always been perceived as a glamorous pursuit.
Alternatively, our personal understanding and appreciation of film is shaped by our experiences at the cinema. The exhibition of film is a commonplace, shared cultural activity highly visible in every city and town in Britain, constantly feeding the popular memory.
By contrast, distribution, the third part of the film supply chain, is often referred to as 'the invisible art', a process known only to those within the industry, barely written about and almost imperceptible to everyone else.

Yet arguably, distribution is the most important part of the film industry, where completed films are brought to life and connected with an audience.
So what is involved in this invisible process? Distribution is about releasing and sustaining films in the market place. In the practice of Hollywood and other forms of industrial cinema, the phases of production, distribution and exhibition operate most effectively when 'vertically integrated', where the three stages are seen as part of the same larger process, under the control of one company. In the UK, distribution is very much focused on marketing and sustaining a global product in local markets.

In the independent film sector, vertical integration does not operate so commonly. Producers tend not to have long-term economic links with distributors, who likewise have no formal connections with exhibitors. Here, as the pig-in-the-middle, distribution is necessarily a collaborative process, requiring the materials and rights of the producer and the cooperation of the exhibitor to promote and show the film in the best way possible. In this sector, distribution can be divided into three stages - licensing, marketing and logistics.

Representation of Sexuality Research


Research examples of the different types of sexuality represented in British and American TV drama.

Key words:
  • homosexual
  • heterosexual
  • bisexual
  • asexual
  • straight
  • gay
  • lesbian
Present your findings using one of the following:
  • prezi
  • powtoon
  • infogram
  • powerpoint
or another presentational element of your choice.

Ensure you add clips and images to illustrate your work.

List of dramatic television series with LGBT characters

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Representation Of Class & Status


ITV 1 Downton Abbey

Discuss the ways in which the extract constructs the representation of class using the following:

• Camera shots, angles, movement and composition
• Editing
• Sound
• Mise en scène
[Total 50]