Friday, 3 December 2010

Film4- Marketing

Slumdog S

Film4 Distribution

  • In 2002 Tessa Ross was introduced to the company and become the controller of Film4 and Channel 4 Productions.
  • The company needed to boost annual investment after almost going bankrupt and they managed to do this through third party partnerships.
  • After this the company will no longer distribute its own films. They are now partnered with Studio Canal and Warp Productions.

  • Film4 make and distribute around 6-8 films per year.
  • They set up a low-budget studio with the film council and distributers Optimum and Warp X which were their digital production house.
  • As the company work across TV and film drama this allows for economies of scale and cross-fertilisation so therefore this ablest hem to think carefully about where to position each of their films.
  • Ross see's Film4 as a part of a wider creative community e.g Working Title, The BBC and BBC Films
  • Warp X and a Film4/UK film council joint project with the Sheffield bases indie 'Warp'- this means that they can definitely finance three low budget films each year

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Working Title Distribution- Hot Fuzz

  • Hot Fuzz is film which is based around the story of a London 'cop' which is transferred and paired with a new partner. Whilst at work the pair stumble upon a number of events and suspicious incidents. 
  • The film was released on the 19th February 2007 in the United Kingdom
  • The film was produced by Big Talk Productions, Ingenious, Studio Canal, Universal Pictures and of course Working Title Productions.
  • Distribution company's that distributed the film were Universal Pictures and Working Title
  • The film starred big names such as Simon Pegg, Nick Frost and Martin Freeman
  • Budget= $16 million
  • Gross Profit= $80 million

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Film Four Production Practices

Film Four is an independant British Film Company which is owned by Tessa Ross. The company was founded in the year on 1998. After the recent 50% rise the company now has a budget of £15 million per year.

Film Four's philosophy is to experiment, innovate and cater for audiences not addressed by other channels. They tend to look for a distinctive films which will make their mark within a competitive cinema market. The company tend to focus on films which are based around social realism. One of Film Fours' huge successes was the film Slumdog Millionaire; this is not your typical film.

The company have said that they would like to produce films which are 'British Talent Led'. Film's that are shown on the FilmFour channel are usually around 2 years old from the original theatrical release. Film Four are joined with 'sister channels' such as Channel 4, E4, More4 and 4music.  Originally it cost £6 per month to view the channel until it changed on the 26th of July when the channel then changed to a free air service.

The Film Four website allows visitors to preview and read up on the new films which they are produces throughout the year. This contains key information such as producers, director and cast.

The website also suggests and post pages containing the top 50 films they suggest you see. These come under different genres for example; 'Top 50 horror films to see before you die' and another example would be 'Top 50 British films to see'.

Film Four have recently partnered with 'Filmflex' which is now a Film4 on demand service. It will supply a selection of films to rent online, with a lot of them available on the same day as the DVD release. 500 films will be available at launch to rent from 50p-£3.99.

Working Title Production Practices

Working Title is a British film company which consists of co-chairpersons; Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner. The company was founded in 1984. The company have been described as having the most powerful figures within the British film industry. The size of the company is reflected by the number of staff. There are only 42 full time staff which are also split between the low budget sister company; Working Title 2.

The Working Title philosophy has always been to make films for an audience- by this they mean play in a multiplex. The company are linked with the Hollywood company; Universal Studios. Universal own a 67% stake in the company and many of its recent films are co-productions with Studio Canal. The rest of the shares are owned by the company's founders which are BBC films and private investors.

On average Working Title make 4 films each year. More than 85 of Working Title films have grossed over $4 billion worldwide. The company are recognised due to their catologue of wide genre. Mainly for their punchy romantic comedies. Some of Working Titles' successes are About a boy, Notting Hill, Dead Man Walking, Billy Elliot and Hot Fuzz. On the other hand the company has experience the flop of films, for example, Wimbeldon and Thunderbirds. Working Title are known for working with fresh new talent and directors. Names that can be recognised within WT productions are Joe Wright, Stephen Daldry, Shekhar Kapor and Stephen Frears.

Working Title 2 creates films as an independent film company. The films that they create are of a low budget. Something that they are known for is their long history with American actors playing leading roles within their films.

On the Working Title website, they reguarly offer video blogs and updates of films that are currently in production. These can be found here;

Sunday, 28 November 2010

How is regional identity represented in the clip?

Within this clip two Northern workers are taken out for dinner by their Southern bosses. Firstly the clip begins with a close up on the meal they have chosen which consists of steak and chips. Straight away the characters of the North are stereotyped in relation to their food. The meal that is present is something that is not seen as your typical sophisticated business meal. It is honest food, which does not try and hide the simplicity of the Northern lifestyle. As well as the meal, we are also shown the drinks which have been brought by the characters. The two Northern men drinking beer which is most likely to be bitter following the typical stereotype. On the other hand the two Southern boss's drinking wine showing the difference in class. Also we are shown as the camera zooms out, the bosses are sat on one side of the table whilst the Northern workers are sat at the other. Here we are able to see an example of binary opposites between the two sets of characters due to their regional identity.

They then engage in conversation which involves the topic of the 'Trade Union'. We once again get a view of the Northern stereotype which is that they 'know their rights'. The camera then moves into a mid shot which allows us to see all of the men sat at the table and the type of environment they are in. We are shown that they are eating somewhere which represents a pub rather than a restaurant. From this we could assume that the bosses have chosen a setting where the two workers would feel more comfortable and 'fit in' better. It also triggers the enigma code at this stage to question as to why they did not take them to a higher class restaurant.

During the conversation which is taking place we learn the different social status' of the sets of characters, due to many different noticeable points regarding regional identity. A Northern character which we are able to refer to as 'Roy' portrays a very arrogant and stubborn personality. Whilst he is speaking the facial expression from the character appears be angry and we are able to see the lack of trust Roy has in the much more presentable character in the grey suit which seemingly is his boss. Although our two Northern workers are dressed smartly and have clearly made the effort, going on the stereotype we can see that this would not usually be something they would choose to wear and have gone out of their way especially.

The only point where the characters seem to have a connection within the scene is when Roy makes a sleazy remark towards the waitress. Playing on the Northern stereotype, Roy matches the creepy Northern man, with the cheesy chat up lines. The male gaze is clearly introduced to us here, as each characters eyes are focused on the waitresses features which would typically be noticed by a man. As the narrative continues, another typical Northern stereotype is presented within the scene. This is the fear of homosexuality. Roy says to his fellow worker the rude statement which is that his 'kid' goes to a 'poncy toffs academy'. This is said in the manner which implies that because of this his child is not 'hard' or tough' as he should be. The different levels of formality between the two groups are made very clear at this point during the conversation. The workers happily swear and use a lower standard of language in comparison to their bosses. The cultural code is introduced here as we are able to understand this is mostly likely a consequence of the North having 'little education' according to their stereotype. The fear of homosexuality is then repeated towards the end of the clip when the other worker begins to make jokes about it. He informs his boss of the nickname his son has received which he states as being 'Bent Rotter' rather than being called by his real name 'Ben Trotter'.

After being informed of the situation the camera then moves into a close up on the bosses face which shows he is shocked by the remark and also a little worried. During the scene no soundtrack or background music is added, as a result of this, social realism is created. To conclude, regional identity is represented in the clip with the use of stereotypes. It may seem that these stereotypes are very judgmental but by associating these the regional identity of the characters is able to be clearly understood throughout the clip.