Friday, 23 March 2012

Technological Convergence/Impact on the Film Industry

Just using this to throw down some notes; I still need to write up the A&I question response so I thought it'd make sense to dump all the relevant information I have so far in one place. Am going to throw down some things I find now in my own words here too (although copy and paste is useful for tons of different things like saving time, transferring files and developing new Call of Duty games, it's important for this to be somewhat original for the sake of being the base of this essay).

When multiple technologies are employed together to complete tasks. In this case, it refers to the number of different technologies which can benefit film production.

Use in Film-making
Production: Not too sure on this one, but I'll have a shot. The most obvious one to me is that both on-set film-making equipment (think cameras and microphones) and post-production equipment (computers, editing software) can be used to produce the film itself. Also things such as music scores/soundtrack production and newer video presentation formats (high definition, 3D) apply additional uses of technology to produce the film. Video production/sound production/graphic design programs can all run from the same kinds of machines, could be beneficial in cutting costs in regards to equipment.

Marketing: Pretty much everything to do with the film's marketing will have been done with technology of some description, but most commonly: film posters, official trailers, design of merchandise (this also relates to synergy; third parties producing t-shirts/soundtrack albums/videogames/etc. will use additional technology), web presence (official website, social networking pages etc.).

Distribution: Physical products no longer necessary, as the web allows content to be both acquired and used from the same device - think web enabled media players e.g. iPod - can connect to iTunes to buy films, then allow the user to play said films using the iPod's video player. Additionally, streaming services such as Netflix can be used across a growing number of formats including videogame consoles (Wii/3DS/Xbox 360/PlayStation3/PlayStation Vita), Operating Systems (Windows/Mac OS X/Android etc.) and general media devices (such as Apple TV). Apple TV is an interesting one on the basis that it can show videos from both free streaming websites such as Vimeo and YouTube and videos from subscription or purchasing based sources like Netflix and iTunes. Often film trailers are uploaded to official YouTube accounts; these trailer videos can mention that the film is available to buy on iTunes etc.

 iTunes' rating system is incredibly beneficial as it is a modern day word-of-mouth (even though it can be unreliable).

Brings risks - media devices having quick and easy access to the internet makes it easier to access unauthorised copies of films; institutions do not profit from this.

Slumdog Millionaire
Production: Original music was produced for the film; this would have been produced externally and later dubbed into the film. As music plays a fair part in creating the mood and tone of a film, Slumdog has benefitted massively from being able to make use of non-diegetic BGM in this way.

Marketing: FoxSearchlight have released trailers for the film on their official YouTube channel, as well as videos of director Danny Boyle discussing different matters regarding the film (such as the child actors etc.). This is highly beneficial to the promotion, as YouTube reaches a massive audience.

Multiple promotional images and posters have been produced and distributed amongst a variety of different regions. These are different as they are all designed to attract the target audience of certain local areas.

Distribution: Has suffered a fair amount of harm from piracy - statistics published by the BBC suggest that it was in the top ten most torrented films as of August 2009.

The film is available on iTunes for £7.99. Has received overwhelmingly positive feedback on iTunes' customer reviews which could give a positive outlook on the film to potential consumers.

Has also been released on DVD and Blu-Ray Disc.

Mr. Bean's Holiday
Production: As with Slumdog this has original music composed for the film,

Marketing: Also had official trailers produced. In addition, an official website was set up which features screenshots from the film and downloadable wallpapers featuring the title character.

Distribution: Is available on iTunes for £6.99. Unlike Slumdog the comments actually work against the film's favour as the reactions are mixed (the fact one of the comments is "I DEMAND A REFUND! I GOT THIS IPOD FOR MY BDAY AND UR SCAMMING ME!!!!!" suggests that people have not put much... thought into their opinions, and that many are irrelevent).

Was physically released on both DVD and HD DVD (the latter of which is now defunct, suggesting that physical distribution is not as reliable as it once was).


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