The Documentary ‘Boom’: Myths, Movies and Marketing Dr Thomas Austin University of Sussex In the period from late 2002 to early 2004, trade and popular film publications and websites in the United States and Britain began to identify a „boom‟ in documentary cinema. In addition to relatively big earners like Fahrenheit 9/11, Bowling for Columbine, and, more recently, The March of the Penguins, the total number of documentaries gaining theatrical release in the US climbed significantly, from an average of 15 in the late 1990s to around 40 in 2003 and 50 in 2004. As Paul Arthur notes, this figure accounted for „roughly ten percent of total film releases but more than one-fourth of the rosters for smaller, nonstudio distributors.‟ This paper considers a number of possible explanations for the rise in visibility and popularity of (some) documentaries in theatrical and DVD markets. (These range from audience disappointment with television news and „reality tv‟, or with Hollywood blockbusters, to Mark Cousin‟s identification of a „new classicism‟ in documentary). The paper also moves beyond these proposals to explore the key role of marketing in the so-called „boom‟, along with related issues of form, content, and the significance of ecologies of production, distribution and exhibition in the US and UK markets. The paper concludes with a very brief look at two boom hits: Touching the Void, which grossed more than $4 million in North America and £2million in the UK after being marketed not as a documentary but as a mountain-top thriller; and Capturing the Friedmans which grossed $3 million after being promoted as a family melodrama / thriller and an unresolved controversy about which viewers were invited to make up their own minds. The Publicity of French and Hollywood Stars in Pour Vous in the 1930s Jonathan Driskell King’s College, London Although stars from various countries appeared in Pour Vous – a leading French fan magazine during the 30s – those from France and Hollywood featured with the greatest consistency and it is the nature of this coexistence that my paper explores. Promotional materials appearing in the magazine (reviews, articles, special features) of stars from both nations are analysed, considering how their stardom is represented through text and photographs/illustrations. In addition, the magazine layout is explained, discussing where stars of these nations appear in relation to each other; whether either group are favoured in regular features; and if those from France or Hollywood are given more space, either within articles or in the consistency of their appearances. In discussing this publicity, I question the ways in which Pour Vous represented the relationship between these groups of stars and how cultural differences were emphasised or diminished. I also explore how the articles and layout fostered the impression that French stars were comparable in stature to those from Hollywood. In doing so, not only does Pour Vous represent the comparable importance of French and Hollywood stars, but also, implicitly, the equal significance of their films and of the two industries to which they belong. Indeed, one of the main things being promoted in Pour Vous is the French film industry, which is able to create stars as bright as those of Hollywood. The Politics of Promoting the New Iranian Cinema Dr Christopher Gow University of Warwick This paper attempts to provide an overview of the way in which the New Iranian Cinema has been promoted and marketed internationally following its rise to global prominence a little over twenty years ago with the success of Amir Naderi‟s The Runner at the Nantes Three Continents Film Festival in 1985. It begins by outlining briefly the state of the Iranian film industry immediately prior to and following the 1978-79 revolution, as well as the largely failed attempts by the regimes of both periods to promote their own distinct brand of Iranian cinema overseas. It then goes to onto to examine how the opportunities for promoting Iranian films internationally, as well as the marketing strategies of the Iranian authorities, have changed since the revolution. At the same time it examines how the New Iranian Cinema has been promoted in both Europe and North America as a quintessential „art cinema‟. The paper concludes by considering how an insight into the international marketing and promotion of the New Iranian Cinema can contribute to a better understanding of the frequently contradictory nature of this cinema, as well as its practitioners. Selling Spectacular Sound: Dolby and the Unheard History of Technical Trademarks Dr Paul Grainge University of Nottingham This paper expands the horizon of cinematic branding to include the technologies that lie at the centre of contemporary film experience. In doing so, it asks questions of how the sensory affect of sound has been made visible in brand terms. With new developments in digital surround technology in the 1990s, fierce corporate battles emerged to control the industrial and technological promise of theatrical sound, creating new competition for what the Los Angeles Times called “the hearts and ears of US moviegoers.” My paper examines the attempt by Dolby to accentuate the industrial and affective significance of its technologies. With the development of DTS and SDDS in the 1990s, Dolby had to imagine its relation to sound in more determined ways as a means of asserting itself against its rivals. This meant developing new digital systems but also a provision for selling (and standardizing) its trademark technologies within new theatrical and consumer markets. My paper will examine a number of cinematic audio trailers - with titles such as Train, Aurora, Canyon, and Rain – that convey a scenic inhabiting of the Dolby universe, inviting the active listener to enter the very world of the trademark. If contemporary cinema is defined by a concept of “total entertainment” – what Charles Acland describes as a mode of experiencing “a world of new images, sounds, and specifically fabricated sites” - Dolby has sought to visualise itself as a world for audiences that have come to recognise sound quality as a component of choice in their encounter with film and its ancillary entertainments. Critically, this paper examines the poetics of branding in the fleeting but distinctly familiar life of entertainment trade names. The Art of Selling Things Twice. Trailers, Marketing and the Culture of Re-Consumption Professor Vinzenz Hediger University of Bochum In this paper, I will argue that film trailers are indicative of major shifts and trends in patterns of film consumption. Adopting a long term perspective and drawing on the results a serial analysis of a significant corpus of examples, I will trace the history of the (American) movie trailers through five major innovations since the early 1910s. In particular, I will argue that in the mid- to late 1970ties, a significant shift in handling story information took place which may be related to the emergence of a film culture of re-consumption. While the trailer has always been a key marketing tool of the film industry, it has now become aligned to an overall marketing strategy that one Wall Street analyst recently highlighted by pointing out that “Hollywood has become very good at selling things twice.” What Are Film Festivals for? Professor Dina Iordanova St. Andrew’s University We still lack consensus in some areas of our understanding of film festivals, and I am planning to outline some of the questions that we would need to address in our on- going studies. Are festivals economically viable? Do festivals really form an alternative distribution network? Does the hierarchy of festivals help the marketability of films? Why are festivals getting more heavily involved in production and distribution? What is the relationship between festivals and film markets? 'The most anticipated two minutes of film ever': Selling Star Wars in the Digital Age Keith Johnston University of Kent On November 17th, 1998 the „most anticipated two minutes of film ever‟ was the trailer for Star Wars: Episode 1 – The Phantom Menace (Empire 116, p. 44) – but the only place to see this new trailer debut was at the cinema. During the day, television news and entertainment programmes began to show clips from the trailer, but by that evening, the trailer had been uploaded onto the Internet – bootleg versions recorded by fans, digitised, and made available on a variety of websites. In an attempt to curtail these low quality bootlegs, Lucasfilm posted the trailer online at starwars.com. 450 Star Wars fans a second attempted to download this trailer, over 200,000 in 48 hours, an estimated 1.5 million downloads in the first week, rising to an estimated 35 million in total: shattering all previous Internet download records. Unlike the 1950s, when widescreen trailers promised „something BIG‟ was coming, the development of technologies such as the Internet, iPods and videophones has offered smaller, mobile screens on which to view trailers. This paper will consider the growth of this new media revolution through a consideration of the trailer strategy for the recent Star Wars 'prequel' trilogy. Analysing cinema, online and videophone trailer advertising, the paper will explore the changing nature of trailer aesthetics and structure in the age of new media screens. The ‘Alternative’ End of Marketing: Building Audiences for Artists’/Community Film and Video Julia Knight University of Sunderland This paper will look at the distribution, marketing and promotion of moving image work that has been produced at the extreme non-commercial, grant-aided end of the UK sector – looking mainly at artists‟ film/video and community/political activism tapes. It will explore how extensive and resource intensive promotional activity is absolutely essential if such work is to find audiences, but will also highlight the difficulties presented by the fact that in such cases the earned income generated never covers the cost of those promotional activities and hence has to be subsidised by grant-aid, volunteer labour, low pay, payment in kind, cross-subsidy from more commercial product, or some combination thereof. This will be contextualised within debates that arose around the distribution potential offered by the VHS cassette in the 1980s and more recently by DVD and the possibilities that these technologies seemed to offer for reaching wider audiences. These issues will be illustrated through references to intiatives such as the Shoot Shoot Shoot, held at the Tate Modern in 2002, focusing on the first 10 years of the London Filmmakers Co-op, the Miners‟ Campaign Tapes (1984-85), the work of Amber Film Collective, the women‟s distributor Cinenova, and a DIY sell-through initiative by video artist George Barber. On the Brink of Disaster: AOL-Time-Warner, and the Information- Clearinghouse Website Ian London Royal Holloway As many economic analysts observed in 2001, the “young” merger of AOL with Time Warner could well have destabilised one of the globe‟s largest media conglomerates––after posting a combined loss of $129 billion by 2002, the merger was formally regarded a disaster. A production trend focusing on top echelon franchise blockbusters became crucial to re-stabilising the company‟s stock price: the promotion and marketing of all three of The Lord of the Rings films covers this transitional period from 2001––2003 aptly. In the post-Phantom Menace world of franchise film, New Line Cinema‟s (a subsidiary of Time-Warner) marketing of the fantasy trilogy set an explicit challenge to Lucasfilm with its compassionate but aggressive audience outreach program. While Star Wars was already well positioned globally, aided by a mammoth licensing campaign, the marketing departments behind The Lord of the Rings films appealed to and secured the loyalties of its core demographic through the official website, making viewers members and promising them related promotional “treats,” and by becoming central “hubs” in a social sphere beyond the cinema. To what extent are the franchise films developed by Warners assisted by the rise of the website, and do these sites follow a shared model? The franchise-based (Batman and Superman movies) and family entertainment (its Harry Potter series) websites which The Lord of the Rings have spawned are valuable assets in a blockbuster film‟s marketing campaign. These information-clearinghouse sites further extend the “socially meaningful network of relations” described by Barbara Klinger in her study of the commodification and reception of film texts. I would argue the “mini-narratives” of which Klinger speaks, accumulate across the course of a film‟s production phase in the world of the information-clearinghouse site, supporting a personal internalising of the phenomena in the spectator, but at the same time an outward globalisation of the phenomena as well. The UK Film Council’s Digital Screen Network Dr Stephen Perrin Deputy Head of Distribution and Exhibition, UK Film Council All in the Name: Tartan Asia Extreme Films Dr Chi-Yun Shin Sheffield Hallam University This paper investigates the UK based exhibitor and distributor Tartan Films‟ flagship label „Asia Extreme‟, which has played a pivotal role in promoting and disseminating East Asian films in recent years. As the first distribution label that came out specifically dealing with East Asian films in the UK, Tartan Asia Extreme has successfully released a number of titles that include Audition (1999), Battle Royale (2000), The Isle (2000), Infernal Affairs (2002), Old Boy (2003) and Lady Vengeance (2005). With an extensive (and ever growing) DVD catalogue, Tartan has emerged as the most high-profile label amongst the East Asian film providers in the UK, initially through their highly successful, annual nationwide tour of Asia Extreme Roadshow (2003-2005) and other marketing strategies specifically targeting young audiences. In 2004, Tartan also launched its US branch, employing the same marketing campaigns: stand alone theatrical releases for stronger titles and a roadshow/cinema tie-in across several major cities in the US. The output of the Asia Extreme label, however, tends to „lump together‟ different types of films from Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong as well as Thailand. Questions are also raised as to the name of the label itself, Asia Extreme, which invokes and in part relies on the Western audiences‟ perception of the East as weird and wonderful. In addition, somewhat problematically, the label aspires to be a genre (perhaps meta-genre is a more appropriate term) as the owner of Tartan Films Hamish McAlpine has referred the label to be a “brand – a genre in itself”. Indeed, the ways in which Tartan registers and navigates the vagaries of distinct national cultures and different genres (horror, action, thriller, etc.) gathered under the Asia Extreme banner provide a fascinating site to explore how the West consumes East Asian cinema. 'Another medium entirely': Esther Harris, National Screen Service and Film Trailers in Britain Professor Sarah Street University of Bristol This paper will examine the work of Esther Harris at National Screen Service (NSS) in Britain. Harris was the major figure in the production of trailers for British films and in the preparation of trailers for American films distributed in Britain, 1920s-1970s. Drawing on Harris's articles in the trade press, and on an interview with her conducted by the BECTU oral history project, I will convey the context of trailer production, particularly in the 1940sand 1950s. As an aspect of advertising and publicity, trailers occupy a particular space in both production and reception which Harris described as 'another medium entirely'. In this analysis trailers serve as mini-narratives which display particular characteristics, themes and techniques that draw on, but often depart from, a full-length film; another medium but at the same time related to the final product. As well as providing an account of how NSS came to dominate the trailer market in Britain and detail the major practices developed by Harris, my paper will be illustrated with some key examples to suggest some ways in which trailers can be analysed. In addition the paper indicates how the study of trailers raises broader questions relating to the significance of film marketing modes, including product differentiation; questions of market domination; censorship; film form and style.