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Andrew Higson (University of York, UK). Patrick Wright, On Living in an Old Country (London: Verso, 1985) Robert Hewison, The Heritage Industry (London:

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Presentation on theme: "Andrew Higson (University of York, UK). Patrick Wright, On Living in an Old Country (London: Verso, 1985) Robert Hewison, The Heritage Industry (London:"— Presentation transcript:

1 Andrew Higson (University of York, UK)


3 Patrick Wright, On Living in an Old Country (London: Verso, 1985) Robert Hewison, The Heritage Industry (London: Methuen, 1987) Claire Monk, Heritage Film Audiences: period films and contemporary audiences in the UK (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2011) Monk, Heritage film audiences 2.0: period film audiences and online fan cultures, Participations: Journal of Audience and Reception Studies (8, no. 2, 2011: 432-477; ntents.htm ).

4 Identifies four research questions, covering production, funding and policy; textuality, representation and identity, both national and transnational; audiences, consumption and reception; and engagement with the heritage sector or heritage industry.

5 Project outline: What role does European, National and Regional policy play in the production of heritage film? How have production companies in a variety of countries across Europe negotiated the film funding landscape and how has this impacted upon the projects chosen for development? Raise three issues in relation to this research question: 1. The question of labelling: is heritage cinema, or heritage film, a useful label? 2. In terms of policy, what sort of policy? Policies designed to do what? 3. The ways in which heritage cinema figures as a national phenomenon, a transnational phenomenon and in some respects a global phenomenon


7 How do heritage films extend, or delimit, the possibilities of historical representation? How do filmmakers perceive national heritage on screens across Europe and how does this reflect the changing politics of national identity formation? How do national agendas interact with transnational conceptualisations of Europeanness, and what role does history play in this interaction? (Project description) 1. Good film studies: textual representation and historical context 2. The national and the transnational: whose heritage? 3. What is European heritage? What is European cinema?

8 European Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou has welcomed the major success of EU- backed film 'The King's Speech', which was crowned with four Oscars at last night's 83rd Academy Awards ceremony in Hollywood. The film, which received 562 000 in distribution support from the EU MEDIA fund for cinema, scooped the big prizes for Best Picture, Best Director (Tom Hooper), Best Actor (Colin Firth) and best original screenplay (David Seidler). Another MEDIA-backed film, 'In a Better World', directed by Denmark's Susanne Bier, collected the statuette for best foreign language film. Commissioner Vassiliou, who is responsible for education and culture, said: "What a great night for the European film industry and the MEDIA programme. Europe loves cinema and the world loves our films! My congratulations to Tom Hooper and Susanne Bier, who showed that you don't need a massive budget to make world-beating films. This shows that the European film industry can compete with the best." Tom Hooper made 'The King's Speech' on a shoe-string budget by Hollywood standards, for less than 11 million. The funding the film received from MEDIA aims to encourage distribution outside the country where it was made – in this case, outside the UK. And the Oscar goes to… Major success for EU-backed film 'The King's Speech' (EC Press Release (ref IP/11/239), Brussels, 28.2.11)

9 The EU tries to hijack The Kings Speech The King's Speech was British funded Within hours of the emphatic triumph of The Kings Speech at last nights Oscars, the European Union is already trying to claim credit in a shameless act of ludicrous self-promotion. In an Orwellian press release entitled: Major success for EU-backed film The King Speech, the European Commission boasts: European Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou has welcomed the major success of EU-backed film 'The King's Speech… The Kings Speech did not of course receive a single Euro from Brussels in production funds. It is an entirely British- made and funded film, receiving funds from the Aegis Film Fund, a consortium of private investors, and from the UK Film Council. As for global distribution, that was handled by the US-based Weinstein Company, which, I imagine, hardly needs the help of the EU to market its films. After all, the Weinstein brothers are responsible for an array of worldwide hits. Needless to say, the EU press release fails to outline in any way what its Media Programme grant actually did to promote the film. The European Unions sad attempt to hijack the success of The Kings Speech is little short of embarrassing, even by the exceedingly low standards of the European Commission. As Ive noted previously, The Kings Speech is a quintessentially British film, whose success on both sides of the Atlantic is a testament to the enduring strength of the partnership between Great Britain and the United States, which is hugely evident in the film industry today. The Kings Speech is not a European film, and certainly does not owe its success in any way to unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats sitting in Brussels, with a penchant for spending taxpayers money on printing ridiculous propaganda. Nile Gardiner on The Telegraph website, 28.2.11:

10 How are European heritage films consumed across and beyond Europe? Who are their audience and what are the mechanisms of their consumption? In particular this question explores the role of digital transmission and consumption of heritage films. Along with traditional audience analysis, it will look at the ways in which films are consumed via digital social media, from Youtube mashups to interactive fan sites, a form of reception that often feeds back into the broader media response to such work. (Project description)

11 How do heritage films interact with the wider heritage industry? How do the imperatives of the tourist industry impact upon the aesthetics of these films and how has the film industry actively worked with regional, national and transnational tourist boards to enhance movie-induced tourism? (Project description) 1. Heritage industry or heritage sector? 2. Movie-induced tourism beyond the heritage film



14 In Britain and Ireland country houses have faced many challenges over the last century. In Ireland these were magnified by the perception that houses were bastions of colonialism, and after Independence in 1922 few people had any sympathy for their plight. In recent years the understanding and appreciation of country houses has changed; they are now seen as part of the national patrimony with the potential to drive the tourist economy. While it has become gradually accepted in both jurisdictions that the country house has much to give, there remain many challenges for those who own and manage country houses as to how best to present or re- present what they have to offer.


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