A Technology Based on Illusion The Edison Lab motion picture camera Lumiere Brothers in France –Cinematographe projection device
D. W. Griffith established the feature length film as an art form with The Birth of a Nation, which served notice of the political and social force of motion pictures Griffith
The Star System Independent producers discovered they could draw crowds with "stars" In 1919, Charlie Chaplin, Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks, and D.W. Griffith created United Artists.
Talkies: the coming of sound 1927- Warners’ The Jazz Singer End of some actor's careers Higher production costs Double features
The Studio Years, 1930 - 1959 MGM; 20th Century Fox; RKO; Warner Brothers; Paramount; Universal; Columbia; United Artists Produced many great films: –Gone With The Wind; –Wizard of Oz; –Citizen Kane; –Singin’ in the Rain
Regulations and controversies 1934 Production Code: “The Hays Office” restricted film content for 20 years Law suits challenge Hollywood's vertical control of production, distribution, exhibition 1948: Government eliminates block booking late ‘40s-50s Blacklisting divides Hollywood 1950’s: film industry fights television
Film in the late ‘60s, 1970s –Rising profits –Higher budget films –Blockbusters from the first film school generation directors –Successful low budget films –Broad marketing –Smart movies –The rating system –X-rated pictures
1980’s to the early 2000’s Studios target younger, repeat moviegoers Video/DVD eclipses box office revenue cable movie channels, internet piracy New production technology introduced
Recent and Current Trends CGI Hits, 3D, Fantasy, & Franchises Digital Cinema Projection, Streaming Home Video Mobile viewing devices
Major Studio Parent Companies Bob Iger Jeff Bewkes Brian Roberts Rupert Murdoch Sumner Redstone
Tools for success in the industry People skills Showmanship, an instinct for the audience Passion for a technical skill or specialty A storytelling imagination Experience Persistence, optimism, confidence & humility Financial survival skills Awareness of global tastes and markets
Film Director Spell Checker George Melies (A Trip to the Moon) Edwin S. Porter (The Great Train Robbery) D.W. Griffith (The Birth of A Nation) Buster Keaton (The General) Charlie Chaplin (The Tramp) Sergei Eisenstein (Battleship Potemkin) Jean Renoir (Rules of the Game) Alfred Hitchcock (North by Northwest) David Lean (Lawrence of Arabia) Federico Fellini (8 1/2) Francois Truffaut (Day for Night) Akira Kurosawa (The Seven Samurai) Orson Welles (Citizen Kane) John Ford (The Searchers) Frank Capra (It’s a Wonderful Life) Howard Hawks (His Girl Friday) Billy Wilder (Some Like It Hot) Ernst Lubitsch (To Be or Not To Be) Clint Eastwood (American Sniper) James Cameron (Titanic) Francis Coppola (The Godfather) George Lucas (Star Wars) Steven Spielberg (Schindler’s List) Martin Scorcese (Raging Bull)
Questions for Discussion How could low cost production technologies enable profitable U.S. production to regularly branch out beyond the Hollywood community? Do filmmakers have an obligation to be socially responsible in what they present on the screen? What are the responsibilities of audience members? If you could bring four movies to a desert island...