“Explain the sort of issues the topic area covers and reflect on how interesting you find this aspect of media”
Genre is a massively important part of film (and different platforms) which basically categorizes different media products into their own distinctive genre. Genre means a few things, first of all they have expectations, for example if you go to the cinema to see a comedy you would expect it to be funny by following the techniques and being created in a way using past movies as a sort of guidebook to how it should look and feel. Equally if you buy a horror book or magazine, you would expect it to try and scare you.
I would say the genre is no more that a categorization tool, although it can shape the film the line is broad and rules can be broken meaning that even in a kids film, there can be times when they get scary e.c.t. but that doesn’t define the entire film to be a horror.
Equally, films can have sub-genres, if it is felt that a film has a broad amount of expectations from a typical romance film and a typical comedy, it would be known as a romcom which has nearly become a genre itself although it has a totally different feel from a comedy or a romance film specifically.
For me narrative is the art form of nearly all media related products. Every magazine, newspaper, film, novel, certain radio shows (the list goes on) all function around narratives with the main function of telling a story. I believe that is why media products have become so prominent, it offers people escapism, opens new worlds where the audience can become so influenced by that it even inspires them to create their own products. Looking at film specifically, I would say although narrative is very important the main thing in film is how the story is told which is what separates the good films from the bad.
Representation is how the audience interprets the publishers/directors vision for their product. It is the portrayal of a fictional character in a film. How the book physically looks. The sound quality of a radio show. It is all this but so much more at the same time. Representation is how the product looks in its entirety as well as every little detail that is the media product. In film editing has an endless amount of possibilities of how the editor chooses to represent the film in respect with the directors vision. For example, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is a fantasy/action film mainly, however there has also been an edit made by someone online for it to look like a romcom film trailer.
Audience is the key to most successful media products. Even if for example you have created a great short film, but don’t aim it to a particular audience, or even aim it towards the wrong audience, there can be problems. If the short film is a comedy aimed at teenagers, then is needs to be closely linked, related to things they are interested in, audience profiles help massively with this. Although some products can be aimed at a larger or niche audience, the products are based on their successfulness with their dependability to reach their audience on fulfill its purpose.
Regulation is a very important part of distribution and marketing. It is crucial that children for example are not exposed to content that is deemed as harmful or irrelevant for their age. This could include sexual content, gore, drugs, language and horror. They also have the power to strictly influence change in a media product if the content may seem irrelevant or too explicit for whatsoever reasons. Furthermore they have a comprehensive guide online with what defines the different age ratings, certificates and acts and what they mean so that filmmakers and producers can successfully target their audience and understand what they can and can’t express or show through their products.
Technology (including digital media)
With the film industry growing at such an alarming rate so is the technology that helps with the process of filmmaking. At his time it has never been cheaper to make a film, equipment is also fairly cheap, obviously as well as being ludicrously expensive the sort of grade cameras that professional film productions use. Also things such as the technology within animation, and how realistic that has become, how green screen now looks much more believable than it did 50 years ago. Not only this but the technology such as the internet is such a big way to consume this media, websites such as netflix, Now TV and Amazon Instant Video now make film and media instantly available, thousands of titles and TV shows available with a monthly cost just streamed online, no need for “old” DVD’s and Video Tapes, this feature industry is quite new but extremely popular. The last thing to mention is that with the internet so broad and instant communication around the world, there are so many online resources to learn and teach film, weather this is information about how to work a camera or how to frame a shot to get a certain response from the audience, it is all there on the internet readily available.
Film distribution is how the film makes it way to the audience and in what platform. Generally most blockbuster films or films with a big budget are displayed at cinemas before being released online (through paid streaming services) and then eventually on DVD and BluRay. Streaming services like Netflix are extremely popular and it raises the question if in the future DVDs and Blu-rays will still be as big of a part of distribution as it is now.
Marketing and Promotion
So once a film productions spends millions on a new film, it is edited, rendered, colour corrected and now looks like a masterpiece, they need to be able to reach out to their audience further with the way they market and promote their film. Whether is be where to place a poster in a certain town, or what channel to advertise a trailer on, or even what internet platform should they advertise on, this is all well thought out and decided the best way to expose them to this through researching demographics, psychographics and audience profiling.