My incessant ramblings
Electric Palace, Bridport
The Electric Palace is a theatre in Bridport that shows both live performances and films. I was lucky enough to speak with some of the people who work there, and they told me that the show local films and current movies. They are able to attract all audiences by tailoring specific genres of films and live shows. I was also allowed to look around the theatre and was able to take some photos, in which you can see they use both a 35mm projector and a digital projector.
Dorchester Arts Centre
A brochure displaying up coming music events at the Dorchester Arts Centre. This isn’t particularly relevant to my film festival idea, but its useful to know other types of local media events. I may be targeting the same type of audience as the Dorchester Arts Centre, so avoiding scheduling conflicts would be a good idea.
Bridport Arts Centre
Similar to the Dorchester Arts Centre, but the Bridport Arts Centre has a lot more film related entertainment on offer. I had the chance to speak to the staff and ask some questions.
The theatre in the Bridport Arts Centre is part of the Curzon group based in London. It was one of the very first Curzon cinemas in Britain. According to their about page: “Curzon Cinemas is a leading arthouse cinema chain with six venues across the capital and one cinema in Knutsford, East Cheshire.”
The theatre has 194 seats, but the staff told me a typical number of viewers for each film would be closer to 30-40 and a premiere would be around 70. These numbers would be quite manageable for an open air cinema.
The movies are hand picked from Curzon’s available titles to suit the audience, an example of a movie that wasn’t shown at Bridport due to the wrong target audience was Diana.
The typical age group is 30+, they find it very difficult to encourage younger viewers, even during the permiere of the Alan Partridge movie. This should help me in deciding my target audience.
They also have a bit of an identity crisis, being so close to the Electric Palace, people often mistakes Bridport Arts Centre’s posters for the Electric Palace. This is probably due to the name “arts centre”, its not clear that it also has a theatre, naming should be considered for my own project.
The arts centre only has two full time staff and three part time, despite this they have held 126 events since Christmas. Staffing shouldn’t be too much of a concern for my project as only small numbers are required.
During the recent field trip to various locations along the Jurassic Coast, I was able to obtain a lot of useful information. Some of the most useful items I picked up on the trip I have included in this post.
There is obviously a high demand for film entertainment a long the Jurassic Coast, this is very useful in helping me to reinforce and guide my idea of an open air film festival.
3D Photos of some cliffs along the Jurassic Coast
As I stated in my research plan, I was able to take some 3D photographs of some cliff faces using the 3D camera built into a Nintendo 3DS. These photos will display on a computer, but only in 2D. To view them in 3D some additional hardware will be needed.
These photos could be useful for knowing what to expect when planning on 3D mapping.
Bridport Arts Centre. 2012. About Us. [online] Available at: http://www.bridport-arts.com/about/ [Accessed: 3 Dec 2013].
Broadchurch. 2013. [TV programme] ITV, 4th March.
Dorchesterarts.org.uk. 2013. About us | Dorchester Arts. [online] Available at: http://www.dorchesterarts.org.uk/about-us/ [Accessed: 3 Dec 2013].
Electricpalace.org.uk. 2013. The Electric Palace | About Us. [online] Available at: http://www.electricpalace.org.uk/about-us/ [Accessed: 3 Dec 2013].
This is the feedback I received from a classmate. From his feedback, I don’t think I was particularly clear about my target audience, this is something I hope to address during the next presentation which is on November 22nd.
Also following feedback from the previous lesson, expanding my idea to video games or perhaps immersive videos tailored to the location, such as an education film about the sea could be shown near the sea for an effective experience.
On Wednesday 30 October we were visted by Michael Hawkyard, the New Business Director for Amuzo and a previous graduate from Bournemouth University. Amuzo (previously 4T2 Multimedia) are a local, twenty-two man casual games studio based in Bournemouth, Hawkyard tells us initally, Amuzo was set up with a “blagged office and computers”. Originally a web games design company, they now mostly create apps. Their biggest client to date is Lego, but they have also worked with Mobil, Warner Brothers and the BBC. A point that Hawkyard covered at some length was pitching, and stressing the importance of being able to successfully pitch ideas to potential clients. Within the last thirty days, Amuzo has manage to acquire £75,000 government funding from a single pitch. In order to have a successful pitch, Hawkyard highlights some important areas:
A brief presentation two show to other class members for feedback.
In the presentation I state my target audience as ages 25+. This is due to my personal experience and the research I did on my friends who are film fans. Conducting more research online, I was able to verify this. An art house cinema group named Pearl & Dean have published their audience profile here. As you can see, quite often the majority of film goers are 25 years and higher. An additional article in the Guardian goes as far to say that “older viewers are rescuing cinema” due to older viewers seeing more films. The beauty of film is that the audience can be targeted to by selecting different titles, in my interview with the Electric Palace in Bridport, this was confirmed. Though during my interview with the Bridport Arts Centre, they highlighted and issue attracting younger audiences even when showed younger orientated targeted films. This could be down to the more mature image that the arts centre has compared with the Electric Palace. Initially I will stick with 25 and older audiences as my research reveals this would be an easier target to cater for.
In my presentation I point out that people would likely come to an open air film festival at the Jurassic Coast not only because of a love of film, but also because of the novelty of being somewhere outside of a typical film viewing environment. Novelty attractions are particularly popular in America, where they have such mundane objects as the “biggest ball of twine” which is still able to attract large numbers of visitors just because of its unusual nature. Doing everyday things in unusual places can be a very lucrative business, a common case study are themed restaurants. These restaurants take the every day task of eating and mixing it up with something completely unusual creating a post-modern experience for the visitors. This can range from monkey waiters to dining in the sky, a huge list can be found here.
Screening Hollywood’s latest hit movies could become very expensive and not profitable. Although this could be seen as a loss leader to encourage more people to the Jurassic Coast, I think it would be better if the film festival was self sustainable or at best not so much of a financial drain. To combat this, at least initially, using film in the public domain would be a good solution. This would be very less expensive, and in some cases free if permission was granted from the public performance rights vendor.
“Public domain comprises the body of information and creativity considered to be part of a common cultural and intellectual heritage. In short, anyone may use or exploit, whether for commercial or non-commercial purposes. There are hundreds of movies, cartoons and dozens of television shows that are now in the public domain. The copyrights to many of these movies were either not properly registered initially or were not renewed and therefore the content is now in the public domain. Many of the most famous movies and cartoons are available for free viewing and free download at Moving Image Archive.”
Downloading or streaming material from the Moving Image Archive seems like the best option here.
In order to show there is already a market in Dorset for open air cinemas, I did some research and found some examples. Corfe Castle and Lulworth Castle open air cinemas I highlighted in my presentation. These are both part of the Purbeck Film Festival which operate for Charity, a collaboration with this festival could be beneficial as a lot of the advertising would be done already and it already has some public awareness.
“The Purbeck Film Festival is the longest running rural film festival in UK and is now in its 17th year.
Each year the Festival makes a selection of the films that we think our audience will like, and gives around 70 performances in the last two weeks of October in venues throughout Purbeck, as well as at Lighthouse in Poole and a small selection in Bournemouth. The main cinema is the Rex in Wareham, but we also show films at local village halls and unusual venues all over the place – Tarantino Night at a Model Village for example – wherever in fact we can find a 13amp plug and an enthusiastic local organiser
Each of the wide range of films is personally introduced with printed Film Notes, and where possible, film makers are invited to give talks about their films and answer questions from the audience. We publish a printed brochure with full details which is available at the start of September, and tickets are available at venues, Tourist Information Centres and on this website. We also endeavour to have a programme of films throughout the year, as well as Open Air films in August at Corfe Castle, Studland and this year Monkey World, and the occasional drive-in movie. We can put on a show at special request – get in touch for details and costs.”
Business.pearlanddean.com. 2013. Pearl & Dean – Audience profile. [online] Available at: http://business.pearlanddean.com/audience_profile [Accessed: 4 Dec 2013].
Cox, D. 2012. How older viewers are rescuing cinema. [online] Available at: http://www.theguardian.com/film/2012/mar/08/older-viewers-rescuing-cinema [Accessed: 4 Dec 2013].
Restoran.us. 2013. ☞ THE MOST UNUSUAL RESTAURANTS IN THE WORLD – Unique Restaurants, Exotic, Strange, Weird, Wacky, Odd, Eccentric, Quirky, Peculiar, Themed, Concept, Theme. [online] Available at: http://restoran.us/trivia/unusual.htm [Accessed: 4 Dec 2013].
Wikipedia. 2013. Biggest ball of twine. [online] Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biggest_ball_of_twine [Accessed: 4 Dec 2013].
Etherington, A. 2013. Purbeck Film Festival. [online] Available at: http://www.purbeckfilm.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=150&Itemid=63 [Accessed: 6 Dec 2013].
Internet Archive. 2013. Download & Streaming : Moving Image Archive : Internet Archive. [online] Available at: https://archive.org/details/movies [Accessed: 6 Dec 2013].
Prattlibrary.org. 2013. How Do I Find Out if a Movie Has Public Performance Rights?. [online] Available at: http://www.prattlibrary.org/research/tools/index.aspx?cat=19956&id=11096 [Accessed: 6 Dec 2013].
Some ideas of information I should try to collect on the field trip;
Following feedback received from Liam Birtles that my initial brief idea would be too specific, I decided to create a second brief:
ExLab is a ground-breaking arts programme along the Jurassic Coast, where earth scientists and artists have collaborated to reveal hidden landscapes through the lenses of art, geology and technology.
Initiated by Jo Morland and Amanda Wallwork, ExLab presents a series of research-led commissions for artists which have led to the creation of fascinating new temporary artworks developed in response to the geology of the Jurassic Coast. The ExLab artists have investigated the coastal processes using geomapping and cutting-edge land-scanning technologies, making the invisible visible.
ExLab’s target audience is tech-savvy, creative people, which typically tend to be younger adults.
ExLab were part of the London 2012 Festival for the Olympics, which aimed to bring together leading artists from across the world with the very best from the UK. The London 2012 Festival celebrates the huge range, quality and accessibility of the UK’s world-class culture including dance, music, theatre, the visual arts, fashion, film, comedy and digital innovation, giving the opportunity for people across the UK to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
I would consider some of my closest friends to be within this target audience, friends whose professions include; media technician, illustrator, graphic designer, photographer, tattooist and chef. A common interest of this friendship group is the love of film, especially older films, as they occasionally meet up for laserdisc evenings.
Two of my friends both own cinema passes for Cineworld in Weymouth, where they pay a monthly fee (around £30) to watch unlimited movies. Though they do sometimes enjoy going to the beach, particularly Ringstead Beach and West Bay for BBQ’s and fireworks, they enjoy most of their digital media indoors.
My idea to encourage more people like this would be to us 3D mapping projection technology to project a movie onto an uneven surface along the Jurassic Coast, such a cliff. Using this technology I hope to be able to retain a movie’s aspect ratio to correct display it as if it were on a screen.
Initially, movies in the public domain could be shown to keep down costs and allow people to attend movie showings/festivals for free. If it proves to be popular, perhaps showings of other movies could be considered too.
art and science on the coast….. 2013. art and science on the coast…… [online] Available at: http://exlab.org.uk/ [Accessed: 6 Dec 2013].