Studies in Australasian Cinema
ISSN: 1750-3175 (Print), 1750-3183 (Online)
Themed Issue 8.3: Distribution & Festivals (Nov-Dec 2014)
Abstracts of 300 words by April 30, 2014
Article submission deadline for 8.3: August 30, 2014
Edited by Greg Dolgopolov (UNSW), Kirsten Stevens (Monash) and Lauren Carroll Harris (UNSW).
Cinema distribution in Australasia is in crisis. Too many films are produced with substantial government investment in development and production but scant attention to distribution. Predictably they bomb at the box office and rarely find their audience. Australian cinema in particular appears largely bereft of innovative distribution ideas of how to meaningfully connect with audiences without a massive advertising budget. At the same time, film festivals in Australia are growing exponentially and films are frequently sold out amidst positive buzz. Hence, there is an audience for Australian/ Australasian screen content but it cannot be understood in extant framings of the commercial audience-production relationship.
This issue of Studies in Australasian Cinema suggests the need for a conceptual focus on the impact of distribution on lived film culture in Australasia today, around the three broad areas of screen business and policy, festival and exhibition, and audiences and production. Such a wide-ranging approach encourages a comprehensive look at the expanded role of distribution, not cast simply as a discrete sector or series of commercial exchanges, allowing scholars to recast current trajectories in film studies through the lens of distribution and film festival study. The goal is to show how the exertion of the distribution sector in festival and ongoing exhibition venues is critical in maintaining film’s presence or exclusion in popular culture. Currently, research into film distribution is not fully connected with questions of how audiences are constructed and the formative links between exhibition and distribution circuits and film production. This is the limited way of thinking we want to challenge.
Questions might include but are not limited to: What is the impact of Adelaide Film Festival’s production branch? What types of screen projects and cultures are new digital models of distribution like YouTube and VOD currently advancing and producing? In this digital sphere, crowd funding is most commonly thought of as a new financing model, but how does it affect distribution and what kinds of projects and genres are most clearly benefiting? What is the relationship between film festivals, policy and distribution? And what is the future of film festivals and distribution in Australia?
Email inquiries and submissions for 8.3 to Greg Dolgopolov.
All general questions regarding Studies in Australasian Cinema should be emailed to: Anthony Lambert.