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The Prospects For A Reinvigorated And Diverse British National Cinema

1264 words - 5 pages

The Prospects For A Reinvigorated And Diverse British National Cinema

'Is there scope for British Cinema in the future?' could be one
interpretation of this statement and one that I intend to explore. I
believe that with the dominance of Hollywood overpowering the British
film industry, the past century has seen the traditional British
cinema suffer. Although audience figures were utterly immense in the
earlier half of the 20th century, we could argue that the Hollywood
film industry enticed the majority of these people. I therefore
disagree with the above statement and propose to look at how the
British film industry has failed the nation and the reasons why.

With recent hit British films such as 'Harry Potter and the
Philosopher's Stone' and 'Bridget Jones' Diary' enticing massive
audiences to British cinemas nationwide, we begin to see some truth in
this statement. And certainly, with respect to a number of other
British successes, it could be reinforced. However, it appears to be
one off hits that the British film industry relies upon whereas
Hollywood can boast hit films, in one way or another, near enough
every year. I intend to look deeper into how Hollywood succeeds vastly
dominates the film industry and the evidence to prove this fact.

To do this I will need to survey attendance figures, highest grossing
British films as opposed to Hollywood 'movies' over the decade and
other relevant information. Therefore, using statistics from the
British Film Institute, such as audience figures over the last century
and the top ten films of all time, I can begin to observe how Britain
has suffered at the hands of Hollywood.

To begin with, perhaps the most apparent factor we need to look at is
the highest grossing films (at the UK box office) of all time, as
suggested by the BFI. Subsequently how many of these are from
Hollywood, or similarly from Britain. In fact, 30% of the 'top ten'
list has strong British involvement. These films being 'Harry Potter
and the Philosopher's Stone' (Chris Columbus, 2002), 'The Full Monty'
(Peter Cattaneo, 1997) and Bridget Jones' Diary', all three of which
were given significant help from Hollywood. This then therefore takes
away the classification of 'British' but as a joint venture. This
begins to show the dominance of Hollywood, especially when we look at
"Harry Potter" and 'Bridget Jones' Diary'.

'Bridget Jones' Diary' is an example of how the decline of the British
film industry has affected the casting. American actress, Renee
Zellwegger, had to be trained to speak with a British accent to
perform the title role of 'Bridget'. This presents obvious evidence of
a decline in the British film industry as the film had to add the
expense of importing and training an American actress to star in a
British film as opposed to simply using a...

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