Friday, September 28, 2012

Hours Away: The Box Office: A Crowd's Worth

Hours Away from the 3rd Annual Students Film festival here at ZUKA in the midst of the hubbub of last minute touches to the artifice that is a film festival, we have pause to reflect on the event and the campaign of which the event is a part of.

The aim of  the campaign in very simple, to promote film because however debatable the claim is, we see film as a medium for increasing access to knowledge and opportunity especially for the youth.

Film is not taken in isolation as we have discovered in the last few years of putting this event together, the cultural industries given their proximity to everyday people have limited barriers to entry as oppossed to other spheres of socio-economic activity.

This campaign is happening in the context of  a worldwide economic downturn that is affecting the high end  the movie industry, namely Hollywood, with box office receipts in steady decline.

The reasons for this are debatable as are the remedies proposed.
 What this context provides is that filmmakers must create value,over and above consumer products whose fall in demand is evident. It calls into question, conventional definitions of "entertainment". Entertainment value is derived from a variety of sources depending on the audience, however, self esteem building, thought provoking,calls to action as packaged into a film or video nourish the spirit as much as they entertain. So perhaps its time to look at entertainment as a a means to convey these virtues.

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