Film Studies Essay

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Film 211 September 23, 2014 Reading Notes: The American theatre and the coming of the Star System. * Before the war (American independence)(1775-81) companies of British actors toured the colonies of the new world. * Professional theatre began in 1752 by William Hallam, a London based manager who wanted his brother Lewis to have a career in acting. Early Film - Cinema without Stars * The star system was already established in American theatre by the end of the 19th century; early cinema did not immediately emulate the theatre business. * Film technology was developed in various contexts at the end of the century. * Thomas Edison, William Kennedy and Laurie Dickson developed the Kinetograph viewing machine. * This machine allowed people to watch as short films (one at a time). * In contrast, in Europe, this machine was developed to show in front of a large amount of people. * In 1895,the Lumiere brothers patented their Cinematographe, a combined camera printer projector. * Also, the same year the German brothers Max and Emile Skladanowsky patented the Bioskop projector * In Britain the Robert W. Paul and partner Birt Acres built their own camera with Paul Accompanied with a commercial patent in 1896 for the Theatrograph. * In early cinema the business was mainly driven by economics of film hardware. * The films themselves were of secondary concern * Early cinema marketed to audiences to audiences through the exciting possibilities of film technology. * Early films frequently worked to document a real-life moment and in some cases, filmmakers would manipulate the technology o as the transform reality. For example, “The failing Wall, from1895” ---------- page 64 Class Notes: Melodrama * Reading from Brook and Elsaesser offer exploration of the genre from literature and cinema perspectives

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