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A history of cinema exhibition in Britain since 1896

The exhibition of films has developed from a lowly fairground attraction in the 1890s to the multi-million pound industry of today. This book charts the development of cinema exhibition and cinema-going in Britain from the first public film screening in February 1896 through to the opening of 30-screen 'megaplexes'. It recounts the beginnings of cinema and in particular its rapid development, by the eve of the Great War, as the pre-eminent mass entertainment. The book considers developments of cinema as an independent entertainment, the positioning of cinemas within the burgeoning metropolitan spaces, the associated search for artistic respectability, the coming of sound and a large-scale audience. The period from 1913 to 1930 was one in which the cinema industry underwent dramatic restructuring, new chains, and when Hollywood substantially increased its presence in British cinemas. Cinema-going is then critically analysed in the context of two powerful myths; the 'Golden Age' and the 'universal audience'. The book also considers the state of cinema exhibition in Britain in the post-war period, and the terminal decline of cinema-going from the 1960s until 1984. It looks at the development of the multiplex in the United States from the 1960s and examines the importance of the shopping mall and the suburb as the main focus for these cinema developments. Finally, the book discusses the extent to which the multiplex 'experience' accounts for the increase in overall attendance; and how developments in the marketing of films have run in tandem with developments in the cinema.

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Stuart Hanson

This book charts the development of cinema exhibition and cinema-going in Britain from the first public film screening – the Lumière Brothers’ showing of their Cinématographe show at London’s Regent Street Polytechnic in February 1896 – through to the opening of 30-screen ‘megaplexes’ such as Birmingham’s Star City. In 1896 there were no permanent buildings dedicated to the showing of moving pictures

in From silent screen to multi-screen
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Marcos P. Dias

In Hull, the performance included two phases. In the first phase, residents queued up outside phone boxes to answer a call from the fictitious character Hessa – ‘one of the three rulers of the future city’ – as she asked for help. The participants’ ideas for the future of the city were recorded during the conversation with Hessa (Blast Theory, 2017b ). In the second phase, over the course of five weekends, Blast Theory hosted pop-up film screenings of the films recorded for the project across several neighbourhoods of Hull. Concurrently, a fleet of electric cars

in The machinic city
Stuart Hanson

This chapter explores the future of film screening at home and in cinema houses in the digital age with developments such as of back-projection, plasma and liquid crystal display (LCD) television sets; five, six and seven-channel surround sound, such as Dolby Digital and Dynamic Theater Sound; digital broadcast technology offering High Definition Television (HDTV); and the Digital Versatile Disc (DVD). It first provides the reasons for the popularity of multiplexes among the audiences in Britain when cinema had been declining prior to their inception. The chapter examines the myth of "choice" of the movies or product as it is known in the production, distribution and exhibition industries. The arthouse or specialised cinema represents an alternative site of consumption to the multiplex, both spatially and in terms of capital, though the relationship is characterised by a dynamic interplay in which their identities are specified in relation to each other.

in From silent screen to multi-screen
Anna Bocking-Welch

Chapter 2 extends existing histories of imperial travel and exploration to reveal how ideas about reciprocity, knowledge, and the right to represent foreign peoples changed in the context of decolonisation. It uses the international activities of the Women’s Institute and Rotary Club to show how imperial decline shaped both the practical and discursive dimensions of educative activities such as film screenings, lectures, and International Days. Global events determined not only which parts of the world were worth investing time in, but also which aspects of foreign life were worth knowing about. This chapter shows that instigators of international engagements were typically mobile members of society who had some form of ‘first hand’ experience of the Empire/Commonwealth. While some speakers put themselves forward as amateur ambassadors, bringing their own experiences back to their local communities, others claimed authority by speaking from positions of professional expertise. This chapter uses these events as a window on to the wider debates about expertise and amateurism that characterised many discussions of diplomacy, international relations, development, and imperial administration in this period.

in British civic society at the end of empire
The making of segregated dancing worlds in South Africa, 1910–39
Klaus Nathaus
James Nott

both white and black patrons. Audiences watched the vaudeville sensations that music hall proprietors often announced as the ‘best’ American song and dances. From the 1910s onwards, film screenings became part of the entertainment bills. Theatre proprietors imported films, often directly from international agencies and at great expense, which underscores how important this new attraction was to them. In Johannesburg specifically, theatrical performers, including dancers, entertained patrons before the films

in Worlds of social dancing
Sneha Krishnan

the film showed Padmavati as being in love with Khilji and that this was unacceptable to Hindus. These same groups eventually acquiesced to the film's screening after it was found that the film in fact depicts Khilji as deranged and violent – among other things, eating meat raw – in direct opposition to Padmavati's evident grace and beauty. As many scholars pointed out in the wake of the fracas, the film's telling of the story is problematic. Rape as an instrument of war was widely used by both Hindu and Muslim armies in that period, and continues to be used by

in Passionate politics
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Anna Bocking-Welch

British population – the ‘best human material’ – were capable of taking on leading roles in a globalising world. Given Chislett's high level of civic activity, it is likely that he shared similar diagnoses and prescriptions in a wide range of associational settings over the course of the 1960s, including with his Rotary Club (where he served as Chair of the International Committee), in the Rotherham Celebrity Lectures Group, and at his frequent film screenings. 3 Chislett's participation in Rotherham civic society illustrates how those

in British civic society at the end of empire
Open Access (free)
From content warning to censorship
Jack Halberstam

syllabi sparked furious debates and a national conversation. In a 2014 article on trigger warnings in the New York Times (Medina, 2014), UC Santa Barbara was credited as the origin of the trigger warning, and the article described the trigger warning as having ‘ideological roots in feminist thought’. Santa Barbara student Bailey Loverin, who identifies herself as a victim of sexual assault, had called for campus-​ wide trigger warnings after being surprised by a film screening in one of her classes that featured a rape (Loverin, 2014). When asked whether she herself was

in The power of vulnerability
Vilsoni Hereniko

paragraph, see S. Gilbert, ‘Please Turn On Your Phone in the Museum: Cultural Institutions Learn to Love Selfies, Tailor-Made Apps, and Social Media’, The Atlantic (October 2016),​ zine/archive/2016/10/please-turn-on-your-phone-in-the-museum/497525/. Accessed 10 April 2017. 333 334 Afterwords  3 I was attending an anthropology conference organised by the Royal Anthropological Institute of the United Kingdom and Ireland. The focus was  climate change. My film screening there was Moana Rua: The Rising of the Sea.  4 R. Parry and J. Hopwood

in Curatopia