Globalisation in the Film Industry

Globalisation has already transformed the film industry, and will continue to do so. The transformation is due to a number of factors;

Production is no longer dominated by America. China and India have massive film industries. Smaller countries attract foreign film making talent by offering economic incentives, cheaper production costs, or value for money by virtue of exchange rate differences. This leads to the sharing of both skills and personnel, and very soon the smaller countries are also producing their own films. Sharing of the media is now possible not only in cinemas, but via CD or DVD distribution, through the internet or by streaming.

New technology has completely changed the way films are made, from the use of advanced CGI to the availability of small, high quality cameras. Affordable software makes the production of films by low budget, talented groups possible. This in turn makes the distribution channels affordable too. With the rapid advance in digital technology, this trend will continue.

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Hardcore Henry is a good example of the new global film trade. This film was written by a heavy metal musician, made with small portable equipment (GoPro cameras and drones). It was filmed almost exclusively in a POV format, using a South African actor, filmed in Russia on a small budget, and distributed world-wide.

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Another example is the film Searching for Sugarman, which is a low budget British documentary filmed in South Africa and the USA, distributed all over the world, which received honours at the Sundance Film Festival.

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Technology is changing at ever increasing rates, and this technology is driving globalisation. The change is so rapid that firm predictions are very difficult. What is certain however, is that in five years’ time the filmmaking industry will be even more global than it is now.

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