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Working Title Synthesis

Working Title Synthesis

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Published by pearcey234

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Published by: pearcey234 on Dec 11, 2010
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Working Title Synthesis
Working Title is a British film production company. It was founded by Tim Bevan and Sarah Radycliffein 1983. At the time, it was originally an independent production company similar to the otherBritish production company Warp films. They released their first film My beautiful laundrette in1986, in which they probably gained most of their funding from government grants, tax schemesor/and tax shelters. This film received around £650,000 budget, but Working Title werent the onlyproduction company involved. It then made around $2,500,000 of gross profit, but not all of thatwould have gone to Working Title, but the fact that they were involved with other productioncompanies such as MGM, will have made them more recognisable and respected by those involvedin the film industry.1992 was a big year for Working Title, as Sarah Radycliffe left the company and was replacedby Eric Fellner. As well as this, Polygram became Working Titles corporate backer, as part of thisrelationship Polygram provided funding for Working Title and helped them progress into a betterestablished production company, and in return, Working Title made films for Polygram FilmedEntertainment.Working Title made a big brake through in 1994 when they produced the film FourWeddings and a Funeral. The film received a budget of £3,500,000, which was very high for WorkingTitle, as they were only a small production company at the time; therefore this shows theadvantages of working with other companies, conglomerates and sharing investments. Anotheradvantage of sharing investments into a film is that if one company has to drop out from producing afilm, then the film can continue to be developed. A disadvantage of shared investments is that theprofit has to be shared out and everyone has to consider the ideas and proposals of everyoneinvolved in the production process. The gross profit made from Four Weddings and a Funeral wasaround $52 million. This was a huge profit and due to this Working Title then had a lot more moneyto invest in future films, and due to it being so successful, a much larger audience want to go seeWorking Title productions. After this film was made, Working Title focused a lot more on theromantic comedy genre, and is now famous for making romantic comedies with all-star casts, suchas Notting Hill and Love Actually.Then, in 1999, PolyGram merged with MCA Music Entertainment to form Universal MusicGroup. This then became part of Universal Studios who are now the parent company of theconglomerate between Universal studios and Working Title. This was a huge advantage for WorkingTitle as it meant they could have much higher budgets for their films and involve major Hollywoodactors. This could make the films more appealing to the target audiences. Notting Hill is a perfectexample of this. It was made in 1999, following the merge between Universal and Working Title. Thefilm had a budget of over $42 million; however a third of this went on securing the leading actress,Julia Roberts. This was a good investment, because if less well known actors and actresses were usedthen the film wouldnt have encouraged as much audience interest. The film went on to make aprofit of over $116 million, whereas if the budget was lower, then Working Title wouldnt have beenable to secure A-list actors like: Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts and therefore wouldnt have madesuch a high profit.
Bevan and Fellner then introduced Working Title 2, an independent sister company of Working Title, who were introduced so that a different type of filming could be used for their films,because they obviously still wanted the creative and artistic types of films that they made prior totheir join with Universal Studios. Working Title 2 have produced well known films such as Billy Elliot;Shaun of the Dead and the Calcium kid, and have made a reasonable profit from these.During the following ten years, Working Title went through phases where they focused onmaking films for specific genres. For example, a lot of Working Titles recent films are adaptations of novels, from both pre-1900s and from more recent films, such as Pride and Prejudice,Atonement, High fidelity and About a Boy. Another example is Working Titles most recent films,which, since 2006, have started to fall under the genre action. Hot Fuzz, Smokin Aces 1 and 2, andGreen Zone, can all be classed as action films. As Working Title making a large variety of films, thissuggests that they are trying to target a larger range of audiences. They have made films for bothmale and female, old and young. This is known as a Four Quadrant audience, as they do notspecifically target 1 genre, but a range of genres, to get larger audiences in general. The large varietyof films created by Working Title also means that they can target all 6 categories of audience. Thesecategories are: A (doctors, businessmen etc); B (teachers etc); C1 (office supervisors, nurses etc); C2(skilled workers, tradesmen etc); D (semi skilled and un-skilled workers) and E (unemployed people).By targeting such a large range of audiences by creating films of many different genres, Working Titleattract more and a wider range of audiences and therefore create more profit for futureinvestments.In 2010, Working Title made large progress in the film industry. The release of NannyMcPhee and the Big Bang was a giant step for the production company. This was important becauseit was the first Working Title film to be released in 3D. Although released as 3D film, the movie wasnot actually filmed with 3D cameras to get the effect but instead just added the effect in as a post-production enhancement. Although this is the case, this step was important to Working Title as theyare starting to create more 3D films in the future, and this will lead to filming with 3D cameras to geta larger audience.Also in this year, Working Title released the film Green Zone. A film based in the Iraq war in2003. Due to the film being based on a real life situation, it can plant an idea into the audiencesmind. This is known as the Hypodermic needle theory; a theory which suggests that a message canbe sent from the film into the viewers mind, and in some cases, causes a panic amongst theaudience. An example of this is the film 2012, in which the audience believed what happened in thefilm would happen in the year 2012. Green Zone is based in the Iraq war, and therefore plants anidea into the audiences mind relevant to whats happening in Iraq at this moment. This film receiveda budget of around $100,000,000. This shows how much Working Title has progressed since theirbreak through with 4 weddings and a funeral. They can afford to invest more than 10 times thebudget of 4 Weddings now into their new films, because of the large profits that they make fromtheir previous films.Since Working Title started as a production company is 1983, they have made massiveprogression in the films they make, the audiences they attract, and the investments they can affordto pay. We can see this if we compare Green Zone, one of their most recent films to 4 Weddingsand a funeral. There is a huge gulf in the size of the budget that the two films received. Green Zone

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