Warp films

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Page 1: Warp films
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Warp Films is an independent UK film production company. It is based in Sheffield & London, UK with a further office in Melbourne, AustraliaWarp Films was established by Warp Records founding partners Rob Mitchell and Steve Beckett. Warp Films was initially created with financial support from NESTA and had a remit to produce a number of short films.

NESTA (formerly NESTA, National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts) is an independent charity that works to increase the innovation capacity of the UK.

The Hollywood domination over the film industry continues to reign, although the British film industry has managed to develop, and move closer, to matching Hollywood’s superiority.

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The First Film…

The first film by Chris Morris, starring Paddy Considine as a mentally disturbed man taking care of a friend's Doberman Pinscher (named Rothko, and voiced by Morris) while she's away.

It was released on DVD in 2003, on a region 0, PAL disc. The disc featured a false commentary track, among other bonuses. The packaging included a handwritten list of various wrongs committed by the protagonist, although one would have to destroy the case to read them all. The title comes from this tendency of the protagonist to record his sins: the film depicts numbers 8245–8249 in the timeline, and number 117, which was an unguarded comment made as a small boy, in a flashback.

In 2003, the film won a BAFTA for best short film.

It was also edited into the ‘Cinema16: European Short Films’, a DVD featuring European Short Films.

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PROLIFERATION OF HARDWAREThe digitalization of film makes it cheaper to produce distribute and exhibit. Independent film makers can therefore produce larger numbers of prints at a smaller cost, thus they will not lose as much money if the film doesn’t attract such a large audience in the cinemas. This should ease the path for more independent British films into more cinemas across the country.

However, the digitalization of film (cameras, cinemas, screens) and the effect on production costs has resulted in increased accessibility, resulting in piracy. -The advances in digital technology have made piracy easier, cheaper and has improved the quality of the content- Electronic files can be leaked in advance of a film release - The internet allows pirate materials to be distributed all over the world very quickly

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DISTRIBUTIONIn 2005, Warp Films (the film division of music label Warp Records) launched a distribution arm. The distribution label will be DVD driven, although it aims for most films to have a theatrical life. Mixing in-house films and acquisitions, it will sub-distribute to companies in other European markets as its sister company does with music. It is designed to make it more attractive to filmmakers due to the company’s ability to release in other markets. It will focus on independent cult and classic films and will spawn an online distribution site in May 2005. However, Warp do not always distribute their own films.

The reason for Hollywood’s distribution domination is down to two key factors, money and status. Money enables them to hire better distributors, while the ‘Hollywood’ status grabs the distributor’s attention.

Optimum Releasing – Warp Films has a secured distribution alliance with Optimum Releasing.

The digital screen network set up in 2005 by the UK Film Council and the arts council England. A 12 million investment to equip 240 screens in 210 cinemas across the UK with digital projection technology to give UK audiences much greater choice.

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Warp X, founded in 2005, digital film studio that is designed to shake up the way feature films can get financed and produced in Britain.

Produces feature films.

Secured a distribution alliance with Optimum Releasing.

Budgets usually between £400,000-£800,000

The studio serves as a format for new film directors to create movies for the first time on a lower budget scale with less expectation for high box office revenues on their initial feature foray

The film studio backed by £4.5 million of funding from the National Lottery, Film Four and regional screen agencies and by using the latest digital production methods

The intent of the film studio's creation was to add energy and vitality to the film industry in Britain.

Unique initiative to generate and sustain a low budget film industry in Britain for the first time.

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The Launch of

It comes at a time when the British film industry is beginning to explore the implications of digital technology for traditional production and business models. The harnessing of cutting edge digital technology with low budget production methods, namely high definition, will enable Warp X to be well placed to take advantage of the coming digital transformation of film distribution and is allied to Warp Films and Warp Records

The creative and commercial success of Shane Meadow’s Dead Man’s Shoes, produced by Warp Films and released in 2004, influenced the setting up of Warp X to make low budget films that are distinctive and market orientated. Warp X‘s business model is also innovative in the way that creative talent, cast, crew and producers will benefit from the commercial success of a film as they will be able to participate in revenue from ‘first dollar or pound’.

“Warp X wants movies that can be made faster, leaner, lighter – with no excess baggage. And then to use that freedom to ‘re-tox’ British cinema with an injection of adventure. Our ideal is to make films which audiences find exhilarating, whether they be original interpretations of marketable genres or stories with a passion and hook that gets them noticed in the marketplace.”

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Synergy & Collaboration

UK film production company Warp and Australian indie distributor Madman, in 2008 announced a collaboration whereby the two companies will seek to broker the best UK talent with the best Australian talent, with the focus on making at least 2 films together over the next 3 years.

Madman is a vertically integrated distribution company in Australia & New Zealand which are committed to productions which widen the audience choice.

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Budget: £1,500,000Worldwide Gross: £5,058,000UK Distributor: Optimum ReleasingOpening Weekend:UK- £207,676 (62 screens)USA- $18,430 (1 screen)

This Is England had limited distribution and was approximately exhibited in 150 digital screen network screens across the UK.

This shows This Is England wasn’t successful in USA due to the lack of money available to them in order to distribute and exhibit widely across the USA. Also as Hollywood is dominant in the film industry, American cinema chains generally only show American films as the Hollywood production companies own the cinemas and therefore exhibit their own films.

Warp Films produced and distributed This Is England.

The digitalization of cameras and projectors allow British cinema to operate in a more cost effective way and target national audiences.

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MARKETINGThis Is England had no star actors marketing opportunities, unlike the conglomerate, Pixar/Disney. Due to the limited money smaller British Independent Companies have access too, juxtaposing the large amount of money the large Hollywood companies generate. This allows them to spend a lot of money on hiring famous actors in order to create popularity and excitement about the film and also ensuring there will be a reliable audience.

Trailers - contextualizes the story with pop music, documentary footage of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, the Falklands War and the National Front. The soundtrack is an important part of the trailer and has been marketed as a standalone product that can be purchased

As Warp Films worked with Film4 to produce This is England. This gave Shane Meadows' production exclusive access to their TV channel, where they show, analyze and preview productions. Film4 channel can be seen either on Sky or free view channels making it available to a wider audience. Warp Films also created a website for This is England where you can download various things such as desktop backgrounds, and iron on print outs.

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The main poster of the film clearly promotes it as a a film which would be of more interest to committed alternative film fans.

It also has quotes from more high-end and left leaning newspapers, as well as specialized film magazines.

The poster also has Meadows name on the poster which would appeal to both alternative film fans as well as regular fans of his work

The poster also appeals to a more alternative film audiences, as it shows that it is clearly of the social realist genre.

The fact the film boasts no stars would also be an appeal to an alternative audience.

The title of the film also suggests it will challenge the best known representation of 80's Britain. Again, this would appeal to an audience group opposed to more common films and seek challenging texts.

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This Is England - WebsiteThis Is England website offers many areas to visit within the website and many options for the visitors to take. A sense of exclusiveness is created for the viewers as they find out more information presented on their website. By creating a website solely dedicated to the film, it allows potential fans to access exclusive insights and also to make them more involved. The website takes pride in the success of the film as ‘quotes & reviews’ and ‘awards & festivals’ links are presented. The option to buy the DVD online