Media Screen Round-up December 2016Published: 17 January 2017
The monthly round-up of film and television publications compiled by Simon Baker, Institute of Historical Research and published at Learning on Screen by Andrew Ormsby.
Zoë Shacklock’s article ‘On Not Watching Outlander in the United Kingdom’ (Visual Culture in Britain 17, no. 3 (2016): 311-28) explores the idea that, despite the increasing availability of media from around the world, audiences still prefer content situated within their local frames of reference. She uses the example of the television series Outlander. Released in the US at the height of the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, the Jacobite sympathies of Outlander’s narrative were widely believed to have restricted the UK release of the series, which failed to secure a distribution deal with a UK broadcaster, and was eventually released in the UK on Amazon Prime six months after its US debut.
A special issue of Revue Lisa – ‘Based upon a Life’: The Biopic Genre in Question – looks at what film writer Ellen Cheshire has called this ‘maligned and misunderstood genre’ (Bio-Pics: A Life in Pictures, 2015, 3), and features articles which explore the patterns and conventions underlying films and television programmes based on the lives of real people. Amongst the contents are pieces by Hélène Charlery on ‘HBO’s Black Women Artist Biopics: The Josephine Baker Story and Introducing Dorothy Dandridge’ and Nicole Cloarec on ‘The Secret Life of Secret Agents: Alan Bennett and John Schlesinger’s An Englishman Abroad (1983) and A Question of Attribution (1991)’