In this podcast Dr Ellen Wright talks with Dr Adrian Smith of the university of Sussex.
Adrian is an expert on exploitation cinema. ‘But what is exploitation cinema?’ I hear you ask. Well, as Roche observes, in his article, ‘Exploiting Exploitation Cinema: an Introduction‘ it is not a genre of films but:
‘an industry with a specific mode of production. Exploitation films are made cheap for easy profit. “Easy” because they are almost always genre films relying on time-tried formulas (horror, thillers, biker movies, surfer movies, women-in-prison films, martial arts, subgenres like gore, rape-revenge, slashers, nazisploitation, etc.). “Easy” because they offer audiences what they can’t get elsewhere: sex, violence and taboo topics. “Easy” because they have long targetted what has since become the largest demographic group of moviegoers: the 15-25 age group.’
Here Drs Wright and Smith discuss exploitation cinema and the exploitation of film , in its truest sense – from the perspective of media marketing.
Adrian has been studying and working in film and media education for more than two decades now. He has an eclectic range of interests and has contributed to journals and books, presented at conferences, written for specialist magazines and websites, interviewed key figures in exploitation and contributed to several exras on blu ray releases of cult and classic films. Hes a really witty and engaging conversationalist working on some really fascinating cinematic materials.
In the interview, Adrian discusses collecting cinema memorabillia, how you study cinema publicity, the benefits and drawbacks of undertaking archival research, the Compton film company, the 1966 film Secrets of a Windmill Girl and mentions the work of several key figures in the British movie industry. These include producer and distributor Tony Tenser (Guardian obituary here) and the English film director Norman J Warren. To learn more about him, see this BFI article
If you wanted to learn more about Secrets of a Windmill Girl, I’d heartily recommend the superb episode of the Soho Bites podcast on this film.
If you are interested in finding out more about Adrian Smith’s work, I’d recomend his superb (2018) essay ‘The language of love: Swedish sex education in 1970s London.‘ In the journal Film Studies.
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Music is by kind permission of The Shannon Reilly Trio. The full version of the song Trouble can be found along with its video here, and purchased on the Shannon Reilly Trio album also called Trouble.
The podcast was produced thanks to the post-production expertise of John Ashbrook of Radio Pictures.
The opinions expressed on this blog are mine, and do not reflect the opinions of the De Montfort University or any other employee thereof. Nor is De Montfort University responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied within this blog.