The Beyond the Multiplex project aims to understand how to enable a wider range of audiences to participate in a more diverse film culture. As such 16, UK-wide, film elicitation focus groups have discussed the significance of particular films on aesthetic, emotional, and intellectual levels, with participants offering a range of rich insights into the cultural value of the independent cinema, as well as the barriers to participation and engagement.
This interactive session will involve a condensed version of such a focus group, before a discussion of some of the key findings of and reflections on the groups that have already taken place.
DAVID FORREST is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies in the School of English at the University of Sheffield. His research focuses primarily on questions of class, region, and landscape in British cinema, television and literature. He is the author of Social Class: Nationhood and Politics (CSP, 2013), the co-author (with Sue Vice) of Barry Hines: ‘Kes’, ‘Threads’ and Beyond (Manchester University Press, 2017), the co-editor with Beth Johnson of Social Class and Television Drama in Contemporary Britain (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), and the co-editor with Graeme Harper and Jonathan Rayner of Filmurbia: Screening the Suburbs (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017). David is currently at work on a monograph entitled New Realisms: Contemporary British Cinema (Edinburgh University Press, due 2019).
For Beyond the Multiplex, David is responsible for ‘Research Theme 2: The meaning of specialised film for regional audiences’. This part of the project is interested in the ways in which audiences construct meaning in and through specialised or non-mainstream films. The theme seeks to work with communities of cinemagoers to explore the specific nature of the films, close reading film texts to examine the relationship between film form and the wider cinematic experience.