Once Upon a Time in Hong Kong: Tarantino Falls in Love, Weinstein Aims for the Mainstream, and Fans Rebel

A Harrington Forum Event featuring Prof. Lisa Dombrowski (Wesleyan University, Dept. of Film Studies)

After the American fan base for Hong Kong action films steadily grew during the 1980s, video store geek turned indie hitmaker Quentin Tarantino convinced Miramax chieftain Harvey Weinstein there was a potential mainstream audience for the sensational Hong Kong crime and martial arts films he so adored. This talk explores the acquisition and distribution strategies utilized by Miramax to market popular Chinese-language films to a North American audience.  While Miramax’s strategies succeeded in introducing millions of new viewers to the stars and excitement of Hong Kong cinema, they also sparked opposition by many of the American fans who originally supported the films—as well as the Hong Kong filmmakers who made them. Miramax’s Hong Kong experiment illustrates how globalization has complicated the age-old balancing act faced by cultural purveyors who seek to expand their audience while still retaining the loyalties of their original niche supporters.

Lisa Dombrowski is Associate Professor of Film Studies at Wesleyan University.

This Harrington Forum event is co-sponsored by the College of Arts & Sciences and the Program in Film/Media.

Monday, October 21 at 4:00pm

Ranger Hall, 103
10 Ranger Rd, University of Rhode Island, Kingston, RI 02881, USA

Event Type

Lecture

Co-Sponsors

College of Arts and Sciences, Harrington School of Communication and Media, Film Media

Contact Person

Scott Kushner

Contact Email

scottkushner@uri.edu

Contact Phone

4018745223

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