Home > #1, Film & convergence > Blog #1–Black Swan

Blog #1–Black Swan

During the break I saw the film Black Swan. It was terrifying, to say the least, but it did not fit the conventional horror movie mold. Labeled a psychological thriller, it definitely lived up to its name. It kept me continuously intrigued and scared, leaving me with new fears. It was also a box office hit, earning a new top record for production company, Fox Searchlight. This is partly due to Fox Searchlight’s valiant advertising effort. They employed technological convergence to promote Black Swan.

In keeping up with other companies, Fox Searchlight has Twitter and Facebook accounts, features in popular magazines, and a new iPhone application. The magazine, Entertainment Weekly, has published two January issues, one with James Franco and one with Natalie Portman. Both are actors in Fox Searchlight’s biggest hits of the year. If standing in the grocery checkout line, staring at James and Natalie isn’t enough of a draw to purchase the magazine and see the movies, Twitter also advertises it. Fox Searchlight’s Twitter account has posed a challenge to its’ followers—to buy both the James Franco and Natalie Portman editions. Twitter is also encouraging audiences to see Black Swan multiple times. One post, from December 20th says, “A lot of you guys are seeing Black Swan multiple times in theaters…and that’s totally awesome.” This type of informal post also serves as a thank you to devoted fans. Fans feel like they are appreciated by a Hollywood-powerhouse, such as Fox Searchlight.

Fox Searchlight’s interactive website gives exclusive information about its movies, as well as sneak previews. Each page has a different scene from Black Swan that plays immediately when opening the site. The website has hyperlinks that lead to soundtrack downloads and photo galleries from Black Swan. The book Converging Media suggests that the use of such hyperlinks make it easier for people to purchase products and view the information that they find most interesting (p. 11).

However, the iPhone app is what really pushed Fox Searchlight into technological success.  The application makes searching for movie times, tickets, and inside information about Fox Searchlight readily available at anytime. By downloading this app, the user gets the latest news as well as “special access to free screenings.” This transforms Fox searchlight from being an ordinary production company into an exclusive club. By using the most successful movie in its history as the face of new technology, Fox Searchlight is employing convergence to create a broader market and availability to audiences.

 

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