Small-gauge Storytelling: Discovering the Amateur Fiction Film

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Ryan Shand, Ian Craven
Edinburgh University Press, 2013 - Performing Arts - 306 pages
What do you understand by the term 'home movie'? Do you imagine images of babies-on-the lawn, sandcastles on the beach, or travels with the family? Did you know that amateur filmmakers have also explored fictional genres as diverse and fascinating as their professional counterparts, that specific amateur film studios have risen and fallen, or that household-name directors owe their origins and inspirations to the amateur film movement? Across a range of settings from the Canadian north-west to the Russian far-east, this book offers an introduction to the amateur maker of film comedies, thrillers, adaptations and sci-fi. It records the ambitions and achievements of enthusiasts struggling to emulate the mainstream and tell their own stories, armed with limited resources and endless initiative.

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About the author (2013)

Dr Ryan Shand is Research Assistant on the AHRC-funded project 'Children and Amateur Media in Scotland' based at the University of Glasgow, Scotland. He completed his PhD, entitled 'Amateur Cinema: History, Theory, and Genre (1930-80)', at the University of Glasgow, and has contributed chapters to the recent anthologies Movies on Home Ground: Explorations in Amateur Cinema (Cambridge Scholars, 2009), and The City and The Moving Image: Urban Projections (Palgrave, 2010); article publications have appeared in The Moving Image: The Journal of the Association of Moving Image Archivists, and The Drouth. Ian Craven is Senior Lecturer in Film and Television Studies at the University of Glasgow, Scotland. His research interests include Australian cinema, film and television technology, and British amateur cinema. Edited publications include Australian Popular Culture (Cambridge University Press, 1994), Australian Cinema in The 1990s (Frank Cass, 2001), and Movies On Home Ground: Explorations in Amateur Cinema (Cambridge Scholars, 2009). Recent articles have appeared in journals including Antipodes, Studies in Australasian Cinema, Continuum and the Journal of Media Practice. He is currently researching and writing a monograph history of British amateur filmmaking, 1920-1980.

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