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Remake Studies: New Methods and Approaches


Bildquelle: licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0 by Márcia Oliveria https://flic.kr/p/gTQrDh

Workshop | 25 October 2018

Freie Universität Berlin | John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies | Room 340

Organizer: Kathleen Loock (Kathleen.Loock@fu-berlin.de)


Cinema abounds with films that repeat, continue, expand and revise an already familiar story. This workshop brings together scholars and practitioners to examine one of cinema’s most longstanding practices as a meaningful and meaning-making industrial and cultural activity. The objective is to discuss and probe new methods and approaches for remake studies. What new insights and perspectives do quantitative methods, audience research, industry studies, and videographic criticism have to offer the emerging research field? How can they contribute to our understanding of popular culture and its principle of repetition and innovation?


Workshop Program

9:00–9:15          Welcome

9:15–10:45        Session 1: Quantitative Methods

Vitaly Belik (FU Berlin) / Kathleen Loock (FU Berlin), “Graphs, Stats, and Networks: Remake Studies in the Age of Digital Humanities”

Stefanie Mathilde Frank (HU Berlin), “Dealing with Definitions: The Challenges of Building an International Remake Database”

10:45–11:15      Coffee Break

11:15–12:45      Session 2: Audience Research

Eduard Cuelenaere (U of Ghent), “Why Audiences Matter: Exploring the Possibilities of Audience Research in the Field of Remake Studies”

Kathleen Loock (FU Berlin), “Hollywood Memories/Movie Generations: Remake Studies and Global Reception Practices”

12:45–14:15      Lunch

14:15–15:45      Session 3: Industry Studies

Miguel Fernández Labayen (U Carlos III de Madrid) / Ana Martín Morán (U Rey Juan Carlos), “Remaking Film Industry Studies: Methodological and Theoretical Challenges of an Expanding Field"

Meg Thomson (Globalgate Entertainment), “Retelling and Reselling:  The Industry Context of Remaking Films”

15:45–16:15      Coffee Break

16:15–17:45      Session 4: Videographic Criticism

Catherine Grant (Birkbeck, U of London), “Simultaneity as Device: The Multiple Screen Video Essay and Comparative Remake Studies”

Kevin B. Lee (Merz Akademie Stuttgart), "Desktop Remakes, Critical Simulations"

17:45–18:00      Break

18:00–18:30      Concluding Discussion

19:00                 Dinner

Workshop Participants

Vitaly Belik is assistant Professor and the head of the System Modeling Group at the Freie Universität Berlin. A trained theoretical Physicist and Data Scientist, he is an expert on network science, complex systems, applied statistics and machine learning with applications ranging from epidemiology, mobility to bibliographic co-authorship networks analysis and animal sensing.

Eduard Cuelenaere is a Ph.D. researcher at the department of Communication Sciences at Ghent University, Belgium. His research interests focus on remake/adaptation studies, film theory, cultural studies, and audience studies. In September 2016, Eduard embarked on a FWO-funded research project, which aims to critically investigate the emerging practice of monolingual film remakes in the Low Countries. This project is supervised by Dr. Stijn Joye and Dr. Gertjan Willems, who are, together with Eduard, members of the research group Centre for Cinema and Media Studies (CIMS). In May 2018, Eduard co-organized a conference on film remakes in a European context at Ghent University.

Miguel Fernández Labayen is associate professor in the Department of Journalism and Media Studies at Universidad Carlos III de Madrid and member of the research group TECMERIN. His work deals with transnational Hispanic cinemas and experimental film and video, and it has been published in journals such as Transnational Cinemas, Screen, and the Journal of Spanish Cultural Studies. He co-leads the research projects “Transnational relations of Hispanic digital cinemas: the cases of Spain, Mexico, and Argentina” (CSO2014-52750-P), and “Mobility cinema across the Hispanic Atlantic” (CSO2017-85290-P), both funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness and with support of the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Stefanie Mathilde Frank studied theatre studies/cultural communication and cultural studies/ aesthetics at Berlin’s Humboldt University. Since 2011, she has been a lecturer at the Institute for Musicology Studies and Media Studies. In 2015, she finished her dissertation about remakes of films (1949–1963) from the National Socialist era. The study was published in 2017 as Wiedersehen im Wirtschaftswunder.

Catherine Grant,Professor of Digital Media and Screen Studies at Birkbeck, University of London, UK, has published widely on theories and practices of film authorship, adaptation and intertextuality, and has edited important collections of work on world cinema, Latin American cinema, digital film and media studies, and the audiovisual essay. A relatively early and prolific adopter of the online short video form, Grant is internationally known for her pioneering and award-winning work on the audiovisual essay in film and moving image studies, especially in found-footage, first-person and essay-film forms. In 2015, she was the recipient (with four project colleagues) of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies Award of Distinction in the Anne Friedberg Innovative Scholarship competition for the founding and editing of the [in]Transition: Journal of Videographic Film and Moving Image Studies, the first peer-reviewed publication in this field, supported by Cinema Journal. She is currently completing a book on Spatial Montage and Digital Cinephilia.

Kevin B. Lee is a US-born, Germany-based filmmaker and critic. He has produced over 360 video essays exploring film and media. His award-winning film Transformers: The Premake was named one of the best documentaries of 2014 by Sight & Sound Magazine. His works have screened at festivals and exhibitions including the Berlinale Film Festival Critics Week, the Viennale, the Rotterdam International Film Festival, the Ars Electronica Festival and the Museum of Modern Art. He was 2017 Artist in Residence of the Harun Farocki Institut in Berlin and 2018 European Media Artist Platform Resident at m-cult in Helsinki. He is Professor of Crossmedia Publishing at the Merz Akademie, Stuttgart. 

Kathleen Loock is a Dahlem Postdoc Fellow at the John F. Kennedy Institute for North American Studies, Freie Universität Berlin. She has co-edited the collection Film Remakes, Adaptations, and Fan Productions: Remake/Remodel (with Constantine Verevis, 2012), edited the special issues “Serial Narratives” for LWU: Literatur in Wissenschaft und Unterricht (2014) and “American TV Series Revivals” for Television & New Media (2017), and co-edited the special issue “Exploring Film Seriality” for Film Studies (with Frank Krutnik, 2017). Her other publications include journal articles and book chapters on film remakes, sequels, and seriality in film and television. She is currently writing a book on the cultural and industrial history of Hollywood’s remaking practice.

Ana Martín Morán is lecturer in Media Studies at the Rey Juan Carlos University (Madrid), and holds a PhD in History of Film. Her thesis and some her published works focus on film production of the North African diaspora in France. She has also published articles in several books and specialized journals on Spanish and Latin American Cinemas. Her most recent article on film remakes, “Remakes trans­nacionales: dinámicas industriales y estéticas” (“Transnational remakes: industrial and aesthetic dynamics”), co-written with professor Fernández Labayen, appeared on Fonseca. Journal of Communication, n. 14 (June 2017).

Meg Thomson is SVP of Worldwide Content at Globalgate Entertainment, a partnership comprised of best-in-class motion picture distributors and co-financing partners, sourcing and accessing intellectual property, for production as local-language films in territories worldwide. From 2011 to 2014, she served as managing director of Eccho Remakes, an agency representing the remake rights to successful international feature films. She curated a catalogue of over forty feature films, and sold them internationally to India, Asia, Europe, and the USA. Before that, she was a producer, and her feature credits include Racing Hearts a.k.a. Flying Home (Belgium, 2014), Siren (USA, 2013), Wild Art: Olly & Suzi (UK, 2009), Live Free or Die (USA, 2006), Dot the I (UK/Spain, 2005), Milk (UK, 2001), Myth America (USA, 1998).