Thursday, 6 June 2013

Revisiting Star Studies - An International Conference, Newcastle University, 12th-14th June 2013

My title and abstract are as follows:

The industrial contexts of national stardom: a Spanish case study.

Despite stardom's industrial dimension being routinely passed over in critical analyses, the industrial contexts of stardom in a given national culture is integral to both the form and content of stardom and the star image. This paper will argue, following Willis (2004), that stars cannot be separated from the industrial contexts of their production, and that they also can be seen to be as reflective of their industry as they are of contemporaneous cultural assumptions. Due to a number of nationally-specific factors in the Spanish film industry since the 1990s, 'Spanish cinema' has been becoming a more nebulous and hybrid entity. If stars are 'a means by which Hollywood has been able to present itself as a global rather than a national film industry' (Drake 2004: 76), this paper examines what the impact on Spanish stardom has been of Spanish stars and their images circulating in a national cinema that has increasingly acknowledged and utilised the codes and conventions of a more international form of cinema production. This paper will take as its main example Eduardo Noriega, a Spanish star who emerged in the late 1990s, the point at which a shift in the balance of factors (industrial versus national and / or cultural) shaping Spanish stardom was becoming apparent, and will also suggest that the trend for Spanish stars crossing national boundaries to further their careers is simultaneously symptomatic of both success and crisis in the Spanish cinema of this era.

The website for the conference can be found here. The programme and all of the collected abstracts can be downloaded.
I will put my full paper up on the blog the week after the conference.