Summer SAVY 2016 (Session 2, Day 3) – Page to Screen
Some people could make the mistake of saying that today was more of the same. Students read texts and watched adaptations of those texts. They talked about it. Same ol’, same ol’.
Those people would be wrong.
Today, students analyzed the nuances in camera angles. In True Grit, camera placement can make a world of a difference in terms of how much power Mattie has in the scene. It’s not just about where the camera is pointing, but also about where that image originates. Is it in front of the character? Behind? Above? Below? What does it all mean?
And once you pick a location, it’s all about perspective. How can the camera be placed to capture one character’s perspective. When Cairo catches Sam Spade unaware in The Maltese Falcon, how does the camera make it so the audience is also surprised? Two different adaptations handle it very differently, but both are successful. What makes them successful? Is one more successful than another?
Finally, students had to confront the behemoth of the adaptation industry: Disney. After reading the opening of J.M. Barrie’s class, they watched four drastically different adaptations of Peter Pan, spanning nearly 100 years. The result? Disney may make a good movie, but they seem to ignore the source material when it gets right down to it.
Tomorrow students will more deeply explore the relationship between source and adaptation, as well as start on their final projects. Stay tuned!