Stanley Kubrick at the interface of film and television

Melia, Matthew (2018) Stanley Kubrick at the interface of film and television. Essais : Revue Interdisciplinaire d'Humanites(4), pp. 195-219. ISSN (print) 2417-4211


With the recent announcement, that Stanley Kubrick’s unmade passion project Napoleon is potentially being made as a HBO television serial to be produced by Stephen Spielberg, this paper intends to discuss and consider Kubrick’s own position at the interface of cinema and television in the 21st century and what his legacy is for the medium. Furthermore it will ask how the visual language and spatial concerns of Kubrickian cinema increasingly sets the spatial and visual frameworks for contemporary TV drama and other forms. The paper will be divided into two sections. It will first consider the instances and ways in which Kubrick’s cinema has historically intersected with television and suggest that Kubrick’s cinema is both particularly tele-literate and also, in some ways, suspicious of the medium In section 2 the paper will then analyse and discuss key instances of contemporary ‘Spectacular’ television: Through close reading and textual and visual analysis I will illustrate how contemporary TV dramas adapt and appropriate Kubrickian narrative, thematic, architectural and aesthetic tropes

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