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The Profitable Purity of Robert Redford: Authenticity, Auteur Capital, and the Sundance Film Festival

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The Profitable Purity of Robert Redford: Authenticity, Auteur Capital, and the Sundance Film Festival

King, Matthew (2018) The Profitable Purity of Robert Redford: Authenticity, Auteur Capital, and the Sundance Film Festival. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

This thesis, through the relationship between actor-director Robert Redford and the Sundance Film Festival, examines the dynamic between filmmakers and film festivals, and the effect the former can have on the latter's public perception. Scholarship on the ties between festivals and filmmakers has been limited, often using Pierre Bourdieu's concepts of field, capital, and habitus to focus on the festival's ability to imbue a director with legitimacy and capital. While this study also uses Bourdieu's theories as a foundation for understanding film festivals, it ultimately filters these concepts through a lens of star and auteur studies to look at the relationship the other way around: that is, how an auteur-star like Redford might affect a festival like Sundance, both economically and culturally. Through closely examining the constructed images of both Redford and Sundance, this study posits that the actor-director brings his prestige and legitimacy--that is, his auteur capital--to bear on the Festival, and therefore affects its public understanding, as well as its values, norms, and practices. Sundance is a bundle of contradictions, each of which points to a habitus of paradoxical beliefs in Redford, which, in turn, reflects and reinforces a dominant society built out of oppositional forces. By comprehending how the public vision of festivals like Sundance can be affected by the popular perception of auteur-stars like Redford, this thesis will further bring light to the economic, political, and cultural relationships and hierarchies at work in such events.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Fine Arts > Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:King, Matthew
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Film Studies
Date:1 March 2018
Thesis Supervisor(s):Dickinson, Kay
ID Code:983537
Deposited By: Matthew King
Deposited On:11 Jun 2018 01:30
Last Modified:11 Jun 2018 01:30
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