In­flu­en­tial movies: a tale of two stud­ies

The Guardian - Journal - - Letters -

The Ital­ian study of in­flu­en­tial films (How the movies fol­lowed the yel­low brick road, 30 Novem­ber) ap­par­ently used the on­line movie data­base IMDb to ar­rive at a global rank­ing of rel­a­tive “in­flu­ence”.

I won­der if the au­thors knew a study of Bri­tish films’ “cul­tural im­pact” com­mis­sioned by the UK Film Coun­cil and the Bri­tish

Film In­sti­tute 10 years ago, in which we also started with IMDb data, but ex­plored dif­fer­ent ways of mea­sur­ing how films achieve “ex­tended im­pact” in the dig­i­tal era?

Con­clud­ing that Lois Maxwell (Moneypenny in Bond movies) and Car­rie Fisher are the “most in­flu­en­tial fe­male ac­tors” sounds more like count­ing men­tions than ex­plor­ing in­flu­ence, or im­pact, more sys­tem­at­i­cally.

Pro­fes­sor Ian Christie

Birk­beck Col­lege

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