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Film Festival - Broadcast News

Wednesday - May 18, 2005
MAC Playhouse - 3:30 pm - 6:15 pm

Broadcast News

Hosted by: Dr. Robert Singer, Professor of English
College Now English Course Coordinator
Professor Sam Taitt, College Now Communications Course Coordinator

About the Movie: Broadcast News
Director, James Brooks 1987 - Rating R
Were you really thinking about a career in the media? The "sparks fly" as two rival male television reporters, one handsome and one talented, must find a way to work together with a new female producer. Live...on the television...the battle of style, ratings and the sexes!

About the Presenter: Professor Sam Taitt
Professor Sam Taitt is a communications specialist who has been a faculty member in the Communications Department at Kingsborough Community College for the past 9 years. Formerly he was CEO and General Manager of CBC TV & Radio in Barbados, West Indies, and has completed several assignments as a media consultant in Africa, China, South and Central America, Canada, and throughout the Caribbean. He has been a consultant in several political campaigns in the Caribbean and here in New York. Professor Taitt likes nothing more than to watch the world of media "spin".

Sample ACT Essay

Extra Credit Assignments
Broadcast News (1987) is a film set in the late 1980s that examines the business of television news broadcasting as it focuses on the intersecting lives of three involved professionals. Although there are many significant issues raised in this film, such as demonstrating how network news is reported to the American audience, there are also moments when the film examines interpersonal relationships and how this affects the workplace. One especially important issue raised in the film Broadcast News involves whether the news is meant just to inform the television audience about important people and events, or is it also a form of popular entertainment? Many media critics believe that the nightly television news broadcast has become too entertaining, almost like a situation comedy, and that it lacks a serious informative, educational manner. Many other people find that this is not a problem and enjoy the "light touch" when it comes to reporting events and even about the lives of media personalities. Still, some others believe that broadcast news should attempt to do both, inform and entertain its audience.

You have been asked to write a letter to your local newspaper in which you will express your views concerning several issues that are raised in the film Broadcast News. The first issue for you to consider involves the purpose and role of television broadcast news. Should the evening news broadcast be just informative, or entertaining, or both? Has television news become too much like the rest of the evening's traditional entertainment programming -- is Paris Hilton really newsworthy? Has the evening news broadcast too much influence on the audience? Should we read about the news, in newspapers and periodicals, as much as we watch television for information? Do television reports have a responsibility to inform the audience when they interpret rather than report events and information? Fully discuss your view; you may refer to any form of media coverage, other opinions, and especially the film, Broadcast News.

Mini-Research Project

(NOTE: This is NOT a research paper - it is a research-oriented, library experience in which students gather and categorize information. They can prepare outlines, note-cards, bibliography, cite references, or practice any combination of these skills associated with preparing a research paper. The use of the Internet is also encouraged.)

Prepare an investigative project that focuses on any one of the following topics associated with or suggested by the film, Broadcast News..

a) the television rating system
b) sexism in the workplace
c) the decline in readership of print journalism
d) censorship of media violence and sexuality

Standard College Essay

Many issues arise from the analysis and discussion of the film, Broadcast News. Some of these issues involve working closely and under pressure with people; the censorship of controversial images and information; deciding what is newsworthy and what is entertainment; communicating without editorializing; and the basic need to set individual, professional moral codes of behavior for oneself.

In a full-length essay (approximately 400-500 words), later to be revised for content and correctness, discuss any of the issues raised in the film Broadcast News that you consider to be of special interest either for yourself or for society. Explain why and how these issues are significant not only in the film but also in relationship to your own life, society, or even both. You may refer to this film or any form of media coverage and to other people's opinions.


Event Photos Broadcast News - May 18, 2005

Broadcast NewsBroadcast News

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