“Stay disconnected”: Eventising Star Wars for transmedia audiences

Pett, Emma (2016) “Stay disconnected”: Eventising Star Wars for transmedia audiences. Participations: Journal of Audience and Reception Studies, 13 (1). pp. 152-169.

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In the run up to the release of The Force Awakens (Abrams, 2015) a proliferation of attractions and interactive screenings emerged around the Star Wars franchise. This article primarily explores participant responses to one of these events, Secret Cinema’s staging of The Empire Strikes Back (Irvin Kershner, 1980), which ran from June to September 2015 in London. Alongside this, discussions of the Star Wars at Madame Tussauds exhibition are also considered, as a different kind of immersive attraction that a number of the research participants visited during the same period. Using original qualitative data, the article examines audience experiences of these events in three key ways. Firstly, it explores responses to both the formal and informal participatory elements of the immersive experience, such as interactive sets, personalised address, audience performance and cosplay. Secondly, the article considers issues of ‘liveness’ and exclusivity, analysing the relationship between the contemporary immersive experience and its cultural forerunner, the cult film screening. Finally, it explores responses to branding strategies and the commercial culture surrounding the attractions, interrogating the ways in which these heighten, inhibit or otherwise effect audience participation and enjoyment of them.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Participations operates an open access policy at all times and at all levels. The Journal is free to use to all readers, with permission automatically granted to download, print and circulate materials published here, with the sole proviso that such copying must visibly retain the names of authors, and retain publication details from Participations. Authors retain all copyright in materials published in Participations with automatic rights to republish in any format, without having to seek permission, with the sole proviso that they should acknowledge prior publication in the Journal.
Uncontrolled Keywords: cult screenings,immersive,participatory,secret cinema,star wars,transmedia
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Art, Media and American Studies
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Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 22 Mar 2016 09:19
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2022 14:31
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/57716


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