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Talent Intermediaries: Anonymous Content and the Independent Packaging Technique

STUBBS, Andrew (2021) Talent Intermediaries: Anonymous Content and the Independent Packaging Technique. In: Television Histories in Developement, 30 September - 01 October 2021, Hilversum. (Unpublished)

[img] Text (Conference preceeding. Citation details: Stubbs, Andrew (2021) 'Talent Intermediaries: Anonymous Content and the Independent Feature Packaging Technique,' at Television Histories Conference, Hilversum, Netherlands)
Talent Intermediaries - - The Independent Feature Packaging Technique - Television Histories in Development.docx - AUTHOR'S ACCEPTED Version (default)
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Abstract or description

In Television Studies, scholars have regularly analysed authorship as a branded identity and promotional discourse surrounding individual writer-producer creators and mobilized by channels and platforms to promote certain high-end event programmes (Hills, 2010: 70; Pearson, 2011: 105-131; Kompere, 2013: 301; Mittell, 2015: 87) . Within this dynamic, however, the role of talent intermediaries who facilitate dialogue and exchange between creators and channels has frequently gone overlooked (Lotz, 2014: 27-28; Roussel, 2017: 194-195). Meanwhile, in critical discourse, talent intermediaries are frequently framed alongside other media industry managers in overly broad terms as the personification of bureaucratic constraint opposite the autonomous artist (Johnson, Kompere, Santo, 2014:3).

With this in mind, this article analyses the operations of a single integrated media production and talent management company, Anonymous Content, as it increased its investment in television production during the 2010s. The article explores especially how Anonymous used what its executives called ‘the independent feature packaging technique’ to produce and sell premium shows including The Knick, True Detective and Maniac, Mr. Robot and Homecoming, The OA, and I am the Night, with key clients including Steven Soderbergh, Cary Fukunaga, Sam Esmail, Brit Marling, Patty Jenkins, respectively. Analysing promotional, extratextual and critical discourse surrounding Anonymous’ production within the industry and cultural contexts, the article analyses how and why Anonymous contributed to creating apparently individually authored and ‘cinematic’ shows for sophisticated audiences. In doing so, the article explores what role Anonymous specifically and talent managers generally play in rearranging and reinforcing industrial, cultural and social hierarchies, and sheds light on the role that these often-overlooked figures have played in television history.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Faculty: School of Digital, Technologies and Arts > Film and Media
Event Title: Television Histories in Developement
Event Location: Hilversum
Event Dates: 30 September - 01 October 2021
Depositing User: Andrew STUBBS
Date Deposited: 14 Oct 2021 13:24
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2023 14:02
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