Accessible filmmaking envisages the integration of audiovisual translation and accessibility as part of the filmmaking process. Unlike the current prevailing model, in which translation and accessibility are dealt with as add-ons in the distribution stage, accessible filmmaking factors them in from inception, which means that foreign, hearing and visually impaired audiences are taken into account as the film is being made. This does not necessarily mean that films are always going to be altered by adopting this approach, but it does require the collaboration between translators and filmmakers. The aim of this workshop is to outline how this collaboration can materialise and to provide the participants with the opportunity to test this approach with the use of specialised software.
The information provided during the workshop will be based on first-hand experience teaching at the MA in Accessible Filmmaking at the University of Roehampton, recent work on award-winning films such as Notes on Blindness (2016) and Handia (2017) and the results obtained in the latest reception studies comparing accessible filmmaking with more traditional approaches to translation and accessibility. The workshop will draw on the contents of Accessible Filmmaking, a forthcoming monograph to be published by Routledge, and the Accessible Filmmaking Guide commissioned by the British Film Institute, both of which provide filmmakers with a step-by-step reference on how to integrate translation and accessibility as part of their films and how to collaborate with translators to ensure that their vision is not altered when it reaches foreign, hearing and visually impaired audiences. Particular emphasis will be placed on the production of creative subtitles as one of the techniques available for filmmakers to provide a type of translation/media access that can suit the style and tone of the film.
The first part of the workshop will introduce accessible filmmaking, its background and the progress made so far in terms of training, research and practice since this initiative was launched. Secondly, an outline will be provided of what it is that filmmakers need to be aware of regarding audiovisual translation and accessibility so that they can have a meaningful and well-informed discussion with the translators of their films. Thirdly, using real-life material and specialised software, the participants will have the opportunity to implement this approach at three different stages: in pre-production, in post-production and before distribution. Depending on the participants' interest, the focus of their exercise may be placed on dubbing, voice-over, subtitling, SDH or AD. However, special emphasis will be placed on the use of creative and integrated titles and the possibilities they offer for filmmakers and translators to experiment with different fonts, positions, display modes and effects to suit the tone of the film.
Part 1: Introduction to accessible filmmaking (AFM)
Part 2: What filmmakers (and translators/media access experts) need to know before their collaboration
Part 3: AFM exercise on the use of creative subtitles
Part 4: Discussion and conclusion
Translators, media access experts, translation/media access companies, translation and media access scholars, filmmakers, film producers, film editors, script writers, film scholars.
Target Audience Sector(s):
Audiovisual translation, media accessibility, filmmaking, film studies.
Some knowledge of the theory and practice or film(making) and/or translation/media accessibility.
The participants will be provided, first of all, with research-based information about the extent to which translation and media accessibility can impact on the nature and reception of translated and accessible films.
They will then learn about:
- how translation and media access can be integrated at different stages of the filmmaking process as an alternative to the prevailing model that places these processes within the distribution stage, as an afterthought.
- the cost and time required for this new model.
- the theory and practice involved in the production of creative subtitles, including knowledge about cinematography, film composition, communication design basics, mise-en-scène and typography.
This will allow them to adopt informed decisions as to how translation and accessibility can be provided in collaboration with filmmakers so that foreign, hearing and visually-impaired viewers are truly catered for in the filmmaking process.