Dissertation > Art > Movies, TV Arts > Film,television, art theory > Television and movies, reviews, appreciate

Intercultural Communication Analysis of Avatar’s Popularity in Mainland China

Author ZhangYiYin
Tutor TianZhongYang
School Hunan Normal University
Course Communication
Keywords Avatar intercultural communication universal value Hollywood
CLC J905
Type Master's thesis
Year 2012
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By the end of2009and early2010, a Hollywood movie named Avatar set off a global viewing frenzy, receiving an unprecedented attention worldwide. It also got a very warm response in China, which was so popular that it both became the best-selling movie and critically acclaimed, even bringing about a kind of "Avatar phenomenon". Why does Avatar get global praise and become a phenomenon in China? It is worth studying.Undoubtedly, as a heterogeneous text, Avatar made a successful cross-cultural communication. However, the current knowledge on its popularity are roughly around three aspects. Firstly, the narrative mode and the interpretation of the text content. Secondly, marketing mode and technical analysis. Thirdly, cultural imperialism perspective:American cultural hegemony in American movies. Thus, there is not many research about Avatar from cross-cultural perspective, especially upgrading it to a certain level of theory and revealing the Hollywood movie intercultural communication features by Avatar’s case study. There is much potential in this field.Research idea in this paper is mainly based on three key elements of intercultural communication:the content, the subject and the object. The first part conducts a comprehensive text analysis of Avatar. Narrative features, cultural connotation and the new technology in this movie are discussed to explore whether the text itself provides the possibility for successful intercultural communication. Followed by further analysis of the cross-cultural receiving object. Analysis of Chinese accept environment includes hardware facilities and social situation; audiences’ population structure and psychological characteristics; Chinese traditional culture, the modern democratic aspiration and the mainstream cultural values in contemporary China. A high degree of fit among the movie theme, the Chinese culture and demands of the times is found in this part. The third part begins with comparation of Avatar and Titanic’s theme, searching for contemporary Hollywood cross-cultural communication characteristics. The main research method applied in this part is comparative analysis and case study. A comparative analysis of Avatar and Titanic finds the commonality of their thoughts, offering the possibility to explore the universality of Hollywood movies. In addition, the case study on a part of global high box office Hollywood movies can avoid the potential one-sidedness of a single case. The final part mentions the Chinese film Confucius’encountering Avatar’s heavy defeat as released in a same period, then explains the necessity and possibility for Chinese movie to participate the cross-cultural communication, and give some suggestions for making highly qualified Chinese movie and achieving successful cross-cultural communication.Avatar is considered as a landmark work. This paper aims to explore why it in mainland China became so popular. In addition to a certain universal value implied, this movie has meet the Chinese spirit of times more than one point. Another box-office-miracle movie Titanic, from the same director, is added to discuss category, in order to analyse the cross-cultural communication strategies carried by Hollywood blockbusters. This topic provides a certain inspiration to the construction of Chinese core value system and creation of culture boutique under the background of globalization.

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