The target audience for our film opening is 15-24. Often a movie's main characters reflect their target audience, and the slasher film is a prime example of this. The characters are more often than not teenagers/college students, and there is usually a couple. This reflects the target audience. This was the most common target audience we saw throughout our research in to the genre. This tells us there is an already established audience for the slasher genre, and as filmmakers we would utilise this by also targeting the same audience.
Our primary audience would be males. This is because they are a very prominent section of audience in this genre. However, we don’t want to lose out on 50% of our potential audience so we have included a romantic element to attract females as our audience too. This is how many slasher films try to attract the female audience.
We decided to have two scream queens. This is using the male gaze theory to attract men into the film. Laura Mulvey's theory of male gaze is very heavily supported in the slasher genre, with the scream queens often objectified through the use of costumes, shot types, script, etc.
Our secondary audience would be couples as they often go to the cinema together to watch movies, and horror is often the choice of film to watch. This is another technique slasher films use to attract another key audience.
We also want to appeal to an older audience as this will again bring in more people to see our film. We have done this through using the post-modern idea of a film within a film in the hopes to attract an audience for the story and effects too.
Another way we have attracted an older audience is through intertextuality. We used a lot of intertextuality throughout our film and this helps with attracting an audience who have seen the other films we have references to in our film. This also helps attract a teenage audience as it gives a post-modern appeal to the film opening.
We also have to consider the BBFC ratings. Liar would be a 15 due to scenes of strong threat and menace and very brief gory imagery.
We got a lot of feedback from our target audience throughout the making of the film opening, including comments on what age group would be suitable for the audience. We used this to shape our film towards their feedback especially as it was from our exact target audience.
The slasher genre has a very large audience. We can see this from some of the box office figures from slasher films, such as Halloween, which had a budget of $325,000 and a box office return of $70 million, and Scream who’s budget was set at $15M and got a box office figure of $173M, over ten times its budget. British horror movies are also successful too, for example An American Werewolf in London had a budget of $10M, and a box office return of $61M. Even extremely low budget films such as ours can have success, such as Colin, a zombie film that claims to have a budget of £45, which was shown at Cannes film festival after some previous success at other film festivals. This shows the extent of the horror genre’s audience.