DeAnn Dunkins

Document Type


Date of Award



School of Communication (SOC)

Degree Name

MA in Communication

First Advisor

Professor E. Bun Lee


For years, film has provided a large source of entertainment and facilitated the process of social intercourse. As a result of this evident supremacy, communication researchers have for many years, focused on audiences' relationships to films. As film becomes increasingly global it provides people with not only entertainment, but also exposes them to places quite different from their own. The need to introduce films from various lifestyles is important in shaping the minds of audiences. This study surveys the opinions and preferences of foreign films of individuals in Houston, Texas. This study surveyed 113 individuals and four foreign film distributors were interviewed in Houston, Texas during the summer of 2003. The respondents represented a cross-section of Houston's population. The study found that preferences toward foreign film in Houston, Texas, are minimal in comparison to US film. Many participants preferred American films over foreign films and several do not watch foreign films at all. This may be due to lack of exposure, because of minimal advertising and very little commercialism, which saturates American films. 1 2 Most people watch films mainly for entertainment and educational purposes. Currently "globalization" seems to refer to the US making global not included other .countries, which seems to be the case when many of the participants responded that they do not even watch films from other countries. In the near future film will become completely digital and we will be able to have greater access to media worldwide. However, will this really help to expose Americans to a different culture found in the world of film? The results of this survey and interview are extensively discussed in terms of their contribution toward defining specific preferences in film according to those living in the Houston area and in terms of their implications for future study. To increase the external validity of the present study, it should be replicated in larger communities in the city of Houston.