Stephanie's Blog

PR Publications Blog

The Agenda Setting Theory in the Movie Hancock April 6, 2010

Filed under: Senior Seminar — stephrachman21 @ 3:02 pm

Hancock is a movie starring Will Smith, who plays Hancock, a drunk, bad mannered and destructive superhero whose actions mean well but result in a negative public image. One man that he saves, Ray Embrey, is a public relations consultant and decides that he should make it his job to change how the public viewed Hancock and teach him how to be a positive public figure. Throughout the movie, Embrey utilizes many of the aspects found in the agenda setting theory. The agenda setting theory is evident throughout the movie. The theory states that although the media cannot tell the public what to think, the media can be effective in creating what topics are talked about. Throughout the movie, Ray Embrey, Hancock’s PR publicist keeps reminding Hancock that if the media sees Hancock as a positive icon that the public will too. Embrey, as a PR consultant understands that the media has the power to help establish what people talk about. When the media sees Hancock as a negative figure, so does the public but when Hancock changes into a hero the media portrays him that way to the public. The media’s publicity of Hancock is important to his career because it helps make him popular among the people.

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