Rank

   Now the Rank Group, Rank has interests in many areas as one of the world’s biggest leisure groups. Its holdings include over 300 Odeon cinemas, Pinewood Studios, theme parks, bingo halls, Butlins holiday villages and franchises of the Hard Rock Cafe. Overseas, this extends to ownership of Universal Studios and a theme park in Orlando.
   The prime mover within the embryonic organization was J.Arthur Rank (1888–1972), a Methodist millionaire businessman who switched from the family flour company to became one of the most important figures in British cinema. Originally J. Arthur Rank had founded a film company, British National, whose aim was to promote Methodism through documentaries. This floundered due to lack of distribution, and he later allied with General Film distributors, which became Rank Film Distributors. The powerful position of the Rank organization led to a reference to the Monopoly Commission, which reported in 1943 that the extent of the company’s control (over 50 percent of studios and 10 percent of cinemas) was acceptable. The film distribution arm was sold to Carlton for £65 million in 1997.
   While Rank produced bawdy films such as Doctor in the House (Thomas 1954) and the Carry On films, the Methodist roots of the organization began to show through with attempts to ban Xrated films, now classed as 18 Certificate, from showing in their Odeon chain. Later, having financed Nick Roeg’s 1980 film Bad Timing with its necrophiliac story line, executives echoed earlier conservatism in condemning it. While Rank’s sole commitment to film is fast receding, it is important to appreciate the crucial importance the organization once had and the role J.Arthur Rank enjoyed as its catalyst:
   Rank managed to tie all the discrete strands of British film culture together. In his bid to set the industry on its feet, he intervened on every level. He pioneered technical research and developed equipment. He invested in ‘B’ pictures. He started a ‘charm school’ to generate stars…. For a brief moment in the mid-1940s, it seemed as if he had managed to introduce a measure of harmonious sanity to the schizophrenic organism which the British film industry has traditionally been. (Macnab 1993:xi)
   See also: British film industry
   Further reading
    Macnab, G. (1993) J.Arthur Rank and the British Film Industry, London: Routledge (a thorough, engaging account of both the Rank organization and J.Arthur Rank).
   GUY OSBORN
   STEVE GREENFIELD

Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture . . 2014.

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  • Rank — is a very broad term with several meanings. As a noun it is usually related to a relative position or to some kind of ordering (see also ranking). As an adjective it is used to mean profuse, conspicuous, absolute, or unpleasant, especially in… …   Wikipedia

  • RANK (O.) — RANK OTTO (1884 1939) Né à Vienne dans une famille modeste marquée par la mésentente et l’alcoolisme, le jeune Rosenfeld prend à dix sept ans le nom de Rank pour renier ce milieu. Destiné à un travail manuel, il est obligé de prendre, pour des… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Rank — ist der Name folgender Personen: Elisabeth Rank (auch Lisa Rank, * 1984), deutsche Schriftstellerin Franz Rank (1870–1949), deutscher Architekt Heiner Rank (* 1931), deutscher Schriftsteller Joseph Rank (1816–1896), österreichischer Erzähler und… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Rank — (r[a^][ng]k), a. [Compar. {Ranker} (r[a^][ng]k [ e]r); superl. {Rankest}.] [AS. ranc strong, proud; cf. D. rank slender, Dan. rank upright, erect, Prov. G. rank slender, Icel. rakkr slender, bold. The meaning seems to have been influenced by L.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • rank — rank1 [raŋk] n. [MFr renc < OFr ranc, renc: see RANGE] 1. a row, line, or series 2. an orderly arrangement 3. a social division or class; stratum of society [people from all ranks of life] 4. a high position in society; high degree; eminence …   English World dictionary

  • Rank 1 — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Rank 1 Información personal Origen Países Bajos …   Wikipedia Español

  • RANK — (Receptor Activator of Nuclear Factor κ B), also known as TRANCE Receptor, is a type I membrane protein which is expressed on the surface of osteoclasts and is involved in the activation of osteoclasts upon ligand binding. It is also expressed on …   Wikipedia

  • rank — Ⅰ. rank [1] ► NOUN 1) a position within a fixed hierarchy, especially that of the armed forces. 2) high social standing. 3) a single line of soldiers or police officers drawn up abreast. 4) (the ranks) (in the armed forces) those who are not… …   English terms dictionary

  • Rank — Rank, n. [OE. renk, reng, OF. renc, F. rang, fr. OHG. hring a circle, a circular row, G. ring. See {Ring}, and cf. {Range}, n. & v.] 1. A row or line; a range; an order; a tier; as, a rank of osiers. [1913 Webster] Many a mountain nigh Rising in… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • rank# — rank adj 1 Rank, rampant mean growing or increasing at an immoderate rate. Rank applies primarily to vegetation and implies vigorous, luxuriant, and often unchecked or excessive growth {behold, seven ears of corn came up upon one stalk, rank and… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • rank — [adj1] stinking, foul bad, dank, disagreeable, disgusting, evil smelling, feculent, fetid, funky*, fusty*, gamy*, graveolent, gross*, high, humid, loathsome, mephitic, moldy, musty, nasty, nauseating, noisome, noxious, obnoxious, off, offensive,… …   New thesaurus

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