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EPK stands for Electronic Press Kit, which I am defining as "recorded cast and crew interviews and other clips that capture the making of the movie to be used for publicity." Is that right? Next, what is its origin? Does anyone know how far it goes back? Any early examples would be awesome.

  • Welcome to ELU. This seems like a decent question but do you have a reference for your definition? Like a Wikipedia entry. It might be you can answer your own question with a little research, otherwise links will show answerers what you’ve already seen. – Pam Sep 30 '18 at 11:59
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    Interesting question, but it’s not about English language and usage, it’s about the history of an industry-specific term, so it’s off-topic on this site. – Chappo Sep 30 '18 at 11:59
  • The “electronic” must have been added later, when the assets started turning digital instead of physical, like tapes and papers. The “press kit” is just that, a lot for the press. I’m sure that term is much older, decades if not a century, but it seems a straightforward coinage to me. You can probably google “origins of the press kit”. Since it’s a transparent and straightforward term (not unusual in its own right), I don’t imagine there’s a separate history for the press kit and for the term “press kit”. – Dan Bron Sep 30 '18 at 12:20
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    @Chappo It's an English phrase so therefore it is about English. – Laurel Sep 30 '18 at 16:12
  • press kits are press kits, be they electronic or print ones. – Lambie Oct 1 '18 at 16:01
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According to a Google Books Search, it dates at least as far back as 1982:

If home-video technologies threaten to put movie theaters out of business, you wouldn't know it from the Hollywood studios' latest promotional gimmick: the electronic press kit, a videotaped collection of film clips and interviews with the stars, producers, and directors of a new film.
Channels of Communications, November/December issue, 1982

Given the wording of the article, it probably doesn't date back much further than that.

  • It cannot date back much further, because the enabling technology was also fairly new. – michael.hor257k Sep 30 '18 at 16:44
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According to Oxford English Dictionary, press kit dates to 1954.

The publicity staff entered with tons of mimeograph paper,..press kits, a Western Union man and boxes of pencils.

  • 1954 Statesville (N. Carolina) Daily Record 29 Jan. p2/4

Electronic press kit was coined simply to refer to a press kit contained in some electronic format (today, this is typically a digital format). It appears that the term caught on in industry circles in or shortly before 1982, and was commonly used in connection with Universal Studios in their promotion of "Conan the Barbarian," ostensibly a film adaptation of a comic.

Armstrong devised an "electronic press kit" to help "Conan" sell. It contains 55 minutes of interviews, film clip and features that can be dropped into TV news shows.

Universal is spending more than $1 million on these kiits [sic] for 10 new releases and 20th Century Fox has similar plans.

  • In 1982, electronic was strictly analog. Digital formats came much later. – michael.hor257k Oct 1 '18 at 15:45
  • @michael.hor257k A valid point, answer updated. – RaceYouAnytime Oct 1 '18 at 16:28
  • While I am nitpicking: the film's title was "Conan the Barbarian" and it was not based on the comics. – michael.hor257k Oct 1 '18 at 16:34

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