Genius of the System

Thomas Schatz, Author Pantheon Books $24.95 (514p) ISBN 978-0-394-53979-9
In this original, monumental survey of Hollywood's film studios during their most glorious period, Schatz, professor at the University of Texas and author of Hollywood Genres , in contrast with the directorial theories of Andrew Sarris and other film historians, describes the creative give-and-take, the symbiotic accord between creators and front offices, in which the styles of writers, directors and stars fused with studio management structures, production operations, talent pools, narrative traditions and market strategies. Analytically and with anecdote examining the financial as well as creative workings of MGM, Warner Bros., Para mount, Universal and RKO in the era of Thalberg, Selznick, Zanuck and Hitchcock, Schatz demonstrates that at the heart of each studio's house style were the star-genre formulations (Bette Davis melodramas, Humphrey Bogart thrillers, Boris Karloff horror films, Gene Kelly musicals) that nowadays, as they are recirculated and rediscovered by young viewers, are all that remain of the great studios and of the vigorous, dynamic men and women who sustained them. Photos. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/01/1989
Release date: 02/01/1989
Ebook - 978-1-62779-645-3
Paperback - 978-0-679-72885-6
Paperback - 528 pages - 978-0-8050-4666-3
Paperback - 514 pages - 978-0-8166-7010-9
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