In the entertainment world, there are myriad performers; there are also stars, and then there are stars—and not all of them are people. Expanding the definition, one could term Facebook a star; likewise, Secretariat; and so, in its high-fat way, McDonald's. Herewith, a cross-section of "stars" in the broadest sense.
The Nation's Stage: The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, 1971–2011 considers the vast array of stars (species Humanus populus) whose performances in theater, music, dance, and more have enriched the cultural heritage of the huge numbers who throng the magnificent granite structure on the Potomac River.
One of last year's Kennedy Center honorees was Oprah. In Chris Rock's tribute to the queen of talk, he spoke of his awe in staring at "the most powerful person in the world, and then next to her Barack Obama." The Oprah Winfrey Show: Reflections on an American Legacy offers fresh takes on the program and the personality.
Also honored at the Kennedy Center, in 2002, was the inimitable Elizabeth Taylor. In addition to an illustrious career over some 50 films in 70 years, Liz was renowned for her humanitarian efforts; when she died in March, Broadway dimmed its lights. Elizabeth Taylor: Her Place in the Sun assures that well-deserved place.
From a place in the sun to a shadier site—Pauline Kael: A Life in the Dark tells of the girl born in 1919 on a chicken farm in Petaluma, Calif., who became one of the country's leading film critics. From 1968 to 1991 she reigned at the New Yorker, and moviegoers scoured her reviews for their style, candor, and humor.
Pauline might have looked down her nose at the swooningly romantic film adaptation of a certain Truman Capote novella. But Breakfast at Tiffany's: The Official 50th Anniversary Companion celebrates a bona fide star: it's got a cat named Cat, it's got that famous jewelry store, it's got "Moon River," and it's got Audrey Hepburn!
We predict that this "star" will be around to collect lots of anniversary awards. The Art of Pixar: The Complete Color Scripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation celebrates a studio that's revolutionizing the film industry.
Not unlike burgeoning movie studios, many stars endure the "new kid on the block" stage. We vote for Piers Morgan—partly because of his plummy accent, and because he's stepped into some big shoes (belonging to Larry King). The bloke combines pop culture smarts with a dash of highbrow; see Piers Morgan: The Biography.
It's tough to picture Jane Fonda as a new kid anywhere, and certainly not "on the block." From leading lady to activist to businesswoman, she's always seemed totally together. (Well, there was that "Hanoi Jane" episode as she vociferously protested the war in Vietnam.) Jane Fonda: The Private Life of a Public Woman is by Patricia Bosworth, who's written acclaimed biographies of Arbus, Brando, and Clift.
"There's No Business Like Show Business," indeed—and Broadway is home to a positive gaggle of stars. Columnist Peter Filichia has chosen his Broadway Musical MVPs, 1960–2010: The Most Valuable Players of the Past 50 Seasons—those who toil on the Broad Way.
Lastly, our daily/nightly (virtually hourly) news reportage: a 24/7 occupation scrutinized in From Yesterday to Today: Six Decades of Historical Moments, Unforgettable Segments, and Newsmaking Interviews. The rich and famous are big business in this arena, where media mavens can turn common folk into stars and events can sink a career with a few strategically chosen photographs.
PW's Top 10 Performing Arts
The Nation's Stage:
The John F. Kennedy Center for the
Performing Arts, 1971–2011
Michael Dolan. Simon & Schuster, Oct.
The Oprah Winfrey Show:
Reflections on an American Legacy
Deborah Davis. Abrams, Oct.
Elizabeth Taylor: Her Place in the Sun
Cindy De La Hoz. Running Press, Nov.
Pauline Kael: A Life in the Dark
Brian Kellow. Viking, Oct.
Breakfast at Tiffany's: The Official 50th Anniversary Companion
Sarah Gristwood. Rizzoli, Sept.
The Art of Pixar:
The Complete Color Scripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation
Amid Amidi. Chronicle Books, Nov.
Piers Morgan: The Biography
Emily Herbert. Trafalgar Square, Sept.
The Private Life of a Public Woman
Patricia Bosworth. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Aug.
Broadway Musical MVPs, 1960–2010:
The Most Valuable Players of the
Past 50 Seasons
Peter Filichia. Applause Books, Oct.
From Yesterday to Today: Six Decades of Historical Moments, Unforgettable Segments, and Newsmaking Interviews
Stephen Battaglio. Running Press, Nov.
The Oprah Winfrey Show: Reflections on an American Legacy by Deborah Davis (Oct., hardcover, $50, ISBN 978-1-4197-0059-0) celebrates the 25-year history of this iconic program and its host, arguably the most influential television personality of all time.
Star Trek Vault: 40 Years from the Archives by Scott Tipton (Oct., hardcover, $40, ISBN 978-1-419-70075-0) charts the series' impressive longevity, covering the six TV series and 10 films, and considering such milestones as its groundbreaking mixed-race casting.
Industrial Light & Magic: Creating the Impossible by Pamela Glintenkamp (Nov., hardcover, $50, ISBN 978-0-8109-9802-5) takes an illustrated, behind-the-scenes look at the multiple-Oscar-winning, state-of-the-art visual effects company founded by George Lucas in 1975.
Broadway Musical MVPs: 1960–2010: The Most Valuable Players of the Past 50 Seasons by Peter Filichia (Oct., paper, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-61774-086-2). Taking a leaf from sports teams, Filichia names his MVP choices; includes such categories as Comeback Player of the Year and Led League in Errors.
Son of Harpo Speaks!: A Family Portrait by Bill Marx (Nov., paper, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-55783-790-5). Author Marx, the last living person to have worked with the three Marx Brothers (his uncles Chico and Groucho and his father, Harpo) recalls the personal and professional relationships among this celebrated comic threesome.
Arsenal Pulp Press
Shoot It!: Hollywood Inc. and the Rising of Independent Film by David Spaner (Sept., paper, $22.95, ISBN 978-1-55152-408-5). In a time when Hollywood studios focus on chasing the blockbuster, Spaner lauds the independents that develop local film culture and draw global appeal.
Filming the Undead: How to Make Your Own Zombie Movie by Rod Durick (Sept., paper, $18.99, ISBN 978-0-7641-4716-6) features step-by-step, how-to color photos and illustrations, do-and-don't warnings, and lists of needed materials.
The Real Housewives Tell It Like It Is by Bravo (Sept., hardcover, $14.95, ISBN 978-0-8118-7417-5) captures the best, worst, and most outlandish quotes from the ladies of the O.C., New York, Atlanta, New Jersey, D.C., and Beverly Hills.
The Art of Pixar: The Complete Color Scripts and Select Art from 25 Years of Animation by Amid Amidi (Nov., hardcover; $50, ISBN 978-0-8118-7963-7) includes a selection of the best art from the popular studio's 12 films to date.
John Huston: Courage and Art by Jeffrey Meyers (Sept., hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-307-59067-1) offers the first complete biography of the director, writer, actor, and bon vivant who made such iconic films as The Maltese Falcon, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, and The African Queen.
Steve McQueen: A Biography by Marc Eliot (Oct., hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0-307-45321-1). The biographer of Jimmy Stewart, Paul Simon, and Cary Grant remembers the hip star of such classics as Bullitt, The Great Escape, The Getaway, and many more.
Monsters in the Movies by John Landis (Sept., hardcover, $40, ISBN 978-0-7566-8370-2). Some 1,000 posters and movie stills illustrate the work of the horrormeister (American Werewolf in London, et al.) who also gave us such hits as The Blues Brothers and Animal House.
Inside Pee-Wee's Playhouse: An Unauthorized Look Behind the Scenes of a Pop Phenomenon by Caseen Gaines (Sept., paper, $19.95, IBN 978-1-55022-998-1) commemorates the 25th anniversary of Pee-Wee's wacky extravaganza, which created a cult following in the late 1980s with a weekly audience of 10 million viewers.
Starmaker: Life as a Hollywood Publicist with Farrah, the Rat Pack and 600 More Stars Who Fired Me by Jay Bernstein as told to Larry Cortez Hamm. (Oct., paper, $16.95, ISBN 978-1-77041-012-1) chronicles the so-called glamorous life of a Hollywood insider.
Shooting Movies Without Shooting Yourself in the Foot: Becoming a Cinematographer by Jack Anderson (Aug., paper, $29.95, ISBN 978-0-240-81493-3). For enthusiasts who can't afford film school, this tome approaches its topic from a hands-on, in-the-trenches viewpoint.
Screenwriting Tips, You Hack: Practical Pointers to Get You from Hack to Hero by Xander Bennett (Oct., paper, $19.95, ISBN 978-0-240-81824-5) presents chunks of wisdom sugar-coated with humor, explains what works and what doesn't, and walks readers through the process of writing a screenplay.
Every Step You Take: A Memoir by Jock Soto (Oct., hardcover, $24.99, ISBN 978-06-173238-6). Considered one of the greatest ballet dancers of his generation, Soto performed featured roles in more than 40 ballets at the New York City Ballet, of which more than 35 were created for him.
Jane Fonda: The Private Life of a Public Woman by Patricia Bosworth (Aug., hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-547-15257-8). The noted biographer of Montgomery Clift goes behind the image of the legendary star to reveal a life that mirrors the conflicts of a generation of women.
Happy Accidents by Jane Lynch (Sept., hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-1-4013-4176-3). The Glee-ful performer shares how she (a former real-life Sue Sylvester) learned to relax, get out of her own way, and finally find happiness.
Hal Leonard Performing Arts
Sweat, Tears and Jazz Hands: The Official History of Show Choir from Vaudeville to Glee by Mike Weaver and Colleen Hart (Sept., paper, $19.99, ISBN 978-1-55783-772-1) details the pop culture and theater influences that created this entertainment genre's popularity.
A Hard Day's Night: Music on Film Series by Ray Morton (Sept., paper, $9.99, ISBN 978-0-87910-388-0) recounts the trials and tribulations in the making of what's considered the greatest rock-and-roll movie of all time.
If You Like Monty Python...: Here Are Over 200 Movies, TV Shows and Other Oddities That You Will Love by Zack Handlen (Jan., paper, $14.99, ISBN 978-0-87910-393-4) not only studies the British troupe, but considers its influence on the comedy shows that followed—from Saturday Night Live to Modern Family.
Dance with Me: Ballroom Dancing and the Promise of Instant Intimacy by Julia Ericksen (Nov., hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0-814-72266-4). Interviews with top competitors and social dancers reveal the power that intimacy between partners can bring.
Scorsese on Scorsese by Michael Henry Wilson (Sept., paper, $69.95, ISBN 978-2-86642-702-3). Based on 30 years of interviews with Wilson, Scorsese sketches the career history of one of filmdom's great directors in his own words.
Breakfast at Tiffany's: The Official 50th Anniversary Companion by Sarah Gristwood (Sept., $29.95; ISBN 978-0-8478-3671-0) celebrates the iconic film's half-century anniversary.
I Love Lucy: A Celebration of All Things Lucy—Inside the World of Television's First Great Sitcom by Elisabeth Edwards (Sept., hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-762-43976-8) marks Lucy's 60th anniversary with rare backstage and personal photos plus previously unpublished (and unexpurgated?) commentary.
The Ultimate Book of Gangster Movies: Featuring the 100 Greatest Gangster Films of All Time by George Anastasia and Glen Macnow (Sept., paper, $20, ISBN 978-0-762-44154-9) provides extensive reviews, facts and trivia, and original contributions from actors, directors—and gangsters.
From Yesterday to TODAY: Six Decades of Historical Moments, Unforgettable Segments, and Newsmaking Interviews by Stephen Battaglio (Nov., hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-762-44462-5) celebrates in copious photographs 60 years with personal recollections from anchors and principal players.
Elizabeth Taylor: Her Place in the Sun by Cindy De La Hoz (Nov., hardcover, $35, ISBN 978-0-762-44045-0). This lavishly illustrated book celebrates Taylor's most memorable film performances at the peak of her career in the 1950s and '60s.
Simon & Schuster
The Nation's Stage: The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, 1971–2011 by Michael Dolan (Oct., hardcover, $40, ISBN 978-1-4516-2944-6) traces the Kennedy Center's artistic and educational legacy and its contributions to the hearts and minds of millions of Americans.
Chaplin: A Life by Stephen M. Weissman (Nov., paper, $14.95, ISBN 978-1-61145-040-8). A professor at the Washington School of Psychiatry, Weissman examines the life and work of filmdom's comic genius from a psychoanalytical perspective, focusing on his childhood and early career.
Marilyn: Intimate Exposures by Susan Bernard (Oct., hardcover, $35, ISBN 978-1-4027-8001-1) celebrates Monroe's vibrant life and remembers her tragic death—2012 will mark its 50th anniversary. The photos, by noted Hollywood photographer Bruno Bernard (Susan's father), include the famed shot of Marilyn standing over a subway grate.
More than Just a Kiss: The Greatest Love Movies by Robert Marich (Oct., $19.95, ISBN 978-885440610-0) explores the enduring appeal of romantic films, collecting 55 memorable moments on the silver screen (where a kiss is never just a kiss)—from the black-and-white era to today's blockbusters.
St. Martin's/Thomas Dunne Books
And Nothing but the Truthiness: The Rise (and Further Rise) of Stephen Colbert by Lisa Rogak (Oct., hardcover, $25.99, ISBN 978-0-312-61610-6). A funny, personal portrait of the comedian who became the headline-making, ground-breaking star of The Colbert Report.
St. Martin's Griffin
The Good, the Bad, and the Godawful: 21st-Century Movie Reviews by Kurt Loder (Nov., paper, $19.99, ISBN 978-0-312-641634). The former Rolling Stone reviewer and MTV host makes his bid to be the Roger Ebert of the Millennial generation—but cooler!
Pedro Almodóvar Archives by Pedro Almodóvar and Vicente Foix (Nov., $200, ISBN 978-3-8365-0283-2) explores the sexy, colorful, and often controversial works of the Iberian cinema auteur who's graduated from enfant terrible to Oscar-winning director of All About My Mother.
Expanded Cinema: Art, Performance, Film by A.L. Rees et al. (Sept., paper, $32.50, ISBN 978-1-5437-974-0) explores the influence of video art on new media technologies as it traces multiscreen cinema from early abstract film to multimedia experiments of the 1960s and '70s, and new perspectives on pioneers like Schneemann and Vanderbeek.
Taylor Trade Publishing
Best Flix: The 6,000 Films You Must See Before You Die by Jay Robert Nash (Dec., hardcover, $60, ISBN 978-1-58979-646-1). This A–Z encyclopedia provides comprehensive annotations of the top films, from 1914 to the latest Oscar nominees.
The Complete Three Stooges by Jon Solomon (Sept., paper, $34.95, ISBN 978-0-85768-298-7) yuks it up with Larry, Moe, and Curly—the celebrated comedy trio whose work spanned almost 40 years, more than 200 films, and still appears on TV every day of the week all over the world.
Piers Morgan: The Biography by Emily Herbert (Sept., hardcover, $26.95, ISBN 978-1-84358-351-6) investigates the man who scored one of TV's hottest gigs, replacing Larry King on his CNN show. In addition to chatting up celebrities and famously getting sacked at the Mirror, among other escapades, he's penned several books, most recently Don't You Know Who I Am? (Ebury, 2008).
Cary Grant: A Life in Pictures by Yann-Brice Dherbier (Dec., hardcover, $39.95, ISBN 978-1-86205-924-5). Born into poverty in England, Archibald Leach transformed himself into Cary Grant and became rich and famous in America, an icon of gentlemanly style and an international star of more than 70 films.
James Dean by George Perry (Jan., paper, $22.95, ISBN 978-0-9564942-7-6). Timed to coincide with the 80th anniversary of Dean's birth, this biography includes popular and previously unpublished photos of the archetypal screen icon who lived fast and died young.
Movies: From the Silent Classics of the Silver Screen to the Digital and 3-D Era by Philip Kemp (Oct., hardcover, $35, ISBN 978-0-7893-2262-3) assesses the key writers, directors, and films of every genre, with an emphasis on influences across time, culture, and geography.
Univ. of California Press
Myrna Loy: The Only Good Girl in Hollywood by Emily W. Leider (Oct., hardcover, $34.95, ISBN 978-0-520-25320-9). Offering a slice of studio-era history, the first biography of the sophisticated star traces her life and her unprecedented career, which spanned six decades.
Fork on the Left, Knife in the Back by Michael Musto (Sept., paper, $15.95, ISBN 978-1-936467-10-5). This rollicking and cutting view of our gossip-laden pop culture—and how it got that way—features the myriad contributions of Musto's Village Voice zingers.
Pauline Kael: A Life in the Dark by Brian Kellow (Oct., hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0-670-02312-7). The first biography of the New Yorker's influential, candid, and controversial film critic.
Wayne State Univ. Press
The Fugitive by David P. Pierson (Nov., paper, $14.95, ISBN 78-0-8143-3429-4). A social, cultural, historical, and institutional analysis of the classic original series; TV Milestones series.
Wesleyan Univ. Press
The Actor Within: Intimate Conversations with Great Actors by Rose Eichenbaum (Oct., hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-8195-6952-3) delves into the lives of 35 celebrated actors through conversations and revealing portraits (also by Eichenbaum). Subjects include Stockard Channing, William H. Macy, Ellen Burstyn, Ed Harris, and Joe Mantegna.