Popular Filmgoing in 1930s Britain: A Choice of Pleasures

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University of Exeter Press, 2000 - Performing Arts - 316 pages
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In the 1930s there were close to a billion annual admissions to the cinema in Britain and it was by far the most popular paid-for leisure activity. This book is an exploration of that popularity. John Sedgwick has developed the POPSTAT index, a methodology based on exhibition records which allows identification of the most popular films and the leading stars of the period, and provides a series of tables which will serve as standard points of reference for all scholars and specialists working in the field of 1930s cinema. The book establishes similarities and differences between national and regional tastes through detailed case study analysis of cinemagoing in Bolton and Brighton, and offers an analysis of genre development. It also reveals that although Hollywood continued to dominate the British market, films emanating from British studios proved markedly popular with domestic audiences.






 

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Contents

A Matter of Taste
23
The Context
39
Tables
41
Measuring Popularity
55
Shares in the British Market
84
Popular Films and their Stars in Bolton Worktown
102
Profits Film Budgets and Popularity
143
Stardom andHits
180
Michael Balcons Close Encounter with the American Market
211
Difficulties Facing the Production Sector of the British
230
Conclusion
246
Notes
277
Figures
285
References
307
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About the author (2000)


John Sedgwick is Principal Research Fellow at the University of North London.


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