Hollywood on the Hudson: Film and Television in New York from Griffith to Sarnoff
Thomas Edison invented his motion picture system in New Jersey in the 1890s, and within a few years most American filmmakers could be found within a mile or two of the Hudson River. They planted themselves here because they needed the artistic and entrepreneurial energy that D. W. Griffith realized New York had in abundance. But as the going rate for land and labor skyrocketed and their business grew more industrialized, most of them moved out. The way most historians explain it, the role of New York in the development of American film ends here.
In Hollywood on the Hudson, Richard Koszarski rewrites an important part of the history of American cinema. During the 1920s and 1930s, film industry executives had centralized the mass production of feature pictures in a series of gigantic film factories scattered across Southern California, while maintaining New York as the economic and administrative center. But as Koszarski reveals, many writers, producers, and directors also continued to work here, especially if their independent vision was too big for the Hollywood production line.
East Coast filmmakers-Oscar Micheaux, Rudolph Valentino, Ben Hecht, Charles MacArthur, Paul Robeson, Gloria Swanson, Max Fleischer, and others-quietly created a studio system without back-lots, long-term contracts or seasonal production slates. They substituted "newsreel photography" for Hollywood glamour, targeted niche audiences instead of middle-American families, ignored accepted dramatic conventions, and pushed the boundaries of motion picture censorship. Rebellious and unconventional, they saw the New York studios as laboratories, not factories-and used them to pioneer the development of new technologies (from talkies to television), new genres, new talent, and ultimately, an entirely new vision of commercial cinema.
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Koszarski, Richard. Hollywood on the Hudson: Film and Television in New York from Griffith to Sarnoff. Rutgers Univ. 2008. 576p. photogs. index. FILM~ Koszarski examines the early years when U.S ... Read full review
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Hollywood on the Hudson: Film and Television in New York from Griffith to ...
No preview available - 2010
actors Adolph Zukor AFI Catalog Allan Dwan animation announced appeared April Astoria studio audiences August Billy Rose Billy Rose Collection Biograph studio broadcast Broadway camera cameraman cartoons cinema City comedies crew D. W. Griffith December directed director documentary Dwan East Coast Emperor Jones ERPI Exhibitors February film production film’s filmmakers Fleischer Florey Folsey footage George Goldwyn Hearst Hollywood January Jenkins Jersey July June Koszarski Lasky later Long Island Mamoulian March Micheaux Monta Bell motion picture industry movie Movietone Moving Image Museum musical newsreel NYPL October operation Oscar Micheaux Paramount Pathé Phonofilm played Press radio released Sarnoff scenes screen script Selznick September shooting Short Shots silent sound film stage star Street Swanson talkies talking pictures television theater theatrical tion two-reel Vitagraph Vitaphone Walter Wanger Wanger Warners West Coast William Yiddish York York’s Zukor