Buccaneer: James Stuart Blackton and the Birth of American Movies

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Rowman & Littlefield, Apr 15, 2016 - Performing Arts - 312 pages
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A man of many film firsts, James Stuart Blackton promoted motion pictures as a mass commercial medium by creating the first true movie studio, adopting the star system, pioneering film animation, and publishing Motion Picture Magazine, one of the first film periodicals. As much of a seminal figure to the film industry as Thomas Edison and D.W. Griffith, James Stuart Blackton nonetheless remains unknown to most film enthusiasts and even many cinema scholars.

In Buccaneer: James Stuart Blackton and the Birth of American Movies Donald Dewey recounts the drama, intrigue, and romance of this motion picture trailblazer. A gifted director, producer, and founder of Vitagraph studios, Blackton’s personal escapades were nearly as dramatic as his contributions to the medium he helped establish. Decades ahead of his time, Blackton also played a critical role in propagating war-time sentiment during both the Spanish-American War and World War I and was an influence on such key historical figures as Theodore Roosevelt.

A fascinating look into the life of a truly distinguished filmmaker, Buccaneer narrates the volatile world of the early motion picture industry, as influenced by a man whose own story rivaled anything on screen. A must read for film lovers, this book will also prove to be invaluable to readers with an interest in American history.
 

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Contents

1 Fish and Chips Tales
1
2 In America
9
3 Wives and Widows
17
4 Movie Magic
25
5 Burglaries
37
6 War Is Good
45
7 Real Wars and the Other Kind
55
8 Wizardry
63
18 IndependentSort Of
169
19 Dont Arise Sir James
177
20 At Homes with the Blacktons
191
21 The Eagle Has Crashed
203
22 Other Dimensions
213
23 The NotSoGreat Depression
221
24 Parading On
229
25 Gin and Ham
239

9 Division of Labors
75
10 Whats Playing
85
11 Reaching for Couth
97
12 New Sets
105
13 Star Powers
113
14 Longer Views
127
15 The Commodore
139
16 General Chaos
149
17 The High Cost of Peace
157
26 Last Glorious Adventures
247
Epilogue
253
Appendix A
259
Appendix B
265
Notes
267
Bibliography
287
Index
291
About the Author
297
Copyright

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About the author (2016)

Donald Dewey has written hundreds of magazine stories and articles, many about the film industry. He is the author of more than thirty books of fiction, nonfiction, and drama, including Marcello Mastroianni: His Life and Art (1993), James Stewart: A Biography (1997), and Lee J. Cobb: Characters of an Actor (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014).

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