At a time when the studio is making a stunning comeback, film historian Thomas Schatz provides an indispensable account of Hollywood's tradional blend of business and art. This book lays to rest the persistent myth that businesspeople and producers stifle artistic talent and reveals instead the genius of a system of collaboration and conflict. Working from industry documents, Schatz traces the development of house styles, the rise and fall of careers, and the making-and unmaking-of movies, from Frankenstein to Spellbound to Grand Hotel. Richly illustrated and highly readable, The Genius of the System gives the definitive view of the workings of the Old Hollywood and the foundations of the New.
Thomas Schatz, Professor of Radio-TV-Film at the University of Texas in Austin, is also the author of Hollywood Genres.