Film Adaptation in the Hollywood Studio Era

Film Adaptation in the Hollywood Studio Era

by Guerric DeBona
     
 

ISBN-10: 0252035410

ISBN-13: 9780252035418

Pub. Date: 05/13/2010

Publisher: University of Illinois Press

In this exceptional contribution to literary adaptation studies, Guerric DeBona shifts the focus away from determining a film's allegiance to the original source and redirects the conversation to the industrial choices, audience responses, and socio-cultural factors that contribute to the construction of the cinematic text.

Film Adaptation in the Hollywood Studio

…  See more details below

Overview

In this exceptional contribution to literary adaptation studies, Guerric DeBona shifts the focus away from determining a film's allegiance to the original source and redirects the conversation to the industrial choices, audience responses, and socio-cultural factors that contribute to the construction of the cinematic text.

Film Adaptation in the Hollywood Studio Era analyzes the intertextuality, cultural value, and authorship of four films from the 1920s to the 1950s based on canonical British and American novels. This unique methodological alternative to formalist "fidelity" approaches to literary adaptations blends archival research with DeBona's own deft and culturally rich interpretations of David Copperfield (1935), Heart of Darkness (1939), The Long Voyage Home (1940), and The Red Badge of Courage (1951).

Emphasizing the historical and cultural contexts as well as political and economic filmmaking decisions, DeBona reveals how high-minded source material from literary luminaries Charles Dickens, Joseph Conrad, Eugene O'Neill, and Stephen Crane did not necessarily translate to prestigious or credible films during the studio era. He also considers how such films led to a new set of industry standards and audience expectations in film after World War II. Through this hermeneutic and historical approach, DeBona argues that the films are examples of what French film critic André Bazin termed "mixed cinema," and not solely the transformation of one work of art to another medium.

Building on the work of mid-twentieth-century French auteurs from Cahiers du Cinéma and incorporating contemporary film criticism, DeBona presents a fully realized methodological alternative to the formalist approach of "fidelity critics" and conclusively demonstrates the importance of historical context to adaptation studies.

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780252035418
Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
Publication date:
05/13/2010
Edition description:
1st Edition
Pages:
195
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

Contents

Acknowledgments....................ix
1. Is There a Novel in This Film? or The Cultural Politics of Film Adaptation....................1
2. A Victorian New Deal: Dickens, the Great Depression, and MGM's David Copperfield (1935)....................37
3. Into Africa: Orson Welles and Heart of Darkness....................64
4. Filmed Theater: John Ford's The Long Voyage Home (1940)....................94
5. Canon Fire: John Huston's The Red Badge of Courage (1951)....................125
Notes....................155
Index....................191

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >