First Hollywood: Florida and the Golden Age of Silent Filmmaking

Overview

"Jacksonville, Florida, was once the king of the silent film industry. Devastated by fire in 1901 and rebuilt in a wide variety of architectural styles capable of mimicking other locales, the city shared geographic and meteorological conditions also common to southern California. The city was soon discovered to be an ideal location for northern film production companies eager to relocate from the expense and often inhospitable weather of New York." "In 1908, New York-based Kalem Studios sent its first crew to Jacksonville. By 1914, fifteen major
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The First Hollywood: Florida and the Golden Age of Silent Filmmaking

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Overview

"Jacksonville, Florida, was once the king of the silent film industry. Devastated by fire in 1901 and rebuilt in a wide variety of architectural styles capable of mimicking other locales, the city shared geographic and meteorological conditions also common to southern California. The city was soon discovered to be an ideal location for northern film production companies eager to relocate from the expense and often inhospitable weather of New York." "In 1908, New York-based Kalem Studios sent its first crew to Jacksonville. By 1914, fifteen major companies - including Fox and Metro Pictures - had set up shop there. Oliver Hardy, D. W. Griffith, Mary Pickford, and the Barrymores all made movies in the Florida sunshine. In total, nearly 300 films, including the first Technicolor picture ever made, were completed in Florida by 1928." But storm clouds hovered over the city: even as Hollywood's boosters sought to discredit this burgeoning Florida film capital, Jacksonville imploded under the strain of political upheaval, simmering racial tensions, disease, and World War I. Shawn Bean uses personal accounts, filmmaker biographies, newspaper reports, and city and museum archives to bring to light a little-known aspect of film history.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813032436
  • Publisher: University Press of Florida
  • Publication date: 7/28/2008
  • Edition description: First
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Sales rank: 1,389,996
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author


Shawn C. Bean has twice been named Writer of the Year by the Florida Magazine Association. He is a former music and theater reviewer for the Miami New Times and current contributor to Florida Travel & Life and Miami.
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Table of Contents

1 New Year's Day, twentieth century 5

2 A city burns 19

3 Kalem comes to town 32

4 Meanwhile, on the West Coast 50

5 A film town is born 62

7 The boom goes boom 91

8 Reel people 106

9 The industry moves on 123

10 Jacksonville : act three 145

Film listing 161

Notes 169

Bibliography 181

Index 187

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