Pretty People: Movie Stars of the 1990s

Overview

In the 1990s, American civil society got upended and reordered as many social, cultural, political, and economic institutions were changed forever. Pretty People examines a wide range of Hollywood icons who reflect how stardom in that decade was transformed as the nation itself was signaling significant changes to familiar ideas about gender, race, ethnicity, age, class, sexuality, and nationality.

Such actors as Denzel Washington, Andy Garcia, Halle Berry, Angela Bassett, Will ...

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Pretty People: Movie Stars of the 1990s

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Overview

In the 1990s, American civil society got upended and reordered as many social, cultural, political, and economic institutions were changed forever. Pretty People examines a wide range of Hollywood icons who reflect how stardom in that decade was transformed as the nation itself was signaling significant changes to familiar ideas about gender, race, ethnicity, age, class, sexuality, and nationality.

Such actors as Denzel Washington, Andy Garcia, Halle Berry, Angela Bassett, Will Smith, Jennifer Lopez, and Antonio Banderas became bona fide movie stars who carried major films to amazing box-office success. Five of the decade’s top ten films were opened by three women—Julia Roberts, Jodie Foster, and Whoopi Goldberg. “Chick flick” entered the lexicon as Leonardo DiCaprio became the “King of the World,” ushering in the cult of the mega celebrity. Tom Hanks and Tom Cruise defined screen masculinity as stark contrasts between “the regular guy” and “the intense guy” while the roles of Michael Douglas exemplified the endangered “Average White Male.” A fascinating composite portrait of 1990s Hollywood and its stars, this collection marks the changes to stardom and society at century’s end.

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Editorial Reviews

Choice

"Everett assembles a coterie of capable scholars to investigate changes in society, popular culture, and stardom during the 1990s. Several chapters shine with insight. Everett's chapter on the talents of the iconoclastic Johnny Depp delights as it instructs. Recommended."
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Product Details

Meet the Author

ANNA EVERETT is a professor of film and media studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is the author of Returning the Gaze: A Genealogy of Black Film Criticism, 1909–1949 and Digital Diaspora: A Race for Cyberspace and founding editor of the journal Screening Noir.

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Table of Contents


Acknowledgments
Introduction

1. Arnold Schwarzenegger: Corporeal Charisma

2. Jodie Foster: Feminist Hero?

3. Denzel Washington: A Revisionist Black Masculinity

4. Julia Roberts: Cultural Phenomenon

5. Leonardo DiCaprio: King of the “World”

6. Antonio Banderas, Andy Garcia, and Edward James Olmos: Stardom, Masculinity, and “Latinidades”

7. Tom Hanks and Tom Cruise: The Box Office and “True Masculinity”

8. Angela Bassett and Halle Berry: African American Leading Ladies

9. Michael Douglas: An Ordinary Man

10. Pierce Brosnan: Licensed to Sell

11. Johnny Depp and Keanu Reeves: Hollywood and the Iconoclasts

In the Wings

Works Cited
Contributors
Index

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