The Washington Post
Thomas Ince: Hollywood's Independent Pioneerby Brian Taves
Thomas H. Ince (1880--1924) turned movie-making into a business enterprise. Progressing from actor to director and screenwriter, he revolutionized the motion picture industry through developing the role of the producer. In addition to building the first major Hollywood studio facility, dubbed "Inceville," he was responsible for more than 800 films./p>
Thomas H. Ince (1880--1924) turned movie-making into a business enterprise. Progressing from actor to director and screenwriter, he revolutionized the motion picture industry through developing the role of the producer. In addition to building the first major Hollywood studio facility, dubbed "Inceville," he was responsible for more than 800 films.
Thomas Ince: Hollywood's Independent Pioneer chronicles Ince's life from the stage to his sudden death as he was about to join forces with media tycoon William Randolph Hearst. Author Brian Taves explores Ince's impact on Hollywood's production system, the Western, his creation of the first American movies starring Asian performers, and his cinematic exploration of the status of women in society.
Until now, Thomas Ince has not been the subject of a biography. This book offers insight into the world of silent cinema through the story of one of its earliest and most influential moguls.
The Washington Post
"Brian Taves's exhaustive and compelling biography of Thomas Ince documents the career of a valiant independent producer in the early days of Hollywood, a period when the movies became big business. Thanks to Taves's exhaustive research, which documents Ince's working methods, financial arrangements, and filmmaking skills, Ince emerges as a true founder of the industry, along with Adolph Zukor, Carl Laemmle, Cecil B. De Mille and D. W. Griffith." Tino Balio, author of The Foreign Film Renaissance on American Screens, 1946-1973
"For more than half a century, film historians all over the world have been awaiting an authoritative and scrupulously researched biography of American film mogul Thomas H. Ince. Brian Taves has achieved this formidable task, patiently researching in the remotest archives in order to give us a vivid and convincing portrayal not only of a neglected filmmaker, but of his flourishing film company and his independent studio. A must for any cinephile's library." Hervé Dumont, author of Frank Borzage: The Life and Films of a Hollywood Romantic
"I strongly recommend Brian Taves' vanguard study on Thomas Ince as a definitive source. Accessible and free of jargon, Taves makes exemplary use of newly available archival materials with keen analysis of Ince's surviving films to paint a vivid picture of Ince's career as an independent, challenges he faced and overcame, revealing Ince's contribution as an under-recognized innovator in film history. As Taves demonstrates, Ince developed the division of labor and system of specialized roles that dominate Hollywood to this day." Sheri Chinen Biesen, author of Blackout: World War II and the Origins of Film Noir
"Until now, Thomas Ince has not been the subject of a biography. This book offers a glimpse into the world of silent cinema through the story of one of its earliest and most influential moguls." The Silent Treatment
"[Taves] is painstakingly righting nearly a century of wrongheaded, ignorant or deliberately cruel thinking about Ince's character and career." Denver Post
"This fascinating book offers insight into the professional achievements and personal struggles facing Ince during the tumultuous silent movie era." Film Threat
"Filled with unexpected surprises." King Features Syndicate
"Only one third of Ince's features survive.... Taves is less interested in the nature of his subject's cinematic achievement than in what his career reveals of the early film industry, and in particular of the struggles between the monopolistic tendencies of the major studios and a few individuals trying to maintain their independence." Sight & Sound
"Ince was busy making films, not scandal, and it is fitting that this biography treats his business and artistic dealings in detail, for those, and not fictions about his death, are important parts of the larger story of movies." Columbus Dispatch
"Taves explores Ince's impact on Hollywood's production system, the Western, his creation of the first American movies starring Asian performers, and his cinematic exploration of the status of women in society.... A great bio for you film buffs out there." Kick Ass Book Reviews
"Shows just how important [Ince] was to the film business and how many producers model their careers after him today." City Book Review
"The illuminating result is a picture of an extraordinary businessman who virtually invented the role of the producer and the institution of the studio." Virginian Pilot
"Will undoubtedly become a priceless handbook for everyone interested in the history of [the] American film industry." 25fps
Meet the Author
Brian Taves is an archivist with the Library of Congress, where this project began with a staff fellowship award. He is the author of over a hundred articles and six books including P. G. Wodehouse and Hollywood: Screenwriting, Satires and Adaptation; Robert Florey: The French Expressionist; and The Romance of Adventure: The Genre of Historical Adventure Movies. He lives in Culpeper, Virginia.
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