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Hollywood Stardom

Paul McDonald

ISBN: 978-1-118-32166-9 November 2012 Wiley-Blackwell 352 Pages


By integrating star studies and film industry studies, Hollywood Stardom reveals the inextricable bonds between culture and commerce in contemporary notions of film stardom.

  • Integrates the traditions of star studies and industry studies to establish an original and innovative mode of analysis whereby the ‘star image’ is replaced with the ‘star brand’
  • Offers the first extensive analysis of stardom in the ‘post-studio’ era
  • Combines genre, narrative, acting, and discourse analysis with aspects of marketing theory and the economic analysis of the film market
  • Draws on an extensive body of research data not previously deployed in film scholarship
  • A wide range of star examples are explored including George Clooney, Mel Gibson, Tom Cruise, Daniel Day-Lewis, Tom Hanks, Will Smith, and Julia Roberts

List of Figures vii

List of Tables ix

Acknowledgments x

Introduction 1

Part One: Star Business 9

1 The Symbolic Commerce of Hollywood Stardom 11

2 Star-as-Brand 41

3 The Extraordinary Ordinariness of Tom Hanks 65

Part Two: Star System 85

4 Post-Studio Stardom 87

5 Money and Talent 123

6 “The Will Smith Business” 155

Part Three: Star Performance 179

7 Spectacular Acts 181

8 Prestige Stardom and the Awards System 215

9 Starring Julia Roberts 254

10 Conclusion 281

Appendix: Academy Award Nominees and Winners in the Actress and Actor in a Leading Role Categories, 1990–2009 285

References 291

Index 315

"In Hollywood Stardom the relationship between Hollywood modes of production and economic film theory is given the importance that it deserves ... It is clear that Paul McDonald knows a great deal about Hollywood movie stars."
Cassone: The International Online Magazine of Art and Art Books (June 2013)