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date: 08 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The scholarship on American film adaptations is surprisingly ahistorical, neglecting the institutional and production history of Hollywood film. Chapter 38 attempts a more historical approach. Concentrating on the 1930s, it discusses how stories were chosen, what kinds of stories were chosen, and how stories were shaped in the film production process, identifying the screenwriter and the supervising producer as key contributors to adaptation. Statistical tables provide information on the percentage of novel, play, and short story adaptations made in each year between 1931 and 1940. Critiquing both the auteur theory and Robert Stam’s intertextuality for their lack of interest in production history, the essay calls for more archival research and more attention to the production process.

Keywords: film, Hollywood, screenwriter, supervising producer, production process

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