Hide in Plain Sight: The Hollywood Blacklistees in Film and by Paul Buhle

By Paul Buhle

Hidden in undeniable Sight completes Buhle and Wagner's trilogy at the Hollywood blacklist. while the blacklistees have been hounded out of Hollywood, a few left for tv the place many labored on kid's exhibits like "Rocky and Bullwinkle." a bunch wrote grownup sitcoms equivalent to The Donna Reed Show, and M*A*S*H whereas a few of them finally again to Hollywood and made nice motion pictures corresponding to Norma Rae, and Midnight Cowboy. it is a considerate examine the aftermath of the horror that used to be the McCarthy interval from specialist historians of the blacklist period.

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Additional info for Hide in Plain Sight: The Hollywood Blacklistees in Film and Television, 1950-2002

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Cinema had its beginnings in the storefront benches of immigrant neighborhoods, its techniques located squarely within popular melodrama, adding more than a dash of the circus, the carnival, the religious festival and assorted historic mass entertainments. But by the 1920s, the film industry already had begun to affirm its social aspirations to move onward and upward toward the preferred consumer. Radical critics, who played important roles in the emergence of modern theater a generation or more before the advent of popular films and television, naturally feared that movies would reduce the artistic possibilities of the theater by making cinema its mechanically reproduced replacement, now with its political LIVING ROOM MODERNISM / 9 and avant-garde heart removed.

As the Group dissolved, Ritt moved on to other acting jobs until his induction into the Air Force in 1943. There he found himself “drafted” into theater and films again, tapped for a supporting role in the Hollywood version of Winged Victory (1944), a home front morale-booster. By the time of his 1946 discharge, Ritt was off and running. His most notable direction before turning to television was a stage dramatization of the life of Denmark Vesey, the hero and martyr who guided a slave rebellion in 1823 that shocked the 18 / HIDE IN PLAIN SIGHT South.

Now, everything that had been gained might be lost—a glum sentiment reinforced as global film production came to be centered in Hollywood, where twenties’ capitalism ceaselessly celebrated its triumph and, most hypocritically, its virtue. The pessimism, like earlier optimism about the theater, turned out to be overblown, or at least misdirected. Outside of Russia and Germany, the mainstream of the theatrical tradition had never transcended the triumphant march of middle-class realism, apart from a gentle ribbing of the subjects, while the plot complications of gender and class were most often played for conservative purposes.

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