Showing posts from January, 2013

CFP: Lasting Stars edited volume


Lasting Stars: Personas that Endure and Images that Fade

Lucy Bolton and Julie Lobalzo Wright, editors

Project Overview:
Film star studies have often focused on star images noted for their longevity and enduring status. The question of longevity, however, has been largely buried beneath the surface of the discipline. Although many studies have touched on the prolonged existence of some film stars, few studies have tackled longevity as a vital aspect of stardom. Underpinning longevity and film stardom are issues of aging, charisma, emblematic status, type and uniqueness, suggesting that many issues contribute to the lasting status of star images. In fact, these same areas factor into the fading of a star image, illustrating how closely success and failure are linked.

This collection of essays seek to fill the gap in star studies by addressing the issue of longevity through an examination of the various factors that affect the staying power or decline of a star’s persona.…

Craftsperson Auteurism

I've been working on an essay on cinematography which, among other things, is wrestling with what it means to understand the cinematographer as an artist. And by happenstance, I watched on Mubi a documentary on production design, The Man on Lincoln's Nose (Daniel Raim, 2000). Like other documentaries of its kind (namely Visions of Light), the tone of the documentary (on designer Robert Boyle) is entirely laudatory. What I noticed was that the praise came in a rhetoric of execution: the craftsperson was an artist because she/he was able to take a vision explicit from the director and implicit from the story and actualize this vision into a visual form.

But there's at least another potential way of understand the art of the Hollywood craftsperson, as stylistic autonomy from the directorial vision. This is not how craftspeople in the classical Hollywood would have thought about themselves, at least not in public and perhaps not in private. They were wedded to the execution-fu…