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Title: Stardom after the star system : economics of performance in contemporary Hollywod cinema
Author: Drake, Philip Justin
Awarding Body: University of Glasgow
Current Institution: University of Glasgow
Date of Award: 2002
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This thesis conducts a study of stardom in contemporary Hollywood cinema through the conceptual models offered by political economy and performance analysis. It suggests that a fuller understanding of the meaning of star texts involves a consideration of industry, of performance, and of interpretative frameworks adopted by audiences. The thesis is structured in two sections: the first examines the political economy of stardom in contemporary Hollywood, presenting an evaluation of industrial changes over the last forty years. The following section builds upon this analysis, focusing on issues of performance and stardom. In Section One, Chapter Two examines stars as both a form of labour and capital, and assesses the extent to which the contemporary freelancing star is able to exploit his or her star image under the package-unit mode of production in Hollywood. It examines how contemporary stars have gained substantial power through the publicity value they accumulate, and argues that their importance to the industry has been underestimated in existing research. It argues that the shift from production as a major activity towards licensing, distribution, and ancillary markets has changed the function of stars in the industry. The importance of the Screen Actors Guild and talent agencies is used as an example of the reconfiguration of this relationship. Chapter Three outlines theories of post-Fordism and considers whether they are able to explain the function of stars in contemporary Hollywood?s mode of production. Turning to questions of property rights, it suggests that the recognition in US law of the right of publicity, and the rise of flexible contracting, had the effect of conferring industrial power on stars. In doing so, it argues that the power of stars was consolidated by the flexible package-unit mode of production and the legal recognition of the right of publicity in US law.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Not available Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: PN1993 Motion Pictures