Competing with Hollywood: National Film Industries Outside Hollywood

Paul Grainge, Mark Jancovich and Sharon Monteith

in Film Histories

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print January 2007 | ISBN: 9780748619061
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748670888 | DOI:
Competing with Hollywood: National Film Industries Outside Hollywood

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This chapter discusses the competitors of the American film industry. The German film industry competed most successfully with America in that its domestic productions outweighed foreign imports in the 1920s, and Britain put up a very good fight at the box office, with 1927 its annus mirabilis. However, protectionist measures would characterise a decade in which national cinemas sought to hold their own against Hollywood's incursions into other national cinemas. The American challenge to European and other cinemas was also underwritten by the federal support that the American film industry received from the US Government's Commerce Department, designed to support a developing industry. The chapter also includes the study, ‘Social Mobility and the Fantastic: German Silent Cinema’ by Thomas Elsaesser, a revisionist study that pays tribute to two classic film studies of the era — Siegfried Kracauer's sociological From Caligari to Hitler (1947) and Lotte Eisner's aesthetic study The Haunted Screen (1969). Elsaesser critiques what had become their ‘consensus’ view of the cinema of the period.

Keywords: American film industry; German films; British films; competition; national cinemas; protectionism; Thomas Elsaesser; film history

Chapter.  13812 words. 

Subjects: Film

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