Escape Artist : The Life and Films of John Sturges Paperback / softback
by Glenn Lovell
Part of the Wisconsin Film Studies series
Escape Artist - based on Glenn Lovell's extensive interviews with John Sturges, his wife and children, and numerous stars, including Clint Eastwood, Robert Duvall, and Jane Russell - is the first biography of the director of such acclaimed films as ""The Magnificent Seven"", ""The Great Escape"", and ""Bad Day at Black Rock"".
Lovell examines Sturges' childhood in California during the Great Depression; his apprenticeship in the editing department of RKO Pictures, where he worked on such films as ""Gunga Din"" and ""Of Human Bondage""; his service in the Army Air Corps in World War II; and his emergence as one of the first independent producer-directors in Hollywood.Chronicling the filmmaker's relationships with such luminaries as Spencer Tracy, James Garner, Yul Brynner, and Frank Sinatra, ""Escape Artist"" interweaves biography with critical analyses of Sturges' hits and misses.
Along the way, Lovell addresses the reasons why Sturges has been overlooked in the ongoing discussion of postwar Hollywood and explores the director's focus on masculinity, machismo, and male-bonding in big-budget, ensemble action films.
Lovell also examines Sturges' aesthetic sensibility, his talent for composing widescreen images, and his uncanny ability to judge raw talent - including that of Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, and James Coburn, all of whom began their careers in Sturges' movies.This long overdue study of a major Hollywood director will find a welcome home in the libraries of film scholars, action movie buffs, and anyone interested in the popular culture of the twentieth century.
- Format: Paperback / softback
- Pages: 352 pages, 20 b/w illustrations
- Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press
- Publication Date: 15/10/2008
- Category: Films, cinema
- ISBN: 9780299228347