Please note: In order to keep Hive up to date and provide users with the best features, we are no longer able to fully support Internet Explorer. The site is still available to you, however some sections of the site may appear broken. We would encourage you to move to a more modern browser like Firefox, Edge or Chrome in order to experience the site fully.

Hollywood's Embassies : How Movie Theaters Projected American Power Around the World, Paperback / softback Book

Hollywood's Embassies : How Movie Theaters Projected American Power Around the World Paperback / softback

Part of the Film and Culture Series series

Paperback / softback


Beginning in the 1920s, audiences around the globe were seduced not only by Hollywood films but also by lavish movie theaters that were owned and operated by the major American film companies.

These theaters aimed to provide a quintessentially "American" experience.

Outfitted with American technology and accoutrements, they allowed local audiences to watch American films in an American-owned cinema in a distinctly American way. In a history that stretches from Buenos Aires and Tokyo to Johannesburg and Cairo, Ross Melnick considers these movie houses as cultural embassies.

He examines how the exhibition of Hollywood films became a constant flow of political and consumerist messaging, selling American ideas, products, and power, especially during fractious eras.

Melnick demonstrates that while Hollywood's marketing of luxury and consumption often struck a chord with local audiences, it was also frequently tone-deaf to new social, cultural, racial, and political movements.

He argues that the story of Hollywood's global cinemas is not a simple narrative of cultural and industrial indoctrination and colonization.

Instead, it is one of negotiation, booms and busts, successes and failures, adoptions and rejections, and a precursor to later conflicts over the spread of American consumer culture.

A truly global account, Hollywood's Embassies shows how the entanglement of worldwide movie theaters with American empire offers a new way of understanding film history and the history of U.S. soft power.




Free Home Delivery

on all orders

Pick up orders

from local bookshops


Also in the Film and Culture Series series  |  View all