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MGM: Hollywood's Greatest Backlot Hardcover – February 25, 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
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"Reading this was like being there. I know. I was there." Clint Eastwood
"The first ten films I made for MGM changed my life. Now you can go back in timeas I havein the pages of this remarkable book, learning how and where the Land of Make Believe’ became real. Once you take the journey, you, too, will be transported." Angela Lansbury
"What a cornucopia of valuable behind-the-scenes information and rare photos. I’ve got one word to describe this book: Irresistible!" Leonard Maltin
"For anyone who has ever dreamed what it was like to live in the Golden Age of Hollywood, this visit to my grandfather’s studio will vividly re-create the experience." Daniel Mayer Selznick
"This comprehensive history uses detailed text and a wealth of behind the scenes photos to take you through the most storied of major studio lots. If you love classic Hollywood, this book is a knockout." Kenneth Turan
"I was under contract with MGM for six years and twenty four films, and seeing this extraordinary new book of photos and commentary took me, and will take you, on a journey where Louis B. Mayer’s More Stars Than There Are in Heaven’ acted on the magnificent grounds and sets of MGM’s five backlots." Richard Anderson
"What an achievement! Having spent a great deal of time on the backlot myself, this book brought forth so many memories. The description of the last days of MGM is brilliantly done, and the list of films shot on the various sets is incredible. All in all, it’s a spectacular project!" Kevin Brownlow
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Top Customer Reviews
The authors, Stephen Bingen, Stephen X. Sylvester, and Michael Troyer, strive and succeed at bringing to life this studio. Told through a careful selection of photographs from the day (be ready for black and white), as well as a compelling text that begs to be read, the history of the studio unfolds early on (after a wonderful but all too short forward by Debbie Reynolds). Then, the authors go section by section and "deconstruct" the lot. They provide a map of each section, and then go through each part, explaining its significance to the studio and revealing factoids to keep the movie lover or trivia expert up all night devouring the information. Tidbits like "the bridge of sighs", what happened to the famed columned entrance, and Marion Davies' bungalow are there to just whet your whistle.
When the book first arrived, I expected to flip through the pictures and just look at them. However, the writing, and the information, kept pulling me away as I wanted to learn more about what I was seeing. As a result, the authors have done something rather remarkable: they have brought to life this studio unlike anything I've ever seen before.Read more ›
As anyone who watches a lot of movies will tell you, the major Hollywood studios had their own unique style and part of that style was associated with their backlots and movie sets. MGM was the grandest of them all. After all the dust from the former backlots had settled, when I'd go out to California I'd try to figure out what used to be MGM without much luck. It was difficult to determine where the lots once stood and harder still to know where the familiar outdoor sets that appeared in so many great films stood.
This book is incredible. While its size might give the impression that this is one of those fancy coffee table books with plenty of pictures and non-existent text, this book delivers. It is the story of a studio as well as a family of employees and it documents and details the founding of the studio, its boom years, and its slow disintegration. It is heavy with maps, pictures, archival information, and contains a huge amount of information and documentation about how the studio operated and how it was physically laid out. It chronicles the changes that occurred throughout the years as well as the business decisions that triggered those changes.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Amazon tells me that I have now owned this book for 5 years. What a half-decade of pure pleasure I have received from this one purchase! Read morePublished 1 month ago by Backlot Lover
A very interesting book on the the MGM movie studio. It is amazing how they made movies and how real the sets looked. Anyone will enjoy this book.Published 1 month ago by larryb711
This is a two-part review. For the Hollywood history buff, this is a fantastic book to have. I have been lucky enough to have worked a few times on the Sony (former M-G-M) Lot, so... Read morePublished 3 months ago by M. Francis
Entertaining read. Would have liked some more trivia about the stars and backstory on the films.Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
Lovely piece about the great MGM Studios and its complex factory for film makers and film making.Published 9 months ago by Frederick Jee
Great! Full of great pics and interesting stories...but nothing very juicy!Published 10 months ago by Kathryn J. Levitt