All summer we’ve been working closely with filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich to build a new site here on indieWIRE. His new home on the growing indieWIRE Blog Network, appropriately dubbed Blogdanovich, features frequent dispatches on the Golden Age of movies and has just been updated with ten reviews, including classics of the Golden Age, and his first “Best of” list, starting with the year 1929 (when Talkies began in earnest).
The Golden Age of Pictures, as its called by filmmaker Peter Bogdanovich, ran from 1912 – 1962. With that as a starting point, Bogdanovich launched the new site here at indieWIRE.
“The state of movie culture–indeed, the state of culture in the U.S.A.–is at a distressingly low level,” Peter Bogdanovich says in his welcome dispatch. “At film schools all over the country, most of the students act as though picture history begins somewhere around ‘Raging Bull.’ The knowledge of, or interest in, films made during the fifty-year Golden Age of Pictures — 1912-1962 — is generally either non-existent or extremely spotty.”
Peter Bogdanovich considers his blog as a way to develop a direct relationship with his readers. He says, “I’m right here in your own private computer, talking to you.”
On the site, Bogdanovich offers insights harvested from an immersion in Hollywood that began back when he was just getting started as a director. “Since many of the pioneers in the medium were still around when I first came to Hollywood,” he explained, “I decided to put myself through their university, and interviewed extensively, or got to know, numerous filmmakers of the Golden Age just as it came to an end: John Ford, Alfred Hitchcock, Howard Hawks, Orson Welles, Leo McCarey, Josef von Sternberg, Raoul Walsh, King Vidor, Fritz Lang, Samuel Fuller, George Cukor, Frank Capra, Otto Preminger, and many more, including some of the period’s most legendary stars, like Cary Grant, Jimmy Stewart, John Wayne, Frank Sinatra, Audrey Hepburn–I directed her last starring role in a feature–and others. Therefore, if I should drop a name here and there, I’ve earned it, and anyway I’m just the conduit really from their spirit through my reports to you.”
Bogdanovich’s blog delivers essential insights on film. His first crop of reviews on Blogdanovich includes articles on “Casablanca,” “Ball of Fire,” “The Heartbreak Kid,” “High Sierra,” “History is Made at Night,” “Love Affair,” “Meet Me in St. Louis,” “Pickup On South Street,” “Stage Door,” and “A Woman Under the Influence.”
Which picture featured Katharine Hepburn, Ginger Rogers, Lucille Ball, Eve Arden and Ann Miller all in the same film? Who defined a director as, ‘a man who presides over accidents’? What about the similarities between Frank Borzage’s “History is Made at Night” and “Titanic?” Why is Bogdanovich so fond of the 1972 Elaine May – Neil Simon comedy, “The Heartbreak Kid?” Who was originally offered the chance to direct “Casablanca?”
Peter Bogdanovich answers such questions and more. Here at indieWIRE, we’re absolutely thrilled to welcome Peter Bogdanovich!