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Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Joseph McBride

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
book
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.001.0001
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

Moviegoers often assume Frank Capra’s life resembled his beloved films (such as Mr. Smith Goes to Washington and It’s a Wonderful Life). A man of the people faces tremendous odds and, by doing the ... More


. A Reputation

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0020
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter focuses on Capra’s life after retiring from films. Capra initially threw himself into the ranching business with the energy he once had devoted to his films. He planted thousands of new ... More


. American Madness

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0009
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter focuses on the film American Madness, which featured a banker for a hero at a time when the public image of the banker was near its lowest. It describes Capra’s embrace of a Rooseveltian ... More


. “That fellow Capra”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0016
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter recounts Capra’ army experiences during World War II. Capra accepted his wartime anonymity, managing to subordinate his ego to a higher loyalty. He performed brilliantly in carrying out ... More


. “Cap”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0004
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter recounts Capra’s college years at Throop College of Technology in Pasadena. The snobbery Capra had encountered at Manual Arts High School fueled his drive for acceptance in mainstream ... More


. “I’m from Hollywood”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0005
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter recounts Capra’s life after being discharged from the army on December 13, 1918. Capra found his first verifiable full-time job in the movies in 1919, at the Christie Film Company, a ... More


. “The catastrophe of Success”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0010
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter focuses on Capra’s successful film career. Lady for a Day was the first film for which Capra received an Academy Award nomination for best director, and was also an artistic and ... More


. “The Judas pain”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0019
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter recounts how Capra turned his back on his colleagues and joined the ranks of witch-hunters seeking to purge Hollywood of “subversive” influences. It describes Capra’s involvement in the ... More


. The Gag Man

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0006
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter recounts Capra’s stint as a Hollywood gag man between 1924 and 1927. Capra started with the Hal Roach Studios in Culver City, and also worked for the Hollywood Photoplay Company on two ... More


. “Marrying the harlot”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0007
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter details Capra’s early film career. Capra went to work for Columbia Pictures on October 1927, who he claimed called him in for interview because his name appeared at the top of an ... More


. Liberty

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0017
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter focuses on Capra’s career after his leaving the army. Capra was hoping to pick up where he had left off in Hollywood when Pearl Harbor interrupted his career. Just as he was doing then, ... More


. “We’re the Front Office”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0015
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter, which focuses on Capra’s career after severing ties with Columbia in October 1939, describes the making of the films Meet John Doe and Arsenic and Old Lace. On December 12, 1941, five ... More


. “The doghouse”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0012
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter focuses on how the film Lost Horizon caused lasting damage to Capra’s career. The film went over its budget and took more than five years to recover its cost. It caused a grave financial ... More


Cinema as a Medium of Sentiment

James Chandler

in An Archaeology of Sympathy: The Sentimental Mode in Literature and Cinema

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780226034959
eISBN:
9780226035000
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:
10.7208/chicago/9780226035000.003.0004
Subject:
Literature, 18th-century Literature

This chapter looks at how Mr. Deeds Goes to Town remakes Platinum Blonde, to decisive effect for the account of Capra's sense of his medium, and at how Mr. Smith Goes to Washington in turn remakes ... More


. “The Man in the Street”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0008
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter details Capra’s film career in the 1930s. Capra’s films during this period sometimes espoused positions that he personally opposed, and under the pressure of the social unrest of the ... More


Capra's America

James Chandler

in An Archaeology of Sympathy: The Sentimental Mode in Literature and Cinema

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780226034959
eISBN:
9780226035000
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:
10.7208/chicago/9780226035000.003.0002
Subject:
Literature, 18th-century Literature

This chapter discusses the films of Frank Capra, including Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939) and It's a Wonderful Life (1946); how Capra appeared to realize the long-term significance of television ... More


. “I hated america”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0002
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter recounts Capra’s grueling voyage to and arrival in America with his family in 1903. The journey took thirteen days. Eight days out, on May 18, Capra marked his sixth birthday. On Sunday ... More


An Archaeology of Sympathy: The Sentimental Mode in Literature and Cinema

James Chandler

Published in print:
2013
Published Online:
January 2014
ISBN:
9780226034959
eISBN:
9780226035000
Item type:
book
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:
10.7208/chicago/9780226035000.001.0001
Subject:
Literature, 18th-century Literature

In the middle of the eighteenth century, something new made itself felt in European culture—a tone or style that came to be called the sentimental. The sentimental mode went on to shape not just ... More


Golden Silence

Gabriella Oldham and Mabel Langdon

in Harry Langdon: King of Silent Comedy

Published in print:
2017
Published Online:
September 2017
ISBN:
9780813169651
eISBN:
9780813169996
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
DOI:
10.5810/kentucky/9780813169651.003.0003
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

Chapter 2 notes the beginning of the film industry and the downfall of vaudeville, causing Langdon to move from stage to screen. In March 1923 at the Hillstreet Theatre, Langdon was “discovered,” and ... More


. “I felt nothing”

McBride Joseph

in Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success

Published in print:
2011
Published Online:
March 2014
ISBN:
9781604738384
eISBN:
9781604738391
Item type:
chapter
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:
10.14325/mississippi/9781604738384.003.0001
Subject:
Film, Television and Radio, Film

This chapter describes Capra’s return to his birthplace, the Sicilian village of Bisacquino, on April 29, 1977. His visit was part of an elaborately orchestrated Italian tour on behalf of the U. S. ... More


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