Books Reviews

MGM: Hollywood’s Greatest Backlot – Book Review

By Jeff Swindoll Mar 10, 2011, 3:56 GMT

MGM: Hollywood’s Greatest Backlot – Book Review

Going behind the scenes at one of Hollywood\'s greatest movie studios, this extraordinary history reveals the untold story of the soundstages and outdoor sets where many of the world\'s greatest films were produced. Featuring candid, previously unpublished photographs from the studio\'s archives and exclusive interviews with actors and staff, this detailed exploration of MGM\'s backlot—the setting for more than a fifth of the films produced prior to 1980—takes film buffs ...more

"Reading this was like being there. I know. I was there."  —Clint Eastwood

That capsule review from the legendary Clint Eastwood basically says it all.  At one time MGM studios roared with life and its backlot was abuzz with activity and all the Hollywood stars that shone in the sky tread there. 

During the studios golden age, the name was synonymous with quality films.  Our modern era finds the once roaring lion a shadow of its former self.  However, with this fantastic book we can revel in the studios glory years and fantastic backlot.  That area was a large section of the studio where many films were being simultaneously shot. 

Very little of it remains so all we have is the pictures in this book.  I was interested in several sections of the book where they detailed how certain props and sets appeared in a large selection of films.  Those halcyon years are detailed in commentaries, oodles of glorious black and white photos, and testimonials from those who remember the era. 

The authors cover the “pride” but they also cover the “fall” that comes after detailing the demise of the once grand studio and what remains.  All in all, the book is a fantastic read for those that love old Hollywood. 

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