Refocus: the Films of William Castle - ReFocus: The American Directors Series (Hardback)Murray Leeder (editor)
Hardback 256 Pages / Published: 30/04/2018
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The first collection of essays devoted to Hollywood director William CastleOften described as 'the Master of Gimmicks', William Castle is best known for the outrageous publicity stunts that characterised his genre films in the 1950s and '60s, including offers for an insurance policy against death by fright, vibrating seats, a skeleton that flew over the audience, and a 'punishment poll' to determine a film's conclusion. But far from being 'the world's craziest filmmaker', Castle was also a dependable studio director who made more than 50 films between 1944 and 1974, and who produced films for Orson Welles and Roman Polanski. 'ReFocus: The Films of William Castle' assembles fourteen essays on the full sweep of Castle's career, including his horror films, westerns, film noirs and more. With an influence felt on directors like Joe Dante, Robert Zemeckis and John Waters, this volume reappraises Castle's legacy as an innovator as much as a showman.ContributorsHugh S. Manon (Clark University)Zachary Rearick (Georgia State University)Anthony Thomas McKenna (Shanghai Jiao Tong University)Murray Leeder (University of Calgary)Beth Kattelman (Ohio State University)Eliot Bessette (University of California, Berkeley)Alexandra Heller-Nicholas (University of Melbourne) Steffen Hantke (Sogang University)Michael Brodski (University of Mainz) Caroline Langhorst (University of Mainz)Michael Petitti (University of Southern California)Peter Marra (Wayne State University)Kate J. Russell (University of Toronto)
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Number of pages: 256
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
"Murray Leeder's collection is a truly perceptive study that examines the films from a variety of angles as well as including a commentary on the aspects of popular entertainment and audience appeal they represented. Unsurprisingly, given the provenance of the book -Edinburgh University Press - there is writing here of perception and ambition. Some will argue that Castle's films do not merit such attention, but those of us who fell under the late director's spell will find much to entertain and stimulate." -- Barry Forshaw, Crime Time
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