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The Girls in the Picture: A Novel de Melanie…
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The Girls in the Picture: A Novel (2018 original; edició 2019)

de Melanie Benjamin (Autor)

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3787752,484 (3.8)9
A fascinating novel of the friendship and creative partnership between two of Hollywood's earliest female legends--screenwriter Frances Marion and superstar Mary Pickford--from the New York Times bestselling author of The Swans of Fifth Avenue and The Aviator's Wife It is 1914, and twenty-five-year-old Frances Marion has left her (second) husband and her Northern California home for the lure of Los Angeles, where she is determined to live independently as an artist. But the word on everyone's lips these days is "flickers"--the silent moving pictures enthralling theatergoers. Turn any corner in this burgeoning town and you'll find made-up actors running around, as a movie camera captures it all. In this fledgling industry, Frances finds her true calling: writing stories for this wondrous new medium. She also makes the acquaintance of actress Mary Pickford, whose signature golden curls and lively spirit have given her the title of America's Sweetheart. The two ambitious young women hit it off instantly, their kinship fomented by their mutual fever to create, to move audiences to a frenzy, to start a revolution. But their ambitions are challenged both by the men around them and the limitations imposed on their gender--and their astronomical success could come at a price. As Mary, the world's highest paid and most beloved actress, struggles to live her life under the spotlight, she also wonders if it is possible to find love, even with the dashing actor Douglas Fairbanks. Frances, too, longs to share her life with someone. As in any good Hollywood story, dramas will play out, personalities will clash, and even the deepest friendships might be shattered. With cameos from such notables as Charlie Chaplin, Louis B. Mayer, Rudolph Valentino, and Lillian Gish, The Girls in the Picture is, at its heart, a story of friendship and forgiveness. Melanie Benjamin perfectly captures the dawn of a glittering new era--its myths and icons, its possibilities and potential, and its seduction and heartbreak.… (més)
Membre:lizcaldwell
Títol:The Girls in the Picture: A Novel
Autors:Melanie Benjamin (Autor)
Informació:Bantam (2019), Edition: Reprint, 480 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:
Etiquetes:No n'hi ha cap

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The Girls in the Picture de Melanie Benjamin (2018)

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Mary Pickford did not have a traditional childhood since she acted was a stage actor since she was seven. Although other siblings also acted, Mary was the primary breadwinner of the family since her father died. Lonely, Mary earnestly wanted a friend however, stage performers were considered seamy; not self-respecting parent would allow their child to play with Mary. Shortly after the beginning of silence film era, Mary was hired by D.W. Griffith and soon became "America's Sweetheart."

Frances Marion, initially a commercial artist sketching stage actors' portraits, was enchanted by the burgeoning movie industry wanted to be involved somehow in it. Meeting Mary Pickford at a party, they soon became friends and Mary offered assistance in achieving her dreams. Although she acquired a few minor acting roles, she preferred to be behind the camera as a director and screenwriter. She if most famous for the latter role being considered one of the 20th century's most prolific screenwriters.

This historical novel was told in alternating chapters voiced by Mary and Frances. I found historical elements of this novel interesting such beginning of Hollywood and its movie studios including United Artists founded by Mary Pickford, Douglas Fairbanks and Charlie Chaplin. Frances aided in typecasting Mary in chidren roles which the public loved, but she was forced by her adoring public to continue these roles well into her late twenties. I enjoyed Frances Marion's voice in this book but tired of the Mary's narcissitic nature. Although I only considered this book a okay read, you might enjoy it if you are interested in the early years of cinema. ( )
  John_Warner | May 14, 2021 |
It seems strange and very intriguing to me that silent movies and the beginnings of the film industry in Los Angeles happened more than 100 years ago. It doesn't seem possible that we are a century away from the old black and white "flickers.'' This book is about the friendship between Actress Mary Pickford, who was touted as America's Sweetheart back in the early days, and Frances Marion, an early screenwriter. Both women were incredibly famous in their day and paved the way for women in the film industry. Both won academy awards for their work. And both are largely forgotten. A century of time can erase all things......unless it's preserved on film.

As I read this book I took breaks and watched Mary Pickford films just to get the feel for what these women created. My favorite is Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, released in 1917. The Screenplay was adapted by Frances Marion from the classic novel and the film stars Mary Pickford and Eugene O'Brien. The film is grainy and silent. The title cards and credits jump and jerk around on the screen. The makeup gives the actors raccoon eyes and a melodramatic look. But.....it was one of the first films with a real plot and for me it's amazing that I can watch a performance that took place over 100 years ago. Long dead actors appearing as young, dedicated performers still, after all these years. Film magic!

I enjoyed this book. I know very little about Mary Pickford except that she was married to Douglas Fairbanks. And I had never heard of Frances Marion before this book. In 1972, Frances Marion wrote a book, "Off With Their Heads,'' about her experiences in Hollywood. She died soon after it was published. After reading The Girls in the Picture, I definitely want to read Marion's book!

Once I started reading I couldn't put this book down. It tells the story of how the movie industry got its start, and about the early lives of two powerful pioneering women in the industry. Mary Pickford was the highest paid actor back then, but paid a price for her fame. The story unfolds to include other notable classic early performers -- Charlie Chaplin, Douglas Fairbanks, and more. I learned so much about the early days of film and these two strong women. Great book!!

Anyone who loves old movies and Old Hollywood tales will love this book!!

Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm starring Mary Pickford can be seen on Youtube.com here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QJXjylxkXNc

**I voluntarily read an advanced readers copy of this book from Random House - Ballentine via NetGalley. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.**





( )
  JuliW | Nov 22, 2020 |
I didn't know much about the history of early Hollywood before reading this book, but it certainly came alive within these pages. It was wonderful to see that history from the perspective of the women involved and I thought Benjamin did a wonderful job giving voice to those long dead. I confess I didn't really like some of the main characters which made me feel less engaged than with previous works by this author, but the book was an enjoyable read nevertheless. ( )
  ForeignCircus | Oct 21, 2020 |
A beautiful gem of a book about beloved actress Mary Pickford and one of most successful script writers Frances Marion. They become close because they complement and understand each other.

The novel describes the men and women who made Hollywood what it is. The history, the personalities, the scandals, and the wonderful movies that came out.And the immense sums of money they spent and made. The audience doesn't get to see the hard work, the creative talent, long hours of make-up, costuming, and rehearsing going on backstage.

Nor do they know of the poor treatment of women actors by short-sighted movie men on all levels, owners, directors, producers, actors, and all the rest. Since men help decision-making power, the 'casting couch' was considered a fair price to pay for the privilege of working in the industry. And of course women actors were paid less than male actors, AND after many Hollywood scandals it was only the women actors contract which included MORALITY clauses giving the men even more power! And even worse, these women were openly discouraged from getting pregnant and having children because they would lose time in front of the camera costing the movie studio money.

While the women competed with each other over roles many became good friends and helped support each other emotionally. Many men felt threatened by strong, sucessful women like Mary Pickford and Frances Marion and tried to break them, discredit their work, and cause them to fail. But it didn't work.The women loved making and acting in movies, and wouldn't give up. Eventually Mary and a few partners, her husband, Douglas Fairbanks, Charlie Chaplin and D.W. Griffith create United Artists allowing them creative control of their movies.

A wonderful novel about the often messy lives of strong, passionate, talented, creative, and sensitive people making history and entertainment for generations.
  Bookish59 | May 27, 2020 |
Ressenya escrita per a Crítics Matiners de LibraryThing .
I received this book in a librarything giveaway. This book was very well researched. I do love that when a book is about real people. The author gives the reader details about the characters friendships, dreams and loves. This is also a look into the begging of the film industry. The reader will learn so much about that time in Hollywood. It's a very interesting read. I did feel it was a bit long. ( )
  Thelmajean | Dec 11, 2019 |
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Perhaps the simplest formula for a plot is: invent some colorful personalities, involve them in an apparently hopeless complication or predicament, then extricate them in a logical and dramatic way that brings them happiness.
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A fascinating novel of the friendship and creative partnership between two of Hollywood's earliest female legends--screenwriter Frances Marion and superstar Mary Pickford--from the New York Times bestselling author of The Swans of Fifth Avenue and The Aviator's Wife It is 1914, and twenty-five-year-old Frances Marion has left her (second) husband and her Northern California home for the lure of Los Angeles, where she is determined to live independently as an artist. But the word on everyone's lips these days is "flickers"--the silent moving pictures enthralling theatergoers. Turn any corner in this burgeoning town and you'll find made-up actors running around, as a movie camera captures it all. In this fledgling industry, Frances finds her true calling: writing stories for this wondrous new medium. She also makes the acquaintance of actress Mary Pickford, whose signature golden curls and lively spirit have given her the title of America's Sweetheart. The two ambitious young women hit it off instantly, their kinship fomented by their mutual fever to create, to move audiences to a frenzy, to start a revolution. But their ambitions are challenged both by the men around them and the limitations imposed on their gender--and their astronomical success could come at a price. As Mary, the world's highest paid and most beloved actress, struggles to live her life under the spotlight, she also wonders if it is possible to find love, even with the dashing actor Douglas Fairbanks. Frances, too, longs to share her life with someone. As in any good Hollywood story, dramas will play out, personalities will clash, and even the deepest friendships might be shattered. With cameos from such notables as Charlie Chaplin, Louis B. Mayer, Rudolph Valentino, and Lillian Gish, The Girls in the Picture is, at its heart, a story of friendship and forgiveness. Melanie Benjamin perfectly captures the dawn of a glittering new era--its myths and icons, its possibilities and potential, and its seduction and heartbreak.

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