Book of the Week: The Making of Gone with the Wind

bowstarsover2

As I was reading the section titled, A Conversation with Susan Meissner in her novel Stars Over Sunset Boulevard, the author mentioned using Steve Wilson’s The Making of Gone with the Wind as a primary resource during her writing of the novel.
One of the aspects I love about Susan Meissner’s historical novels is the way she brings history to life. As the historical time period unfolds before my eyes, I am driven to learn all I can. Hence, I placed a hold on  The Making of Gone with the Wind at our local public library.

bowmakinggonewithwind

From the inside of the jacket cover of The Making of Gone with the Wind by Steve Wilson published by the Henry Ransom Center and University of Texas Press:

“Gone With The Wind is one of the most popular movies of all time. To commemorate its seventy-fifth anniversary in 2014, The Making of Gone With The Wind presents more than 600 items from the archives of David O. Selznick, the film’s producer, and his business partner John Hay “Jock” Whitney, which are housed at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin. These rarely seen materials, which are also being featured in a major 2014 exhibition at the Ransom Center, offer fans and film historians alike a must-have behind-the-camera view of the production of this classic.

Before a single frame of film was shot, Gone With The Wind was embroiled in controversy. There were serious concerns about how the film would depict race and violence in the Old South during the Civil War and Reconstruction. While Clark Gable was almost everyone’s choice to play Rhett Butler, there was no clear favorite for Scarlett O’Hara. And then there was the huge challenge of turning Margaret Mitchell’s Pulitzer Prize–winning epic into a manageable screenplay and producing it at a reasonable cost. The Making of Gone With The Wind tells these and other surprising stories with fascinating items from the Selznick archive, including on-set photographs, storyboards, correspondence and fan mail, production records, audition footage, gowns worn by Vivien Leigh as Scarlett, and Selznick’s own notoriously detailed memos.

This inside view of the decisions and creative choices that shaped the production reaffirm that Gone With The Wind is perhaps the quintessential film of Hollywood’s Golden Age and illustrate why it remains influential and controversial decades after it was released.”

Kathy Alphs

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s