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This ground-breaking new book shows how Hollywood developed its ‘calculated blockbuster’ and created a replicable model for success which all industry professionals can use to their advantage. Packed with insights and unheard stories from the massive films of the past and today through an industry insider’s perspective, it’s a must-read for screenwriters, producers and anyone with a passion for the movies over recent decades.
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About Alexander Ross and BLOCKBUSTED…
Dr. Alexander Ross launched his journey into filmmaking, as an undergraduate at the University of Cambridge, by watching a lot more films at the Arts Cinema than attending lectures. On graduating, he was hired by Ismail Merchant (Merchant/Ivory Productions) to work on a film as assistant director.
Ross later went to Los Angeles, working for MGM Studios as a story analyst. With a keen eye for spotting scripts with great winning potential, he was hired by a literary agency based in Beverly Hills. Sifting through the pile of rejections, he noticed a script by a then unknown Quentin Tarantino, as well as one by Andrew Niccol (The Truman Show). The discoveries gave his career a major boost.
Several years later, Ross created his own management company, helped to finance a number of films, produced a romcom (which he sold to Warner Bros.), founded www.writemovies.com, ran more than 5,000 pitch meetings at the studios, (mainly with the heads of production), became an expert consultant to the European Union: Education, Audio-visual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA), as well as to several hedge funds and family offices looking to invest in motion pictures. With his deep reservoir of knowledge about Hollywood’s inner sanctum, he decided to write about his experiences and so headed back to the UK to do a PhD. His first major publication came in the 2019 anthology on the film Grease: “Grease is the Word”.
Now, “The Evolution of Hollywood’s Calculated Blockbuster Films: Blockbusted” is his most extensive probe into Hollywood’s most dynamic era. It is the first contemporary book to delve deep into the studio process behind the making of some of the defining modern blockbusters of the 1970s and 1980s, by engaging directly with many of the leading executives who run Hollywood.
The book investigates William Goldman’s “Nobody knows anything” contention which suggests that every film the studios make is a colossal gamble. Over eight years of research, which included dozens of interviews with leading filmmakers and leading film academics, revealed that not only do the studios know exactly what they are doing, but by using replicable key markers of success, they have radically reduced the risk in film investment and significantly increased their multi-platform revenue streams.
This book is intended not just for scholars, undergraduates and post-graduates, but also for the fans of The Godfather, Jaws, Star Wars, E.T., Back to the Future etc. who want to find out what really made those films work. It also provides budding screenwriters, directors, producers, agents and studio executives with the keys to the kingdom.
The book shows specific, detailed instructions on how to make highly successful movies, repeatedly.