Warner Brothers Research Paper

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Warner Brothers studios were one of the top major studios in early Hollywood, and were especially known for their realistic and cutting-edge films. They were mostly male dominated and included famous stars such as James Cagney, Humphrey Bogart and Paul Muni. However, their female stars were equally as important, such as Bette Davis, Barbara Stanwyck, and Lauren Bacall. Warner Brothers films included stars that played familiar roles and character types, for example Paul Muni. Paul Muni was one of many of Warner’s contract players, who then became some of Hollywood’s most famous stars. Paul starred in one of Warner’s most successful film, ‘ I am a fugitive from a chain gang. ‘ In the 1930’s Warner Brothers were clearly known as the ‘ gangster…show more content…
The film reflected the actions that took place during the Great Depression, and its ominous effects. The film, like Warner Brother studios was gritty, consonant and realistic. Warner’s films usually consisted of a depressing reality, and at the time of the Great Depression, man was severely affected with the economic decline. ‘ I am a fugitive in a chain gang ’ reflects the character of the Warner Brother studios as they both reflect the harshness and depressing realism of what could be. The studio is very truthful in a sense that they portray how reality does not always have a happy ending. Warner Bros. were most famous for their gangster styled films, and it was clear to them that gangster films made money. “ The success of these films is attributable to the fact that Depression disillusion made Warners’ pre-dominantly working-class audiences receptive to attacks on the established power structure of American society. ” (Cook and Bernink, 1999) Moreover, ‘ I am a fugitive from a chain gang ’ highlights the wrong doing of the law enforcements and the deeds of the criminals. “ Warners’ social-realist aesthetic is visible in its observation of Depression America and its effect on the people. “ (Cook and Bernink,…show more content…
had star troubles… The studio became very controlling with their actors and exclusive contracts. “ Cagney was already on long-term contract at $400 per week when he did Public Enemy, and he spent much of 1931 and 1932 lobbying for a new pact. Jack Warner refused to renegotiate and eventually Cagney refused to perform, so Warner put him on indefinite suspension. ” (Schatz, 1988) Another Warner Bros. star that was being controlled and frequently got suspensions was Bette Davis. She was one of many stars whom resented the Warner Brothers studio policy and did not want to accept to the studios authority. The studios stars were not being treated justly; furthermore this characteristic of the studio could be compared with the treatment of the prisoners in the 1932 film, and how they were also treated

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