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John Sayles

John Sayles

David R. Shumway
Copyright Date: 2012
Pages: 200
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  • Book Info
    John Sayles
    Book Description:

    John Sayles is the very paradigm of the contemporary independent filmmaker. By raising much of the funding for his films himself, Sayles functions more independently than most directors, and he has used his freedom to write and produce films with a distinctive personal style and often clearly expressed political positions. From The Return of the Secaucus Seven to Sunshine State, his films have consistently expressed progressive political positions on issues including race, gender, sexuality, class, and disability._x000B__x000B_In this study, David R. Shumway examines the defining characteristic of Sayles's cinema: its realism. Positing the filmmaker as a critical realist, Shumway explores Sayles's attention to narrative in critically acclaimed and popular films such as Matewan, Eight Men Out, Passion Fish, and Lone Star. The study also details the conditions under which Sayles's films have been produced, distributed, and exhibited, affecting the way in which these films have been understood and appreciated. In the process, Shumway presents Sayles as a teacher who tells historically accurate stories that invite audiences to consider the human world they all inhabit.

    eISBN: 978-0-252-09408-8
    Subjects: Film Studies

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-viii)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. ix-x)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xi-xiv)
  4. John Sayles: Critical Realist
    (pp. 1-152)

    The one word most often associated with John Sayles is independent. He has been throughout most of his career referred to as America’s leading independent filmmaker. More recently, he has been called both the grandfather and the godfather of American independent cinema. He may be the only filmmaker in the world whose face appears on a seal or medallion. This medallion graces the first page of, and has appeared after the credits of some of his films. It shows a drawing of Sayles’s face, with a legend imprinted around the outside: at the top, “John Sayles,” and at the...

  5. Interviews with John Sayles
    (pp. 153-156)

    Because Sayles has sat for so many interviews, in lieu of a single one, the following is a bibliography of key interviews given by the director throughout his career, followed by a sampling of comments from these materials. Readers should also consult Diane Carson, ed., John Sayles: Interviews. Jackson: University of Mississippi Press, 1999....

  6. Filmography
    (pp. 157-166)
  7. Bibliography
    (pp. 167-174)
  8. Index
    (pp. 175-182)
  9. Back Matter
    (pp. 183-187)