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Rebels on the Backlot: Six Maverick Directors and How They Conquered the Hollywood Studio System

by Sharon Waxman

By the Hollywood correspondent for The New York Times, Rebels on the Backlot is a revealing and page-turning account of the new generation of film directors who are changing the face of today's Hollywood. Very much as the 1970s gave rise to a defining group of filmmakers such as Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola, the 1990s witnessed a new generation who captured the imaginations of audiences and opened the purse strings of the Hollywood film machine. Rebels on the Backlot follows six top-level film directors from the origins of their careers through the making and release of their signature films. They are: Quentin Tarantino (Pulp Fiction), Paul Thomas Anderson (Boogie Nights), David Fincher (Fight Club), Steven Soderbergh (Traffic), Spike Jonze (Being John Malkovich) and David O. Russell (Three Kings). The book uses the development, writing, shooting, editing and release of each director's major film to explore the lives and struggles each of them faced. It will dip in and out of each filming experience, drawing in the stories of other figures along the way, creating a chronological portrait of contemporary Hollywood and the rebel generation of the 1990s. This is also a story of an emerging community of talented artists -- directors, writers, actors of young Hollywood -- who supported each other, burn with envy at one another's success, swap girlfriends and boyfriends and ultimately spur each other to greater accomplishments.

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