This book documents the barriers to success encountered by U.S. Latino films over the past three decades, as their proponents sought to secure distribution deals and prove the films' worth as commodities. Over time, more studio and studio specialty divisions have acquired and circulated them; but many film distributors still do not understand the nuances of the U.S. Latino market and how to promote these films. The book includes interviews with marketers, publicists, and producers, and secondary research material from trade publications, newspaper articles, and websites, centering on marketing strategies, release dates, and box office figures. One of the first academic works to analyze the concurrent social and industrial factors within the U.S. Latino community and the larger Hollywood marketplace, this book examines and illuminates the history of U.S. Latino films.
Heroes, Lovers, and Others tells the fascinating history of Latinos in film, from the birth of the movies to the present, through a series of stories about Hollywood's most famous and enduring stars. The book features such Latino legends as Dolores del Rio, Rita Hayworth, Ramon Navarro, Desi Arnaz, Anthony Quinn, Raquel Welch, Selma Hayek, and Antonio Banderas. The sparkling parade of Latino film stars presented against the backdrop of American social and cultural history changes the way we think of race and ethnicity in Hollywood and challenges us to reexamine conventional ways of viewing our past.
Dance and the Hollywood Latina asks why every Latina star in Hollywood history, from Dolores Del Rio in the 1920s to Jennifer Lopez in the 2000s, began as a dancer or danced onscreen. While cinematic depictions of women and minorities have seemingly improved, a century of representing brown women as natural dancers has popularized the notion that Latinas are inherently passionate and promiscuous. Yet some Latina actresses became stars by embracing and manipulating these stereotypical fantasies. Introducing the concepts of "inbetween-ness" and "racial mobility" to further illuminate how racialized sexuality and the dancing female body operate in film, Priscilla Peña Ovalle focuses on the careers of Dolores Del Rio, Rita Hayworth, Carmen Miranda, Rita Moreno, and Jennifer Lopez. Dance and the Hollywood Latina helps readers better understand how the United States grapples with race, gender, and sexuality through dancing bodies on screen.
This book fills a void in bringing together Hollywood stereotyping and Latino self-representation in one study. With clarity and insight, Berg demonstrates why it is so important to take such an approach.
Badmen, Bandits, and Folk Heroes is a comparative study of the literary and cinematic representation of Mexican American masculine identity from early twentieth-century adventure stories and movie Westerns through contemporary self-representations by Chicano/a writers and filmmakers. In this deeply compelling book, Juan J. Alonzo proposes a reconsideration of the early stereotypical depictions of Mexicans in fiction and film: rather than viewing stereotypes as unrelentingly negative, Alonzo presents them as part of a complex apparatus of identification and disavowal. Furthermore, Alonzo reassesses Chicano/a self-representation in literature and film, and argues that the Chicano/a expression of identity is characterized less by essentialism than by an acknowldgement of the contingent status of present-day identity formations. Alonzo opens his provocative study with a fresh look at the adventure stories of Stephen Crane and the silent Western movies of D. W. Griffith. He also investigates the conflation of the greaser, the bandit, and the Mexican revolutionary into one villainous figure in early Western movies and, more broadly, traces the development of the badman in Westerns.
The Bronze screen honors the past, illuminates the present, and opens a window to the future of Latinos in motion pictures. From silent movies to urban gang films, stereotypes of the Greaser, the Lazy Mexican, the Latin lover and the Dark lady are examined. Rare and extensive footage traces the progression of this distorted screen image to the increased prominence of today's Latino actors, writers and directors.
Latin Numbers is a work of performance history, examining the way in which Latino actors on the twentieth-century stage and screen communicated and influenced American ideas about race and ethnicity. Brian Eugenio Herrera looks at how these performances and performers contributed to American popular understanding of Latinos as a distinct racial and ethnic group. His book tracks the conspicuously "Latin" musical number; the casting of Latino actors; the history of West Side Story; how Latina/o performers confront stereotypes; and the proliferation of the gay Latino character in the AIDS era. With a flair for storytelling and a unique ability to see the deeper meanings embedded in popular culture, Herrera creates a history that will appeal to popular culture enthusiasts, theater aficionados, and those interested in the cultural history of Latinos. The book will also delight readers interested in the memorable (and many of the lesser-known) Latino performances on stage and screen.
This book explores the role film and television stardom has played in establishing, reinforcing, and challenging popular ethnic notions of Latina/os in the United States since the silent film era of the 1920s. In addition to documenting the importance of Latina and Latino stars to American film and television history, Mary C. Beltrán focuses on key moments in the construction of "Hollywood Latinidad" by analyzing the public images of these stars as promoted by Hollywood film studios, television networks, producers, and the performers themselves. Critically surveying the careers of such film and television stars as Dolores Del Rio, Desi Arnaz, Rita Moreno, Freddie Prinze, Edward James Olmos, Jessica Alba, and Jennifer Lopez, Latina/o Stars in U.S. Eyes also addresses the impact of the rise in Latina and Latino media producers and the current status of Latina/o stardom.