Cover image for Foreign films in America : a history
Foreign films in America : a history
Segrave, Kerry, 1944-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Jefferson, N.C. : McFarland & Co., [2004]

Physical Description:
v, 253 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Foreign films dominate, 1895-1915 -- The silent era, 1916-1928 -- The early sound era, 1929-1945 -- A rank attack, 1946-1949 -- The golden age, 1950-1959 -- The golden age ends, 1960-1965 -- The modern era, 1966-2002.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PN1995.9.F67 S44 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Foreign films once enjoyed a position of prominence on American theater screens. By the start of World War I, however, the United States' film industry was strong enough to challenge that foreign presence and foreign films in America have been insignificant ever since. For about a century, the Hollywood cartel has dominated the production, distribution, and exhibition of movies domestically and around the world. This work traces the history of the foreign film in America from its domination in the early days to its low standing in the present, looking at the attempts made by foreign producers to increase their presence on American cinema screens, the responses by Hollywood to those attempts, and the oligopoly of Hollywood's few producers. The work discusses the cultural differences between foreign artistic expression and the commercialism of the American film and analyzes Hollywood's explanations for the lack of a foreign presence: Americans have "unique" tastes, they don't like subtitles, foreign films are immoral or badly made, trade union pressure, and so on. An appendix detailing the all-time gross earnings of foreign-language films and a full bibliography conclude the work, which is illustrated with stills and posters.

Author Notes

Kerry Segrave is also the author of Piracy in the Motion Picture Industry (2003), Movies at Home (1999) and Drive-In Theaters (1992)

Table of Contents

Prefacep. 1
1. Foreign Films Dominate, 1895-1915p. 3
2. The Silent Era, 1916-1928p. 21
3. The Early Sound Era, 1929-1945p. 48
4. A Rank Attack, 1946-1949p. 72
5. The Golden Age, 1950-1959p. 88
6. The Golden Age Ends, 1960-1965p. 142
7. The Modern Era, 1966-2002p. 161
8. Conclusionp. 208
Appendix All-Time Gross Earnings Leadersp. 213
Notesp. 217
Bibliographyp. 231
Indexp. 247