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Twentieth Century-FoxTwentieth Century-Fox

The Zanuck-Skouras Years, 1935-1965

Peter Lev

Narrated by Garrett Martin

Available from Audible

Book published by University of Texas Press

When the Fox Film Corporation merged with Twentieth Century Pictures in 1935, the company posed little threat to industry juggernauts such as Paramount and MGM. In the years that followed however, guided by executives Darryl F. Zanuck and Spyros Skouras, it soon emerged as one of the most important studios. Though working from separate offices in New York and Los Angeles and often of two different minds, the two men navigated Twentieth Century-Fox through the trials of the World War II boom, the birth of television, the Hollywood Blacklist, and more to an era of exceptional success, which included what was then the highest grossing movie of all time, The Sound of Music.

Twentieth Century-Fox is a comprehensive examination of the studio’s transformation during the Zanuck-Skouras era. Instead of limiting his scope to the Hollywood production studio, Lev also delves into the corporate strategies, distribution models, government relations, and technological innovations that were the responsibilities of the New York headquarters. Moving chronologically, he examines the corporate history before analyzing individual films produced by Twentieth Century-Fox during that period. Drawn largely from original archival research, Twentieth Century-Fox offers not only enlightening analyses and new insights into the films and the history of the company, but also affords the reader a unique perspective from which to view the evolution of the entire film industry.

Peter Lev Films of the 70s: Conflicting Visions. In addition to receiving an Academy Scholars Grant from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, he has also received the Jim Welsh Award for Outstanding Achievement in Adaptation Studies from the Literature/Film Association.


“Lev's consistently illuminating book joins the first rank of Hollywood studio histories. Summing up: Highly recommended.”


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