American Newspaper Journalists on Film

Portrayals of the Press During the Sound Era


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About the Book

When “talking” pictures first appeared in cinema theaters in the late 1920s, films about newspaper journalists quickly became a Hollywood mainstay. These were a variety of responses from working reporters, editors, and photographers. The newspaper film was a popular genre in the 1950s, and famous films such as All the President’s Men (1976) and Spotlight (2015) have depicted the power of the press. Journalists have also been portrayed in films that are not specifically about newspapers, appearing in noir films like Woman on the Run (1950), Westerns such as Fort Worth (1951), comedies like The Ghost and Mr. Chicken (1966), musicals like Wake Up and Live (1937) and historical epics like Lawrence of Arabia (1962).
A film historian and former newspaper writer, the author investigates how accurately films have portrayed journalists across the decades. The book also details what journalists thought of the depictions at the time, contributing to brief histories and analyses for each film. Featured journalist archetypes include airy reporters, screaming editors, photographers, sportswriters and war journalists. Classics, misfires, Westerns, obscure treasures and films the press both adored and detested are all included in this comprehensive here.

About the Author(s)

Johnny D. Boggs, former newspaper writer, is an award-winning author of Western fact and fiction. He has contributed to such magazines as True West and Boys’ Life. A past president of the Western Writers of America, he is based in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Bibliographic Details

Johnny D. Boggs
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 293
Bibliographic Info: 80 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2023
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7993-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-4600-8
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface 1
Introduction 3
Chapter One. 1929–1939 7
Chapter Two. Serial Reporters and Photographers 52
Chapter Three. The 1940s 56
Chapter Four. The Newspaper Photographer 94
Chapter Five. The 1950s 105
Chapter Six. Newspapers in Westerns 139
Chapter Seven. The 1960s and 1970s 151
Chapter Eight. Sportswriters 172
Chapter Nine. The 1980s and 1990s 189
Chapter Ten. War Correspondents 207
Chapter Eleven. The 21st Century 220
Chapter Twelve. Newspaperwomen 237
Conclusion 253
Chapter Notes 255
Bibliography 269
Index 277