S Ilent Film Industry In Hollywood Essay

1422 words - 6 pages

Hollywood; when people hear Hollywood they usually first think of the giant Hollywood sign that is on Mount Lee in Los Angeles, California, celebrities, fame, money and last but not least movies. The Hollywood movie industry makes around thirty billion to thirty five billion dollars in the United States alone, while making ninety billion to hundred billion dollars worldwide (McCandless and Quick). The Hollywood movie industry has become one of the most successful industries in the United States. Every major industry has its beginning and Hollywood’s beginning goes all the way back to the late nineteenth century.
Hollywood’s early years are referred as the silent film Era in the film industries. This was due to the films having no synchronized recorded sound with the film. The thought to combine motion picture with recorded sound is nearly as old as film itself. However combining motion picture with recorded sound was not possible at the time due to technological challenges. Synchronized dialogue was only practical in the late 1920s with the perfection of the Audion amplifier tube and the introduction of the Vitaphone system. To convey what was going on in the film the dialogue was transmitted through either muted gestures, miming or title cards with dialogue on them would be used.
Whenever a silent film was shown, it always featured live music this was first introduced by the Lumière Brothers in Paris (Griffith). The music that was played was either improvised or compiled of classical or theatrical repertory music. The music was essential for silent films because it also contributed to the atmosphere and gave the audience vital emotional cues. Once full features became commonplace in society, music was compiled from photoplay music by either musicians, conductors or the movie studio. The sheet music were often lengthy, with detailed noted about effects and moods to watch out for in the film. Starting with the mostly original score composed by Joseph Carl Breil for D.W. Griffith’s groundbreaking film The Birth of a Nation it then became relatively common for the biggest-budgeted films to come with an original, especially composed scores. The first designated score was however composed earlier in 1908 by Camille Saint-Saëns for The Assassination of the Duke of Guise. Even when sheet music was provided musicians would still add improvisational flourishes to heighten the drama that was on the screen. The type of musical performance that one would experience when going to see a film would depend on where the film was viewed. In small towns and neighborhood movie theaters usually there was just a pianist, while the large city theaters had organists or ensembles of musicians. Due to their being such a large gap in what someone would experience when going to see a movie massive theater organs were designed to fill the gap between a simple piano soloist and a larger orchestra. Theater organs had a wide range of special effects; theatrical organs like...

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