Sailing on the Silver Screen: Hollywood and the U.S. Navy

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Naval Institute Press, 1996 - 307 pages
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The author provides a fully documented history of the making of the Navy's image on film from the movie industry's earliest days. He goes behind the scenes for deliberations about the potential impact of certain movies on both the military and civilians, and examines the ripple effect of such watershed films as Top Gun, a movie that initially gave the Navy a needed post-Vietnam boost. However, when the Tailhook scandal erupted and the conduct of some aviators was attributed to the "flyboy" image projected in the movie, Top Gun became a liability. Lawrence Suid's inside revelations about the Navy's cinematic input range from pre-World War I to post-Cold War. More than 100 films, as varied as Annapolis and Hunt for Red October, are analyzed for their portrayal of the Navy. The book's focus is on feature films, but relevant documentaries and made-for-television movies are also discussed. Suid draws on original documents from the Department of Defense, National Archives, and private collections, and from interviews with more than 100 filmmakers, naval officers, and government officials.

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Sailing on the silver screen: Hollywood and the U. S. Navy

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The U.S. military has a long love-hate relationship with Hollywood, sometimes cooperating on films that bolster its recruiting or image-improvement efforts, other times boycotting scripts it considers ... Read full review

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About the author (1996)

Lawrence H. Suid, a military historian, is the author of several books and has appeared on The History Channel, Turner Classic Movies, and CNN.Show More

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