We have lots of cinema and film-related interviews recommending a wide range of books from the history of cinema to manuals on how to write screenplays and direct.
Darren Aronofsky, the Oscar-nominated director of Black Swan, chooses his best books on making movies and screenwriter and novelist Frank Cottrell Boyce talks about filmmaking and argues that good filmmaking springs from having a broad cultural frame of reference beyond cinema.
The writer Barry Forshaw talks about Film Noir and the film critic and former professor of film studies at Columbia, Andrew Sarris, looks at film criticism. Ian Christie, professor of film and media history at Birkbeck College London, chooses his best books on Russian cinema and Brian Macfarlane, editor of the Encyclopaedia of British Film, his on British cinema. Brian Shoesmith, professor at the University of Liberal Arts, Bangladesh, looks at Indian Film and Guardian columnist Marina Hyde at Hollywood. Meanwhile screenwriting guru Richard Walter talks screenwriting, recommending Aristotle’s Poetics as essential reading, and director of Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll, Matt Whitecross, discusses film directing.
We also have a section on great books made into Netflix shows.
The best books on American Film, recommended by Mark Harris
Five fantastic books on American film, selected by Mark Harris, bestselling author of Mike Nichols: A Life, who explains how “movies can reflect what’s going on in American society—sometimes anticipate it, sometimes fall behind it, sometimes lead it, and sometimes change it.”
The Best Movies about Race, recommended by Greg Garrett
Movies are a big part of American cultural life and also one of the country’s biggest cultural exports. As a result, movies play an important role in how Americans see themselves, including in attitudes to race. Here Professor Greg Garrett of Baylor University—film historian, cultural theologian and author of A Long, Long Way: Hollywood’s Unfinished Journey from Racism to Reconciliation—talks us through five movies that best illustrate how Hollywood has evolved in terms of race over the past century, from Gone with the Wind to Get Out.
The best books on Popular Culture, recommended by Susan Bordo
Popular culture shapes our fantasies, our expectations and our beliefs about what is real, argues Susan Bordo. She picks five books that shed light on popular culture.
The best books on Making Movies, recommended by Darren Aronofsky
Darren Aronofsky, the Oscar-nominated director, recommends five amazing books about making movies—and talks about the filmmakers who inspired him.
Woody Allen on The Books that Inspired Him
Film legend Woody Allen talks us through his favourite books, from JD Salinger to Elia Kazan.
The best books on Filmmaking, recommended by Frank Cottrell Boyce
Filmmaking involves lots of different disciplines, says the acclaimed English screenwriter and author. And the secret of making good films is to look outward – for instance, by reading the history of railways
The best books on Film Criticism, recommended by Andrew Sarris
The legendary American critic, Andrew Sarris, sounds off on auteurism, his own career and the value of the traditional film-writing canon over internet innovations such as IMDB. He picks the best books on film criticism.
The best books on Where Good Ideas Come From, recommended by Jane Root
The former head of BBC2 reveals the two important ideas that made The Office a worldwide success, and says that most good ideas are little ones nurtured over time. Here she chooses five books that hold the key to success
The best books on Film Noir, recommended by Barry Forshaw
Film writer Barry Forshaw plunges us into a world of dangerous women in ankle bracelets, flawed heroes silhouetted against a dark rain-swept street, smoky jazz scores and very unhappy endings.
The best books on Indian Film, recommended by Brian Shoesmith
Professor Brian Shoesmith chooses five books that celebrate the lavish history of the Indian film industry. He maintains that Bollywood has become a global brand — in Perth, you can even take classes in Bollywood dance.
The best books on Screenwriting, recommended by Richard Walter
The Hollywood screenwriting guru picks the best five books on writing a blockbusting screenplay. Aristotle knew what he was doing. It’s all about the story. Less is more. One word is better than lots of words. Simple really.
The best books on Film Directing, recommended by Mat Whitecross
The young film director of Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll (about the troubled but brilliant British rock star Ian Dury) talks about the books that inspire his films.
The best books on Russian Cinema, recommended by Ian Christie
From Eisenstein to Tarkovsky, film scholar Ian Christie looks at the titans of Russian cinema and draws attention to the pre-Revolutionary Siberian gold merchant’s daughter who opened a cinema purely for the upper classes.
The best books on Hollywood, recommended by Marina Hyde
The best books on Hollywood. ‘Smart people went to the ballet and opera, and what the poor and lower middle classes did with their time didn’t matter. But these men in Hollywood had a vision and were creating this product that was loved by everybody of all different backgrounds.’
The best books on British Cinema, recommended by Brian McFarlane
The editor of the Encyclopaedia of British Film talks about Britain’s cinematic offerings. ‘I love Brief Encounter – I cry from the moment Celia Johnson speaks until the credits come up at the end.’