The Art of Selling Movies by John McElwee

The Art of Selling Movies Book Cover

The Art of Selling Movies
John McElwee
Arts & Photography , History
GoodKnight Books
28 Feb 2017


The Art of Selling Movies presents the first-ever look at 60 years of newspaper advertising for motion pictures great and small. These ads created by Hollywood and adapted by local and regional exhibitors motivated patrons to leave their homes, part with precious income, and spend time in the dark.

Because of the high stakes involved, theater operators used wildly creative means to make that happen. They made movie advertising equal parts art and psychology, appealing to every human instinct (especially sex) in an effort to push product and keep their theatres in business.

From the pen-and-ink masterpieces of the 1920s and 30s to location-specific folk art to ad space jam-packed with enticements for every member of the family, The Art of Selling Movies dissects the psyche of the American movie-going public ... and the advertisers seeking to push just the right buttons.

“The Art of Selling Movies” covers movie advertising up until 1970, adds from newspapers and magazines by theater operators. It’s a fun read and niche take on the movie industry, one which explains why certain types of adds are chosen, and each separate add is provided with a short comment and or explanation.

If you’re a movie buff / collector (or search for a present for one of them) and love movies which are made before 1970 this is a book to have just because you’ll probably will never ever find another book about this subject again.


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