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The historical development of Hollywood cinema, including the art and business of filmmaking along with the popular experience of film viewing, has influenced every aspect of social life in North America—and increasingly around the world—for more than a century. In continuous efforts to reach the widest possible audiences, the Hollywood film industry from the outset sought to create marketable products, to which end it moved to standardize all phases of the manufacturing and distribution of motion pictures. By 1930, the industry, galvanized by the dominant seven studios (MGM, Columbia, Twentieth Century Fox, Warner Brothers, RKO, Paramount, Universal), was able to achieve its goal of a commercially successful popular entertainment medium. In this context, filmmaking evolved through a merger of commercial and aesthetic impulses, with ...

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