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Silent cinema was never truly silent as performances were more often than not accompanied by live music and the noise of enthusiastic audiences. Yet silent cinema is regarded as a specific era in the history of the medium, and often as a separate art form in its own right. New York Times-bestselling author Brian J. Robb's lively resource traces how, from the origins of cinema onwards to the coming of sound in 1929 with The Jazz Singer, many of the ground rules of cinema were laid and filmmaking techniques developed, including editing and special effects, styles of acting, and filming on location. Studying the earliest origins of cinema, including the stars, comedians, and directors who became popular from the late-Victorian era to the end of the 1920s, including D. W. Griffiths, Cecil B. DeMille, and Sergi Eisenstein, this book also includes a look at the Hollywood scandals of the time. The accompanying DVD includes lengthy excerpts from films such as The Perils of Pauline, Phantom of the Opera, Salomé, and Son of the Sheik.

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