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"Just as Griffin suspected, there was a meeting in Levison's office without him." With this opening, we are taken into the mind and life of Griffin Mill, senior vice president of production at a major Hollywood studio. It is a mind full of paranoia, duplicity, and guile--and a life full of money, power, and fame. It is the movie business.

Griffin Mill is ruthlessly ambitious, driven to control the levers of America's dream-making machinery. Griffin listens to writers pitch him stories all day, sitting in judgment on their fantasies, their lives. But now one writer to whose pitch he responded so glibly is sending him postcards: "You said you'd get back to me. You didn't. And now in the name of all writers who get pushed around by studio executives I'm going to kill you."

Squeezed between the threat to his life and the threat to his job, Griffin's deliberate and horrifying response spins him into a nightmare. Then he meets the sad and beautiful June Mercator and his obsession for her threatens to destroy them both.

With a compulsively readable narrative that offers a devastating portrait of contemporary Hollywood--the studio execs, the deal-making, the politics, the pitches--The Player is the smartest book.

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