There’s movie guides galore in these new film & tv books!

Check out some of these newly catalogued books on movies and TV shows, including the historical side stories of the very popular TV series; Game of Thrones and Doctor Who. A variety of movie guides such as The Bad Movie Bible should not be missed.

Syndetics book coverYou win or you die : the ancient world of Game of Thrones / Ayelet Haimson Lushkov.
“In this essential sequel to Carolyne Larrington’s Winter is Coming: The Medieval World of Game of Thrones, Ayelet Haimson Lushkov explores the echoes, from the Summer Islands to Storm’s End, of a rich antique history. She shows how the wanderings of Tyrion Lannister replay the journeys of Odysseus and Aeneas. She suggests that the War of the Five Kings resembles the War of the Four Emperors (68-69 AD). She also demonstrates just how the Wall and the Wildlings advancing on it connect with Hadrian’s bulwark against fierce tribes of Picts. This book reveals the remarkable extent to which the entire Game of Thrones universe is animated by its ancient past.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBBC Doctor Who : a brief history of Time Lords / Steve Tribe ; original illustrations by Richard Shaun Williams ; design by Richard Atkinson.
Doctor Who: A Brief History of Time Lords tells the story of all of this ancient, legendary civilization, of notable historical figures, of Gallifrey itself, of the Time War and much more. The planet Gallifrey. The Shining World of the Seven Systems. Often to be found in the constellation of Kasterborous. Birthplace of one of the oldest civilizations in the universe: The Time Lords. Featuring full-color, never-before-seen illustrations and a beautiful interior design, this is a highly collectible in-world companion no Whovian can be without.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMonty Python’s Flying Circus : hidden treasures / Adrian Besley ; foreword by The Pythons ; artwork by Terry Gilliam.
“This is the story of Monty Python, one the most popular and influential forces in modern comedy–and of their TV show–told in words and images. This celebratory book includes 22 facsimiles of rare memorabilia from their official archives, including hand-scribbled scripts, cue sheets, character lists, posters, and animation artwork. Written with active input from the Pythons themselves, the book recounts the adventures of all six members and their TV show, from early days in the Cambridge Footlights through early appearances on the BBC, global stardom, the inevitable fights, and their triumphant reunions.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTalking pictures : how to watch movies / Ann Hornaday.
“In Talking Pictures, veteran film critic Ann Hornaday walks us through the production of a typical movie-from writing the script and casting to the final sound edit-and explains how to evaluate each piece of the process. How do we know if a film is well-written, above and beyond snappy dialogue? What constitutes a great screen performance? What goes into praiseworthy cinematography, editing, and sound design? And what does a director really do? Full of engaging anecdotes and interviews with actors and filmmakers, Talking Pictures will help us see movies in a whole new light-not just as fans, but as film critics in our own right.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMovies of the 2000s / ed. Jürgen Müller.
“Through the gripping stories, insightful dramas, and thrilling, mindless escapism, Movies of the 2000s gathers the best of the best round the globe, from the blockbuster Harry Potter and The Lord Of The Rings installments to cult classics Lost in Translation, Inglourious Basterds, and No Country For Old Men, The Lives of Others, and Y Tu Mama Tambien. Each movie masterpiece is profiled with stills and production photos, a synopsis, analysis, and movie-buff trivia, as well as cast, crew, and technical listings.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe bad movie bible / Rob Hill.
“Most movies aren’t very good. That shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. But nor should it be a surprise that some are so bad they possess a unique appeal arising specifically from their inadequacies. This book is a celebration of, and guide to, those movies.
– Analysis and reviews of 101 of the best good-bad movies of the last fifty years
– Exclusive interviews with heroes and villains
– First-hand accounts from genre legends who explain what went wrong, and why it isn’t their fault
– Unique behind-the-scenes images
– Future classics are exposed, old mysteries solved
Whether you realize it or not, you probably enjoy bad movies.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverRogue One, a Star wars story : the official mission debrief.
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – The Official Mission Debrief presents an all-encompassing guide to the hugely successful movie, with unprecedented access to the making of the film, its stars, its crew and its stunning landscapes. Relive the latest movie in the world’s biggest franchise over and over again. A must for any fan of Star Wars.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAnne Bancroft : a life / Douglass K. Daniel.
“In the first biography to cover the entire scope of Bancroft’s life and career, Douglass K. Daniel brings together interviews with dozens of her friends and colleagues, never-before-published family photos, and material from film and theater archives to present a portrait of an artist who raised the standards of acting for all those who followed. Daniel reveals how, from a young age, Bancroft was committed to challenging herself and strengthening her craft. Her talent (and good timing) led to a breakthrough role in Two for the Seesaw, which made her a Broadway star overnight. The book offers new insights into the life and career of a determined actress who left an indelible mark on the film industry while remaining true to her art.” (Syndetics summary)

Binge these new movie & TV books

Make sure to check out some newly catalogued books on movies and TV programmes. They include the colourful ‘top 100’ movie guides by Fantastic Press and the insightful guidebooks of the much-loved TV series; Game of Thrones and Orphan Black.

Syndetics book coverTop 100 horror movies / written, edited and designed by Gary Gerani ; Ken Rubin, production coordinator.
“For the first Fantastic Press offering, it’s horror against horror in the ultimate scary movie match-up. Screenwriter/film historian Gary (Pumpkinhead) Gerani presents and evaluates the cinema’s most celebrated shockers, from silent classics to today’s gleefully audacious gorefests. This super-colorful overview contains over 600 rare visuals, and features a brand-new introduction by celebrated horror movie director Roger Corman.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTop 100 comic book movies / written, edited and designed by Gary Gerani.
“From the classic era of super-serials like FLASH GORDON to the current blockbusters that have taken Hollywood by storm, Top 100 Comic Book Movies covers the fascinating universe of live-action theatrical adaptations of comic books and comic strips. Readers will revel in historic overviews of the greatest works of this unique genre, accompanied by dazzling photographs, full-color posters, and countless rare artifacts. Watch the patriotic ’40s give way to the campy ’60s, until the 21st Century explodes with superhero excitement on a scale never before experienced.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTop 100 sci-fi movies / written, edited and designed by Gary Gerani ; Ken Rubin, production coordinator.
“Fantastic Press strikes again with its second trade paperback offering, this time exploring the ultra-fanciful universe of spaceships, exotic planets, time travel, and extraterrestrials. The top 100 sci-fi movies are reviewed and ranked by fantasy screenwriter/film historian Gary Gerani, who covers everything from early silent groundbreakers like A Trip to the Moon to today’s widescreen, computer-generated blockbusters. With over 600 rare visuals, full-color layouts. and an introduction by one of Hollywood’s greatest filmmakers, this exciting new pictorial overview is the ideal companion book to 2010’s Top 100 Horror Movies.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe DNA of Orphan Black / Abbie Bernstein.
“Get under the skin of clone club. This comprehensive guide to Orphan Black has an access-all-areas pass to the most innovative drama on TV. Includes interviews with the show’s creators and cast, exclusive behind-the-scenes photos, production and visual effects secrets, plus everything you need to know about the Dyad Institute, the Proletheans and Neolutionists, Projects Leda and Castor, and more. This is a must-have for all fans of Orphan Black.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe science of Game of thrones. / Helen Keen.
“Award-winning comedian and popular-science writer Helen Keen uncovers the astounding science behind the world’s most popular television show. Join Helen as she sifts the fact from fantasy, discovers the truth beneath the togas, and reveals a world more fantastical than Daenerys Targaryen’s wildest dreams. So pour yourself a bowl of brown, climb on your beast of burden, and prepare yourself for an amazing adventure. It’s time to see the Seven Kingdoms as you have never seen them before.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMakeup man : from Rocky to Star trek : the amazing creations of Hollywood’s Michael Westmore / Michael Westmore with Jake Page.
“Since 1917, there has never been a time when Westmores weren’t shaping the visages of stardom. For their century-long dedication to the art of makeup, the Westmores were honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2008. In this lively memoir, Michael Westmore not only regales us with tales of Hollywood’s golden age, but also from his own career where he notably transformed Sylvester Stallone into Rocky Balboa and Robert DiNiro into Jake LaMotta, among many other makeup miracles.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBreaking and entering : a manual for the working actor in film, stage and TV : from auditions to agents to a career / Philip Carlson.
“Philip Carlson was the first agent to sign Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Billy Crudup, Liev Schreiber, Claire Danes, Idris Elba, Kyra Sedgwick, Adrien Grenier and Paul Giamatti. He has represented Viola Davis, Kathy Bates, Brian Dennehy, and W.H. Macy among many and gifted others. He shares his practical trade secrets in this extraordinarily comprehensive guide on how to get into show business.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe actor uncovered : a life in acting / Michael Howard.
The Actor Uncovered is certainly not a set of rigid rules advocating one “method” or one singular “truth.” Departing from the common guidebook format, Michael Howard uses a unique approach to teaching acting, reflecting on his own history and sharing his own experiences as an actor, director, and teacher. How he writes about the process and craft of acting is at once intensely personal and relatable by others.” (Syndetics summary)

New books on Movies & TV

A variety of new books on movies and TV programmes have been added to our collection recently. They include the intriguing study about movies adapted from comics (and vice versa) and the history of Wellington summer Shakespeare. See also the fascinating biographies of Charlotte Rampling and Ava Gardner.

Syndetics book coverWho I am / Charlotte Rampling ; with Christophe Bataille ; translated from the French by William Hobson with Charlotte Rampling.
“Oscar-nominated Charlotte Rampling most recently appeared in hit ITV drama Broadchurch, the BBC’s London Spy and HBO’s Dexter, and the feature film 45 Years. Having shied away from biographies and autobiographies (“too personal”) Rampling has now written Who I Am (first published in French) a lyrical, and intimate self-portrait via reminiscences. Written in a style that gives a unique insight into her screen persona, it is an idiosyncratic and beguiling insight of one of the most consistently adventurous and interesting actors.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverKirk and Anne : letters of love, laughter, and a lifetime in Hollywood / Kirk and Anne Douglas ; with Marcia Newberger.
“Film legend Kirk Douglas and Anne Buydens, his wife of nearly sixty-three years, look back on a lifetime filled with drama both on and off the screen. Sharing priceless correspondence with each other as well as the celebrities and world leaders they called friends, Kirk and Anne is a candid portrayal of the pleasures and pitfalls of a Hollywood life lived in the public eye.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAva : a life in movies / Kendra Bean and Anthony Uzarowski.
“Renowned for her screen performances, down-to-earth personality, and love affair with Frank Sinatra, Ava Gardner left an indelible mark on Hollywood history. Her adventurous life story is told through authoritative text and hundreds of photos in Ava: A Life in Movies.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverJean Renoir : a biography / Pascal Mérigeau ; translated by Bruce Benderson ; foreword by Martin Scorsese.
“Originally published in France in 2012, Pascal Merigeau’s definitive biography of legendary film director Jean Renoir is a landmark work–the winner of a Prix Goncourt, France’s top literary achievement. Now available in the English language for the first time, Jean Renoir: A Biography is the definitive study of one of the most fascinating and creative artistic figures of the twentieth century.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverFences / a play by August Wilson ; introduction by Lloyd Richards.
“From legendary playwright August Wilson, the powerful, stunning dramatic work that won him critical acclaim, including the Tony Award for Best Play and the Pulitzer Prize. Denzel Washington’s film adaptation received nominations for awards from the Academy Awards, African-American Film Critics Association, American Film Institute, Critics’ Choice Movie Awards, Golden Globe Awards, and NAACP Image Awards, among others.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWellington Summer Shakespeare, 1983-2017 / David Lawrence.
“Since its first production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 1983, the Wellington Summer Shakespeare has become an unmissable annual event, staging some of the liveliest Shakespeare productions performed in New Zealand. Over 33 years, the Summer Shakespeare has enthralled audiences, introduced new generations of theatregoers to Shakespeare in performance, and played a formative role in the early careers of many of New Zealand’s leading creatives. Wellington Summer Shakespeare 1983-2017 collects photos, ephemera and memories from some of the plays’ directors to document the evolution of Wellington’s only large-scale, large-cast, outdoor theatre event.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverT2 trainspotting / screenplay by John Hodge ; based on the books Porno and Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh.
“First there is an opportunity, then there is a betrayal. Twenty years have gone by. Much has changed but just as much remains the same. Mark Renton returns to the only place he can ever call home. They are waiting for him, of course: Spud, Sick Boy, and Frank Begbie. But they are not alone. Other old friends are waiting too: sorrow, loss, joy, vengeance, hatred, friendship, love, longing, fear, regret, diamorphine, self-destruction and mortal danger, they are all lined up to welcome him, ready to join the dance. Mark Renton returns, to the chaos of life and death.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMovie comics : page to screen/screen to page / Blair Davis.
“Adaptations of comics have been an integral part of American cinema from its very inception, with comics characters regularly leaping from the page to the screen and cinematic icons spawning comics of their own. Movie Comics is the first book to study the long history of both comics-to-film and film-to-comics adaptations, covering everything from silent films starring Happy Hooligan to sound films and serials featuring Dick Tracy and Superman to comic books starring John Wayne, Gene Autry, Bob Hope, Abbott & Costello, Alan Ladd, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis.” (Syndetics summary)

New Books on Movies and TV for June

We have received a wide variety of new books on movies and TV programmes, including beautifully designed visual guidebooks for Rogue One, The Jungle Book and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Must-read titles are the biography of much-missed actress Carrie Fisher, as well as a history of Wellington’s iconic theatre BATS by Ken Duncum and Rebecca Rodden.

Syndetics book coverBats plays / Ken Duncum & Rebecca Rodden.
“Six seminal plays from Ken Duncum and Rebecca Rodden, whose playwriting partnership powered the vibrant theatre scene round Wellington’s BATS Theatre in the 1980s and 90s. Boldly inventive, darkly comic and ceaselessly imaginative, the plays collected here present a chilling one-woman vision of alienation (Polythene Pam); the comic and tragic impossibility of human connection (Truelove); an irresponsible punk couple horrified to find they’ve become parents to the Messiah (Flybaby); conjoined twins plunged into an off-kilter world of rampant advertising, animal terrorism and a perfume made from monkey semen (cult-classic JISM); a real-life 20th-century martyr tested to his limits in the afterlife by a vengeful gang of defrocked saints (The Temptations of St Max); and the not-so-quiet desperation of a fearful hoarder fighting to survive the night hours (Panic!). Supporting the plays are introductions and selected images from the writers and other BATS practitioners which vividly recapture a crucial time and place in New Zealand’s theatre history.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe princess diarist / Carrie Fisher.
“With these excerpts from her handwritten notebooks, The Princess Diarist is Fisher’s intimate and revealing recollection of what happened on one of the most famous film sets of all time–and what developed behind the scenes. Fisher also ponders the joys and insanity of celebrity, and the absurdity of a life spawned by Hollywood royalty, only to be surpassed by her own outer-space royalty. Laugh-out-loud hilarious and endlessly quotable, The Princess Diarist brims with the candor and introspection of a diary while offering shrewd insight into the type of stardom that few will ever experience.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe art of Rogue One, a Star Wars story / written by Josh Kushins ; forewords by Doug Chiang, Neil Lamont, and Gareth Edwards.
“This book is a visual chronicle of the Lucasfilm art department’s creation of new worlds, unforgettable characters, and newly imagined droids, vehicles, and weapons for the first movie in the Star Wars Story series — Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. In the same format and style as Abrams’ The Art of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the book gives readers unprecedented access to hundreds of concept paintings, sketches, storyboards, matte paintings, and character, costume, and vehicle designs.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe art of The jungle book / written by Ellen Wolff ; foreword by Jon Favreau.
“Beautifully designed and packed with behind-the-scenes details, The Art of The Jungle Book provides an in-depth look at Disney’s latest film. In this finely crafted book, dazzling concept art, behind-the-scenes photography, CG designs, and more come together to highlight the visual spectacle of the film. Delving into the film’s interpretation of iconic Jungle Book elements, from beloved characters such as Baloo and Bagheera to the jungle itself, the book features full-color images and gorgeous double-page spreads to illustrate the magic behind the art of the film.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverFantastic beasts and where to find them : the art of the film / Dermot Power ; foreword by Stuart Craig.
The Art of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, edited by Dermot Power, concept artist on the film, takes you on a magical journey through a design process every bit as wonderful as that encountered by Newt Scamander in the wizarding world. Bursting with hundreds of production paintings, concept sketches, storyboards, blueprints and matte paintings, and filled with unique insights about the filmmaking journey from Stuart Craig and the artists themselves, this superb book – officially licensed by Warner Bros. Consumer Products – presents a visual feast for readers, and will welcome fans of Harry Potter films into the world of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBorn a crime : stories from a South African childhood / Trevor Noah.
“Trevor Noah’s unlikely path from apartheid South Africa to the desk of The Daily Show began with a criminal act: his birth. Trevor was born to a white Swiss father and a black Xhosa mother at a time when such a union was punishable by five years in prison. Living proof of his parents’ indiscretion, Trevor was kept mostly indoors for the earliest years of his life, bound by the extreme and often absurd measures his mother took to hide him from a government that could, at any moment, steal him away. Finally liberated by the end of South Africa’s tyrannical white rule, Trevor and his mother set forth on a grand adventure, living openly and freely and embracing the opportunities won by a centuries-long struggle.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTim Burton : the iconic filmmaker and his work / Ian Nathan.
“Tim Burton is one of the most popular and remarkable filmmakers of the last 30 years, being responsible for such films as Edward Scissorhands, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Corpse Bride and Alice in Wonderland. He is famed for the visually arresting style of his films that combine with highly original storylines. A truly international filmmaker, Tim Burton has carved a reputation as one of the world’s greatest creative directors. This stunning treasury explores the influences on his development as a filmmaker and assesses how he has captured the fruits of his imagination on screen.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverGeorge Lucas : a life / Brian Jay Jones.
“On May 25, 1977, a problem-plagued, budget-straining independent science-fiction film opened in a mere thirty-two American movie theaters. Conceived, written, and directed by a little-known filmmaker named George Lucas, the movie originally called The Star Wars quickly drew blocks-long lines, bursting box-office records and ushering in a new way for movies to be made, marketed, and merchandised. It is now one of the most adored-and successful-movie franchises of all time. Now, the author of the bestselling biography Jim Henson delivers a long-awaited, revelatory look into the life and times of the man who created Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Indiana Jones.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverI loved her in the movies : memories of Hollywood’s legendary actresses / Robert J. Wagner with Scott Eyman.
“In a career that has spanned more than sixty years Robert Wagner has witnessed the twilight of the Golden Age of Hollywood and the rise of television, becoming a beloved star in both media. During that time he became acquainted, both professionally and socially, with the remarkable women who were the greatest screen personalities of their day. Monroe, Gloria Swanson, Norma Shearer, Loretta Young, Joan Blondell, Irene Dunne, Rosalind Russell, Dorothy Lamour, Debra Paget, Jean Peters, Linda Darnell, Betty Hutton, Raquel Welch, Glenn Close, and the two women whom he ultimately married, Natalie Wood and Jill St. John.” (adapted from the book jacket)

Syndetics book coverTelevision : a biography / David Thomson.
“In just a few years, what used to be an immobile piece of living room furniture, which one had to sit in front of at appointed times in order to watch sponsored programming on a finite number of channels, morphed into a glowing cloud of screens with access to a near-endless supply of content available when and how viewers want it. With this phenomenon now a common cultural theme, a writer of David Thomson’s stature delivering a critical history, or “biography” of the six-decade television era, will be a significant event which could not be more timely. With Television, the critic and film historian who wrote what Sight and Sound’s readers called “the most important film book of the last 50 years” has finally turned his unique powers of observation to the medium that has swallowed film whole.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe platinum age of television : from I love Lucy to The walking dead, how TV became terrific / David Bianculli.
“Television shows have now eclipsed films as the premier form of visual narrative art of our time. This new book by one of our finest critics explains–historically, in depth, and with interviews with the celebrated creators themselves–how the art of must-see/binge-watch television evolved. Television has triumphantly come of age artistically; David Bianculli’s book is the first to date to examine, in depth and in detail and with a keen critical and historical sense, how this inspiring development came about.” (Syndetics summary)

New Books on Movies & TV programmes

New books on movies and TV offer a great summer read in a wide variety of topics. They include the lovely biography about Bill Murray and the official guide book of the much-loved TV series Outlander. A Star is Born and The Fashion of Film can be fantastic coffee table books. Check them out!

Syndetics book coverThe Tao of Bill Murray : real-life stories of joy, enlightenment, and party crashing / by Gavin Edwards ; illustrations by R. Sikoryak.
“People love Bill Murray movies, but even more, they love crazy stories about Bill Murray out in the world. For The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-Life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing, best-selling author Gavin Edwards tracked down the best authentic Bill Murray stories. People savour these anecdotes; they consume them with a bottomless hunger; they routinely turn them into viral hits. The book not only has the greatest hits of Bill’s eye-opening interactions with the world, it puts them in the context of a larger philosophy (revealed to the author in an exclusive interview): Bill Murray is secretly teaching us all how to live our lives.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLast girl before freeway : the life, loves, losses, and liberation of Joan Rivers / Leslie Bennetts.
“Joan Rivers was more than a legendary comedian; she was an icon and a role model to millions, a fearless pioneer who left a legacy of expanded opportunity when she died in 2014. Her life was a dramatic roller-coaster of triumphant highs and devastating lows: the suicide of her husband, her feud with Johnny Carson, her estrangement from her daughter, her many plastic surgeries, her ferocious ambition and her massive insecurities. But Rivers’ career was also hugely significant in American cultural history, breaking down barriers for her gender and pushing the boundaries of truth-telling for women in public life. A juicy, intimate biography of one of the greatest comedians ever-a performer whose sixty year career was borne, simply, out of a desire to make people laugh so she could feel loved-LAST GIRL BEFORE FREEWAY delves into the inner workings of a woman who both reflected and redefined the world around her.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe making of Outlander : the series : the official guide to seasons one & two / Tara Bennett ; introduction by Diana Gabaldon.
“Get an exclusive look behind the scenes of the first two seasons of Outlander with this official, fully illustrated companion to the hit Starz television series based on the bestselling novels. Best of all, The Making of Outlander offers a veritable feast of lavish photographs–including an array of images spotlighting the stars in all their characters’ grandeur and up-close personal portraits. Featuring an introduction by Diana Gabaldon herself, this magnificent insider’s look at the world of the Outlander TV series is the companion all fans will want by their side.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA star is born : the moment an actress becomes an icon / George Tiffin.
“Marlene Dietrich, Marilyn Monroe, Catherine Deneuve… Feted, adored and desired, successful movie actresses are icons of modern culture. But what was it that made them true stars? Was it looks, talent, drive, personality – or just plain luck? What was the first captivating image or unforgettable line that etched them indelibly on our collective memory – and transformed the screen actress of the passing movie credit into the screen goddess of eternal legend? In a sequence of elegant pen-portraits, George Tiffin takes a microscope to the movies and the moments that established 75 female icons of cinema. These penportraits are supplemented by quotes, notes and anecdotes, including script excerpts from key scenes. A STAR IS BORN is a seductive celebration of the eternal feminine at the heart of the movie business – and an informal and engaging history of cinema itself.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe fashion of film : how cinema has inspired fashion / Amber Butchart.
“The Fashion of Film is the perfect book for the fashion fan. In it, fashion historian Amber Butchart takes a journey through the last 100 years of cinema style and its influence on the catwalks. With beautiful imagery and thoroughly-researched text, she looks at how our most iconic movies have transformed the world of high fashion. Karl Lagerfeld was influenced by the dystopian vision of Metropolis, the picture-perfect world of Wes Anderson’s films are echoed in the collections of Miuccia Prada, and Audrey Hepburn was key to Hubert de Givenchy’s work. Fashion designers have long taken their inspiration from silver screen idols, and continue to do so today.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe real James Dean : intimate memories from those who knew him best / edited by Peter L. Winkler ; foreword by George Stevens.
“In the decades following his death, many of those who knew James Dean best–actors, directors, friends, lovers (both men and women), photographers, and Hollywood columnists–shared stories of their first-person experiences with him in interviews and in the articles and autobiographies they wrote. Their recollections of Dean became lost in fragile back issues of movie magazines and newspapers and in out-of-print books that are extremely hard to find. Until now. The Real James Dean is the first book of its kind: a rich collection spanning six decades of writing in which many of the people whose lives were touched by Dean recall their indelible experiences with him in their own words.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe impossible has happened : the life and work of Gene Roddenberry, creator of Star Trek : a biography / by Lance Parkin.
“8 September 2016 will mark the fiftieth anniversary of the debut of the world’s most successful science fiction television series: Star Trek. In this new biography Lance Parkin, author of Aurum’s acclaimed Magic Words: The Extraordinary Life of Alan Moore, will go in search of the show’s creator, Gene Roddenberry. This book will reveal how an undistinguished writer of cop shows set out to produce ‘Hornblower in space’ and ended up with an optimistic, almost utopian view of humanity’s future that has been watched and loved by hundreds of millions of people around the world.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStanley Kubrick and me : thirty years at his side / Emilio D’Alessandro with Filippo Ulivieri ; translated from the Italian by Simon Marsh.
“This intimate portrait by his former personal assistant and confidante reveals the man behind the legendary filmmaker–for the first time. Emilio was the silent guy in the room when the script for The Shining was discussed. He still has the coat Jack Nicholson used in the movie. He was an extra on the set of Eyes Wide Shut , Kubrick’s last movie. He knew all the actors and producers Kubrick worked with; he observed firsthand Kubrick’s working methods down to the smallest detail. Making no claim of expertise in cinematography but with plenty of anecdotes, he offers a completely fresh perspective on the artist and a warm, affecting portrait of a generous, kind, caring man who was a perfectionist in work and life.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverIn such good company : eleven years of laughter, mayhem, and fun in the sandbox / Carol Burnett.
“Comedy legend Carol Burnett tells the hilarious behind-the-scenes story of her iconic weekly variety series, The Carol Burnett Show. In In Such Good Company , Carol Burnett pulls back the curtain on the twenty-five-time Emmy-Award winning show that made television history, and she reminisces about the outrageously funny and tender moments that made working on the series as much fun as watching it. This book is Carol’s love letter to a golden era in television history through the lens of her brilliant show. Get the best seat in the house for “eleven years of laughter, mayhem, and fun in the sandbox.”” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe birth of a nation : Nat Turner and the making of a movement / edited by Nate Parker.Birth of a Nation: Nat Turner and the Making of a Movement
“This official tie-in to the highly acclaimed film, The Birth of a Nation , surveys the history and legacy of Nat Turner, the leader of one of the most renowned slave rebellions on American soil, while also exploring Turner’s relevance to contemporary dialogues on race relations. Based on astounding events in American history, The Birth of a Nation is the epic story of one man championing the spirit of resistance as he leads a rough-and-tumble group into a revolt against injustice and slavery.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSanford Meisner on acting / Sanford Meisner and Dennis Longwell ; introduction by Sydney Pollack.
“This book, written in collaboration with Dennis Longwell, follows an acting class of eight men and eight women for fifteen months, beginning with the most rudimentary exercises and ending with affecting and polished scenes from contemporary American plays. Throughout these pages Meisner is delight–always empathizing with his students and urging them onward, provoking emotion, laughter, and growing technical mastery from his charges. With an introduction by Sydney Pollack, director of “Out of Africa” and “Tootsie,” who worked with Meisner for five years.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAlan Partridge : nomad / Alan Partridge with Rob Gibbons, Neil Gibbons and Steve Coogan.
“In ALAN PARTRIDGE: NOMAD, Alan dons his boots, windcheater and scarf and embarks on an odyssey through a place he once knew – it’s called Britain – intent on completing a journey of immense personal significance. Diarising his ramble in the form of a ‘journey journal’, Alan details the people and places he encounters, ruminates on matters large and small and, on a final leg fraught with danger, becomes – not a man (because he was one to start off with) – but a better, more inspiring example of a man.” (Syndetics summary)

New Books on Movies and TV

A wide variety of new books on movies and TV programmes include the bestseller autobiography by Amy Schumer, the unique TV show guidebook TV (the book) and Batman v Superman : dawn of justice : the art of the film which features amazing illustrations and photos. If you are an actor or interested in acting, check out the last two books on this list.

Syndetics book coverThe girl with the lower back tattoo / Amy Schumer.
“The Emmy Award-winning comedian, actress, writer, and star of Inside Amy Schumer and the acclaimed film Trainwreck has taken the entertainment world by storm with her winning blend of smart, satirical humor. Now, Amy Schumer has written a refreshingly candid and uproariously funny collection of ( extremely ) personal and observational essays. In The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo, Amy mines her past for stories about her teenage years, her family, relationships, and sex and shares the experiences that have shaped who she is–a woman with the courage to bare her soul to stand up for what she believes in, all while making us laugh.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTV (the book) : two experts pick the greatest American shows of all time / Alan Sepinwall and Matt Zoller Seitz.
“Is The Wire better than Breaking Bad ? Is Cheers better than Seinfeld ? What’s the best high school show ever made? Was the Arrested Development Netflix season brilliant or terrible? For twenty years-since they shared a TV column at Tony Soprano’s hometown newspaper-critics Alan Sepinwall and Matt Zoller Seitz have been debating these questions and many more, but it all ultimately boils down to this: What’s the greatest TV show ever? That debate reaches an epic conclusion in TV (THE BOOK). Using a complex, obsessively all- encompassing scoring system, they’ve created a Pantheon of top TV shows, each accompanied by essays delving into what made these shows great.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPlay all : a bingewatcher’s notebook / Clive James.
“Television and TV viewing are not what they once were–and that’s a good thing, according to award-winning author and critic Clive James. Since serving as television columnist for the London Observer from 1972 to 1982, James has witnessed a radical change in content, format, and programming, and in the very manner in which TV is watched. Here he examines this unique cultural revolution, providing a brilliant, eminently entertaining analysis of many of the medium’s most notable twenty-first-century accomplishments. With intelligence and wit, James explores a television landscape expanded by cable and broadband and profoundly altered by the advent of Netflix, Amazon, and other “cord-cutting” platforms that have helped to usher in a golden age of unabashed binge-watching.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSeinfeldia : how a show about nothing changed everything / Jennifer Keishin Armstrong.
“Comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld never thought anyone would watch their silly little sitcom about a New York comedian sitting around talking to his friends. NBC executives didn’t think anyone would watch either, but they bought it anyway, hiding it away in the TV dead zone of summer. But against all odds, viewers began to watch, first a few and then many, until nine years later nearly forty million Americans were tuning in weekly. In Seinfeldia, acclaimed TV historian and entertainment writer Jennifer Keishin Armstrong celebrates the creators and fans of this American television phenomenon, bringing readers behind-the-scenes of the show while it was on the air and into the world of devotees for whom it never stopped being relevant.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDialogue : the art of verbal action for page, stage, screen / Robert McKee.
“Robert McKee’s popular writing workshops have earned him an international reputation. The list of alumni with Oscars runs off the page. The cornerstone of his program is his singular book, Story, which has defined how we talk about the art of story creation. Now, in DIALOGUE, McKee offers the same in-depth analysis for how characters speak on the screen, on the stage, and on the page in believable and engaging ways. From Macbeth to Breaking Bad, McKee deconstructs key scenes to illustrate the strategies and techniques of dialogue.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBatman v Superman : dawn of justice : the art of the film / Peter E. Aperlo ; foreword by Geoff Johns.
“Zack Snyder’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice sees Batman and Superman come together for the first time on screen. Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice: The Art of the Film, takes fans deep into this world, accompanied by insight and interviews with cast and crew, including an afterword by director Zack Snyder. It explores Metropolis and Gotham City from the streets to the skies and showcases the costumes, weaponry, vehicles, allies and enemies of our two heroes.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe scientific secrets of Doctor Who / Simon Guerrier and Dr Marek Kukula, Public Astronomer, Royal Observatory Greenwich, London.
“Doctor Who stories are many things: thrilling adventures, historical dramas, tales of love and war and jelly babies. They’re also science fiction – but how much of the science is actually real, and how much is really fiction? The Scientific Secrets of Doctor Who is a mind-bending blend of story and science that will help you see Doctor Who in a whole new light. With commentary that explores the possibilities of time travel, life on other planets, artificial intelligence, parallel universes and more, Simon Guerrier and Dr Marek Kukula show how Doctor Who uses science to inform its unique style of storytelling – and just how close it has often come to predicting future scientific discoveries.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverOut at the movies : a history of gay cinema / Steven Paul Davies ; foreword by Simon Callow.
“Over the decades, gay cinema has reflected the queer community’s journey from persecution to emancipation. This shift has been matched by the shift of gay films from the fringes to the mainstream: in 2005 this move was so pronounced that that years Oscars were referred to as ‘The Gay Oscars’. In this, the definitive guide to Gay Cinema, this history is told in all its complexity.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStanley Kubrick and me : thirty years at his side / Emilio D’Alessandro with Filippo Ulivieri ; translated from the Italian by Simon Marsh.
“Stanley Kubrick, the director of a string of timeless movies, has always been depicted by the media as the Howard Hughes of filmmakers, a weird artist obsessed with his work and privacy to the point of madness. But who was he really? Emilio D’Alessandro lets us see. A former Formula Ford driver who was a minicab chauffeur in London during the Swinging Sixties, he took a job driving a giant phallus through the city that became his introduction to the director. Honest, reliable, and ready to take on any task, Emilio found his way into Kubrick’s neurotic, obsessive heart. He offers a completely fresh perspective on the artist and a warm, affecting portrait of a generous, kind, caring man who was a perfectionist in work and life.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBeginning musical theatre dance / Diana Dart Harris.
Beginning Musical Theatre Dance introduces students to basic musical theatre dance techniques from a variety of genres, forms, and styles and explains how to put them into practice for performance on stage. Part of Human Kinetics’ Interactive Dance Series, the text and web resource offer students what they need to know about auditions, rehearsals, performing, and caring for themselves so they can have a successful experience in a musical theatre dance course. Each student-friendly text includes a web resource offering video clips of dance instruction, learning aids, assignments, and activities. The Interactive Dance Series offers students a guide to learning, performing, and viewing dance.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe adventure game : a cameraman’s tales from films at the edge / Keith Partridge.
“Keith Partridge is probably the world’s most experienced and famous practitioner of a rare trade. His filming has recorded expeditions all over the world in some of its most beautiful and hostile environments. The Adventure Game is the story of his life told through several expeditions ranging from the deep caves of Papua New Guinea to the summit of Mount Everest.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe fifty-year mission : the complete, uncensored, unauthorized oral history of Star trek : the first 25 years / Edward Gross & Mark A. Altman.
“The original Star Trek series debuted in 1966 and has spawned five TV series spin-offs and a dozen feature films, with an upcoming one from Paramount arriving in 2016. The Fifty-Year Mission is a no-holds-barred oral history of five decades of Star Trek , told by the people who were there. Hear from the hundreds of television and film executives, programmers, writers, creators and cast as they unveil the oftentimes shocking story of Star Trek ‘s ongoing fifty-year mission. Here is a volume for all fans of pop culture and anyone interested in the nuts and bolts of a television touchstone.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe working actor : the essential guide to a successful career / Paul Clayton.
“Every day do at least one thing that might lead to work, and then get on with living your life.” With this mantra in mind, Chairman of London’s Actors Centre, Paul Clayton, presents a series of invaluable exercises for the newly graduated professional actor to improve their chances of employment.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverFacing the fear : an actor’s guide to overcoming stage fright / Bella Merlin.
“The first book of its kind, designed to help performers overcome the crippling fear of stage fright.” (Syndetics summary)

New Books on Movies

New books on movies and TV programmes feature intriguing inside stories, including the relationship between James Dean and the photographer Dennis Stock, and Star Trek’s 50 year history. Movie guides such as The Film Buff’s Bucket List give movie lovers a delightful read. Check them out!

Syndetics book coverJames Dean / Dennis Stock ; introduction by Joe Hyams.
“Magnum photographer Dennis Stock met James Dean at the Château Marmont in Hollywood in 1954, and they became fast friends. Stock captured Dean’s essence in a stunning series of images of the actor in the midst of family and friends, as well as alone, sleeping, lost in thought, in the frozen fields of Indiana, and on a rainy day in Manhattan. It was an extraordinary collaboration between two people in full command of their respective talents. Dennis Stock: James Dean reintroduces these iconic photographs with Dennis Stock’s original accompanying text and a later introduction by Joe Hyams.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary) Also, check out the recent movie Life.

Syndetics book coverYoung Orson : the years of luck and genius on the path to Citizen Kane / Patrick McGilligan.
“On the centennial of his birth, the defining wunderkind of modern entertainment gets his due in a groundbreaking new biography of his early years–from his first forays in theater and radio to the inspiration and making of Citizen Kane. In this magisterial biography, Patrick McGilligan brings young Orson into focus as never before. Filled with intriguing new insights and startling revelations–including the surprising true origin and meaning of “Rosebud”–Young Orson is a fascinating look at the creative development and influences that shaped this legendary artistic genius.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe autobiography of James T. Kirk : the story of Starfleet’s greatest captain / by James T. Kirk ; edited by David A. Goodman.
The Autobiography of James T. Kirk chronicles the greatest Starfleet captain’s life (2233-2371), in his own words. From his birth on the U.S.S. Kelvin, his youth spent on Tarsus IV, his time in the Starfleet Academy, his meteoric rise through the ranks of Starfleet, and his illustrious career at the helm of the Enterprise, this in-world memoir uncovers Captain Kirk in a way Star Trek fans have never seen. Excerpts from his personal correspondence, captain’s logs, and more give Kirk’s personal narrative further depth.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSharon Tate : a life / Ed Sanders ; illustrations by Rick Veitch.
“Ed Sanders gave readers their clearest insight yet into the disturbing world of Charles Manson and his followers when he published The Family in 1971. Continuing that journalistic tradition, Sanders presents the most thorough look ever into the heartbreaking story of Sharon Tate, the iconic actress who found love, fame, and ultimately tragedy during her all-too-brief life. Sharon Tate: A Life traces Sharon’s path from beauty queen to budding young actress: her early love affairs, her romance with and marriage to director Roman Polanski, and the excitement of the glamorous life she had always sought–all set against the background of the turbulent 1960s.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe caped crusade : Batman and the rise of nerd culture / Glen Weldon.
“A witty, intelligent cultural history from book critic Glen Weldon explains Batman’s rises and falls throughout the ages and what his story tells us about ourselves. Since his creation, Batman has been many things: a two-fisted detective; a planet-hopping gadabout; a campy Pop-art sensation; a pointy-eared master spy; and a grim and gritty ninja of the urban night. In The Caped Crusade, with humour and insight, Glen Weldon, book critic and author of Superman: The Unauthorized Biography, lays out Batman’s seventy-eight-year cultural history and shows how he has helped make us who we are today and why his legacy remains so strong.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverJames Bond : the legacy / John Cork & Bruce Scivally.
“When Dr. No was released in 1962, it had an immediate and lasting impact on film audiences. The character of Bond became an icon of masculine cool and an international idol who would ride the cultural zeitgeist for the next 40 years.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWhat the eye hears : a history of tap dancing / Brian Seibert.
“Magisterial, revelatory, and-most suitably-entertaining, What the Eye Hears offers an authoritative account of the great American art of tap dancing. Brian Seibert, a dance critic for The New York Times , begins by exploring tap’s origins as a hybrid of the jig and clog dancing from the British Isles and dances brought from Africa by slaves. He tracks tap’s transfer to the stage through blackface minstrelsy and charts its growth as a cousin to jazz in the vaudeville circuits and nightclubs of the early twentieth century.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSet phasers to stun : 50 years of Star Trek / Marcus Berkmann.
“Forty-seven years after NBC killed it off, Star Trek celebrates its half-century in a state of rude health. Boldly going where several other people have been before, Marcus Berkmann tells the story of this sturdy science fiction vehicle from its first five-year mission (rudely curtailed to three), through the dark years of the 1970s, the triumphant film series and The Next Generation, to the current ‘reboot’ films, with a younger cast taking on the characters of Kirk, Spock, McCoy and co. With wit, insight and a huge pile of DVDs, he seeks to answer all the important questions. Why did Kirk’s shirt always get torn when he had a fist fight? What’s the most number of times Uhura said ‘Hailing frequencies open, sir’ in a single episode? (Seven.) And what’s the worst imaginable insult in Klingon? (Your mother has a smooth forehead.)” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverReel history : the world according to the movies / Alex von Tunzelmann.
“From ancient Egypt to the Tudors to the Nazis, the film industry has often defined how we think of the past. But how much of what you see on the screen is true? And does it really matter if filmmakers just make it all up? Picking her way through Hollywood’s version of events, acclaimed historian Alex von Tunzelmann sorts the fact from the fiction. Along the way, we meet all our favorite historical characters, on screen and in real life: from Cleopatra to Elizabeth I, from Spartacus to Abraham Lincoln, and from Attila the Hun to Nelson Mandela.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMovie freak : my life watching movies / Owen Gleiberman.
“Owen Gleiberman has spent his life watching movies-first at the drive-in, where his parents took him to see wildly inappropriate adult fare like Rosemary’s Baby when he was a wide-eyed 9 year old, then as a possessed cinemaniac who became a film critic right out of college. In Movie Freak, his enthrallingly candid, funny, and eye-opening memoir, Gleiberman captures what it’s like to live life through the movies, existing in thrall to a virtual reality that becomes, over time, more real than reality itself. For Gleiberman, the moving image has a talismanic power, but it also represents a kind of sweet sickness, a magnificent obsession that both consumes and propels him.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe film buff’s bucket list : the 50 movies of the 2000s to see before you die / Chris Stuckmann.
“Theaters around the world are dominated by comic book heroes, ice princesses, apocalyptic love-struck teens, and whatever masterpiece Pixar is rolling out. It’s clear that cinema is as healthy as ever. But which films are the best of the best? What are the top movies since 2000 to see before you die? Chris Stuckmann, one of YouTube’s most popular film reviewers (70+ million views) gives us his best of the best! In his book debut, Stuckmann delivers his list of the very best 50 Movies since 2000 – with that style and punch that YouTube viewers have come to love. These are the films you must see before you die.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe ultimate binge-watching guide / Chris Roberts.
“Watching a smartly written, well-acted, top-tier TV series is like immersing yourself in a great novel. It’s addictive. And more and more people are gobbling up shows in big bites–sometimes bingeing on an entire season in a weekend. From classics like Seinfeld and Twin Peaks, to Breaking Bad and Sherlock, to Denmark’s Borgen and France’s Les Revenants, here are 100 of the very best, all worth spending hours of time on the couch. In addition to insightful, informative, and spoiler-free overviews of storylines, themes, and characters, you’ll get enough recommendations, trivia, and teasers to make you want to catch the shows you haven’t yet seen–and revisit the ones you have!” (Syndetics summary)

Recent Film and Television book picks

This month’s picks feature a variety of books on the history of entertainment, including costume, comedy and Coronation Street. Enjoy!

Syndetics book coverHow to watch a movie / David Thomson.
“From one of the most admired critics of our time, brilliant insights into the act of watching movies and an enlightening discussion about how to derive more from any film experience. David Thomson offers his most inventive exploration of the medium yet: guiding us through each element of the viewing experience, considering the significance of everything from what we see and hear on screen – actors, shots, cuts, dialogue, music – to the specifics of how, where, and with whom we do the viewing. With customary candour and wit, Thomson delivers keen analyses of a range of films, revealing how to more deeply appreciate both the artistry and (yes) manipulation of film, and how watching movies approaches something like watching life itself.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWhy stand-up matters : how comedians manipulate and influence / Sophie Quirk.
“Popular as a good night out and packing the TV schedules, stand-up permeates British society and culture. Ubiquitous though it is, we are generally reluctant to consider comedy’s social consequences. This book looks at the social and political impact of stand-up comedy in both its positive and negative forms. Drawing on exclusive interviews with comedians such as Stewart Lee, Josie Long, Joe Wilkinson and Mark Thomas, and examples of comic material on everything from revolution, terrorism and homosexuality, to knitting and the inefficiency of the home shower, it explores comedy’s role in determining our attitudes and opinions.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverOrry Kelly : Miss Weston’s protege : the story of a great Hollywood costume designer / Robert Parkinson.
Orry Kelly, Miss Weston’s Protègè tells the incredible story of one of Hollywood’s greatest designers. Using never before seen materials, photographs and letters, Robert Parkinson has compiled years of research into one of the most detailed accounts of Orry Kelly’s history. Over the course of his career Orry Kelly worked for all of the major studios, including Warner Brothers, Paramount and Fox, dressing many of the well-known female stars in some 312 films. As biographies of movie stars began to appear in the 1980s his fashion styling and costume design came to be highly regarded and worthy of study across several universities and colleges.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe comedians : drunks, thieves, scoundrels, and the history of American comedy / Kliph Nesteroff.
“Based on over two hundred original interviews and extensive archival research, Nesteroff’s groundbreaking work is a narrative exploration of the way comedians have reflected, shaped, and changed American culture over the past one hundred years. From comedy’s part in the Civil Rights movement and the social upheaval of the late 1960s, to the first comedy clubs of the 1970s and the cocaine-fueled comedy boom of the 1980s, The Comedians culminates with a new era of media-driven celebrity in the twenty-first century.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA to Z great film directors / Andy Tuohy, with text by Matt Glasby.
“A striking, design-led reference book. A-Z Great Film Directors features Andy Tuohy’s portraits of 52 directors significant for their contribution to cinema including kings of world cinema Wong Kar-Wai and Akira Kurosawa, arthouse pioneers Fritz Lang and David Lynch as well as the often under-appreciated female directors Kathryn Bigelow and Jane Campion. So whether you’re already a film afficionado, or looking for a helpful cheat to pass convincingly as an arthouse fan, you’ll love this guide to international directors, past and present.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDeirdre : a life on Coronation Street / Glenda Young.
“From her first appearance in 1972, Deirdre Barlow (nee Hunt) went on to become one of the street’s most iconic stars and been at the centre of some of its most explosive storylines; including her affair with Mike Baldwin, her imprisonment for fraud which prompted the then Prime Minister, Tony Blair, to raise her case in the Commons and her relationship with daughter Tracy, a woman who has literally gotten away with murder. Deirdre: A Life on the Street is a tribute to one of the most recognised and loved characters on television.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAndy and Don : the making of a friendship and a classic American TV show / Daniel de Visé.
“Andy Griffith and Don Knotts met on Broadway in the 1950s. When Andy went to Hollywood to film a TV pilot about a small-town sheriff, Don called to ask if the sheriff could use a deputy. The comedic synergy between Sheriff Andy Taylor and Deputy Barney Fife ignited The Andy Griffith Show, elevating a folksy sitcom into a timeless study of human friendship, as potent off the screen as on. Written by Don Knotts’s brother-in-law and featuring extensive unpublished interviews with those closest to both men, Andy and Don is the definitive literary work on the legacy of The Andy Griffith Show and a provocative and an entertaining read about two of America’s most enduring stars.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAnd on that bombshell / Richard Porter.
“I was Top Gear’s script editor for 13 years and all 22 series. I basically used to check spelling and think of stupid gags about The Stig. I also got to hang around with Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May. It didn’t feel like something you should get paid for. From the disastrous pilot show of 2002 to the sudden and unexpected ending in 2015, working on Top Gear was quite a rollercoaster ride. I realised that I had quite a few stories to tell from behind the scenes on the show. I remembered whose daft idea it was to get a dog. I recalled the wilfully stupid way in which we decorated our horrible office. I had a sudden flashback to the time a Bolivian drug lord threatened to kill us. I decided I should write down some of these stories. So I have. I hope you like them.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStrictly Bruce : stories of my life / Bruce Forsyth.
“Bruce Forsyth, the consummate performer and much-loved face of British entertainment, invites you to share with him in a collection of his favourite photographs, which tell the story of a remarkable life lived to the full. Charting his life story from talented young lad growing up in north London to achieving national treasure status, Strictly Bruce is full of dazzling photographs and warm anecdotes spanning eight decades of Bruce’s life, man and boy. It’s a chance to take a trip down memory lane, celebrate the golden age of British showbiz and step behind the scenes of Bruce’s personal life, meeting the people he loves and learning what makes him tick.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverJames Dean / Dennis Stock ; introduction by Joe Hyams.
“Magnum photographer Dennis Stock met James Dean in 1954, and they became fast friends. Stock captured Dean’s essence in a stunning series of images of the actor in the midst of family and friends, as well as alone, sleeping, lost in thought, in the frozen fields of Indiana, and on a rainy day in Manhattan. It was an extraordinary collaboration between two people in full command of their respective talents. James Dean reintroduces these iconic photographs, taken at the dawn and high noon of a brief and brilliant career, with Dennis Stock’s original accompanying text and a later introduction by Joe Hyams.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New books on Movies & TV shows

New books on movies and TV shows include very popular Star Wars and Back to the future. Two books about James Bond and Woody Allen offer intriguing reads. If you are a fan of TV shows you won’t be disappointed. Check out comprehensive studies on Mad Men, Poldark and others.

Syndetics book coverThe art of Star Wars the force awakens / written by Phil Szostak ; foreword by Rick Carter.
“Step inside the Lucasfilm art departments for the creation of Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Exclusive interviews with the entire creative team impart fascinating insights in bringing director J.J. Abrams’s vision to life; unused “blue sky” concept art offers glimpses into roads not traveled. Bursting with hundreds of stunning works of art, including production paintings, concept sketches, storyboards, blueprints, and matte paintings, this visual feast will delight Star Wars fans and cineastes for decades to come.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBond by design / written by Meg Simmonds.
Bond By Design gives an exclusive tour through EON Productions’ James Bond archives – a treasure trove of set, storyboard, vehicle, gadget and costume designs, many of which have never been published before. The book provides a unique, spectacular and fascinating insight into the longest-running film franchise of all time. It reveals the craft behind the creation of famous sets, such as Stromberg’s Atlantis base in The Spy Who Loved Me and Drax’s shuttle launch site in Moonraker, as well as technical drawings of Bond’s gadget-laden Aston Martin DB5. Includes two exclusive, full-colour prints of Bond film designs.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBond vs. Bond : the many faces of 007 / Paul Simpson.
“Who is your favorite Bond? Whether you love Sean Connery, Roger Moore, or even Timothy Dalton, you are going to love Bond vs. Bond . A fully comprehensive guide, Bond vs. Bond compares and contrasts all of the various ways Ian Fleming’s iconic British Secret Service agent, code name 007, has been interpreted through the years, from the books and movies to the guns and gadgets. Spanning from Fleming’s 1953 book Casino Royale to Sam Mendes’ 2012 film Skyfall, Bond vs. Bond features every incarnation of 007. This is definitely a book that no Bond fan should be without!” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBack to the Future : the ultimate visual history / written by Michael Klastorin.
“Great Scott! Go Back to the Future with Doc Brown and Marty McFly in this visually stunning look at the creation of one of the most beloved movie trilogies of all time. Few films have made an impact on popular culture like the Back to the Future trilogy. This deluxe, officially licensed book goes behind the scenes to tell the complete story of the making of these hugely popular movies and how the adventures of Marty McFly and Doc Brown became an international phenomenon. Back to the Future: The Ultimate Visual History is a stunning journey into the creation of this beloved time-traveling saga.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWoody Allen : a retrospective / Tom Shone.
“Woody Allen is a uniquely innovative performer, writer and director with nearly fifty movies to his credit, from cult slapstick films and romantic comedies to introspective character studies and crime thrillers. In this timely retrospective, Tom Shone reviews Woody Allen’s entire career, providing incisive commentary on his films and shedding light on this uniquely self-deprecating filmmaker, with the help of comments contributed by Allen himself. This is a fitting tribute to one of the masters of modern cinema, published to mark Woody Allen’s eightieth birthday.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWoody : the biography / David Evanier.
“In the first biography of Allen in over twenty years, David Evanier writes about Allen’s private life as well as his very public career. In fresh interviews with collaborators, boyhood pals, family and friends, Evanier fills in fascinating details about where Woody came from, how he got his start, and how he has been able to be moral in his business dealings and make exactly the movies that interest him most with the people who interest him most, from Diane Keaton to Cate Blanchett to Michael Caine. Woody is the biography of an artist who has never lost his passion, talent and capacity to break new artistic ground, who has always been swept up in the creative act of becoming.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe big bad book of Bill Murray : a critical appreciation of the world’s finest actor / by Robert Schnakenberg.
“The man. The movies. The life. The legend. He’s played a deranged groundskeeper, a bellowing lounge singer, a paranormal exterminator, and a grouchy weatherman. He is William James “Bill” Murray, America’s greatest national treasure. Part biography, part critical appreciation, part love letter, and all fun, this enormous full-color volume, packed with color film stills and behind-the-scenes photography, chronicles every Murray performance in loving detail, recounting all the milestones, legendary “Murray stories,” and controversies in the life of this enigmatic performer.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMad men carousel : the complete critical companion / Matt Zoller Seitz ; foreword by Megan Abbott ; illustrations by Max Dalton ; poems by Martha Orton ; with contributions by Deborah Lipp and Roberta Lipp.
Mad Men Carousel is an episode-by-episode guide to all seven seasons of AMC’s Mad Men. This book collects TV and movie critic Matt Zoller Seitz’s celebrated Mad Men recaps –as featured on New York magazine’s Vulture blog–for the first time, including never-before-published essays on the show’s first three seasons. Seitz’s writing digs deep into the show’s themes, performances, and filmmaking, examining complex and sometimes confounding aspects of the series.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe world of Poldark / Emma Marriott.
“Emma Marriott’s The World of Poldark explores the characters, the compelling stories and the era that Winston Graham – and the television series – set out to recreate, the England that Ross Poldark returned to from the American War of Independence. England, and especially Cornwall, was then marked by social unrest and a deep division between rich and poor. It was a place of tin mines and shipwrecks, of new money versus old, of harsh justice and great kindness. And, above all, it was a place that inspired Winston Graham’s beloved novels. The World of Poldark is the ultimate guide to the popular series.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDownton Abbey : a celebration / by Jessica Fellowes ; foreword by Julian Fellowes.
“Downton Abbey set a new standard, and it’s probable that in 20 or 50 years critics will look back and say that this was period drama at its very best, often imitated but never bettered. Alongside are in-depth interviews with the cast, who have worked on the show for six years and know it so well, as well as a complete episode guide for the first five seasons and a teaser for the sixth. Packed full of stunning location shots and stills from all six seasons of the show including exclusive behind-the-scenes photography, this celebratory book is the ultimate gift for Downton Abbey fans the world over.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe world of Vikings / by Justin Pollard ; foreword by Michael Hirst.
“MGM’s hit show Vikings on the History Channel has drawn millions of viewers into the fascinating and bloody world of legendary Norse hero Ragnar Lothbrok, who led Viking warriors to the British Isles and France. Covering the first three seasons of the series, this official companion book delves into the real history as well as the behind-the-scenes stories. This spectacular package is a must for fans of the show and history buffs alike.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBehind the illusion : unlocking the 9 types of magic / Darcy Oake.
“Darcy, a thrilling Canadian illusionist, won the coveted People’s Choice Award in Seattle and performed at the Magic Castle in Hollywood before he was legally of age. Aged 26, he dazzled the nation as a finalist on ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent and on ITV special Edge of Reality. In Behind the Illusion, magician Darcy Oake takes you through the nine traditionally accepted forms of magic. He reveals the origins and science behind various illusions, and explains why there is a difference between what the eye sees and what is actually happening on stage; as well as giving famous examples from history, and his own personal twists on them.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStar trek costumes : five decades of fashion from the final frontier / Paula M. Block and Terry J. Erdmann ; introduction by Robert Blackman.
“This deluxe book showcases the unique costumes of the Star Trek saga, taking in fifty years of iconic and hugely influential designs. Drawing on the entire franchise, including all twelve films and six TV series, Star Trek: Costumes explores the creation of some of the most memorable garb in the galaxy, telling the complete story of how Star Trek’s outlandishly chic wardrobe has been expanded in increasingly thrilling ways throughout the years. Star Trek: Costumes is the ultimate way to experience the incredible fashions of the Final Frontier.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThunderbirds : the vault / Marcus Hearn.
“On 30th September 1965, International Rescue successfully completed their first assignment, and the Tracy brothers imprinted themselves on a generation of captivated children. Thirty-two episodes, many repeats, sixty territories, two feature films, three albums, numerous comics, books, toys, videos and DVDs and five decades later, Thunderbirds are still saving the world from the brink of peril. Thunderbirds: The Vault will be the first ever lavishly illustrated, definitive, beautifully packaged, presentation hardback telling the story of this enduring cult phenomenon.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverInvestigating Murdoch mysteries : the official companion to the series / Michelle Ricci with Mir Bahmanyar.
“Based on Maureen Jennings’ award-winning novels, at the end of the Victorian era, Toronto-based police detective William Murdoch uses radical forensic techniques, including fingerprinting and trace evidence, to solve some of the city’s most gruesome murders. This companion looks at every aspect of all 8 seasons of the show, from the regular characters and their relationships, to the history of the period, including figures Murdoch encounters, the forensic and scientific advances he utilises, and Murdoch’s most notable cases.” (Syndetics summary)

Latest Film and Television book arrivals

Terry Gilliam. What’s inside his head? Find out by reading his book. Explore the TV revolution by reading Taschen’s favorite TV shows. Journey inside North Korea with The director is the commander. Plus, many other great new arrivals!

Syndetics book coverGilliamesque : my me, me, me memoir / Terry Gilliam and Ben Thompson.
“From his no-frills childhood in the icy wastes of Minnesota, to some of the hottest water Hollywood had to offer, via the cutting edge of ’60s and ’70s counter-culture in New York, LA and London, Terry Gilliam’s life has been as vivid and unorthodox as one of his films. Telling his story for the first time, the director of Brazil, 12 Monkeys and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – not to mention co-founder of Monty Python’s Flying Circus – recalls his life so far. Packed with never-before-seen artwork, photographs and commentary, Gilliamesque blends the visual and the verbal with scabrous wit and fascinating insights.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTaschen’s favorite TV shows : the top shows of the last 25 years / Jürgen Müller (ed.).
“In the last decade, shows like Breaking Bad, Borgen and Mad Men have toppled cinema from its leading position in the popular culture universe and ushered in a whole new level of small screen excellence and appreciation. Networks such as HBO, AMC, and ABC have launched a new era of cinematic narrative, while cable TV networks, DVDs, and the Internet have brought about new, flexible ways of watching and engaging. Global fan communities devour episode after episode, independently of programs and broadcasting schedules, and probe the multiple levels of meaning in their favorite series in blogs, fan groups and online forums. Alongside a wealth of stills, this overview of the TV revolution presents the most important and successful series of recent years, from David Lynch’s groundbreaking masterpiece Twin Peaks to current highlights like Game of Thrones, Girls and House of Cards. Learn something new about your favorite shows, and about those you’re still to discover.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWomen I’ve undressed / Orry-Kelly.
“Orry-Kelly created magic on screen, from Casablanca and The Maltese Falcon to Some Like It Hot. He won three Oscars for costume design. He dressed all the biggest stars, from Bette Davis to Marilyn Monroe. He was an Australian. Yet few know who Orry-Kelly really was – until now. Discovered in a pillowcase, Orry-Kelly’s long-lost memoirs reveal a wildly talented and cheeky rascal who lived a big life, on and off the set. Sharing digs in New York with another aspiring actor, Cary Grant, and partying hard in between auditions, he ekes out a living painting murals for speakeasies before graduating to designing stage sets and costumes. When The Kid from Kiama finally arrives in Hollywood, it’s clear his adventures have only just begun. Fearless, funny and outspoken, Orry-Kelly lived life to the full.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe science of TV’s The big bang theory : explanations even Penny would understand / Dave H. Zobel.
“The highest-rated scripted show on TV, The Big Bang Theory (CBS) often features Sheldon, Howard, Leonard and Raj wisecracking about scientific principles as if the rest of us should know exactly what they’re talking about. The Science of TV’S The Big Bang Theory lets all of us in on the punchline by breaking down the show’s scientific conversations. Covering every angle, author Dave Zobel maintains a humorous and informative approach and gives readers enough knowledge to make them welcome on Sheldon’s couch.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe director is the commander / Anna Broinowski.
“Looking for respite from her crumbling marriage and determined to stop a coal seam gas mine near her Sydney home, filmmaker Anna Broinowski finds wisdom and inspiration in the strangest of places: North Korea. Guided by the late Dear Leader Kim Jong Il’s manifesto The Cinema and Directing, Broinowski, in a world first, travels to Pyongyang to collaborate with North Korea’s top directors, composers and movie stars to make a powerful anti-fracking propaganda film. The Director is the Commander centres around the bizarre twenty-one day shoot Broinowski did in North Korea to make her documentary, Aim High in Creation! Funny, multi-layered and utterly compelling, The Director is the Commander is a gripping account of an extraordinary journey inside a nation we can usually only see from the outside looking in.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverMany more lives of the Batman / edited by Roberta Pearson, William Uricchio, Will Brooker.
“The Many Lives of the Batman (1991) was a pioneer within cultural and comic book scholarship. This fresh new sequel retains the best of the original chapters but also includes images, new chapters and new contributions from the Batman writers and editors. Spanning 75 years and multiple incarnations, this is the definitive history of Batman.” (Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSpecial effects make-up artist / Jonathan Craig and Bridget Light.
“Movies are full of amazingly odd creatures, from aliens to zombies, but what goes into creating them? Many of these bizarre creatures are brought to life with make-up and prosthetics. Find out what’s involved in being a special effects make-up artist, the tools and skills you need, and the difficulties of bringing imaginary creatures to life.” (Syndetics summary)