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Thomas S. Hischak to be Featured on CUTV News Radio

ST. AUGUSTINE, FLORIDA, UNITED STATES, October 2, 2018 / -- The year 1939 was a dark time in world history, but the future was bright: so many songs yet to be written; so many movies yet to be made; so much creativity yet to be unlocked.

In exploring the history of film, all roads lead back to 1939. Thomas S. Hischak is the author of 1939: Hollywood's Greatest Year. Arranged chronologically from January 1 to December 31, each entry covers one day and features major news events as well as notable works on Broadway, radio, the music business, literature, but most significantly provides a full description and commentary on the Hollywood movies released on that day.

“It’s just a fascinating year,” says Hischak. “There was all this optimism for the future, while at the same time Europe was collapsing. I wanted to explore this year as if we were living it in context of what was going on in America and the world. “

In 1939, Hollywood produced an unprecedented number of great films, including two of the most beloved films of all time: Gone with the Wind and The Wizard of Oz, both directed by Victor Fleming. 1939 also saw the release of Babes in Arms, Beau Geste, Gunga Din, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Only Angels Have Wings, and Young Mr. Lincoln as well as Dark Victory, Goodbye Mr. Chips, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, and Ninotchka.

“My theory is that 1939 was a crossroads,” says Hischak. “All the best of the movie makers going back to the silent movies were still working and a whole new generation was just getting started. You have someone like Gary Cooper, who had been making movies for 20 years and then you had Ingrid Bergman making her film debut in America. All their best writers, actors, directors were at their peak. All the stars were aligned to make good movies.”

Hischak serves as an adjunct professor teaching film studies at Flagler College. He’s enjoyed a long career as an educator specializing in theater and film, with a particular interest in musicals.

“It’s funny. I didn’t grow up with it. I wasn’t one of those kids who was dragged to the theater or listened to musical theater,” recalls Hischak.

Hischak started a writing career, publishing books on theater and musical theater, later transitioning to film with books about film, and musicals, moved into books about songs and contemporary songs, but what we call Tin Pan Alley, the grand old days of music.

“They used to say people who go to the movies don’t go to the theater, and people who go to the theater don’t go to the movies,” says Hischak, “but for musicals, they do. During my teaching and writing, there was a big change in people’s interests in musicals. It used to be only old people loved musicals, and the school musical was the kind of thing only theater geeks did. That has changed with Glee and High School Musical and Hairspray and Hamilton and The Book of Mormon. Now it’s kind of cool.”

CUTV News Radio will feature Thomas Hischak in an interview with Jim Masters on October 4th at 11am EDT.

Listen to the show on BlogTalkRadio.

If you have a question for our guest, call (347) 996-3389.

1939: Hollywood's Greatest Year is available on Amazon

Lou Ceparano
(631) 850-3314
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