Revistes Catalanes amb Accés Obert (RACO)

Star Studies Today: From the Picture Personality to the Media Celebrity

Virginia Luzón-Aguado


Although the study of film was already well established, Star Studies did not become the focus of serious, sustained academic research until the 1970s thanks to the seminal work of Richard Dyer, in which it was firmly established that film stars contribute fundamentally to the creation of meaning in a film text. It is for this reason that Star Studies has had a comparatively shorter, although not less productive, history than other areas of research within Film Studies. This paper will therefore be discussing the role, significance and value of Hollywood film stars within both our present society and the contemporary Hollywood film industry. However, in order to fully appreciate the current state of the institution of Hollywood stardom, it will also be necessary to briefly discuss its foundations and development, as well as the various ways in which stardom has routinely been analysed within the academic field of Film Studies. In order to illustrate my theoretical arguments, I will be focusing on the particular case of Harrison Ford, one of the most influential contemporary Hollywood icons.

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