Janet Wasko is the Knight Chair for Communication Research at University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon. Her research and teaching focuses on the political economy of media, especially the political economy of film, as well as issues relating to democracy and media. She currently serves as the President of the International Association for Media and Communication Research.
Wasko is the author, co-author or editor of 19 books, including: How Hollywood Works (Sage, 2003), Understanding Disney: The Manufacture of Fantasy (Polity Press/ Blackwell, 2001), Hollywood in the Information Age: Beyond the Silver Screen (Polity Press, 1994), A Companion to Television (Blackwell, 2005) and Dazzled by Disney? The Global Disney Audience Project (Leicester University Press/Continuum, 2001). How Hollywood Works is a book about the U.S. motion picture industry”its structure and policies, its operations and practices. It looks at the processes that are involved in turning raw materials and labor into feature films. It describes the process of film production, distribution, exhibition and retail”a process that involves different markets where materials, labor and products are bought and sold. This is a book about how Hollywood works as an industry. How Hollywood Works offers an up-to-date survey of the policies and structure of the U.S. film industry and looks at the relationship between the film industry and other media industries. It examines the role of the major studios and the other players, including, law firms, talent agents, and trade unions and guilds. It also provides access to hard-to-find statistical information on the industry.
Wasko examines the film production and marketing process, not from an industry perspective, but critically from within a more general economic, political and social context. In doing so, she provides a timely and essential analysis of how Hollywood works for all students of film and media.