The Impact of Universal Studios Essay

2384 Words Feb 18th, 2013 10 Pages
The Universal Impact Universal Pictures, or Universal Studios, has been around for a little over a century and it is currently regarded amongst the top six movie studios in America. It grosses billions of dollars in revenue annually and produces major hits and movie stars. Universal is also owned by a giant media conglomerate known as NBC Universal, which is quite different from its humble beginnings. This paper will provide a brief insight into the relationship between Universal Pictures and its impact on the movie industry along with how Universal became a big name in Hollywood. The man who started it all was Carl Laemmle. Born in Württemberg Germany, Laemmle was the tenth of thirteen children, eight of which died of a cruel epidemic …show more content…
The Hunchback of Notre Dame was Universal's "Super Jewel" of 1923 and was their most successful silent film, grossing over $3 million, and set the standard for all future horror films in the industry. The Phantom of the Opera made Universal more interested in possibly making higher budget, “grade-A” films. Chaney eventually left Universal for MGM and retired shortly after making a few films for Howard Dietz. In the late 1920s, Universal became a very powerful movie studio but was not considered part of the “Big Five.” It was, however, given companionship alongside Columbia Pictures and United Artists which became collectively known as the “Little Three.” Although it was the largest of the Little Three, Universal Pictures lost money during each year of the 1930s except 1931, 1934 and 1939. This desperate financial situation led to a change in ownership in 1936 and several management upheavals thereafter. Universal had traditionally engaged primarily in the production of low-budget features and “sub-features” aimed at the subsequent run and rural markets, with only an occasional prestige ‘A’ picture. This policy of reliance on programme pictures remained fairly stable throughout the decade of the 1930s; those periodic forays into ‘prestige’ production and away from the basic programme formula generally met with financial disaster and precipitated most of the decade’s management

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