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  • The Divo, New-Style Heavy

    Giorgio Bertellini

    Chapter from the book: Bertellini, G. 2019. The Divo and the Duce: Promoting Film Stardom and Political Leadership in 1920s America.


    Chapter 4 looks at the films Rudolph Valentino made early in his career, often as a secondary or antagonistic character, in order to appreciate why one of his earliest promoters, screenwriter and producer June Mathis, cast him in her 1921 adaptation of Vicente Blasco Ibañez’s novel The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. In her script, Mathis managed to create the figure of a poignantly sympathetic tango dancer from Ibañez’s more amoral character, Julio. The remainder of this chapter, however, juxtaposes her creative characterization of Julio as a romantic figure with how the film publicity promoted the more lasting image of Valentino as an irresistible and dominating seducer.

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    Bertellini, G. 2019. The Divo, New-Style Heavy. In: Bertellini, G, The Divo and the Duce. California: University of California Press. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1525/luminos.62.e

    This is an Open Access chapter distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (unless stated otherwise), which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Copyright is retained by the author(s).

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    Published on Jan. 15, 2019