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Often what seems obvious about a star's or movie's fame is the result of chance or whim. The search for Scarlett O'Hara that contributed to the legend of Gone with the Wind owed as much to David O. Selznick's indecision and Jack Warner's and Bette Davis' intransigence as to any difficulty in finding the right actress. The discovery of Bogart's tough-guy appeal owes much to George Raft turning down several roles that Bogie took and ran with. Base reexamines many such familiar Hollywood stories from the perspective of how casting decisions affected the finished movies and their appeal. Who gets offered a part and who has the foresight to accept a part have as much to do with the creation of great movies as technical accomplishment and good scripting, and careers are made and broken in the casting. In crisp, well-researched prose, Base's eminently readable and informative film history imparts valuable insight into the workings of the Hollywood star machine from the 1930s to the present. Add this book to your movie-book shelves! Mike Tribby