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The American President in Film and Television

Myth, Politics and Representation

Gregory Frame

As evidenced by the election of celebrity and reality television star Donald Trump, popular culture has played a vital role in the conceptualisation of political leadership. This revised edition of The American President in Film and Television explores the complex relationship between the construction of fictional presidents on screen and the political cultures from which they emerged. How have our popular cultural fantasies of presidential leadership contributed to the current political reality? Combining textual analysis with close attention to political and historical contexts, the book addresses the reasons behind the proliferation of images of the president in the past twenty-five years, from the archetype in American genre cinema (Air Force One, Independence Day and Deep Impact) to the idealised fantasy figure in network television (The West Wing, 24 and Commander in Chief). With the election of a president whose worldview appears to have been formed entirely by the aesthetics and rhetoric of popular culture, where does the presidency – either on screen or in the White House – go from here?

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Index

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320 Index Beck, Tom (Deep Impact) 1, 2, 181, 187, 190–9, 204, 205, 207, 209, 213, 214, 216, 217, 220, 231 see also ‘black angel’ Best Man, The (1964) 36 Bigger Than Life (1956) 243 Birth of a Nation, The (1915) 6, 14, 184 ‘black angel’ 186, 187, 195, 199, 234 Bob Roberts (1992) 53 Bogle, Donald 182, 183, 232 Bonfire of the Vanities, The (1990) 192 Bourne Supremacy, The (2004) 139 Bourne Ultimatum, The (2007) 139 Boyz ‘n the Hood (1991) 177 Broadcast News (1987) 248 Bruzzi, Stella 56, 60, 70, 72, 104, 112, 243, 257 buddy movies 198, 213, 222–4 Bush, George, Sr. 49, 50, 54, 56, 57, 63, 65, 69 Bush, George W. 3, 10, 14, 17, 116, 117, 119–24, 134, 135, 137, 139, 141–7, 150, 151, 153, 163, 171–3, 208, 210–12, 261, 276, 277, 285 Cahiers du Cinéma 20, 21, 23 Calloway, Rod (Commander in Chief) 242, 256, 261, 266, 267 Candidate, The (1972) 5, 39 Capitol Building 57, 196–8, 258, 286 Capra, Frank 4, 8, 10, 14, 28–32, 39, 54–60, 62–7, 79, 80, 109, 111, 112 Carr, E.H. 19 Carter, Jimmy 35, 39, 40, 42, 43, 69, 96, 115, 282 Cellular (2007) 287 Charlie’s Angels (1976–81, 2000, 2003) 253 Chasing Liberty (2004) 251 Cheaper by the Dozen (2003) 270 Cheney, Dick 122, 134, 135, 210 Children of Men (2006) 139 Civil Rights Movement 48, 182, 215, 219 Clear and Present Danger (1994) 102...

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