Haworth, Catherine (2017) Music for a gentleman adventurer: scoring the Falcon at RKO Radio Pictures. In: Newland Lecture in Music, 17 October 2017, University of Hull. (Unpublished)

Film exhibition during the 1940s followed the double-bill model, pairing prestige ‘A’ pictures with shorter, cheaper ‘B’ movies. A continual demand for cost-effective product meant that serial-style programmers became a favourite of both Hollywood studios and their audiences; short instalments of an ongoing story, or standalone narratives with recurring characters, story arcs, and stars. The Falcon series was a staple of the RKO Radio Pictures roster during the 1940s, following its debonair investigator across thirteen all-action, romance-filled instalments. Drawing on materials from the RKO archive, I consider the relationship between process documentation and textual analysis in film music studies, and how this might affect our understanding of ‘B’ film production and the studio music department in classical Hollywood.

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