By 1979, the independent film culture that had been born in the late 1960s with the steep decline of Hollywood’s dominance was now, itself, swiftly entering a state of decline. The “blockbuster syndrome” initiated by Jaws in 1975 changed not only what kind of movies got made but how many and how they were distributed. Studios managed their financial risk by making fewer movies, then ramping them up to event status with an onslaught of television advertising, cross-promotion, and saturation booking. The formula was successful enough to turn around Hollywood’s fortunes....
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