Adela Rogers St. Johns
Adela Rogers St. Johns delighted in the fact that James Quirk of Photoplay called her “the mother-confessor of Hollywood” (St. Johns 1976, 11). Her California birth, close association with William Randolph Hearst, and unconventional upbringing gave her an unusual vantage point on the social mores of Hollywood as was born in the 1910s and assumed its mature form in the 1920s. Indeed, St. Johns may be said to have been the most influential of the chroniclers of the Hollywood story of rise and fall inasmuch as she wrote the narrative that became the template for the motion picture What Price Hollywood? (1932) and its later iterations as A Star Is Born (1937, 1954, 1976). She both reported on Hollywood and fictionalized the lives of the stars she covered; thus her significance was as an observer of Hollywood rather than as a participant in it.
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