Translating Hollywood


You already know that movie titles sometimes suffer in their translation overseas. In Japan, The Grapes of Wrath became The Angry Raisins, for example; in Germany, Annie Hall became The Urban Neurotic. But there are deeper lessons to be taken from the export of Hollywood films, as author Sam Sarowitz has learned. Drawing from his extensive movie-poster collection, Sarowitz realized that how a movie is marketed in a foreign country sometimes says as much about that country as it does the movie being advertised. Sarowitz’s book, Translating Hollywood, includes startling foreign posters of familiar movies that reveal much about the selling of American culture overseas. Posteritati, the movie-poster gallery, is hosting a launch party for the book, so while you’re getting your personal copy signed, feel free to check out its massive inventory (Posteritati has posters dating back to 1914).

Wed., May 7, 6 p.m., 2008