Who got that cash?

October 12, 2007

An academic who grew up watching Cary Grant films has been awarded a £22,550 grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council to study her Hollywood idol.

Kathrina Glitre , who teaches film studies at the University of the West of England, will focus on Grant's casting and performance. She said acting was often neglected in film studies. "I want to look at Cary Grant individually - why he is so good in comedy but awful in period dramas and what it is about his mannerisms, intonation and the way he wears costume that makes him so distinctive," explained Dr Glitre. "My hypothesis is he is quite a modern figure in terms of his masculinity, which is why he is so iconic still compared to, say, Clark Gable, who has more or less been forgotten."

The work was primarily academic but would give people another way of thinking about the Bristol-born star. "The fact that Cary Grant was born in Bristol was part of the reason I chose to focus on him. He's also, indirectly, the reason I am a film studies lecturer: I was a huge fan in my teens."

Dr Glitre will visit the Margaret Herrick Library in Los Angeles, which houses the production files for Grant's films. What made Grant particularly interesting, she said, was that he was one of the first stars to set up his own production company so he had more control than most.

The grant will cover Dr Glitre's teaching while she gets on with her monograph.

"My biggest challenge will be producing 35,000 words in eight months."

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