As Hollywood entered the sound era, it was rightly determined that the same public fascinated by the novelty of the talkie would be dazzled by the spectacle of a song and dance film. In 1929 and 1930, film musicals became the industry's most lucrative genre - until the greedy studios almost killed the genre by glutting the market with too many films that looked and sounded like clones of each other.
From the classy movies such as Sunnyside Up and Hallelujah! to failures such as The Lottery Bride and Howdy Broadway, this filmography details 171 early Hollywood musicals. Arranged by subgenre (backstagers, operettas, college films, and stage-derived musical comedies), the entries include studio, release date, cast and credits, running time, a complete song list, any recordings spawned by the film, Academy Award nominations and winners, and availability on video or laserdisc. These data are followed by a plot synopsis, including analysis of the film's place in the genre's history. Includes over 90 photographs.