NY Times Bestseller

Sleepless In Hollywood

Tales from the NEW ABNORMAL in the Movie Business

by Linda Obst

The veteran producer and author of the bestseller Hello, He Lied takes a witty and critical look at the new Hollywood and why the movie business is floundering. In a new introduction, she describes the tumultuous seasons that followed and predicts the crises still to come.

Over the past decade, producer Lynda Obst gradually realized she was working in a Hollywood that was undergoing a drastic transformation. The industry where everything had once been familiar to her was suddenly disturbingly strange.  

Obst writes with affection, regret, humor and hope, and her behind-the-scenes vantage point allows her to explore what has changed in Hollywood like no one else has. This candid, insightful account explains what has happened to the movie business, and explores whether it’ll ever return to making the movies we love—the classics that make us laugh or cry, or that we just can’t stop talking about.

Review excerpts:

Wall Street Journal, Edward J. Epstein, Aug. 6, 2013

Ms. Obst, the author of the best seller “Hello, He Lied” (1996) and producer of a such films as “Flashdance,” “The Fisher King” and “Sleepless in Seattle,” is well positioned to report on the decline and fall of what she sardonically terms “the old abnormal”—the period between 1980 and 2005 when she and her colleagues made original, dialogue-driven films.

She is still on a first-name basis with the key players in Hollywood’s “old abnormal,” and they tell many of their own horror stories…As Ms. Obst points out, the problem with… international franchise movies is that they consume studios’ limited budgets, largely crowding out the dialogue-driven movies that she and her colleagues want to make.

Bloomberg, Willa Paskin, June 20, 2013

In her chatty new book, Sleepless in Hollywood, part memoir, part “Hollywood business model for dummies,” longtime producer Lynda Obst (Sleepless in SeattleThe Fisher KingHow to Lose a Guy in 10 Days) sets out to explain when and why studios stopped making movies for grown-ups, the sort of midpriced original fare that was Obst’s specialty.

Los Angeles Magazine, Jacqueline Mansky, June 12, 2013

With prequels, sequels, and trilogies crowding movies theaters, the aphorism “They don’t make ‘em like they used to” has never felt more true. Why is that? That’s what veteran producer Lynda Obst wanted to know when she began writing her latest book, Sleepless in Hollywood: Tales from the New Abnormal in the Movie Business. Over the past few years Obst, who has produced movies like Sleepless in Seattle and How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, noticed that it was becoming harder to make good films. She began researching the changing dynamics of the movie industry and details her conclusions in Sleepless in Hollywood: Tales from the New Abnormal in the Movie Business, her recent book about living and working in an industry that has been radically changed by technology and globalization.