Have you ever worked somewhere so toxic or had a boss that was so awful that you dreaded work and felt driven away, even if it was a career that was your passion? In Burn It Down: Power, Complicity, and a Call for Change in Hollywood, Maureen Ryan, a contributor for such news outlets as The Hollywood Reporter, Variety, and Huffington Post, exposes the darkness that can happen in Hollywood.
In her years of working with the people of Hollywood, she has seen highs like the teamwork involved in the TV show Friday Night Lights and lows like the trauma-inducing behavior behind the epic series Lost. Through interviews with insiders from various Hollywood echelons, Ryan has painted a picture of the abuse, racism, and misogyny that permeates show business. She showcases quotes from names you may recognize to shine a light on the underbelly of shows you may have loved and proves that #MeToo goes way beyond Harvey Weinstein.
Ryan includes behind the scenes stories from some of the biggest shows like ABC’s Lost and The Goldbergs, Fox’s Sleepy Hollow, and NBC’s Saturday Night Live, leaving the reader to never look at their favorite shows the same way again.
Burn It Down is a captivating read that doesn’t stop at being a Hollywood tell-all as it includes a final section devoted to how Hollywood (and any employer) can do better to stop the bad behaviors that plague Hollywood and many other industries.
This book pairs well with Jennette McCurdy’s I’m Glad My Mom Died because of the behind the scenes, car wreck of drama that is Hollywood. For a lighter look behind the scenes of SNL, read Bossypants by Tina Fey.
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