A book launch for film historian Jon Lewis' new book, Road Trip to Nowhere: Hollywood Encounters the Counterculture, hybrid event on Zoom and in person in Ithaca

This special event celebrates this groundbreaking new book that digs into the twinning of Hollywood and the counterculture in the 1960s and 1970s. Jon Lewis will be on Zoom, and actress Cynthia Henderson will perform readings from sections of this exciting look into an unknown and under-researched polyphonic Hollywoood

How to Join Us for this Hybrid Event

This book launch and special performance takes places on Monday, April 3, at 7:15 p.m.

Opening Salute to FLEFF: Jane Fonda
Author:    Jon Lewis
Actress:   Cynthia Henderson
Moderator:  Andrew Utterson

If you are in Ithaca, join us in Park Auditorium in the Roy H. Park School of Communications at Ithaca College.

If you are from elsewhere, join us via Zoom, to watch Cynthia Henderson's performance and to hear Jon Lewis:

Register in advance for this meeting:



How a new generation of counterculture talent changed the landscape of Hollywood, the film industry, and celebrity culture.

By 1967, the commercial and political impact on Hollywood of the sixties counterculture had become impossible to ignore. The studios were in bad shape,  still contending with a generation-long box office slump and struggling to get young people into the habit of going to the movies. Road Trip to Nowhere examines a ten-year span (from 1967 to 1976) rife with uneasy encounters between artists caught up in the counterculture and a corporate establishment still clinging to a studio system on the brink of collapse. Out of this tumultuous period many among the young and talented walked away from celebrity, turning down the best job Hollywood—and America—had on offer: movie star.

Road Trip to Nowhere elaborates a primary-sourced history of movie production culture, examining the lives of a number of talented actors who got wrapped up in the politics and lifestyles of the counterculture. Thoroughly put off by celebrity culture, actors like Dennis Hopper, Christopher Jones, Jean Seberg, and others rejected the aspirational backstory and inevitable material trappings of success, much to the chagrin of the studios and directors who backed them. In Road Trip to Nowhere, film historian Jon Lewis details dramatic encounters on movie sets and in corporate boardrooms, on the job and on the streets, and in doing so offers an entertaining and rigorous historical account of an out-of-touch Hollywood establishment and the counterculture workforce they would never come to understand.



Jon Lewis is the University Distinguished Professor of Film Studies and a University Honors College Eminent Professor in the School of Writing, Literature, and Film at Oregon State University where he has taught film and cultural studies since 1983.

He has published sixteen books, including: The Road to Romance and Ruin: Teen Films and Youth Culture, which won a Choice Magazine Academic Book of the Year Award; Whom God Wishes to Destroy: Francis Coppola and the New Hollywood; The New American Cinema; Hollywood v. Hard Core: How the Struggle over Censorship Saved the Modern Film Industry; The End of Cinema as We Know It: American Film in the Nineties; American Film: A History; Looking Past the Screen: Case Studies in American Film History; The Godfather;  Essential Cinema; The American Film History Reader; Producing; Hard-Boiled Hollywood: Crime and Punishment in Postwar Los Angeles; When the Movies Mattered (with Jonathan Kirschner); Road Trip to Nowhere: Hollywood Encounters the Counterculture; and, for the BFI Film Classics series, The Godfather and The Godfather: Part II.  He edited Behind the Silver Screen, a ten book series for Rutgers University Press on the history of selected film occupations (screenwriter, director, actor, producer, cinematographer, art director, sound engineer, animator, editor, and costume designer).


cynthia henderson

Cynthia Henderson is a Professor of Acting in Ithaca College's School of Music, Theatre, and Dance, and the Chair of the Department of Theatre and Dance Performance.

A professional actor, director, and the author of The Actor's Landscape, she has worked in the U.S., Europe, South America, Asia, and on the African continent. She is the founder of Performing Arts for Social Change. Her work in the area of social justice has earned her the CSPA of New York State's award for "Outstanding Contribution to Social Justice."  She was also cited at the NYS Women's Expo as one the "20 Outstanding Women You Should Know" in Central NY.

Her directing credits for Ithaca College include: Everybody, Plumfield Iraq, The Exonerated, Burn This, The Colored Museum, and other explorations. She has also directed for the professional arm of the Roy H. Park School of Communications, Park Productions. Cynthia is a member of Actors' Equity, the National Alliance of Acting Teachers, an IC Dana Fellow, and a Fulbright Scholar.