Sociologist Leo Rosten wrote the first major study of Hollywood as a system. His book Hollywood: the Movie Colony the Movie Makers (1941), is still a good read. Rosten later became famous for his work. The Joys of Yiddish.
Hollywood labor issues in general are, for reasons unique to the entertainment business, hard to see. Movie publicity directs a huge amount of attention toward the films themselves, and scrutinizes only a specific part of Hollywood workers’ lives (in the present day, that would be the lurid aspects of private lives of movie stars with substance abuse problems or in domestic relationship transitions). Rosten said, “The dazzling spotlight which Hollywood turns upon its Personalities throws into shadow the thousands who work in the movie studios—technicians and craftsmen, musicians and sound engineers, painters, carpenters, laboratory workers” (Rosten 1941). In terms of production profits, this spotlight creates the star, and aids substantially in the financial success of the motion picture business. The shadow hides the work of thousands of film workers in the business utterly dependent upon them.
Please bear in mind I am not saying that Rosten was talking directly about Runaway Production here. The phenomenon had not even been named yet.