36 Leigh Brackett from “When Women Wrote Hollywood” with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (47 seconds)

Part of the California State University, Fullerton Faculty Noon Time Talks at the Pollak Library.

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36 Leigh Brackett from

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Then we have this lady who I think is fascinating if you’re a Star Wars fan. Leigh Brackett. She’s mostly did all these kinds of space operas they called them right but she got hired to write the first draft of The Empire Strikes Back because George Lucas wanted her sci-fi brain on his property. The problem is she wrote the script — which there you are — and she died of cancer. So Lawrence Kasdan who I adore was hired to do the next draft in the next draft and Lawrence Kasdan becomes the writer we know from Star Wars but when you think about the Han Solo character, Leigh Brackett made him the cowboy that he is because she did cowboy movies and space operas. That’s the perfect blending of Han Solo. So she gave us that character in the incarnation that we know him in — which i think is cool.

Dr. Rosanne Welch discusses the women in her new book “When Women Wrote Hollywood” which covers female screenwriters from the Silents through the early 1940s when women wrote over 50% of films and Frances Marion was the highest paid screenwriter (male or female) and the first to win 2 Oscars.  Yet, she fails to appear in film history books, which continue to regurgitate the myth that male directors did it all – even though it’s been proven that the only profitable movies Cecil B. de Mille ever directed were all written by Jeannie Macpherson film ever won for Best Picture was written by Robert E. Sherwood (who people have heard of, mostly due to his connection to Dorothy Parker) and Joan Harrison.

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