From The Journal Of Screenwriting V2 Issue 2: Lost and gone for ever? The search for early British screenplays by Jacob U. U. Jacob

Highlighting the articles in the past editions of the Journal of Screenwriting, of which I am the Book Reviews Editor. Hopefully these abstracts will entice you to did a little deeper into the history and future of screenwriting. — Rosanne


Lost and gone for ever? The search for early British screenplays by Jacob U. U. Jacob

The systematic collection and preservation of film and TV scripts at a national level has never been implemented in the United Kingdom. While the British Film Institute National Library (BFI) has a respectable collection of around 25,000 scripts, this has been built up from donations over the 75 years of the BFI’s existence. The silent film period, to 1930, is particularly affected by this lack of national care; the BFI has less than 100 British scripts from this period. Researchers from the University of Leeds spent several months in 2007 and 2008 seeking and collating information from around the world, with grant-aid support from the British Academy. The intention was to find out if any British silent film scripts had found a home in both British and foreign institutional collections, or elsewhere. The results were in general as expected – no major new collections were unearthed – but in part surprising. As a result of this a database has been compiled. Why should we search for scripts? It is now being realized that screenplay and other documentation hold information about the provenance and development of the screen idea that a film cannot provide. For some, the script may be a useful substitute for a lost film, but more importantly understanding how the film was envisaged before principal photography can reveal much about the industrial assumptions associated with film production in general, and about that screen idea in particular.


The Journal of Screenwriting is an international double-blind peer-reviewed journal that is published three times a year. The journal highlights current academic and professional thinking about the screenplay and intends to promote, stimulate and bring together current research and contemporary debates around the screenplay whilst encouraging groundbreaking research in an international arena. The journal is discursive, critical, rigorous and engages with issues in a dynamic and developing field, linking academic theory to screenwriting practice. 

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From The “When Women Wrote Hollywood Archives 40: Women Screenwriters: An International Guide by Jill Nelmes and Jule Selbo

Months of research went into the creation of the essays in “When Women Wrote Hollywood.” Here are some of the resources used to enlighten today’s film lovers to the female pioneers who helped create it.

From The

Women Screenwriters is a study of more than 300 female writers from 60 nations, from the first film scenarios produced in 1986 to the present day. Divided into six sections by continent, the entries give an overview of the history of women screenwriters in each country, as well as individual biographies of its most influential.

 


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When Women Wrote Hollywood: The Movies – 6 in a series – La Fee aux Choux | The Cabbage Fairy , Wr: Alice Guy Blaché (1896)

An on-going series highlighting the women screenwriters of early Hollywood.

When I was first asked to create a history course for a new MFA focused on the mission of bringing more female voices and female-centric stories to Hollywood, I knew we had to start at the very beginning, when women ran Hollywood. No other course I had ever taken or been asked to teach focused on these women, some of whom I had been reading about since the summers of my childhood in Cleveland, Ohio. Back then, I went to the library once a week to collect a stack of memoirs by women I had seen interviewed on The Merv Griffin Show, women like Anita Loos and Adela Rogers St. Johns. Their stories introduced me to moguls like Louis B. Mayer or Jack Warner, who make up most of the history courses I later found in academia. Knowing better, I found most of those courses, and their accompanying textbooks, glossed over these women with a paragraph if they mentioned them at all. I conceived a course that would begin with these women who began Hollywood and culminate in research by each graduate student into the life and career of one particular early female screenwriter. That is what you find here. A collection of herstories about how these women lived, loved and created the stories that gave their audiences reasons to live and love in their own lives. — Dr. Rosanne Welch, Editor. When Women Wrote Hollywood


When Women Wrote Hollywood: The Movies - 6 in a series - La Fee aux Choux | The Cabbage Fairy , Wr: Alice Guy Blaché (1896)

The 1896 version of La Fée aux Choux (The Fairy of the Cabbages) is a lost film that featured a honeymoon couple, a farmer, pictures of babies glued to cardboard, and one live baby. This is arguably the world’s first narrative film, and the first film directed by a woman.

Alice Guy-Blaché reported that she had to remake the film at least twice and this accounts for the two films dated 1900 and 1902 that are available to view online. Alice’s 1900 version employed one actress (the fairy), two live babies, and a number of dolls. Her 1902 version, later retitled Sage-femme de première classe, employed a honeymoon couple and a female baby merchant along with numerous babies and dolls. In a still photograph from the 1902 version called Sage-femme de première classe (Midwife First Class) Alice appears, dressed as a man. She does not play the husband in the film, but said that she “for fun pulled on the peasant clothes” for the photograph.

Alice’s 1896 film was the first to bring a story to an audience and the first to have a written scenario which Alice wrote.[1] The 1896 version was filmed on 60-millimeter film and was about 30 meters (about 90 feet) long. The 1900 version of La Fée aux Choux is on 35-millimeter film and is about sixty seconds long. The 1902 version is on 35-millimeter film and is about four minutes long.

All three versions refer to an old and popular French (and actually, European) fairy tale in which baby boys are born in cabbages, and baby girls are born in roses.

Alice Guy-Blaché, the director of La Fée aux Choux, is one of the early cinema’s most important figures, and had a long career as a director, producer and studio owner, working in both France and the United States. — Wikipedia

Alice Guy-Blaché (July 1, 1873 – March 24, 1968) was a pioneer filmmaker, active from the late 19th century, and one of the first to make a narrative fiction film.[2] From 1896 to 1906 she was probably the only female filmmaker in the world. [3] She experimented with Gaumont’s Chronophone sound syncing system, color tinting, interracial casting, and special effects. She was a founder and artistic director of the Solax Studios in Flushing, New York, in 1908. In 1912 Solax invested $100,000 for a new studio in Fort Lee, New Jersey, the center of American filmmaking prior to the establishment of Hollywood. That same year she made the film A Fool and his Money, with a cast comprised only African-American actors. The film is now at the National Center for Film and Video Preservation at the American Film Institute.[4] Wikipedia

More about Alice Guy Blaché

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When Women Wrote Hollywood: Essays on Female Screenwriters in the Early Film Industry

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** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

26 Jamie Lee Curtis from When Women Write Horror with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (47 seconds)

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26 Jamie Lee Curtis from When Women Write Horror with Dr. Rosanne Welch

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In honor of Halloween – and in service to my teaching philosophy —

“Words Matter. Writers Matter. Women Writers Matter.”

I presented this holiday lecture “When Women Write Horror” on Tuesday, October 29th, 2019. Researching the many, many women who have written horror stories – in novels, films and television – brought new names to my attention who I am excited to start reading. I hope you will be, too!

Transcript:

Another famous female in horror films is Jamie Lee Curtis. She also happens to be another Hollywood childhood because her parents are both actors right, but she starts an interesting trend because as a young person doing the first Halloween, which was based on the idea of babysitters being terrorized by a bad evil guy. She is actually — I forgot — as a child actor she could have been Linda Blair in The Exorcist, yeah. She was up for that part and their parents said “No that’s too horrifying. You shouldn’t do that. We don’t want you to go through that experience.” So it happened to Linda Blair whose career was over at the end of that movie. Nobody ever took her seriously after the spinning head and the puking. It was like too much right, whereas Jamie Lee Curtis didn’t do that job, grew up a little more, did Halloween and then has had a 40-year career. So it’s an interesting thought.

From The Journal Of Screenwriting V2 Issue 1: Creative decision making within the contemporary Hollywood studios by Alexander G Ross

Highlighting the articles in the past editions of the Journal of Screenwriting, of which I am the Book Reviews Editor. Hopefully these abstracts will entice you to did a little deeper into the history and future of screenwriting. — Rosanne


Creative decision making within the contemporary Hollywood studios by Alexander G Ross

This article seeks to contribute to the current debate about the decision-making process within the Hollywood studios and the marketing-driven quest to micromanage the creative process in order to manufacture more consistently profitable films. The author outlines the process to which scripts are subjected in order to determine their suitability for production and how this impacts the quality of the scripts. There are compelling questions about whether the current business model hinders relevant, definitive cultural narratives and how this affects both the quality and profitability of contemporary films. In addition to considering the existing literature dealing with the topic, this article also draws on the author’s fifteen years’ experience in Hollywood as a screenwriter, agent and producer.


The Journal of Screenwriting is an international double-blind peer-reviewed journal that is published three times a year. The journal highlights current academic and professional thinking about the screenplay and intends to promote, stimulate and bring together current research and contemporary debates around the screenplay whilst encouraging groundbreaking research in an international arena. The journal is discursive, critical, rigorous and engages with issues in a dynamic and developing field, linking academic theory to screenwriting practice. 

Get your copy and subscription to the Journal of Screenwriting Today!



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** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!

25 Selling Services, not products from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (1 minute)

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25 Selling Services, not products from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

In their mind, playwrights were to be respected because they sold a product — they sold their play — screenwriters sold a service like a maid or a car wash person. That isn’t something they should own and that legal difference made the difference in how writers could have control of their work for years and years and years. At a certain point Dorothy Parker, again a very famous writer from New York, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which we think of as the group that gives away the Oscars and has the big party once a year, in fact, started a union for writers but the producers were in charge of the rules of the union for the writers and Dorothy parker said “Looking to the academy for representation was like trying to get laid in your mother’s house. Someone was always watching in the parlor.” How could you trust the producers to give the writers a good deal if it meant less money for them but they were trying to appease the writers.

A Note About This Presentation

A clip from my keynote speech at the 10th Screenwriters´(hi)Stories Seminar for the interdisciplinary Graduation Program in “Education, Art, and History of Culture”, in Mackenzie Presbyterian University, at São Paulo, SP, Brazil, focused on the topic “Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered.” I was especially pleased with the passion these young scholars have toward screenwriting and it’s importance in transmitting culture across the man-made borders of our world.

To understand the world we have to understand its stories and to understand the world’s stories we must understand the world’s storytellers. A century ago and longer those people would have been the novelists of any particular country but since the invention of film, the storytellers who reach the most people with their ideas and their lessons have been the screenwriters. My teaching philosophy is that: Words matter, Writers matter, and Women writers matte, r so women writers are my focus because they have been the far less researched and yet they are over half the population. We cannot tell the stories of the people until we know what stories the mothers have passed down to their children. Those are the stories that last. Now is the time to research screenwriters of all cultures and the stories they tell because people are finally recognizing the work of writers and appreciating how their favorite stories took shape on the page long before they were cast, or filmed, or edited. But also because streaming services make the stories of many cultures now available to a much wider world than ever before.

Many thanks to Glaucia Davino for the invitation.


 

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From The “When Women Wrote Hollywood Archives 39: A Conversation With Lillian Hellman: A still unfinished woman via Rolling Stone

Months of research went into the creation of the essays in “When Women Wrote Hollywood.” Here are some of the resources used to enlighten today’s film lovers to the female pioneers who helped create it.

From The

Lillian Hellman has been a literary institution for nearly 50 years–long enough, as she put it, to undergo a revival within her own lifetime. She was 27 when her play The Children’s Hour was proclaimed a smash success in 1934, and she almost immediately acquired the label “America’s foremost woman playwright.” (Her reaction to that honor was typical: she was quick to point out the discrimination of the phrase.)

She survived the failure of her second play, Days to Come, and went on to write such major dramas as The Little Foxes, Another Part of the Forest, Watch on the Rhine, Toys in the Attic and The Autumn Garden.

Read A Conversation With Lillian Hellman: A still unfinished woman via Rolling Stone


Buy “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Today!


When Women Wrote Hollywood: Essays on Female Screenwriters in the Early Film Industry

Paperback Edition | Kindle Edition | Google Play Edition

Help Support Local Bookstores — Buy at Bookshop.org

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

When Women Wrote Hollywood: The Movies – 5 in a series – The Musketeers of Pig Alley (1912) – Wr: Anita Loos

An on-going series highlighting the women screenwriters of early Hollywood.

When I was first asked to create a history course for a new MFA focused on the mission of bringing more female voices and female-centric stories to Hollywood, I knew we had to start at the very beginning, when women ran Hollywood. No other course I had ever taken or been asked to teach focused on these women, some of whom I had been reading about since the summers of my childhood in Cleveland, Ohio. Back then, I went to the library once a week to collect a stack of memoirs by women I had seen interviewed on The Merv Griffin Show, women like Anita Loos and Adela Rogers St. Johns. Their stories introduced me to moguls like Louis B. Mayer or Jack Warner, who make up most of the history courses I later found in academia. Knowing better, I found most of those courses, and their accompanying textbooks, glossed over these women with a paragraph if they mentioned them at all. I conceived a course that would begin with these women who began Hollywood and culminate in research by each graduate student into the life and career of one particular early female screenwriter. That is what you find here. A collection of herstories about how these women lived, loved and created the stories that gave their audiences reasons to live and love in their own lives. — Dr. Rosanne Welch, Editor. When Women Wrote Hollywood


When Women Wrote Hollywood: The Movies - 5 in a series - The Musketeers of Pig Alley (1912) - Wr: Anita Loos

When Women Wrote Hollywood: The Movies - 5 in a series - The Musketeers of Pig Alley (1912) - Wr: Anita Loos

The Musketeers of Pig Alley is a 1912 American short drama and a gangster film. It is directed by D. W. Griffith and written by Griffith and Anita Loos. It is also credited for its early use of follow focus, a fundamental tool in cinematography.[1]

The film was released on October 31, 1912 and re-released on November 5, 1915 in the United States. The film was shot in Fort Lee, New Jersey where many other early film studios in America’s first motion picture industry were based at the beginning of the 20th century.[2][3][4] Location shots in New York City reportedly used actual street gang members as extras during the film.

It was also shown in Leeds Film Festival in November 2008, as part of Back to the Electric Palace, with live music by Gabriel Prokofiev, performed in partnership with Opera North.

In 2016, the film was added to the United StatesNational Film Registryby theLibrary of Congressas being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. — Wikipedia

More Information:


Buy “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Today!


When Women Wrote Hollywood: Essays on Female Screenwriters in the Early Film Industry

Paperback Edition | Kindle Edition | Google Play Edition

Help Support Local Bookstores — Buy at Bookshop.org

* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!
† Available from the LA Public Library

25 Sissy Spacek and Carrie Fisher from When Women Write Horror with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (48 seconds)

Watch this entire presentation

Subscribe to Rosanne’s Channel and receive notice of each new video!

In honor of Halloween – and in service to my teaching philosophy —

“Words Matter. Writers Matter. Women Writers Matter.”

I presented this holiday lecture “When Women Write Horror” on Tuesday, October 29th, 2019. Researching the many, many women who have written horror stories – in novels, films and television – brought new names to my attention who I am excited to start reading. I hope you will be, too!

Transcript:

Sissy Spacek was quite wonderful. Do a little pop culture moment here. That’s Sissy Spacek and she’s with Carrie Fisher. Why would i put those two together in a picture? I’s because long ago and far away onthe day that they each auditioned for their separate movie, the two directors swapped the women. So Sissy Spacek could have been Princess Leia and Carrie Fisher could have been Carrie. Think about how different both of their careers would have gone had that happened and how much that each of them affect the further work they did. Carrie Fisher would always argue and I believe with her Princess Leia was powerful. She wasn’t as powerful as she could be but she was a character that took a weapon and helped with saving herself right? So each of them affected the work they did in the future.

From The Journal Of Screenwriting V2 Issue 1: The plot point, the darkest moment, and the answered question: three ways of modelling the three-quarter-point by Patrick Keating

Highlighting the articles in the past editions of the Journal of Screenwriting, of which I am the Book Reviews Editor. Hopefully these abstracts will entice you to did a little deeper into the history and future of screenwriting. — Rosanne


The plot point, the darkest moment, and the answered question: three ways of modelling the three-quarter-point by Patrick Keating
  
Many contemporary screenplay manuals, following Syd Field, encourage writers to place an act break approximately three-quarters of the way through the story. Although this would appear to be an area of widespread agreement, this essay argues that the manuals do not always define the 3/4-point in the same way. One common approach is to define the 3/4-point as a causally significant plot point; another approach is to regard it as an extreme point on an emotional curve, typically the darkest moment; and a third approach is to conceive of the 3/4-point as the answer to a previously introduced question. Taking a closer look at these three competing models of the 3/4-point can help us uncover the manuals’ competing assumptions about narrative structure, showing how they conceptualize causality, emotion and comprehension.


The Journal of Screenwriting is an international double-blind peer-reviewed journal that is published three times a year. The journal highlights current academic and professional thinking about the screenplay and intends to promote, stimulate and bring together current research and contemporary debates around the screenplay whilst encouraging groundbreaking research in an international arena. The journal is discursive, critical, rigorous and engages with issues in a dynamic and developing field, linking academic theory to screenwriting practice. 

Get your copy and subscription to the Journal of Screenwriting Today!



* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
** Many of these books may be available from your local library. Check it out!