DTLA Film Festival panel discussion via Instagram

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DTLA Film Festival panel discussion, Privileged Characters: How to recognize and avoid implicit bias in your screenwriting.

DTLA Film Festival panel discussion via Instagram

Video of this panel coming soon.

 

 

Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered – 10th Screenwriters´ (hi)Stories Seminar – Dr. Rosanne Welch

*** Note: Introduction is in Portuguese, but the presentation is entirely in English

Brazil 10th Screenwriters´ hi Stories Seminar 1

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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 matter s– o 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 Journal Of Screenwriting 5 : Crafting an ‘authentic’ monster: Dialogue, genre and ethical questions in Mindhunter (2017)

Highlighting the articles in the latest edition 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


Crafting an ‘authentic’ monster: Dialogue, genre and ethical questions in Mindhunter (2017)
Erica Moulton

Extended scenes of idiosyncratic dialogue between a serial killer and profiler are emblematic of the first season of Joe Penhall and David Fincher’s Netflix series Mindhunter. In examining this aspect of the series, my article engages with several burgeoning areas of study in screenwriting and adaptation, notably the intersection of ethics, genre and dialogue. Mindhunter falls squarely into the serial killer subset of the crime procedural genre, following two FBI agents as they interview incarcerated killers under the purview of the newly formed Behavioral Science Unit. In exploring the origin and deployment of highly psychologized speech, I argue that conventions within the serial killer subgenre and the invocation of non-fictional source material led the show’s writers to rely on codes of ‘authenticity’ in crafting the dialogue. Building on studies of screenwriting and genre by Jule Selbo, I also argue that the interview scenes depicted on Mindhunter between the FBI agents and the serial killers can be broken down into various dialogue typologies. The dialogue in these scenes presents the killer as a fount of wisdom, the investigator as an eager receptacle and the psychological boundaries between the two characters as disturbingly permeable. I conclude by probing the ethical underpinnings of this typology considering how screenwriters navigate the tensions between on-screen representation and the framing of ‘authentic’ content.

Journal of Screenwriting Cover

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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#MentorMonday 3 – Valerie Woods – Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting

Applications for the 2020 Class of the Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting are now OPEN!

Inquire or Apply Today!

Deadline March 2020


Today’s Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting #mentormonday goes out to none other than Valerie Woods! (IMDB)

#MentorMonday 3 - Valerie Woods - Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting

Valerie C. Woods is a writer/producer in television and film, and also is a publisher, editor and author. Woods currently is co-executive producer/writer on the critically acclaimed television drama series Queen Sugar, created by Ava DuVernay and airing on Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN). She also has been adjunct faculty for Stephens’ Master of Fine Arts in TV and Screenwriting program since 2015.

Recently, Woods served as creative director for Syd Field – The Art of Visual Storytelling. She is one of four Syd Field Screenwriting Method Instructors trained by Mr. Field. She also wrote the screen adaptation of the novel Tempest Rising by Diane McKinney-Whetstone, with the production company of actor/director Phylicia Rashad.

Queen sugar

In 2013, Woods founded the independent press BooksEndependent, which has published five titles, including Woods’ novel Katrin’s Chronicles: The Canon of Jacqueléne Dyanne. She also is the author of Something for Everyone (50 Original Monologues), which is published by Samuel French, Inc. In 2016, Woods produced a series of staged readings of scripts adapted from literary work via Staged/Lit.

During Woods’ 20+ years as a member of Writers Guild of America West, she has written on one-hour drama series for CBS, Lifetime, and Showtime. Credits include consulting producer/writer for the drama series Soul Food on Showtime Network and co-executive producer/writer on the drama series Any Day Now on Lifetime Network. Her episode “Family is Family” was nominated for a GLAAD Media Award. Her television career began after winning a fellowship with Walt Disney Studios.

#MentorMonday 3 - Valerie Woods - Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting


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10 More On TV As Platform And Podium from “Why The Monkees Matter: Even 50 Years Later [Video] (52 seconds)

Enjoy This Clip? Watch this entire presentation and Buy Why The Monkees Matter: Teenagers, Television and American Pop Culture

From Denver Pop Culture Con 2019.

Wherever you go, you find Monkees fans and the Denver Popular Culture Con was no different.  Amid rooms full of caped crusaders and cosplay creations, I was initially not sure how many folks would attend a talk on a TV show from the 1960s – but happily I was met by a nice, engaged audience for my talk on Why the Monkees Matter  – and afterward they bought books!  What more could an author ask for?

10 More On TV As Platform And Podium from

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Transcript

This is a quote by Peter obviously. Who knows who’s sitting behind him? Janis Joplin. These guys were friends. So there’s also this ridiculous myth that nobody in music like The Monkees back then. That’s all not true. They lived in Laurel Canyon which is an area right above Hollywood. They had houses next to Mama Cass Elliot, Eric Clapton lived in the neighborhood and Frank Zappa buy a house there eventually. John Lennon would visit Mickey Dolenz’ home all the time because Mickey had married a woman from England and Lennon and Ringo, of The Beatles obviously, made the joke that that was the house they could go to where somebody knew how to serve tea at four o’clock. So you know they were just English guys hanging out in America. So but Peter, very much against the character he was asked to play which of course was the dummy, he was a very intellectual very smart gentleman and saw right from start that their message would actually have more power than The Beatles.



Buy Why The Monkees Matter: Teenagers, Television and American Pop Culture

A hit television show about a fictitious rock band, The Monkees (1966-1968) earned two Emmys–Outstanding Comedy Series and Outstanding Directorial Acheivement in Comedy.

Capitalizing on the show’s success, the actual band formed by the actors, at their peak, sold more albums than The Beatles and The Rolling Stones combined, and set the stage for other musical TV characters from The Partridge Family to Hannah Montana. In the late 1980s, the Monkees began a series of reunion tours that continued into their 50th anniversary.

This book tells the story of The Monkees and how the show changed television, introducing a new generation to the fourth-wall-breaking slapstick created by Laurel and Hardy and the Marx Brothers.

Its creators contributed to the innovative film and television of 1970s with projects like Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, Laugh-In and Welcome Back, Kotter. Immense profits from the show, its music and its merchandising funded the producers’ move into films such as Head, Easy Riderand Five Easy Pieces.

McFarland (Direct from Publisher) | Amazon | Kindle Edition | Nook Edition

Want to use “Why The Monkees Matter” in your classroom?

Order Examination Copies, Library and Campus Bookstore orders directly from McFarland

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Getting ready for my panel at DTLA Film Festival on Sunday via Instagram

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Getting ready for my panel at DTLA Film Festival on Sunday

Getting ready for my panel at DTLA Film Festival on Sunday via Instagram

Chatting with Maria Staroselets of the DTLA Film Festival before our panel discussion, Privileged Characters: How to recognize and avoid implicit bias in your screenwriting.

Video of this panel coming soon

 

Quotes from When Women Wrote Hollywood – 49 in a series – “…leading lady in the Selznick scenario department.”

Do you know about these women screenwriters? Many don’t. Learn more about them today! 

Buy “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Today!

Quotes from When Women Wrote Hollywood - 49 in a series -

The Morning Telegraph (NY) report April 17, 1921: “Sarah Y. Mason has returned to Hollywood after a year in New York as a leading lady in the Selznick scenario department. She has just completed an original story for screen purposes and has orders for several continuities. However, Mason contrives to divide her time equally between screen and society.”

The Six Degrees of Sarah Y. Mason and Victor Heerman
by Pamela L. Scott


Buy a signed copy of when Women Write Hollywood or Buy the Book on Amazon

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† Available from the LA Public Library

Rosanne Hosts Panel — Privileged Characters: How to recognize and avoid implicit bias in your screenwriting — at DTLA Film Festival, Sunday, October 27, 2019

This Sunday at 4pm join me at the DTLA (Downtown LA Film Festival)! 

I’ll be moderating a panel on implicit bias in screenwriting. “Privileged Characters: How to recognize and avoid implicit bias in your screenwriting” will take place at the Regal Cinema at LA Live. Panelists will include Maria Escobeda, one of the Stephens MFA in TV and Screeenwriting’s favorite mentors, as well as representatives from the worlds of entertainment journalism, marketing and theme parks – all of whom need to understand this idea in order to reach – and succeed – with customers from all over the world. — Rosanne

Dtla logo

Date/Time: Sun, October 27, 2019 @ 4:00 PM
Running Time: 60 Minutes
Location: Regal LA Live MEZZANINE

Panel Description

Privileged Characters: How to recognize and avoid implicit bias in your screenwriting

How do writers recognize and avoid implicit bias in their work? In this panel we review examples of how implicit bias infects popular shows and movies — even now in the wake of the Black Lives Matter, #MeToo and #TimesUp movement.

We’ll also learn about the tools and techniques available to combat implicit bias in the written word.

Finally, we’ll tackle the prickly question of writers who can authentically create characters and stories that are intrinsically about people who demographically different from them?

More Information

Panelists

Beverly Gray

Beverly Gray has spent her career fluctuating between the world of the intellect and show biz. As she was completing her doctorate in Contemporary American Fiction at UCLA, she surprised everyone (including herself) by taking a job with B-movie legend Roger Corman, for whom she helped develop 170 low-budget feature films. Following her Corman years, she covered the movie industry for The Hollywood Reporter. She has also published the best-selling Roger Corman: “Blood-Sucking Vampires, Flesh-Eating Cockroaches, and Driller Killers”, as well as “Ron Howard: From Mayberry to the Moon . . . and Beyond”. Currently, she teaches advanced online screenwriting workshops for UCLA Extension’s internationally-known Writers’ Program, and her popular twice-weekly blog, “Beverly in Movieland,” covers movies, moviemaking, and growing up Hollywood-adjacent. Her most recent book is “Seduced by Mrs. Robinson: How The Graduate Became the Touchstone of a Generation.”
 
Maria Escobedo

Maria Escobedo is a film and television writer with credits including “Grey’s Anatomy”, Hulu’s “East Los High” and the indie film “Rum and Coke”, which she wrote and directed. She’s developed movies and pilots for Lifetime, Disney Channel, and Nickelodeon. She also has written for animated kids’ TV, including “Dora the Explorer”, “Go Diego Go”, “Elena of Avalor”, “Special Agent Oso” and “Nina’s World”, which earned her a Humanitas Award nomination. Escobedo is currently writing for Amazon’s “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie”, Netflix’s “What-To-Doodles” and Nickelodeon’s “Santiago of the Seas”.

Hanala Sagal

Hanala Sagal, screenwriter-producer of “Elvis & Nixon” (Tribeca Film Festival 2016 Centerpiece), starred on “Shape Up L.A!” as Suzan Stadner (1985-2000.) Her brand is Comedy Wellness: Content for a Better Tomorrow and Funnier Today, trending on YouTube with 500M views and 400K subscribers. Hanala is in development on “Traumaland” (dark comedy, feature) based on her best-selling memoir “My Parents Went Through the Holocaust and All I Got Was This Lousy T-Shirt” featured in “The Last Laugh” starring Mel Brooks.
 
Donna Bonilla Wheeler

Donna Bonilla Wheeler is a Peruvian-American film + theatre writer/director who began her film career writing and directing for Walt Disney Productions Theme Parks. Her original screenplays have been selected as Academy Nicholl Fellowship semi finalist/quarter finalists, IFP No Borders, Austin 2nd Rounders, and Slamdance Script Labs, among others. She sold her experimental short about the creative process, “Mind’s Eye” at the Cannes film market. She received the Grand Jury Prize, Narrative Short for her dramedy film, “The Girl Next Door” at Mystic Film Festival, and her family comedy/mystery she wrote and directed, “Death of a saleswoman” has received global recognition at multiple festivals. Donna is a fiscally-sponsored 501c3 filmmaker, working in the Latinx, LGBTQ+ diversity spaces.
 
Kala Guess

Kala Guess is a marketing professional at Final Draft. She acts as both Contest Director for the Big Break Screenwriting Contest and Content Producer for the Final Draft blog and “Write On” podcast. As part of her focus on the customer experience, she produces engaging and insightful content for screenwriters and operates as a champion for emerging talent. Additionally, Kala is a driving force in Final Draft’s efforts for diversity and inclusivity in the entertainment industry. Previously, she worked as the marketing and publicity coordinator for an independent film and television studio in Hollywood. Kala has a decade of experience in various capacities in the entertainment industry.
 
Evette Vargas

Evette Vargas is an award-winning writer, director, producer and immersive storyteller. Named by the New York Times as an “Artist to Watch,” Vargas’ has produced series for Amazon, MTV, Bravo, DirectTV; and interactive content for Fast And Furious, Lord Of The Rings trilogy and Madonna. Vargas executive produced, wrote and directed her digital series Dark Prophet, starring Henry Rollins, which was in contention for two Emmys. Vargas sold her drama series, Muses, to TNT Super Deluxe. Vargas is creating a drama series for MGMTV with Marc Guggenheim and Rosario Dawson serving as executive producers. Vargas wrote The Current War VR Experience, a companion piece for the film, starring Benedict Cumberbatch. A proud member of the WGA, ATAS and PGA, Vargas was born in the Bronx and learned to tell stories at the dinner table where the imagination ruled. Vargas collects action figures, typewriters and shoes; has past lives as a DJ, a fashion designer and is a recovering New York City advertising Art Director.

22 Octavia Butler from The Sisterhood of Science Fiction – Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (46 seconds)

Watch this entire presentation

The Sisterhood of Science Fiction: A Walk Through Some Writers and Characters You (Should) Know And Love

22 Octavia Butler from The Sisterhood of Science Fiction - Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (46 seconds)

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This one allowed me to riff on some of my favorite female science fiction writers across time, whether they be novelists or television writers. It also opened up a good conversation on what art we support and include in our lives – and what that art says to us and about us. — Rosanne

Transcript:

…and we had a marvelous presentation about two weeks ago on Octavia Butler right? So moving now moving further and further into the 90s. Octavia Butler the first African-American female to be successful writing science fiction. We had a presentation here from the curator of her papers at the Huntington Library because she lived in Pasadena. So she’s a local to California and a lot of her stuff was infused with sort of the attitudes and the progressive ideas that we tend to be surrounded by here. She won a MacArthur Fellowship again the first science fiction writer — not a person of color and not even a woman — the very first science fiction writer ever to get a MacArthur grant which is a huge piece of support to creative people and artistic people so I think that’s really cool.



* A portion of each sale from Amazon.com directly supports our blogs
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Demonstrating My Usual Exhuberent Presentation Style 😀 via Instagram

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Demonstrating My Usual Exhuberent Presentation Style 😀

Demonstrating My Usual Exhuberent Presentation Style 😀

The 10th Screenwriters´(hi)Stories Seminar was so enjoyable.



* 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!