From The “When Women Wrote Hollywood Archives 28: Narrative ‘Confidence Games’: Framing the Blonde Spectacle in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1925) and Nights at the Circus (1984)

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 “When Women Wrote Hollywood Archives 28: Narrative ‘Confidence Games’: Framing the Blonde Spectacle in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1925) and Nights at the Circus (1984)

From The

From The

“So tomorrow we will be in England bright and early. And I really feel quite thrilled because Mr. Eisman sent one a cable this morning, as he does every morning, and he says to take advantage of everybody we meet as traveling is the highest form of education.” Lorelei Lee in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes)

What makes Lorelei Lee from Anita Loos’s novel Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Gm) on appealing is her ability to manipulate her own image and effectively become miswess of her own grand confidence game. Throughout the novel, it is clear that Lorelei is aware of herself as an image, and she constantly adjusts this image whew “take advantage. of the situation aromd her. In effect, she is smaner than she looks, and she uses this to her rhetorkal (and financial) ad-vantage. Recently. Christina Britzolakis has questioned the viability of reading the”ferninine spectacle” as a particularly feminist undertaking? Although Brit-zolakis is right to point to the patriarchal underpinnings that inform the male gaze,’ argue that the rhetorical construction of the wise-cracIdng, self-reflexive blonde often enacts a critique on the system of commodification and ob-jectification that she appears to uphold, thus meriting more critical and schol-arly attention.’ More specifically, tlotestigste the parallel rhetorical strategies in Anita Loos’s novel Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and Angela Carter’s Nights at Me Circus to reveal the self-reflexive and ultimately subversive nature oft de-liberately constructed blonde spectacle.’ In contrast, the main character in Dorothy Parker’s then story “Big Blonde.. Hazel Motes. is not in control of her own narrative and thus her “performance” as a blonde has disastrous re-sultn a brief analysis of Parker’s use of the blonde spectacle will provide a use-fid contrast to Loos’s Lorelei Lee and Carter’s main character, Sophie Fevvers. Loos and Carter draw our Mention to the image ofblonde beauty as a valuable

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

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From The Journal Of Screenwriting V1 Issue 2: The early screenwriting practice of Ernest Lehman by Ted Nannicelli

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 early screenwriting practice of Ernest Lehman by Ted Nannicelli

This article analyses Ernest Lehman’s early screenwriting practice and argues that there are essential commonalities between it and his prose fiction writing practice. In the first section, I highlight the similarities between Lehman’s working notes for his abandoned novel, You Scratch My Back , and his unfinished screenplay for the MGM project, Labor Story. In the second section, I look at the ways in which Lehman’s prose fiction writing practice influences the composition of his first screenplay, for Executive Suite, as well as the composition of his screenplay for Sweet Smell of Success, and argue that in his prose fiction writing and screenwriting, Lehman uses language in the same aesthetically relevant ways.


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!

11 Marion E. Wong & Jennie Louise Toussaint from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (27 seconds)

Watch this entire presentation

11 Marion E. Wong & Jennie Louise Toussaint from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

Marion Wong was a Chinese-American woman who made films in the early era in San Francisco. You won’t see her in many books. These ladies were also writers in the early days and I think that we’ll find out more about them in the future because they were connected to other important United States people like President Ulysses S. Grant but no one’s done a lot of research on them. No one has found that of interest yet. It’s just becoming a new thing for us.

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.


 

* 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

From The “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Archives 27: Feminism and the Female Author: The Not So Silent Career of the Woman Scenarist in Hollywood—1896–1930 by Donna R. Casella

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 “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Archives 27: Feminism and the Female Author: The Not So Silent Career of the Woman Scenarist in Hollywood—1896–1930 by Donna R. Casella

From The

In Of With Their Heads! A Serio-Comic Tale of Hollywood, scenarist Frances Marion speaks of her attempts to secures writing job in Hollywood ma reputable salary, particularly of her encounter with Fox who couldn’t understand why she would want to write. “Listen, cuteness, don’t try to be a foolish somebody. Nobody cares nothing about female writer,” She kept pestering him until he offered her a job as a staff writer for $80 a week. She then went across town to William A. Brady’s office at World Film Company and pushed her way in at $200 a week stating in her autobiography, “it’s about time the writers got on the gravy train.. It was the teens, the early days of scenario writing in Hollywood. Anita Loos was a staff writer at Biograph where she was paid by the story, eventually earning $200 a piece. Gene Gunder was acting and writing scenarios for Kalem, then her own company, Gene Gauntier Feature Film Company, and eventually Universal. Jeanie Macpherson was beginning along and prolific partnership with director Cecil B. DeMille. Grace Cunard was taming out and acting in action-packed serials at Universal. Arid by the end of the decade, June Mathis, a regular scenarist at Metro, was chief of their script department. Women did not struggle to be a part of the growing industry of scenario writing in its early days, for women dominated the industry, and women like Marion, Loos, Mathis and Macpherson were among the most successful scenarists finale on female) in film history.’


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

“Name Screenwriters” says Dr. Rosanne Welch in Letter to Los Angeles Times

Because I believe that you can’t change things unless you challenge them, whenever I see a newspaper article about a film where the writer uses the director’s possessive (as in “Spielberg’s Lincoln) and never mention the writer (which in that case was Pulitzer Prize-winning Tony Kushner – Spielberg has never won a Pulitzer Prize), I try to write a letter to the editor explaining the mistake. 

Often they print them. Once my letter appeared alongside a letter with a similar point, written by the author of one of our History of Screenwriting textbooks (who has come to speak to our students during Workshop – Tom Stempel).

This morning the LA Times published this letter. — Rosanne

To the editor: Your editorial elevated “compelling storytelling” as a quality that makes a movie great, but when listing examples of noteworthy films — “Lawrence of Arabia,” “The Shining” and “Vertigo” — you used the director’s possessive to identify the films, not once mentioning the writers (both novelists and screenwriters).

“Lawrence of Arabia” came to screens thanks to the book by T.E. Lawrence, which was adapted by screenwriters Robert Bolt and the blacklisted Michael Wilson. “The Shining” came from the mind of prolific novelist Stephen King, whose book was adapted by Stanley Kubrick and Diane Johnson, with Kubric directing. “Vertigo” is based on the novel “D’entre les morts” by Pierre Boileau and Thomas Narcejac, which was adapted by Alec Coppel and Samuel A. Taylor.

I’ve never understood why newspaper writers forget to name screenwriters when discussing movies. It seems an absurd example of internalized artistic oppression.

How can I be able to teach up-and-coming screenwriters their own value if journalists keep naming films as the property of the directors?

Rosanne Welch, Van Nuys

The writer is executive director of Stephens College’s master of fine arts program in TV and screenwriting.

From The Journal Of Screenwriting V1 Issue 2: Time, space and movement: screenplay as oral narrative by Adam Ganz

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


Time, space and movement: screenplay as oral narrative by Adam Ganz

Paul Schrader contends that the screenplay is an oral medium. This article explores the validity of this contention by analysing the ballad Janet or Lady Maisry (Child 65) and its use of what are generally thought of as screenwriting techniques to tell its story, in particular looking at the way it makes use of montage, multiple narratives and different timescales to create suspense and involve the audience. It looks at the role of visualization in oral narrative and suggests that screenwriters and analyses have much to gain by looking at films as oral narratives, which like ballads are told rhythmically in real time in front of an audience. It suggests that screenwriters and academics studying the screenplay could benefit from looking at song and music as a helpful paradigm for understanding screenplay techniques and developing screenplay notation.


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!

10 Oscar Micheaux from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (43 seconds)

Watch this entire presentation

10 Oscar Micheaux from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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

 

Transcript:

Even books like this book, Without Lying Down is written about famous women in early Hollywood but she doesn’t write about the people of color who worked in early Hollywood. She was very focused on reviving the names of women and I appreciate that but in doing that she forgot this gentleman. Oscar Micheaux was a famous African-American — that’s the phrase we use in the United States — filmmaker and he wrote many films some of which you can find on youtube today in answer to the stereotypes he saw being portrayed in the early days of film. He was trying to put out a different story right? So he’s not written about in very many books because people aren’t thinking about anyone but the very mainstream writers they’ve heard of.

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.


 

* 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

Learn More About the Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting with this Open House Session [Video]

Thanks to the wonderful women of the Stephens College advancement office who arranged a Virtual Open House for our MFA.

This gave us the chance to meet potential students (and a few who had already been accepted) and answer questions about how the program operates.

It’s always fun to engage with people and share our enthusiasm about the Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting – and nowadays part of the fun of Zooming is checking out other folks’ backgrounds whether they are virtual (are they using the TARDIS of the Golden Gate Bridge) or their real office bookshelves. (Hey – I have that same book on my bookshelf!).

If you have any questions that weren’t answered during this Open House, send them directly to me at rwelch@stephens.edu and I’ll be glad to answer them.

Learn More About the Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting with this Open House Session [Video]

Subscribe to the Stephens College YouTube Channel

 

 

From The “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Archives 26: Adela St. Johns, . The Honeycomb. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1969.

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 “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Archives 26: Adela St. Johns, . The Honeycomb. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1969.

“At eighteen I must have been regarded as a woman, writes the author in this colorful memoir, for I was one of the first women reporters, maybe as an all-around police beat, sports, sin and society reporter the first in the world.” “Although she chose what was considered a man’s career, she never forgot that she was a woman, and in her recollections, she also finds time to discuss her youghful flirtations, her bittersweet marriage to Ike St. Johns, a profound love affair, her difficulties with being simultaneously a wife, mother and coreer woman, as well as more serious personal problems. The result is a blockbuster of a story which catches the reader up in its drama and excitement and involves him in a personal confrontation with the events.” — Amazon


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

From The Journal Of Screenwriting V1 Issue 1: No room for the fun stuff: the question of the screenplay in American indie cinema by J. J Murphy

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


No room for the fun stuff: the question of the screenplay in American indie cinema by J. J Murphy
 
One of the most interesting trends in recent independent cinema has been for film-makers to avoid using traditional screenplays in making their films. Not only have emerging film-makers associated with the so-called mumblecore movement, such as Joe Swanberg, Aaron Katz and Ronald Bronstein, veered away from depending on conventionally written screenplays, but other critically acclaimed films, including The Pool (Smith, 2008) and Ballast (Hammer, 2008), have as well. Indeed, some of the most notable American indie film-makers Gus Van Sant, David Lynch and Jim Jarmusch have employed alternative strategies to the screenplay in such recent films as Elephant (2003), Inland Empire (2006), and The Limits of Control (2009). What is behind these developments and why has the conventional screenplay been under attack? What are the aesthetic benefits of choosing not to rely on a traditional script? Is this a completely new phenomenon or has the industrial screenplay always been an obstacle? I explore these issues by looking at three major strategies that indie film-makers have used in place of the traditional screenplay: improvisation, psychodrama and visual storytelling. Finally, I argue that for current independent film-makers in the United States of America these methods provide an appropriate model for a practice that is attempting to create a truly viable alternative to Hollywood cinema.


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!