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

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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

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

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

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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

09 Susan Y. Mason from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (47 seconds)

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09 Susan Y. Mason from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

Likewise this young woman — and these are all from early Hollywood, because they come out of this book, so they’re in my brain right now — Sarah Mason married this gentleman, Victor Herrmann. Before she married him she’d written 15 films. Together they wrote three or four and they won an Oscar for adapting a book called Little Women and then he became a director. He directed for another thirty years. He never wrote another film. She wrote 35 more films. He outlived his wife and when he went to give his oral history, he talked about how he trained her to write and how if it wasn’t for him she wouldn’t have had a career. That is how she is remembered in history because her own husband was her unreliable narrator. So I really have to think about interviews when we use them as the only piece of research.

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

08 Jeannie Macpherson from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (1 minute 3 seconds)

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08 Jeannie Macpherson from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

So unreliable narrators are something we have to look at when we’re doing our own research or study about films. In this case, we have a woman named Jeannie Macpherson and a gentleman who you may or may not have heard, if if you know about early American films Cecil B. DeMille. Mostly if I teach this woman’s work people have heard of him they have never heard of her because when he outlived her and gave an interview to the Academy of Motion Pictures in oral history, he said — after she was long dead — she didn’t do much work I did most of it. She had some nice ideas but I was the one who did all the real work. But if you do the research, all the movies that he made that were blockbusters she wrote and when she didn’t write his films they did not make money. Why would he have kept her on board for 20 years of filmmaking if she did so very little but she didn’t live long enough to give her own oral history and he did.

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

07 Storytelling And Unreliable Narrators from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (1 minute 30 seconds)

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07 Storytelling And Unreliable Narrators from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

Stories have always transmitted culture. If we go far back to the cave paintings of many ancient cultures, to Gilgamesh, to the griots of Africa, we have always used stories to move forward our culture, right, and movies are just the most current version of doing that.

So why do we forget who the storytellers are? That doesn’t make any sense to me, right, and I think there are some reasons that we can fix both in our own casual discussions of films and in the teaching that people might do about what is important, right? One of the first things I discovered in my research is this issue of unreliable narrators. Often we find when people are interviewed to discuss films they chose not to credit anyone who will take away their own fame.So this is one of the most egregious quotes. Alfred Hitchcock, who everyone seems to recognize — you say that you’re watching a Hitchcock film — but he did not write any of his films. He had many other writers who worked for him. This photograph is a woman named Eve Unsell and she’s from the early 1920s in Hollywood. At one point, she was sent to England to work in the studio there and she trained this young man who knew nothing about how films were made and when he wrote about her in his biography, he didn’t mention her name so you could research her. He only said “a middle-aged American woman.” He wrote her out of history as nothing but a middle-aged woman and yet she taught him everything he knows. So, in fact, his movies are Eve Unsell movies but we don’t think that way.

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

06 Stories Are Important! from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (51 seconds)

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06 Stories Are Important! from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

I apologize for the long quote but I am very appreciative when actors recognize the work of writers and so Frances McDormand said this when she won her Oscar basically she said of the writer Martin McDonagh, He did not sketch a blueprint. That’s an insult to a screenplay. He didn’t string together a few words. He wrote and meticulously crafted a tsunami of a story and then he let the actors play there. So she immediately was crediting the writer in a way that many people do not. I believe the stories are important because they transmit our culture around the world. Again, United States has had a corner on that market for far too many years and now we’re beginning to see other stories permeate our culture and that’s only been a good, beneficial 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

05 Do You Know Who Wrote Your Favorite Films? from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (51 seconds)

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05 Do You Know Who Wrote Your Favorites? from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

I think that’s what we should remember but we don’t and I think we realize it without realizing it because when you talk about movies to your friends you don’t say, “I loved the camera angle in scene seven.” No! You quote dialogue. You quote the lines from your favorite movies whether they’re Pixar or Disney or The Princess Bride. You know the dialogue and that is the work of the writer. That’s the person you should credit but often when I start a class I have students list their two or three favorite films and then who directed those films and then I ask them who wrote that film and they very often cannot name the person who wrote the film they adore. How can you want to be a writer if you don’t remember the writers yourself. So I think that’s a really important thing for us to remember.

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

04 Writers Matter. Women Writers Matter from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (1 minute 5 seconds)

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04 Writers Matter. Women Writers Matter from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

My teaching philosophy — I will apologize if the translations aren’t perfect. I used Google Translate — but I think it’s important that words matter, that writers matter, and that women writers matter in this world and we must pay attention to them. I think it’s important to consider writers because writer comes before director when you describe a filmmaker who can do two things. They are writer/ directors. They are not director/writers. That tells me something, right? To me that’s a very important point. I also think that we have to realize that the vision of a movie cannot exist without the screenplay. A director cannot direct nothing. There must be an idea. There must be a philosophy. There must be a theme right? There must be a story. So the writer is of equal importance. Sometimes my students who come from directing think that I am saying we should push the directors down to pull the writers up. I don’t think that’s true. I think they have to be equal partners in this right? I think that’s what we should remember.

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

Master Class On Writing with Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting Mentor, Valerie Woods

Athena film festival logoThe Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting is proud to help sponsor the 10th Annual Athena Film Festival, celebrating films that tell the extraordinary stories of fierce and fearless women leaders.

As part of our sponsorship, we hosted this MasterClass on television writing with one of our valued mentors – Valerie Woods, most recently co-executive producer of Queen Sugar, interviewed at the festival by our writer-in-residence, Ken Lazebnik. 

Learn more about television writing and storytelling with a female focus in our low residency MFA program  — rolling applications means there is still time for you to join our Fall 2020 cohort and learn from working writers like Valerie.

Master Class On Writing with Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting Mentor, Valerie Woods


Visit the Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting for more information.

Follow @StephensMFA on Instagram

Follow and Like the Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting

#MentorMonday 8 - Dawn Comer Jefferson - Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting

03 About Stephens College MFA from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered [Video] (34 seconds)

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03 About Stephens College MFA from Why Researching Screenwriters (has Always) Mattered

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Transcript:

My college is actually in the state of Missouri but we are what is called low residency. So students come to Los Angeles and the picture on the bottom is the Jim Henson Studio in Los Angeles and this is where the students come for workshops twice a year. You’ll see Kermit standing on top. Before Kermit this was the Charlie Chaplin studio founded in 1917 and was never torn down. So it is the original buildings that Charlie Chaplin did all his work in and now we do it with our students. So I you can see the difference in Missouri is quite far away from California.

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