Remembering Screenwriter Jeanie MacPherson on her birthday – When Women Wrote Hollywood

“The resounding mythology around the start of Macpherson’s film career is that she, with immeasurable pluck, simply walked into D.W. Griffith’s office and waited for him for days on end. Finally, the assistant asked about her. “I told him my stage experience. He ignored it, scorned it. ‘We want to know what you can do before a camera,’ he said.”

Jeanie Macpherson: A Life Unknown by Amelia Phillips


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Quotes from When Women Wrote Hollywood – 28 – in a series – Frances Marion

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

Quotes from When Women Wrote Hollywood - 28 - in a series - Frances Marion

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For over twenty years, no writer was more sought after than Frances Marion. With her versatile pen and a caustic wit, she was a leading participant in one of the most creative eras for women in American history. She is credited with writing more than 300 scripts covering every conceivable genre and she also directed and produced half a dozen films.


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Elena Ferrante: A Power of Our Own via The New York Times

Excellent opinion piece by Elena Ferrante (a pseudonym for an Italian novelist, author of the four Neapolitan novels beginning with ‘My Brilliant Friend’ that have been turned into an HBO series).

It covers the power of storytelling and the way the world needs to adapt to the way women wield power.

FerranteElena Ferrante: A Power of Our Own
Power is a story told by women. For centuries, men have colonized storytelling. That era is over.

Power, although hard to handle, is greatly desired. There is no person or group or sect or party or mob that doesn’t want power, convinced that it would know how to use it as no one ever has before.

I’m no different. And yet I’ve always been afraid of having authority assigned to me. Whether it was at school or at work, men were in the majority in any governing body and the women adopted male ways. I never felt at ease, so I stayed on the sidelines. I was sure that I didn’t have the strength to sustain conflicts with men, and that I would betray myself by adapting my views to theirs. For millenniums, every expression of power has been conditioned by male attitudes toward the world. To women, then, it seems that power can be used only in the ways that men have traditionally used it.

Read the entire article – Elena Ferrante: A Power of Our Own



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02 Science Fiction As A Place For Discussion from The Sisterhood of Science Fiction – Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (1 minute)

Watch this entire presentation

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

02 Science Fiction As A Place For Discussion from The Sisterhood of Science Fiction - Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (1 minute)

 

 

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:

I think what’s interesting about science fiction is it’s a place where writers go and where audiences go to discuss the issues of our current world in sort of a safer place because we’re having trouble discussing them maybe in the present. So if we think about the future and how we hope it’s gonna look and how we hope we’re gonna behave to each other that’s a place we can have those debates and then sort of bring them back into our regular life and that’s true of most writing. We sort of work out the world in writing so that’s why reading is so good for our brains because it relaxes us teaches us empathy. It makes us think about more complex thoughts then you know a quick Reddit post. Which is a nice piece of news very quickly but it’s not all the information that you need to have right? So that’s the goal for today. It’s just a look at some interesting writers. Summer is coming up. Perhaps you all might want to have a summer book to read right or perhaps a movie that you’re like “Wow I should know that movie. That’s really iconic and people reference it. it’s a popular culture sort of moment. I should know about that.” So hopefully, in the summer you have some time to pay attention. So I’ll give you some stuff to pay attention to.



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Pioneer Screenwriter Lois Weber’s Birthplace Honored With Pennsylvania Historical Marker

It has taken too long but finally many of the female screenwriters that appear in our collection are being recognized – and often honored. Such is the case with Lois Weber who birthplace has now been given a historical marker. She deserves it.

Read more about her in Chase Thompson’s chapter on Weber in When Women Wrote Hollywood. — Rosanne


Senator Costa Announces New Historical Marker in Pittsburgh

220px LoisWeberPittsburgh, Pa. − March 29, 2018 − Senate Democratic Leader Jay Costa, Jr. today announced the addition of an official Pennsylvania Historical Marker in Pittsburgh: film director Lois Weber.

Lois Weber was the first American woman film director and a pioneer in early film making.

In the era of silent films, she mastered superimposition, double exposures, and split screens to convey thoughts and ideas rather than words on title cards. She also used the nude female figure in the 1915 film Hypocrites and took on progressive and provocative topics, inciting both censorship and artistic praise.

“Lois Weber was a trailblazer for women and all filmmakers in the early 20th century,” said Senator Costa. “She is a worthy addition to this exclusive list.”

Her historical marker will be placed at 1230 Federal Street in Pittsburgh, in front of the new Carnegie Free Library Allegheny. She was born three blocks south of the spot and her childhood home was one block east.

The new markers, selected from 51 applications, will be added to the nearly 2,300 familiar blue-with-gold-lettering signs along roads and streets throughout Pennsylvania.

Read Senator Costa Announces New Historical Marker in Pittsburgh


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Check it out! † Available from the LA Public Library

Dr. Rosanne Welch Appears Twice at Denver Pop Culture Con, May 31, 2019 – June 2, 2019

Dr. Rosanne Welch Appears Twice at Denver Popular Culture Con, May 31, 2019 - June 2, 2019

I’m happy to announce that I will be appearing on two panels at next month’s Denver Pop Culture Con in Denver.  

For the 1st session, I’ll be moderating a panel of contributors to When Women Wrote Hollywood covering female screenwriters of Hollywood’s early days.  

For the 2nd session, I’ll be discussing the subjects of my first book,  Why the Monkees Matter.

Hope to see you there!  RMW PHD signature 2015


DENVER POP CULTURE CON

Friday-Sunday May 31-June 2, 2019
Colorado Convention Center
Denver, Colorado

Saturday June 1, 2019 :: 12:30 pm to 1:20 pm

When Women Wrote Hollywood: A History of Female Screenwriters in the Early Film Industry
ROOM 504 – Reel Heroes (sm) 
Dr. Rosanne Welch, Amy Banks, Mikayla Daniels, Toni Hull, Laura Kirk, Kelley Zinge

Did you know that in the early days of Hollywood there were more women writers than men?  And they made more money than most men while essentially inventing the iconic stories that have filled our movie screens ever since? Many of them ran their own production companies but their names have been left out of the textbooks.  Help us bring their names back into the conversation by joining Dr. Rosanne Welch as she moderates a panel of writers – Amy Banks, Mikayla Daniels, Toni Hull, Laura Kirk, Kelley Zinge – who researched the lives of these creative female writers you need to know.  

Sunday June 2, 2019 :: 2:30 pm to 3:20 pm

Why the Monkees Matter – Even 50 Years Later
ROOM 504 – Reel Heroes
Dr. Rosanne Welch

Whether you’re a fan of The Monkees as a television show or a band – or both – come join Dr. Rosanne Welch as she discusses how they changed television by bringing new ideas about identity, celebrity and popular culture to the teenagers of their day – and all the generations that followed  — all in the span of the 2 season run of their wildly influential program.

Denver Popular Culture Con – Complete Schedule

Denver Popular Culture Con Tickets

Dr. Rosanne Welch Appears Twice at Denver Popular Culture Con, May 31, 2019 - June 2, 2019

Quotes from When Women Wrote Hollywood – 28 – in a series – Telling Film’s Her-story

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

 

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These Stephens College MFA candidates (now, graduates), found research in huge archives such as the Margaret Herrick Library of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and in tiny tidbits in hometown newspapers scanned into digital copies for the information age. The goal was to provide a clearing house of information on which other future historians can continue to build so that they can find new facts, and even contradict some of these, as is the way of history – and herstory.


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“When Women Wrote Hollywood” selected as runner-up for the Popular Culture Association’s Susan Koppelman Award

The Popular Culture Association has named When Women Wrote Hollywood: Essays on Female Screenwriters in the Early Film Industry runner-up for the Susan Koppelman Award, given to the best anthology, multi-authored, or edited book in feminist studies in popular and American culture.  

Congratulations to all the writers who contributed chapters and many thanks to Cari Beauchamp for her wonderful Forward!  It was a pleasure putting this collection together and continues to be a pleasure sharing the stories of these trailblazing women with the world.  Thanks to McFarland for believing in this project from the start.

 

01 Introduction from The Sisterhood of Science Fiction with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (1 minute)

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

01 Introduction from The Sisterhood of Science Fiction with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (1 minute)

 

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:

All right everybody. Hello. How are you? Thank you for coming today. Hopefully you’ll find what I have to say interesting. Some of you are in my class so it kind of suits what we’re talking about. Some of you have wandered in from nowhere. So luckily you’ve seen your poster and that’s very nice of you. Our College does a lot of really cool things. I think it’s important to remember that it’s above and beyond just going to class. There’s a lot of stuff you can pick up from around here. We were talking about Earth Day before. See what’s going on. What suits you particularly. A lot of times when you’re going off to do — again — interviews or visiting with people — the fact that you did above and beyond — that you tried other things — that’s gonna make you look like an interesting, engaging person right? So so thank you for coming today. We’re going to be discussing the Sisterhood of Science Fiction. I’m basically going to go through a run of interesting female science fiction writers you may or may not have heard of and then some characters that are very iconic especially in American science fiction in film and television and kind of what they stood for what they said to us what we’ve learned from them.



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Quotes from When Women Wrote Hollywood – 27 – in a series – Strikingly close as man and wife

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

Quotes from When Women Wrote Hollywood - 27 - in a series - Strikingly close as man and wife

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While they only wrote four films together, the Gordon/Kanins continued to collaborate on each other’s individual creative efforts without taking formal credit for the rest of their careers. Kanin’s obituary in The New York Times notes the intense intimacy they shared. “For most of his life, Mr. Kanin and his first wife, the actress Ruth Gordon, were a team. They were feisty, argumentative collaborators as playwrights and strikingly close as man and wife for 43 years.

A Team In Passionate Action: Ruth Gordon And Garson Kanin
by Rosanne Welch, PhD


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