From The Journal Of Screenwriting V10 Issue 3: Die Filmprimadonna (The Film Primadonna, 1913): A case study of the fiction of a screenplay and the process of filmmaking in German early cinema by Jan Henschen

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


Die Filmprimadonna (The Film Primadonna, 1913): A case study of the fiction of a screenplay and the process of filmmaking in German early cinema by Jan Henschen

A case study on Urban Gad’s German shooting script for Die Filmprimadonna (The Film Primadonna, 1913) reviews the screenplay in the production process shortly after the emergence of multiple-reel feature films. In the dramatic story of the rise and fall of a film prima donna, a fictitious screenplay plays an idiosyncratic function in filmmaking that sketches, for the cinematic audience of that time, a specific idea of how and why an appropriate script has to be made. The article offers an analysis of Gad’s preserved script and demonstrates that this screen-idea contrasts with the value and agency of screenplays in the historic mode of production in 1913. Inasmuch as the plot of the movie simply highlights the function of acting, Die Filmprimadonna as a script itself functions as a complex and highly composed agent in the process of filmmaking – as both a narrative and, equally, a production schedule for the film.


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!


Screenwriting Research Network Conference 2020

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

36 Leigh Brackett from “When Women Wrote Hollywood” with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (47 seconds)

Part of the California State University, Fullerton Faculty Noon Time Talks at the Pollak Library.

Watch this entire presentation

36 Leigh Brackett from

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Transcript:

Then we have this lady who I think is fascinating if you’re a Star Wars fan. Leigh Brackett. She’s mostly did all these kinds of space operas they called them right but she got hired to write the first draft of The Empire Strikes Back because George Lucas wanted her sci-fi brain on his property. The problem is she wrote the script — which there you are — and she died of cancer. So Lawrence Kasdan who I adore was hired to do the next draft in the next draft and Lawrence Kasdan becomes the writer we know from Star Wars but when you think about the Han Solo character, Leigh Brackett made him the cowboy that he is because she did cowboy movies and space operas. That’s the perfect blending of Han Solo. So she gave us that character in the incarnation that we know him in — which i think is cool.

Dr. Rosanne Welch discusses the women in her new book “When Women Wrote Hollywood” which covers female screenwriters from the Silents through the early 1940s when women wrote over 50% of films and Frances Marion was the highest paid screenwriter (male or female) and the first to win 2 Oscars.  Yet, she fails to appear in film history books, which continue to regurgitate the myth that male directors did it all – even though it’s been proven that the only profitable movies Cecil B. de Mille ever directed were all written by Jeannie Macpherson film ever won for Best Picture was written by Robert E. Sherwood (who people have heard of, mostly due to his connection to Dorothy Parker) and Joan Harrison.


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Panorama before the panel: “Between the Sheets: Writing About Sex on Television” at the Writers Guild of America

Panorama before the panel: “Between the Sheets: Writing About Sex on Television” at the Writers Guild of America.

Click for larger version

Writers Guild Foundation@wgfoundation

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

From The “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Archives 09: “Eve Unsell in New York.” Film Daily 6 August 1936

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 09: “Eve Unsell in New York.” Film Daily 6 August 1936

From The

From The

Read “Eve Unsell in New York.” Film Daily 6 August 1936


Buy “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Today!

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* 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 V10 Issue 1: More therapy with Dr Melfi (the character who guides viewer engagement with Tony Soprano): Relationship arcs in serial antihero narratives by Fernando Canet

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


More therapy with Dr Melfi (the character who guides viewer engagement with Tony Soprano): Relationship arcs in serial antihero narratives by Fernando Canet

Antihero narratives constitute a common thread in the current boom of TV fiction. The Sopranos (HBO, 1999–2007) could be considered an early example of this tendency. The antihero is a complex character who demands equally complex responses from viewers. The title of this article is an allusion to Rob White’s article, ‘No more therapy’, in which White explores Dr Jennifer Melfi’s role as a narrative mechanism used to undermine viewer sympathy for Tony Soprano at the end of the series. Here I seek to explore this role further since Dr Melfi’s responses to Tony’s actions serve as a narrative strategy used by The Sopranos writers to guide viewer responses in their relationship with Tony Soprano, a pioneer example of the antihero figure. In doing so, it is my purpose to demonstrate the relevance in antihero TV series of the evolution not only of the antihero themselves but also of their relationship with other major characters over the course of the series. I call this evolution, through which the creators develop the transformational arcs of the two characters concerned: the ‘relationship arc’.


From The Journal Of Screenwriting V10 Issue 1: Creative resistance tactics in the work of English Canadian screenwriters by Kerry McArthur

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!


Screenwriting Research Network Conference 2020

Join me at the Screenwriting Research Network’s Annual Conference in Oxford, UK



* 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!

35 Harriet Frank, Jr. from “When Women Wrote Hollywood” with Dr. Rosanne Welch [Video] (1 minute 9 seconds)

Part of the California State University, Fullerton Faculty Noon Time Talks at the Pollak Library.

Watch this entire presentation

 

35 Harriet Frank, Jr. from

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

 

Transcript:

Moving through into the 50s, we come up with Harriet Frank Jr. — a woman going by Jr. because her mother was Harriet Frank and her mother was a reader at one of the studios which is how she got into the business of writing. She married Irving Ravetch and together they made several important films. To me, most important is Norma Rae. Again a very female based film which really falls into Harriet’s world and also Stanley and Iris and Murphy’s Romance are very female-focused stories. Harriet was a really strong woman — very involved in the Union which makes sense when you think about Norma Rae right? So again names people don’t really know because these are considered Martin Ritt films because he directed all four of them, because he was best friends with Frank and Ravetch. So they liked to hire directors they knew who wouldn’t muck up their work and I believe in those collaborations. I don’t — like I’m dissing directors. I don’t mean to. I like directors but there it’s an even collaboration and I think that’s what academia has to start referencing more than we do because that’s how writers get lost and if male writers are getting lost you know female writers getting even more lost right? So we need to keep thinking about it’s a — it’s a collaboration.

Dr. Rosanne Welch discusses the women in her new book “When Women Wrote Hollywood” which covers female screenwriters from the Silents through the early 1940s when women wrote over 50% of films and Frances Marion was the highest paid screenwriter (male or female) and the first to win 2 Oscars.  Yet, she fails to appear in film history books, which continue to regurgitate the myth that male directors did it all – even though it’s been proven that the only profitable movies Cecil B. de Mille ever directed were all written by Jeannie Macpherson film ever won for Best Picture was written by Robert E. Sherwood (who people have heard of, mostly due to his connection to Dorothy Parker) and Joan Harrison.


Buy a signed copy of when Women Wrote Hollywood

…or via Amazon…

Paperback Edition | Kindle Edition | Google Play Edition

* 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 08: Marion Fairfax: “Algerian Village Erected for Desert Healer.” Motion Picture News. Motion Picture News, 15 March 1926

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 08: Marion Fairfax:  “Algerian Village Erected for Desert Healer.” Motion Picture News. Motion Picture News, 15 March 1926

From The

Algerian Village Erected for
“Desert Healer”

Marion Fairfax Productions in collabora-
tion with Sam E. Rork have had erected a
complete Algerian village for the company
producing “The Desert Healer” under the di-
rection of Maurice Tourneur. The principals
in the cast include Lewis Stone, Barbara
Bedford, Tully Marshall, Katherine MacDon-
ald, Walter Pidgeon, Ann Rork, Arthur
Rankin and Albert Conti.

Read “Algerian Village Erected for Desert Healer.” Motion Picture News. Motion Picture News, 15 March 1926


Buy “When Women Wrote Hollywood” Today!

Paperback Edition | Kindle Edition | Google Play Edition

* 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

Save The Date! – Rosanne at SCMS (Society for Cinema and Media Studies) Conference, April 1-5, 2020, Denver Colorado

Save The Date! - SCMS (Society for Cinema and Media Studies), April 1-5, 2020, Denver Colorado

I’m excited to fly to Denver again this year (twice actually – once for the SCMS conference in April and once for SeriesFest in June – more about that in another post!). 

For SCMS (Society for Cinema and Media Studies) I was invited to be part of a panel with 3 other fascinating female academics discussing How Unreliable Narrators harm giving women enough credit in historical research

A great deal of women’s work has gone uncredited. Its documentation or evidence may not exist in predictable places. Conceiving of how this work was conducted, or had impact, or might be theorized often pose more questions than answers. Our panel is interesteded in meeting these challenges through new and alternative forms of storytelling. How might we identify creative or productive approaches to historical writing that address absences, gaps, rumors, contradictions, or suspect information?

This may involve examining how biography has informed the construction of a star image. Vicki Callahan confronts the inability to reconstruct Normand’s filmmaking career and piece together missing parts of her star biography due to a lack of documentation (in addition to the scandals that arise at pivotal moments). In contrast, Eartha Kitt made a concerted effort to represent herself through “self-narrativization,” according to Philana Payton (who will present “Eartha Kitt vs. Eartha Mae”). Kitt wrote multiple autobiographies, scrupulously examining her private identity versus her public self on stage and screen.

The notion of narrator–whether unreliable narrator, storyteller, cryptic voice–proves useful here. For example, Normand serves as an unreliable narrator, leading Callahan to place historical weight on her scripts and performances (and performativity). Kitt, on the other hand, asserted her authority (and made a bid for black feminist resistance) by claiming her narrator role.

Taking a long-range historical view, my presentation will consider how certain male filmmakers have been unreliable narrators in reference to their collaborations with women in the industry. They often fail to credit their female collaborators or mentors, especially in public. A similar dynamic occurred with Joan Harrison; many of her film and TV contributions have been obscured because of the bright spotlight on Hitchcock. For Christina Lane, this (along with major gaps in documentation) fed into the challenges of historicizing her life and career. Sources came from unexpected places—Harrison’s housekeepers and caretakers—which created an opportunity for alternative feminist writing strategies.

Scms logo

About SCMS

The Society for Cinema and Media Studies is the leading scholarly organization in the United States dedicated to promoting a broad understanding of film, television, and related media through research and teaching grounded in the contemporary humanities tradition.

SCMS encourages excellence in scholarship and pedagogy and fosters critical inquiry into the global, national, and local circulation of cinema, television, and other related media. SCMS scholars situate these media in various contexts, including historical, theoretical, cultural, industrial, social, artistic, and psychological.

SCMS seeks to further media study within higher education and the wider cultural sphere, and to serve as a resource for scholars, teachers, administrators, and the public. SCMS works to maintain productive relationships with organizations in other nations, disciplines, and areas of media study; to foster dialogue between media industries and scholars; and to promote the preservation of our film, television, and media heritage. We encourage membership and participation of scholars and those in related positions not only in the US but around the world.

Journal of Screenwriting 10.3 is now available (Historiographic Research in Screenwriting Special Issue)

Journal of Screenwriting 10.3 is now available (Historiographic Research in Screenwriting Special Issue)

I’m always happy to announce the latest issues of the Journal of Screenwriting and 10.3 — a Special Issue discussing ‘Historiographic Research in Screenwriting’ — is now available! 

 

For me, as Book Reviews editor it’s especially nice to note that 2 alums of the Stephens College MFA in TV and Screenwriting program, one current student and Friend of the Program Anna Weinstein are among the reviewers of books this month, with current MFA candidate CJ Ehrlich having reviewed a text used in our History of Screenwriting courses – Tom Stempel’s Framework.

 

Does your college library have a subscription? Order one today to read all these reviews PLUS the articles noted below:

 

Crash! Boom! Bang! How to Write Action Movies, Michael Lucker (2017) 

JENNIFER ANNE MARTIN

 

Words in Action: Forms and Techniques of Film Dialogue, Paolo Braga (2015) 

JACKIE PEREZ

 

Off the Page: Screenwriting in the Era of Media Convergence, Daniel Bernardi and Julian Hoxter (2017)

ANNA WEINSTEIN

 

FrameWork: A History of Screenwriting in the American Film, 3rd ed., Tom Stempel (2000)

 

C. J. EHRLICH

 

For more information about the special issue and journal, click here >> https://www.intellectbooks.com/journal-of-screenwriting

 

Issue 10.3 Included:

 

Editorial

STEVEN PRICE AND CLAUS TIEBER 

 

Articles

 

Die Filmprimadonna (The Film Primadonna, 1913): A case study of the fiction of a screenplay and the process of filmmaking in German early cinema 

JAN HENSCHEN

 

Once again into the cabinets of Dr. Caligari: Evil spaces and hidden sources of the Caligari screenplay

ALEXANDRA KSENOFONTOVA

 

Reel by reel: Jan Stanislav Kolár’s narrative poetics in the context of transition to feature-length format in Czech silent cinema 

MARTIN KOS

 

Walter Reisch: The musical writer

CLAUS TIEBER

 

Network television writers and the ‘race problems’ of 1968 

CARYN MURPHY

 

From dialogue writer to screenwriter: Pier Paolo Pasolini at work for Federico Fellini

CLAUDIA ROMANELLI 


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!


Screenwriting Research Network Conference 2020

Join me at the Screenwriting Research Network’s Annual Conference in Oxford, UK



* 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!

From The Journal Of Screenwriting V10 Issue 1: Colonizing, decolonizing: Bad-faith liberalism and African space colonialism in Doris Lessing’s screenplay The White Princess By James Arnett

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


Colonizing, decolonizing: Bad-faith liberalism and African space colonialism in Doris Lessing’s screenplay The White Princess
By James Arnett

Although Doris Lessing frequently wrote about Africa over the course of her career, and her relationship to colonialism is undeniably critical, changing theoretical paradigms have complicated readings of her anticolonial critique. From a treasure trove of unpublished African material contained in her papers at the Harry Ransom Center Archives at the University of Texas, this article looks at one of her unpublished screenplays, The White Princess, as a complex and fraught attempt to generate an ethos of decolonization well in advance of its contemporary, post-postcolonial preeminence in twenty-first-century theoretical discourse. Lessing’s positing of a speculative future African recolonization of Britain would have emerged into a smattering of British speculative fictions of the late 1960s and 1970s that likewise imagined African colonialism, but did so, this article argues, hampered by a bad-faith liberalism. Despite the subversive potential of exploring inverted colonial dynamics, this article argues that Lessing ultimately cannot break free of generic conventions, political and theoretical limitations, or colonial discursive structures to achieve real decolonization work in The White Princess – although she may succeed elsewhere in her oeuvre.


From The Journal Of Screenwriting V10 Issue 1: Creative resistance tactics in the work of English Canadian screenwriters by Kerry McArthur

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!


Screenwriting Research Network Conference 2020

Join me at the Screenwriting Research Network’s Annual Conference in Oxford, UK



* 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!