the writers a history of american screenwriters and their guild

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The Writers

Author : Miranda J. Banks
ISBN : 9780813571409
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 45. 73 MB
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Screenwriters are storytellers and dream builders. They forge new worlds and beings, bringing them to life through storylines and idiosyncratic details. Yet up until now, no one has told the story of these creative and indispensable artists. The Writers is the only comprehensive qualitative analysis of the history of writers and writing in the film, television, and streaming media industries in America. Featuring in-depth interviews with over fifty writers—including Mel Brooks, Norman Lear, Carl Reiner, and Frank Pierson—The Writers delivers a compelling, behind-the-scenes look at the role and rights of writers in Hollywood and New York over the past century. Granted unprecedented access to the archives of the Writers Guild Foundation, Miranda J. Banks also mines over 100 never-before-published oral histories with legends such as Nora Ephron and Ring Lardner Jr., whose insight and humor provide a window onto the enduring priorities, policies, and practices of the Writers Guild. With an ear for the language of storytellers, Banks deftly analyzes watershed moments in the industry: the advent of sound, World War II, the blacklist, ascension of television, the American New Wave, the rise and fall of VHS and DVD, and the boom of streaming media. The Writers spans historical and contemporary moments, and draws upon American cultural history, film and television scholarship and the passionate politics of labor and management. Published on the sixtieth anniversary of the formation of the Writers Guild of America, this book tells the story of the triumphs and struggles of these vociferous and contentious hero-makers.

What Happens Next

Author : Marc Norman
ISBN : 9780307450203
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 69. 21 MB
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Screenwriters have always been viewed as Hollywood’s stepchildren. Silent-film comedy pioneer Mack Sennett forbade his screenwriters from writing anything down, for fear they’d get inflated ideas about themselves as creative artists. The great midcentury director John Ford was known to answer studio executives’ complaints that he was behind schedule by tearing a handful of random pages from his script and tossing them over his shoulder. And Ken Russell was so contemptuous of Paddy Chayefsky’s screenplay for Altered States that Chayefsky insisted on having his name removed from the credits. Of course, popular impressions aside, screenwriters have been central to moviemaking since the first motion picture audiences got past the sheer novelty of seeing pictures that moved at all. Soon they wanted to know: What happens next? In this truly fresh perspective on the movies, veteran Oscar-winning screenwriter Marc Norman gives us the first comprehensive history of the men and women who have answered that question, from Anita Loos, the highest-paid screenwriter of her day, to Robert Towne, Quentin Tarantino, Charlie Kaufman, and other paradigm-busting talents reimagining movies for the new century. The whole rich story is here: Herman Mankiewicz and the telegram he sent from Hollywood to his friend Ben Hecht in New York: “Millions are to be grabbed out here and your only competition is idiots.” The unlikely sojourns of F. Scott Fitzgerald and William Faulkner as Hollywood screenwriters. The imposition of the Production Code in the early 1930s and the ingenious attempts of screenwriters to outwit the censors. How the script for Casablanca, “a disaster from start to finish,” based on what James Agee judged to be “one of the world’s worst plays,” took shape in a chaotic frenzy of writing and rewriting—and how one of the most famous denouements in motion picture history wasn’t scripted until a week after the last scheduled day of shooting—because they had to end the movie somehow. Norman explores the dark days of the Hollywood blacklist that devastated and divided Hollywood’s screenwriting community. He charts the rise of the writer-director in the early 1970s with names like Coppola, Lucas, and Allen and the disaster of Michael Cimino’s Heaven’s Gate that led the studios to retake control. He offers priceless portraits of the young William Hurt, Steven Spielberg, and Steven Soderbergh. And he describes the scare of 2005 when new technologies seemed to dry up the audience for movies, and the industry—along with its screenwriters—faced the necessity of reinventing itself as it had done before in the face of sound recording, color, widescreen, television, and other technological revolutions. Impeccably researched, erudite, and filled with unforgettable stories of the too often overlooked, maligned, and abused men and women who devised the ideas that others brought to life in action and words on-screen, this is a unique and engrossing history of the quintessential art form of our time. From the Hardcover edition.

Writers In Hollywood 1915 1951

Author : Ian Hamilton
ISBN : 9780571283712
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 59. 12 MB
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Legend has it that Hollywood lures gifted writers into its service with sunshine and money, only to treat them as glorified typists and plot-mechanics, peripheral to the main business of moviemaking. This is what Ian Hamilton describes as 'the writer-in-chains saga that emerges from any study of Hollywood during its so-called golden years - the period I have marked as running from 1915-1951.' But in this superb account of what befell the likes of Faulkner, Fitzgerald, Chandler and Huxley by working for the Dream Factory, Hamilton argues that these writers 'were in the movies by choice: they earned far more money than their colleagues who did not write for films, and in several cases they applied themselves conscientiously to the not-unimportant task at hand. And they had a lot of laughs...' 'Fascinating and enjoyable.' New Statesman 'Abounds in marvelous stories, apocryphal, fabulous, funny and even true.' Observer Faber Finds is devoted to restoring to readers a wealth of lost or neglected classics and authors of distinction. The range embraces fiction, non-fiction, the arts and children's books. For a full list of available titles visit www.faberfinds.co.uk. To join the dialogue with fellow book-lovers please see our blog, www.faberfindsblog.co.uk.

Writing For Hire

Author : Catherine L. Fisk
ISBN : 9780674973206
Genre : Law
File Size : 79. 78 MB
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Professional writers may earn a tidy living for their work, but they seldom own their writing. Catherine Fisk traces the history of labor relations that defined authorship in film, TV, and advertising in the mid-twentieth century, showing why strikingly different norms of attribution emerged in these overlapping industries.

Off The Page

Author : Daniel Bernardi
ISBN : 9780520285651
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 82. 49 MB
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"Due to rapid technological change, economic challenges facing media industries, and the writers' strike of 2007-08, screenwriting has been changing dramatically. While industry professionals in LA are still writing screenplays, what the studios want is changing, and there are new players in the market. Larger studios have become more conservative about the 'tentpole' pictures they need to make their bottom lines work, relying more on sequels, remakes, and established properties with track records in other media. The spec market for pre-written scripts and pitches by established professionals is in drastic decline--and viable content creation by fans and amateurs is on the rise. At the same time new opportunities for writers are proliferating in TV, micro--budget independents, games, and emerging content platforms like iTunes and VOD services. Off the Page is designed to be used by students and writers who want to understand what studios want, and what kind of opportunities exist beyond the old-school three-act structure screenplay. The book addresses specific genres old and new, a wide range of media, as well as specific professional details like working collaboratively in a 'writer's room,' showrunning, and the specific ways that scripts themselves are now written."--Provided by publishe

Production Studies

Author : Vicki Mayer
ISBN : 9781135840167
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 73. 46 MB
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"Behind-the-scenes" stories of ranting directors, stingy producers, temperamental actors, and the like have fascinated us since the beginnings of film and television. Today, magazines, websites, television programs, and DVDs are devoted to telling tales of trade lore—from on-set antics to labor disputes. The production of media has become as storied and mythologized as the content of the films and TV shows themselves. Production Studies is the first volume to bring together a star-studded cast of interdisciplinary media scholars to examine the unique cultural practices of media production. The all-new essays collected here combine ethnographic, sociological, critical, material, and political-economic methods to explore a wide range of topics, from contemporary industrial trends such as new media and niche markets to gender and workplace hierarchies. Together, the contributors seek to understand how the entire span of "media producers"—ranging from high-profile producers and directors to anonymous stagehands and costume designers—work through professional organizations and informal networks to form communities of shared practices, languages, and cultural understandings of the world. This landmark collection connects the cultural activities of media producers to our broader understanding of media practices and texts, establishing an innovative and agenda-setting approach to media industry scholarship for the twenty-first century. Contributors: Miranda J. Banks, John T. Caldwell, Christine Cornea, Laura Grindstaff, Felicia D. Henderson, Erin Hill, Jane Landman, Elana Levine, Amanda D. Lotz, Paul Malcolm, Denise Mann, Vicki Mayer, Candace Moore, Oli Mould, Sherry B. Ortner, Matt Stahl, John L. Sullivan, Serra Tinic, Stephen Zafirau

Production Studies The Sequel

Author : Miranda Banks
ISBN : 9781317567110
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 25. 69 MB
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Production Studies, The Sequel! is an exciting exploration of the experiences of media workers in local, global, and digital communities—from prop-masters in Germany, Chinese film auteurs, producers of children’s television in Qatar, Italian radio broadcasters, filmmakers in Ethiopia and Nigeria, to seemingly-autonomous Twitterbots. Case studies examine international production cultures across five continents and incorporate a range of media, including film, television, music, social media, promotional media, video games, publishing and public broadcasting. Using the lens of cultural studies to examine media production, Production Studies, The Sequel! takes into account transnational production flows and places production studies in conversation with other major areas of media scholarship including audience studies, media industries, and media history. A follow-up to the successful Production Studies, this collection highlights new and important research in the field, and promises to generate continued discussion about the past, present, and future of production studies.

Writing In Pictures

Author : Joseph McBride
ISBN : 9780307742926
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 83. 80 MB
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A practical guidebook to screenwriting provides a comprehensive, step-by-step framework and illustrative anecdotes that demonstrate how to write a first screenplay through a series of approachable tasks. Original. 20,000 first printing.

Screenwriting Is Rewriting

Author : Jack Epps, Jr.
ISBN : 9781628927382
Genre : Performing Arts
File Size : 59. 97 MB
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If there is one skill that separates the professional screenwriter from the amateur, it is the ability to rewrite successfully. From Jack Epps, Jr., the screenwriter of Top Gun, Dick Tracy, and The Secret of My Success, comes a comprehensive guide that explores the many layers of rewriting. In Screenwriting is Rewriting, Epps provides a practical and tested approach to organizing notes, creating a game plan, and executing a series of focused passes that address the story, character, theme, structure, and plot issues. Included are sample notes, game plans, and beat sheets from Epps' work on films such as Sister Act and Turner and Hooch. Also featured are exclusive interviews with Academy Award® winning screenwriters Robert Towne (Chinatown) and Frank Pierson (Dog Day Afternoon), along with Academy Award® nominee Susannah Grant (Erin Brockovich).

Rewrite Man

Author : Alison Macor
ISBN : 9780292759459
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 42. 36 MB
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In Rewrite Man, Alison Macor tells an engrossing story about the challenges faced by a top screenwriter at the crossroads of mixed and conflicting agendas in Hollywood. Whether writing love scenes for Tom Cruise on the set of Top Gun, running lines with Michael Keaton on Beetlejuice, or crafting Nietzschean dialogue for Jack Nicholson on Batman, Warren Skaaren collaborated with many of New Hollywood's most powerful stars, producers, and directors. By the time of his premature death in 1990, Skaaren was one of Hollywood's highest-paid writers, although he rarely left Austin, where he lived and worked. Yet he had to battle for shared screenwriting credit on these films, and his struggles yield a new understanding of the secretive screen credit arbitration process—a process that has only become more intense, more litigious, and more public for screenwriters and their union, the Writers Guild of America, since Skaaren's time. His story, told through a wealth of archival material, illuminates crucial issues of film authorship that have seldom been explored.

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