Journal of Screenwriting 9.2 is now available

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Intellect is excited to announce that the Journal of Screenwriting 9.2 is now available! To discover more about the journal, click here >>

Theme: SRN New Zealand Conference Issue


Authors: Hester Joyce And Ian W. Macdonald 
Page Start: 131

10 ways to f#ck up your female characters
Authors: Fiona Samuel And Kathryn Burnett 
Page Start: 135

Script development as a ‘wicked problem’
Authors: Craig Batty And Radha O’Meara And Stayci Taylor And Hester Joyce And Philippa Burne And Noel Maloney And Mark Poole And Marilyn Tofler 
Page Start: 153

Both a process and a set of products, influenced by policy as well as people, and incorporating objective agendas at the same time as subjective experiences, script development is a core practice within the screen industry – yet one that is hard to pin down and, to some extent, define. From an academic research perspective, we might say that script development is a ‘wicked problem’ precisely because of these complex and often contradictory aspects. Following on from a recent Journal of Screenwriting special issue on script development (2017, vol. 8:3), and in particular an article therein dedicated to reviewing the literature and ‘defining the field’, an expanded team of researchers follow up on those ideas and insights. In this article, then, we attempt to theorize script development as a ‘wicked problem’ that spans a range of themes and disciplines. As a ‘wicked’ team of authors, our expertise encompasses screenwriting theory, screenwriting practice, film and television studies, cultural policy, ethnography, gender studies and comedy. By drawing on these critical domains and creative practices, we present a series of interconnected themes that we hope not only suggests the potential for script development as a rich and exciting scholarly pursuit, but that also inspires and encourages other researchers to join forces in an attempt to solve the script development ‘puzzle’.

Scripting the virtual: Formats and development paths for recent Australian narrative 360-degree virtual reality projects
Authors: Kath Dooley 
Page Start: 175

Since around 2015, an abundance of cinematic, short narrative virtual reality (VR) projects utilizing an immersive 360-degree format have emerged at film festivals around the world and on online platforms. While this medium is one that is increasingly being adopted by established, traditional 2D filmmakers, the specificity of the form gives rise to a number of challenges for the screenwriter when considering screen grammar, script formats and the writing process. This article begins to address a gap in knowledge in this area by reporting upon approaches to the script formats, development techniques and methods of collaboration utilized by three Australian practitioners working in this format. This research includes a study of the physical expression of a screen idea (recorded on the page or elsewhere) and an exploration of the working conditions within which these ideas are shaped to provide some insight into emerging practices. I draw upon detailed interviews with the three practitioners, and in doing so, I open up a discussion on how their approaches to 360-degree VR differ from traditional forms of screenplay writing.

Cinematic virtual reality: Towards the spatialized screenplay
Authors: Miriam Ross And Alex Munt 
Page Start: 191

This article considers how screenwriting might operate in the newly established medium of cinematic virtual reality (CVR). In Part One, we take a wide view of ways to consider screenwriting and development for CVR. Our approach theorizes CVR in the tradition of picture-making (or image-making) practices that can be traced within a broader history of the visual arts – from painting, to photography and contemporary art. In this way, we lay open the possibility for CVR to find diverse paths as it responds to narrative concerns rather than suggest it should merely repeat the consolidation of narrative that occurred with the transition of exploratory early cinema to the dominant Classical Hollywood system. In Part Two, our case study approach considers co-author, Miriam Ross’, CVR practice-based research to allow a discussion of the format that can be used for delivery of the CVR screenplay. Our aims are to connect a historically based spatialization of the image with the question of the spatialization of the screenplay for CVR 360-degrees media. The agenda is to expand the conversation around CVR to reflect upon, and inspire, new ways of thinking (and seeing) the potential for the development of screen ideas in this medium.

Fact and fiction in Jackie (2016): Revisiting a biopic with Paul Ricoeur
Authors: Carmen Sofia Brenes 
Page Start: 211

The film Jackie (2016) by Chilean filmmaker Pablo Larraín and American screenwriter Noah Oppenheim provides an excellent basis to reflect on biopics and this genre’s capacity to reconstruct and present historical figures. This article is grounded in Paul Ricoeur’s reflections on narrativity, time and history, which have given rise to a new branch of film and screenwriting studies that regards films as poetic narrations, that is, condensed representations of slices of life. Drawing on Ricoeur’s notion of narration and his concept of the relationship between story and history, I explore how Jackie, the fictional character, allows us to get to know part of the historical figure, Jacqueline Kennedy’s, personal life. This reflection may be of particular interest to screenwriters now that biopics are experiencing a revival as an auteur genre. In the first section, I describe some features of biopics and examine whether and how Jackie fits into this category of film genre. In the second, I outline the theoretical foundations of Ricoeur’s story/history duality. In the third part, acting on Ricoeur’s suggestion for an analytical approach, followed by a synthetic or global reading of the story that leads to the identification of the inner force that unifies the fictional narrative, I analyse the rhetorical and visual mechanisms used in Jackie, paying special attention to the timeline and the point of view of the narrator. An overview of the main character’s motivations both in the film script and the film version, and of the way in which the ending is presented, finally makes it possible to see where story and history come together. Ricoeur’s reflection on human actions and how they are represented in narrative works sheds light on the foundations of screenwriting studies. Similarly, so does Juan José García-Noblejas, when he suggests that the unifying object of a screenplay is ‘human action’. Thus, this article is a transdisciplinary reflection on the biopic genre through the analysis of a recent film, with Ricoeur’s practical philosophy as the starting point.

‘Screenwriting: Fact and fiction, truth and the real’, 10th SRN Conference, University of Otago, 28–31 August 2017
Authors:  Hester Joyce And  Armando Fumagalli And Rosanne Welch And  Ian W. Macdonald 
Page Start: 227

Authors: Amy Banks And Maria Manti And Felipe Pruneda Sentíes And Terry Selucky 
Page Start: 241

  • The Woman in the Story: Writing Memorable Female Characters in Trouble, in Love, and in Power, 2nd ed., Helen Jacey (2017
  • Transcultural Screenwriting: Telling Stories for a Global World, Carmen Sofia Brenes, Patrick Cattrysse and Margaret McVeigh (eds) (2017) Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 199 pp., ISBN-10: 1443852449, h/bk, £43.52; ISBN-13: 9781443852449, ebook, £53.15
  • Las Guionistas: A Bilingual Anthology of Mexican Women Screenwriters, María Teresa Depaoli and Laura Kanost (eds) (trans. Laura Kanost) (2017)
  • The Writer’s Journey, 3rd ed., Christopher Vogler (2007)