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Noémie Lvovsky, Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, Maïwenn
Sarah Leahy and Isabelle Vanderschelden

The last chapter of this volume looks at three contemporary women screenwriting directors who have been making films since 2000. The first two, Noémie Lvovsky and Valeria Bruni Tedeschi, are close friends. They have worked together extensively since the 1990s, acting in, directing and/or co-writing in their respective films. Their styles and agendas may differ, but

in Screenwriters in French cinema
Sarah Leahy and Isabelle Vanderschelden

the genre. Our choice of synopses and screenplays to illustrate contemporary comedy is driven by the desire to present examples of successful comedies and to compare writing methods and legacies. Rehabilitating comedy screenwriting requires eliciting the creativity of the screenplays, often devalued or dismissed in critical discourse as adaptations of pre-existing works. This is especially true of comedy films derived from

in Screenwriters in French cinema

This book aims to demystify the place and power of the screenwriter within French film production, in creative and artistic terms, but also in the context of film criticism and film discourse more generally, whether that be in mainstream, popular or auteur cinema. Critical discourses on French cinema have tended to consider words to be of secondary importance to the image, regarding screenwriters as either over-dominant or completely eclipsed. The reality is, of course, that screenwriting has remained an integral part of the industry since the coming of sound. This book takes a number of key figures in the history of French screenwriting from the transition to sound to the present day, in order to explore the shifting function and position of screenwriters and major trends in screenwriting practice. It considers the industrial categorisation of screenwriting as adaptation, script development and dialogue writing, and explores creative practices around these three specialist areas – which are rarely as clearly defined as film credits might have us believe. It addresses and questions the myths that have emerged around certain writers in critical discourses, as well as the narrative mythologies that these writers have helped to shape in their films: from fatalism and the working-class (anti)hero to the small-minded petit bourgeois; from the neurotic protagonist to the naive fool of comedy. In doing so, it also reflects on the methodological challenges of screenwriting research, and the opportunities opened up by shedding light on these frequently neglected figures.

The Awakening (2011) and Development Practices in the British Film Industry
Alison Peirse

This article reveals how screenwriter Stephen Volk‘s idea for a sequel to The Innocents (1961, Jack Clayton) became, over the course of fifteen years, the British horror film The Awakening (2011, Nick Murphy). It examines practitioner interviews to reflect on creative labour in the British film industry, while also reorientating the analysis of British horror film to the practices of pre-production, specifically development. The research reveals that female protagonist Florence Cathcart was a major problem for the project and demonstrates how the Florence character changed throughout the development process. Repeatedly rewritten and ultimately restrained by successive male personnel, her character reveals persistent, problematic perceptions of gender in British horror filmmaking.

Film Studies
Abstract only
Author: Gemma King

This is the first book dedicated to the career and films of Jacques Audiard. It argues that the work of this prominent French director both reinforces and undermines the traditional concept of the auteur.

The book traces Audiard’s career from his early screenwriting projects in the 1970s to his eight directed feature films. From a prison outside Paris to a war zone in Sri Lanka, from a marine park on the Côte d’Azur to the goldfields of the American Wild West, these films revolve around the movement of bodies. Fragile yet powerful, macho yet transgressive, each of these films portrays disabled, marginalised or otherwise non-normative bodies in constant states of crisis and transformation.

This book uses the motif of border-crossing – both physical and symbolic – to explore how Audiard’s films construct and transcend boundaries of many forms. Its chapters focus on his films’ representation of the physical body, French society and broader transnational contexts. Located somewhere between the arthouse and the B movie, the French and the transnational, the feminist and the patriarchal, the familiar and the new, this book reveals how Jacques Audiard’s characters and films reflect his own eternally shifting position, both within and beyond the imaginary of French cinema.

The ‘screenplays’ of the New Wave auteurs
Sarah Leahy and Isabelle Vanderschelden

The French New Wave and its critical legacy have had a fundamental impact on the way screenwriting practices have developed since the 1960s, and not just in French cinema. Because of the overwhelming influence of the auteurist position that privileges the director’s role, they have also affected the way screenwriting and the screenwriter have been conceptualised in film

in Screenwriters in French cinema
Exploring the words of young people
Sarah Leahy and Isabelle Vanderschelden

In the previous chapters, we have shown that dialogue writing and the role of the dialogue writer have fashioned the French screenwriting tradition. Since the early talkies, France has nurtured a tradition of chatty cinema. In the 1930s, this could be seen in filmed theatre, comedy and in certain Poetic Realism to distinguish between characters (Jacques Prévert’s bad guys

in Screenwriters in French cinema
Screenwriting from notebooks to screenplays
Anna Soa Rossholm

conversed with himself, often in a playful, self-deprecating manner, or interacted with the fiction at the moment of creation in a way much akin to a child’s make-believe game or a daydream fantasy. The question is how one should understand such ‘games’ and playful digressions as a feature of Bergman’s writing process. What does the transgression of reality and fantasy represent in Bergman’s filmmaking and screenwriting? This chapter addresses these questions and discusses the creative playfulness evident in Ingmar

in Ingmar Bergman
Abstract only
Gemma King

screenwriting, Audiard explores movement in all its manifestations. His films follow the passage of families and individuals across geographic borders; trace the gestures of body parts engaging in violent, creative and intimate acts; portray the inhibition of movement by societal and criminal justice structures; convey the experience of everyday space by different or damaged bodies; unveil the complex shifts

in Jacques Audiard
Writing the ‘tradition of quality’
Sarah Leahy and Isabelle Vanderschelden

(see filmography), as well as pursuing their own individual careers within and beyond screenwriting. They remain best known for their post-war collaborations, which cemented their partnership and earned them the nickname ‘Aurenchébost’. These films, directed by Yves Allégret, Jean Delannoy, René Clément and, most frequently, Claude Autant-Lara, are held up as exemplifying the

in Screenwriters in French cinema