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Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy

Tom Stempel

Tom Stempel is the author of five books, two of which were published by Continuum–FrameWork: A History of Screenwriting in American Film and Storytellers to the Nation: A History of American Television Writing–the others being Screenwriter: The Life of Nunnally Johnson; Screenwriting; and American Audiences on Movies and Moviegoing. He is Professor of Cinema, Cinema-Television Department, Los Angeles City College. He has taught on these subjects for more than thirty years. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Understanding Screenwriting : Learning from Good, Not-Quite-So-Good, and Bad Screenplays

Continuum, 2008

Book chapter

...Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004. Screenplay by Will Ferrell & Adam McKay. 94 minutes) A few readers of early drafts of this book got upset about this chapter, saying comedy is “subjective,” and so how can I put a comedy...

Bull Durham

Tom Stempel

Tom Stempel is the author of five books, two of which were published by Continuum–FrameWork: A History of Screenwriting in American Film and Storytellers to the Nation: A History of American Television Writing–the others being Screenwriter: The Life of Nunnally Johnson; Screenwriting; and American Audiences on Movies and Moviegoing. He is Professor of Cinema, Cinema-Television Department, Los Angeles City College. He has taught on these subjects for more than thirty years. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Understanding Screenwriting : Learning from Good, Not-Quite-So-Good, and Bad Screenplays

Continuum, 2008

Book chapter

...Bull Durham (1988. Screenplay by Ron Shelton. 108 minutes) Before he became a screenwriter, Ron Shelton played minor league baseball. The first screenplay he wrote, A Player to Be Named Later, told the story of “Crash” Davis, a journeyman...

The Elements of Screenwriting

Joseph McBride

Joseph McBride is a film historian and associate professor in the Cinema department at San Francisco State University. His many books include Searching for John Ford, Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success, Steven Spielberg: A Biography, Hawks on Hawks, Whatever Happened to Orson Welles?: A Portrait of an Independent Career, as well as the critical studies John Ford (1974, with Michael Wilmington) and Orson Welles. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Writing in Pictures : Screenwriting Made (Mostly) Painless

Faber & Faber, 2012

Book chapter

...So now you’ve written the outline for your adaptation. That wasn’t so hard, was it? With the benefit of a writing collaborator, you probably found it easier than you expected to construct a good plan for a movie. The original writer...

Kinsey

Tom Stempel

Tom Stempel is the author of five books, two of which were published by Continuum–FrameWork: A History of Screenwriting in American Film and Storytellers to the Nation: A History of American Television Writing–the others being Screenwriter: The Life of Nunnally Johnson; Screenwriting; and American Audiences on Movies and Moviegoing. He is Professor of Cinema, Cinema-Television Department, Los Angeles City College. He has taught on these subjects for more than thirty years. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Understanding Screenwriting : Learning from Good, Not-Quite-So-Good, and Bad Screenplays

Continuum, 2008

Book chapter

...Kinsey (2004. Screenplay by Bill Condon. 118 minutes) Alfred Kinsey first came to scientific notice as an entomologist studying the gall wasp. What made him famous were his studies in the forties and fifties of human sexuality. It took...

Synopsis

Mark Evan Schwartz

Mark Evan Schwartz is Associate Professor of Screenwriting at Loyola Marymount University, School of Film and Television, in California. He’s a former Head of Story Development for Nelson Entertainment, Story Analyst for the David Geffen Company, and Production Assistant to Francis Ford Coppola. A working screenwriter, he has credits on over a dozen produced feature films and television movies. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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How to Write: A Screenplay : Revised and Expanded

Bloomsbury Academic, 2016

Book chapter

...Act One Wanting to score with starlet Bebe, Danny is told that if he wants to get anywhere with her he’s going to have to write her a great screenplay. Unbe-knownst to Danny, someone is lurking, listening, in the shadows. With a draft...

Titanic

Tom Stempel

Tom Stempel is the author of five books, two of which were published by Continuum–FrameWork: A History of Screenwriting in American Film and Storytellers to the Nation: A History of American Television Writing–the others being Screenwriter: The Life of Nunnally Johnson; Screenwriting; and American Audiences on Movies and Moviegoing. He is Professor of Cinema, Cinema-Television Department, Los Angeles City College. He has taught on these subjects for more than thirty years. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Understanding Screenwriting : Learning from Good, Not-Quite-So-Good, and Bad Screenplays

Continuum, 2008

Book chapter

...Titanic (1997. Screenplay by James Cameron. 194 minutes) Ever since the Titanic sank on April 15, 1912, there have been movies about it. In 1943 the Nazis made Titanic as propaganda about the excesses of British capitalism. Joseph Goebbels,...

Step 3: The Character Biography

Joseph McBride

Joseph McBride is a film historian and associate professor in the Cinema department at San Francisco State University. His many books include Searching for John Ford, Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success, Steven Spielberg: A Biography, Hawks on Hawks, Whatever Happened to Orson Welles?: A Portrait of an Independent Career, as well as the critical studies John Ford (1974, with Michael Wilmington) and Orson Welles. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Writing in Pictures : Screenwriting Made (Mostly) Painless

Faber & Faber, 2012

Book chapter

...The new frontier in film style is character. They’ve pushed film style so far that there’s no sense trying to change these music video and film school kids. You go back to basics. . . .That’s what it’s about. Particularly on a lower budget,...

Breaking the Back of the Book; or, The Art of Adaptation

Joseph McBride

Joseph McBride is a film historian and associate professor in the Cinema department at San Francisco State University. His many books include Searching for John Ford, Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success, Steven Spielberg: A Biography, Hawks on Hawks, Whatever Happened to Orson Welles?: A Portrait of an Independent Career, as well as the critical studies John Ford (1974, with Michael Wilmington) and Orson Welles. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Writing in Pictures : Screenwriting Made (Mostly) Painless

Faber & Faber, 2012

Book chapter

...There’s another terrible phrase in Hollywood, but one that is much more useful than “high concept.” This is what is known as “breaking the back of the book.” It’s the elegant way movie people have of explaining the delicate process...

Ten Tips for the Road Ahead

Joseph McBride

Joseph McBride is a film historian and associate professor in the Cinema department at San Francisco State University. His many books include Searching for John Ford, Frank Capra: The Catastrophe of Success, Steven Spielberg: A Biography, Hawks on Hawks, Whatever Happened to Orson Welles?: A Portrait of an Independent Career, as well as the critical studies John Ford (1974, with Michael Wilmington) and Orson Welles. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

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Writing in Pictures : Screenwriting Made (Mostly) Painless

Faber & Faber, 2012

Book chapter

...Before we move on to our practical applications and exercises, here are some of the key dos and don’ts that help define the craft of screenwriting.1. Don’t write what we can’t see or hear. If I can leave you with one basic rule about...

Short Takes on Bad Screenplays

Tom Stempel

Tom Stempel is the author of five books, two of which were published by Continuum–FrameWork: A History of Screenwriting in American Film and Storytellers to the Nation: A History of American Television Writing–the others being Screenwriter: The Life of Nunnally Johnson; Screenwriting; and American Audiences on Movies and Moviegoing. He is Professor of Cinema, Cinema-Television Department, Los Angeles City College. He has taught on these subjects for more than thirty years. Author affiliation details are correct at time of print publication.

Search for publications

Understanding Screenwriting : Learning from Good, Not-Quite-So-Good, and Bad Screenplays

Continuum, 2008

Book chapter

...The films are in chronological order of release. Dune (1984. Based on the book by Frank Herbert. Screenplay by David Lynch, but he took his name off the credits as writer of the 137-minute theatrical release. He put his name back...