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Catherine Sheppard Webster
University of Central Oklahoma (Edmond, OK 73034-5209)
Une Exception Francaise: From Playwright to Filmmaker in Mid-20th Century France

In my study, I examine a unique development in the history of cinema, the adoption of filmmaking by three renowned French playwrights during the 1930s, when sound technology first became available in France. Marcel Pagnol, Jean Cocteau and Sacha Guitry operated in different intellectual and artistic circles, yet all three made the move from stage to screen between 1930 and 1934, and they all came to make films based on their own plays. My project examines the theatre/cinema relationship as evidenced by these three writer-directors and argues that the idea of progression from adaptation to original screenplay oversimplifies the narrative; the interplay between the two categories creates a common space for the discussion of performance and dramatic purpose, as well as for the examination of style and the development of cinematic technological advances.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
Film History and Criticism

Summer Stipends

Research Programs

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/2010 – 9/30/2010