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Thief12

Alma Reville: film editor, scriptwriter, mother, and a fine cook

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Love this quote that Dr. Edwards brought from Hitch's Lifetime Achievement Award: 

 

"I beg permission to mention by name only four people who have given me the most affection, appreciation, and encouragement, and constant collaboration. The first of the four is a film editor, the second is a scriptwriter, the third is the mother of my daughter Pat, and the fourth is as fine a cook as ever performed miracles in a domestic kitchen. And their names are Alma Reville..."

 

Reading up about Alma's collaboration with Hitchcock makes me wonder, she had already earned her reputation as a scriptwriter and assistant director before meeting Hitchcock...

 

What would've been of her career, if she had continued working on her own?

 

Why did she choose to focus on her "silent" collaboration with Hitchcock instead? 

 

Was there space for a woman in Hollywood to be successful as a screenwriter, director, etc.?

 

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Ida Lupino was a successful woman in Hollywood, but she had hardly any female company. In fact, I think she was only the second female member in the directors' guild, and the first member had already died when Lupino joined.

 

Maybe others on this discussion board know more about this.

 

From Lupino's story, I am guessing that women had a very rough time of it in Hollywood. And apparently not a whole lot has changed.

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One of the lecture videos ended with a clip from that AFI ceremony, when Hitchcock made that speech about Alma, and the camera cut to Alma's face, tears in her eyes.  Great clip, and a great quote.

 

Re: women in Hollywood, a while back I caught a documentary on TCM about female screenwriter Frances Marion. It seemed like back in the carefree early days, when Hollywood was a little movie-making colony out in sunny California, women were more visible in the various production roles.  But as Hollywood became a big business, the culture changed and women were mostly employed as secretaries and such.  (Or something like that.)

But for some examples of women in Hollywood, check out Oscar-winning screenwriter Frances Marion, Oscar-nominated screenwriter Dorothy Parker (who worked on Hitchcock's Saboteur), and rare Golden Age female director Dorothy Arzner.  That's just off the top of my head.  It would seem that women directors were few and far between, but there were some writers floating around.

 

More screenwriters I've found: Claudine West, Frances Goodrich, Sarah Y. Mason, Helen Deutsch, Dorothy Kingsley, and Hitchcock collaborator Joan Harrison (who became a producer, apparently).

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Some of the most esteemed screenwriters of the studio era; with brief mention of who they worked with most often.

 

Sidney Buchman:

(wrote for Capra)

Theodora Goes Wild (1936)

The Awful Truth (1937)

Holiday (1938)

Lost Horizon (1937)

Mr. Smith Goes To Washington (1939)

Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941)

The Talk of the Town (1942)

 

Robert Riskin:

(wrote for Capra)

American Madness (1932)

It Happened One Night (1934)

Mr. Deeds Goes To Town (1936)

You Cant Take It With You (1938)

Meet John Doe (1941)

 

William Faulkner:

(associated with Hawks)

The Road to Glory (1936)

To Have and Have Not (1944)

The Big Sleep (1946)

 

Clifford Odetts:

The General Died at Dawn (1936)

Humoresque (1946)

None But the Lonely Heart (1944)

Clash by Night (1952)

The Country Girl (1954)

The Big Knife (1955)

Bigger Than Life (1956)

Sweet Smell of Success (1957)

 

John Balderstone:

(associated with horror, fantasy)

Dracula (1931)

Frankenstein (1931)

The Mummy (1932)

The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

The Prisoner of Zenda (1937)

Gas Light (1944)

 

Edwin Justus Mayer:

(associated with Ernst Lubitsch)

Desire (1936)

A Royal Scandal (1945)

To Be Or Not To Be (1942)

 

Samuel Hoffenstein:

Dr. Jekyll and Mister Hyde (1932)

Tales of Manhattan (1942)

Laura (1944)

Phantom of the Opera (1943)

The Wizard of Oz (1939, part of team)

 

Daniel Fuchs:

The Hard Way (1942)

Criss-Cross (1949)

Panic in the Streets (1950)

Love Me or Leave Me (1955)

 

John Lee Mahin:

(wrote for Jean Harlow & Clark Gable)

Riffraff (1936)

China Seas (1935)

Bombshell (1933)

Red Dust (1932)

Too Hot To Handle (1930)

Test Pilot (1938)

Gone with the Wind (1939, part of team)

Boom Town (1940)

 

Frances Marion:

(wrote for Pickford, Jean Harlow, Marie Dressler)

Dinner at Eight (1933)

The Big House (1930)

Min and Bill (1930)

The Champ (1931)

Camille (1937)

 

Anita Loos:

San Francisco (1936)

Saratoga (1937)

The Women (1939)

 

June Mathis:

(wrote for deMille, Von Stroheim)

The Four Horseman of the Apocalypse (1921)

Ben-Hur (1925)

Greed (1924)

 

C. Gardner Sullivan:

(associated with deMille)

The Buccaneer (1938)

Union Pacific (1939)

Northwest Mounted Police (1940)

 

Lamarr Trotti:

(associated with John Ford)

Judge Priest (1934)

Steamboat Round the Bend (1935)

Drums Along the Mohawk (1939)

Young Mr. Lincoln (1939)

 

Ben Hecht:

(wrote for Howard Hawks, Hitchcock)

Underworld (1927)

The Front Page (1931)

His Girl Friday (1940)

Barbary Coast (1935)

Foreign Correspondent (1940)

Spellbound (1945)

Notorious (1946)

 

Casey Robinson:

(wrote for Bette Davis, Errol Flynn)

Its Love I'm After (1937)

Dark Victory (1939)

Now, Voyager (1942)

The Corn is Green (1945)

All This And Heaven Too (1940)

The Old Maid (1939)

 

Herman J. Mankiewicz:

(associated with Marx Bros)

The Cocoanuts (1929)

Animal Crackers (1930)

 

Jeannie MacPherson:

(associated with Cecil B. deMille)

Manslaughter (1922)

The Ten Commandments (1923)

 

William LeBaron:

(associated with W.C. Fields, Mae West)

The Beautiful Rebel (1924)

The Old-Fashioned Way (1934)

Its a Gift (1934)

She Done Him Wrong (1933)

I'm No Angel (1933)

Cimarron (1931)

 

John Paxton:

(associated with noir)

Cornered (1945)

Murder, My Sweet (1944)

Crossfire (1947)

Crack-up (1946)

 

Charles Schnee:

(associated with noir)

They Live By Night (1949)

I Walk Alone (1947)

Scene of the Crime (1949)

 

Daniel Mainwaring:

(associated with noir)

From Out of the Past (1947)

The Big Steal (1949)

The Phenix City Story (1955)

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)

 

Jules Furthman:

(associated with Hawks, westerns, gangster, Von Sternberg, Marlene Dietrich)

The Texan (1920)

The Iron Rider (1920)

The Big Punch (1921)

The Dragnet (1928)

Thunderbolt (1929)

The Docks of New York (1928)

Morocco (1930)

Mutiny on the Bounty (1935)

Body and Soul (1931)

The Blue Angel (1930, part of team)

The Way of All Flesh (1940)

Only Angels Have Wings (1940)

The Shanghai Gesture (1941)

The Shanghai Express (1932)

The Peking Express (1951)

The Outlaw (1943)

Blonde Venus (1932)

Nightmare Alley (1947)

Rio Bravo (1959)

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Marian Clark --a wheelchair-bound writer--wrote around 70 of the 480 plots for the famous 'Gunsmoke' serial. The TV show (600+ episodes) often reused them.

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