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Ideal for the classroom:

Designed for students and writers who are looking to understand what studios want, as well as what kinds of opportunities exist beyond the outmoded three-act structure. There is no similar book that critically analyzes the diverse industrial, professional and craft practices of screenwriting today.

  • the authors are working scholars and screenwriters, who employ industry studies, production culture studies, textual analysis and interviews with working screenwriters
  • addresses specific genres and adjacent industries across a wide range of rapidly evolving media, such as online content creation and the development of the video games industry
  • couples the recent history of screenwriting with close analysis of scripts in the context of the screenwriting paraindustry—from “how to write a winning script” books to screenwriting software
  • provides an astute cultural-industrial analysis of the creative labor of screenwriters, whose contributions have been increasingly devalued in the post-1980s era of deregulation, conglomeration, and globalization

“A much-needed antidote to the plethora of ‘how-to’ books, workshops, and blogs currently flooding the marketplace.”—Denise Mann, University of California, Los Angeles

“An insightful must-read for writers across all emerging and converging media.”—David Howard, University of Southern California

“This book does a rare thing: it provides a compelling bird’s-eye view of how the industry’s recent technological and economic changes have disrupted conventional writing practices, even as it closely analyzes scripts and drills deeply into the thoughts and words of working screenwriters.”—John T. Caldwell, author of Production Culture

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Daniel Bernardi is Professor of Cinema in the School of Cinema at San Francisco State University. He is a documentary filmmaker, edits the War Culture book series at Rutgers University Press, and has published several books on film, television, and popular culture.

Julian Hoxter is Associate Professor of Cinema in the School of Cinema at San Francisco State University. He is a produced screenwriter and has published three books on the history and practice of screenwriting.