6.05.2004

Plays

Shakespeare wrote plays, not screenplays. He wrote such a long time ago that he wrote his plays before people even wrote novels in English. (The novel is a relatively new invention).

Shakespeare alsowrote poetry.

Shakespeare wrote a very special sort of play: he wrote VERSE PLAYS. In other words, all of the dialog is written as poetry, not as English is spoken between ordinary people.

What do plays do that screenplays can't?

When film was first developed, many (especially writers) feared it would replace stage theatre. It did not!

When tv was first developed, many (especially filmmakers) feared it would replace movies. It did not!

What’s the difference between film, tv, and theatre?

Is any theatre "art"?

What do screenplays do that plays can't?

Well, for one, screenplays can be played over and over -- they can be reproduced.

Plays can be re-acted, but each performance is different.

Play scripts can be printed over and over again, but

-- the versions in the printings vary too!

What do screenplays do that plays can't? Special effects? Atmosphere? Huge jumps in place and time?

Reproducibility

A critic named Walter Benjamin (pronounced Ben-yah-meen) wrote an essay called THE WORK OF ART IN THE AGE OF MECHANICAL REPRODUCTION.

I’ll be introducing parts of this work throughout the term.

http://www.jahsonic.com/WAAMR.html

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