One in a Million Girl: a fictocritical screenplay for a feminist musical

Sawtell, L 2019, One in a Million Girl: a fictocritical screenplay for a feminist musical, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Media and Communication, RMIT University.


Document type: Thesis
Collection: Theses

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Title One in a Million Girl: a fictocritical screenplay for a feminist musical
Author(s) Sawtell, L
Year 2019
Abstract Through its small acts of resistance, this PhD highlights an experimental, feminist and personal approach to writing screen stories about women. As the latest statistics indicate at the time of this project's completion, only a third of the major characters and female protagonists in mainstream feature films are women (Lauzen 2019; Smith et al 2016). Being a feminist filmmaker, researcher and spectator, I am interested in changing these practices at the earliest stages of a screen work.

This practice-led research project is presented as a new form that I call 'a fictocritical screenplay'. As a document that represents the individual and process-driven script development stage of a screen story, it privileges the writer-director's subjectivity on the page. This project asks, how can a fictocritical screenplay perform a feminist aesthetic and language? How is agency given to the female characters and the author within the construction of a screen story?

The fictocritical screenplay tells two stories: fiction and process. The fictional story features the scenes for a proposed feminist musical called One in a Million Girl. In this story two actresses navigate their changing positions in an industry that favours youth and beauty. The second story focuses on the process and practice of writing in an alternative way. I write myself into the picture by showing a woman's history of cinema and give agency to the multiple female voices in the texts. By giving the screenplay another identity, where it becomes 'a subject in process' (Brewster 2005, 400), I produce an alternative form that is more than the proposed film.
Degree Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Institution RMIT University
School, Department or Centre Media and Communication
Subjects Film and Television
Keyword(s) fictocritical screenplay
script development
feminist musical
practice-led research
women's stories
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Created: Thu, 24 Oct 2019, 15:10:17 EST by Keely Chapman
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