Drama and Film Department

Professors: Jesse G. Kalin, Sarah R. Kozloff (Chair, Film), Kenneth M. Robinson b, James B. Steerman; Associate Professors: Gabrielle H. Cody (Chair, Drama),Christopher Grabowski; Assistant Professors: David Birn, Mia Mask a, Philippe Roques a, Denise Walen; Visiting Assistant Professor: Neil Worden; Lecturers: Holly Hummel, William Miller; Adjunct Instructor: Penny Kreitzer, Kathy Wildberger.


Drama

Requirements for Concentration: 101⁄ 2 units. Drama 100, 103, 221-222, 3 additional units in dramatic literature or theater history from the following courses: Drama 201, 231, 317, 324, 335, 336, 337, of which 2 must be 324, 335, 336 or 337. 2 units from the following production courses: Drama 202, 203, 205, 209, 302, 304, 305, 307, 390; 2 additional elective units at the 200-level or above in drama, film, or dance.


1. Introductory

 
100a. Introduction to Western Drama
(1)
An introduction to Western dramatic literature, including an overview of the historical, theoretical, and practical dimension of theater productions. Special emphasis is placed on the cultural energy which produced specific aesthetic movements and literatures as well as the physical forms of Western theater through the ages from its ritual beginnings to the advent of performance art and multimedia performance. Ms. Cody, Ms. Walen, Mr. Grabowski, Mr. Birn, Mr. Worden, Ms. Hummel.
       Two 75-minute periods.
 
103a or b. Introduction to Stagecraft
(1/2)
An introduction to the fundamentals of stagecraft, including the processes of flat and platform construction, scene painting, rigging, and theatrical safety. Mr. Miller.
       This is a six-week course.
       Two 75-minute periods.
 

II. Intermediate

 
200a or b. Production Laboratory
(1/2)
Participation in the performance, design, or technical aspects of department productions. The department.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100, 103, and permission of the department.
       May be repeated.
       One 3-hour period and production laboratory.
 
201b. Text In Performance
(1)
The structural analysis of plays and its practical application in contemporary theatrical production. Ms. Cody, Mr. Grabowski.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100, 103, 221-222 or special permission of the instructors.
       One 2-hour period and laboratory.
 
202b. Methods of Production: Theory and Practice of Theatrical Communication
(1)
An exploration of the strategies theatre artists use to communicate with an audience in production, and the collaborative manner these strategies are developed and deployed in contemporary theatrical practice. The historical and critical context of these strategies is explored through readings by such writers as Sophocles, Shakespeare, Racine, Chekhov, Brecht, Fornes, Brooks, Jones, Craig, Foucault, Berger, and Hollander. Mr. Birn, Mr. Grabowski.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100, 103.
       Two 75-minute periods.
 
203a or b. The Actor’s Craft: The study of acting theories from 1915-present.
(1)
The development of rehearsal techniques and strategies in preparation for acting on the stage. Approaches are drawn from the work of Stanislavsky, Michael Chekhov, Tadashi, Suzuki, and Bogart, among others. Mr. Worden.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100, 103, and permission of the department.
       Two 75-minute periods.
 
205a or b. The Actor’s Voice
(1)
Instruction, theory, and practice in the use of the voice for the stage. Ms. Kreitzer.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100, 103 and permission of the department.
       One 3-hour period.
 
206a. Movement for Actors
(1)
Training in stage movement for actors. Students learn to understand neutral posture alignment and explore the dynamic and expressive qualities of movement, as well as the methods of developing a rich physicalization of character. Concepts from the Alexander Technique, Laban Movement Analysis, experimental theatre, and post-modern dance are used. Ms. Wildberger.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100, 103, and permission of the instructor.
       One 3 hour period.
 
209a or b. Topics in Production
(1)
Concentrated study in one production area. May be repeated in another area of design. Ms. Hummel, Mr. Miller, Mr. Birn.
       Past topics have included Drafting and Draping, Ms. Hummel; Scenic Painting, Mr. Miller; Graphic Communication for Designers, Mr. Birn.
       Prerequisites: Drama 103 and permission of the instructor.
       Unscheduled.
 
221a-222b. Sources of World Drama
(2)
An exploration of dramatic literature and performance practices from around the world and the theories that have affected both the literature and practice of theatre from Aristotle’s The Poetics to writings by late twentieth-century theorists. The course focuses in depth on a number of critical periods rather than surveying the development of dramatic literature. Ms. Walen.
       Prerequisite: Drama 100.
       Two 75-minute periods.
 
231a. History of Fashion for the Stage
(1)
History of dress from the Egyptians through the nineteenth century as seen in sculpture, painting, and illuminated manuscripts. Cultural background investigated through manners and customs in Western Europe. Ms. Hummel.
       Permission of the instructor required.
       Two 75-minute periods.
 
241b. Introduction to Black Drama in America
(1)
(Same as Africana Studies 241)
 
290a or b. Field Work
(1/2 or 1)
To be elected in consultation with the adviser and the Office of Field Work.
 
298a or b. Independent Work
(1/2 or 1)
To be elected in consultation with the adviser.
 
 

III. Advanced

 
302a or b. Problems in Design
(1)
Study of set, costume, lighting or sound design. May be repeated in another area of design. Mr Birn, Ms. Hummel, Mr. Miller.
       Prerequisites: Drama 202 and permission of the instructor.
       One 3-hour period.
 
304a. The Art of Acting
(1)
Advanced study of classical acting including Shakespeare, Chekhov, and Ibsen in which students examine the challenges of creating an entire acting role. Techniques explored include John Barton, Michael Chekhov, Tadashi Suzuki, Bogart, Linklater. Mr. Worden.
       Prerequisites: Drama 203, 205, 1 unit in dance or movement analysis, and permission of the instructor.
       Two 2-hour periods.
 
305a. The Director’s Art
(1)
An investigation of the actor/director collaboration as well as a theoretical and practical examination of the visual and aesthetic elements of directorial composition for the stage. Mr. Grabowski.
       Prerequisites: Drama 202 or 203, 302 or 304, and permission of the instructor.
       Two 2-hour periods.
 
[307b. The Directorial Production Process]
(1)
An examination of the directorial aspects of realizing the theatrical event, including preproduction research, structures and traditions of collaboration, rehearsal strategy and techniques, and articulation of directorial concept. Mr. Grabowski.
       Prerequisites: Drama 201 or 203 and permission of the instructor.
       Not offered in 2003/04.
 
317a or b. Dramatic Writing
(1)
(Same as Film 317) Studies of dramatic construction, analysis of, and practice in writing stage plays and/or screenplays. Mr. Steerman.
       Note: students wishing to be considered for admission must submit a short writing sample (dramatic, narrative, poetic, or expository) at least ten days prior to preregistration.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100 or Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
       Open only to juniors and seniors.
       One 2-hour period.
 
324b. European and American Drama
(1)
Historical and critical study of European and American dramatic literature, theory and criticism, playwrights, and/or aesthetic movements. Ms. Walen.
       Prerequisites: Drama 221-222 or permission of the instructor.
       One 2-hour period.
 
335a. Seminar in Drama
(1)
Beckett and inter-textuality: fiction, drama, film, culture. Ms. Cody.
       Prerequisites: Drama 221-222 and permission of the instructor.
       One 2-hour period.
 
[336a. Seminar in Performance Studies: Modern and Postmodern Theatrical Practice]
(1)
Selected topics in Western and non-Western performance traditions and literatures. Ms. Cody.
       Prerequisites: Drama 221-222 and permission of the instructor.
       One 2-hour period.
       Not offered in 2003/04.
 
[337b. Seminar in Para-Theater]
(1)
Selected topics in “para-theatrical” genres from around the world, such as fairs, festivals, street theater, vaudeville, cabaret, circus arts, performance art, ordeal art, etc. Ms. Walen.
       Prerequisites: Drama 221-222 and permission of the instructor.
       One 2-hour period.
       Not offered in 2003/04.
 
382b. Acting for the Camera
(1)
Techniques of acting and writing for the camera. Special emphasis placed on collective class project. Instructor to be announced.
       Prerequisites: permission of the instructor.
       One 3-hour period.
 
383a. Radio Drama Seminar
(1)
An overview of the history of American Radio Drama including the work of Corwin, Wells, Oboler, and others. The class listens to and critiques work from contemporary drama and the "Golden Age" of radio and creates a radio drama broadcast over Vassar's radio station.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100, 221-222
       One 2-hour period.
 
390a or b. Senior Project in Drama
(1)
Students may propose to undertake a project in one of the following areas: research in dramatic literature, theater history, performance studies, acting, directing, design, or playwriting. The nature of this project is to be determined in consultation with the department. The department.
       Enrollment limited to senior drama majors.
       Prerequisites: senior standing, and permission of the department. In the case of directing projects, students must also have completed Drama 202.
       Unscheduled.
 
391a or b. Senior Production Laboratory
(1)
Participation in the performance, design, or technical aspects of department productions. The department.
       Prerequisites: senior standing, 1 unit at the 300-level in Drama, and permission of the department.
       May not be taken concurrently with Drama 390.
       Unscheduled.
 
399a or b. Senior Independent Work
(1/2 or 1)
To be elected in consultation with the adviser.

Film

Requirements for Concentration in Film:
  1. 11 units required.
  2. Film 210/211, Film 392 required.
  3. Six (6) additional courses in Film at the 200- or 300-level, with the restrictions below:
    1. No more than 4 units in film, video, or digital production may be counted toward the concentration (Film 245, 320/321, 326/327, 328/329, 345/346).
    2. Two of the above 6 units must be our courses in film history/theory. These 2 units must be completed prior to enrollment in Film 392, which must be taken in the senior year.
    3. Only 1 thesis option may be elected (300 or 301).
  4. Two additional elective units at the 200- or 300-level selected from the following categories:
    1. Courses offered by the Department of Film, including fieldwork and independent study.
    2. Courses offered by the Department of Drama
    3. Specifically film-related courses offered by other Vassar departments appearing on the Film DepartmentÕs Approved Elective List, or, with pre-approval, similar courses taken on Study Away or Exchange Programs.
  5. Senior Year Requirement: Film 392.
ble>ses taken on Study Away or Exchange Programs. V. Senior Year Requirement: Film 392.
 

I. Introductory

 
175b. The Art of Film
(1)
An introductory exploration of central features of film and film study, including the relation of film and literature, film genre, silent film, formal and stylistic elements (color, lighting, widescreen, etc.), abstract and nonnarrative film, and film theory. Subjects are treated topically rather than historically. Enrollment limited to freshmen and sophomores who have not previously taken Film 210. The department.
 

II. Intermediate

 
210a. World Cinema to 1945
(1)
An international history of film from its invention through the silent era and the coming of sound to mid-century. The course focuses on major directors, technological change, industrial organization, and the contributions of various national movements. In addition to the historical survey, this course teaches the terminology and concepts of film aesthetics, and introduces students to the major issues of classical film theory. The department.
       Prerequisite: 4 units in the humanities or social sciences. Enrollment limited.
       Two 75-minute periods plus film screenings.
 
211b. World Cinema After 1945
(1)
An international history of film from mid-century to the present day. The course focuses on major directors, technological changes, industrial organization, and the contributions of various national movements. In addition to the historical survey, this course explores the major schools of contemporary film theory, e.g., semiology, Marxist theory, feminism. The department.
       Prerequisite: Film 210. Enrollment limited.
       Two 75-minute periods plus film screenings.
 
212b. Genre: The Musical
(1)
Examines the development of American film musicals from The Jazz Singer to the present day. The course looks at the role of major stars such as Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, Gene Kelly, and Judy Garland, and the contributions of directors such as Vincente Minnelli and Bob Fosse. Students examine the interrelationships between Broadway and Hollywood, the influence of the rise and fall of the Production Code, the shaping hand of different studios, the tensions between narrative and spectacle, sincerity and camp. Reading assignments expose students to a wide range of literature about film, from production histories to feminist theory. Ms. Kozloff.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
 
[214a. Genre: The War Film]
(1)
An examination of how American films have represented World War I, World
       War II, and the Vietnam War. Films chosen include both those made while the conflicts raged (Bataan, 1942), and those made many years later (Saving Private Ryan, 1998). This class focuses on such issues as: propaganda and patriotism, pacifism and sensationalism, the reliance on genre conventions and the role of changing film technologies. For comparison, we look also at documentaries, at films focusing on the sacrifices made on the “home front,” and at war-time poetry, posters, and music. Reading assignments cover topics such as the government’s Office of War Information, the influence of John Wayne, and the racism of the Vietnam films. Ms. Kozloff.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
       Not offered in 2003/04, offered in 2004/05.
 
215a. Genre: Science Fiction
(1)
The course surveys the history of science fiction film from its beginnings in the silent period (culminating in Fritz Lang’s Metropolis and The Woman in the Moon) to the advent of digital technologies. The “golden age” of the 50s, the emergence of a new kind of science-fiction film at the end of the 60s (Kubrick’s 2001, and the “resurgence/revival” of science-fiction film in the late 70s-early 80s (Star Wars, Blade Runner, Alien, The Terminator) are given special attention. Topics include subgenres (end of the world, time travel, space exploration/the “new” frontier, technology/robots/atomic energy), the relation of science-fiction films to their social context and their function in popular culture, the place of science in science-fiction, film’s relation to science-fiction literature (and issues of adaptation), the role of women and feminist criticism, and remakes. In addition to film history and criticism, a small amount of science fiction literature is read. While passing mention will be made to television science-fiction, the course focuses on science fiction film. Mr. Kalin.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
 
[216b. Genre: Romantic Comedy]
(1)
This class studies the genre of romantic comedy in American film from the “screwball comedies” of the 1930s (It Happened One Night, Bringing Up Baby) to the resurgence of the genre in the 1990s (You’ve Got Mail). The course focuses on the work of major stars such as Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, and Meg Ryan, as well as the contribution of such directors as Ernst Lubitsch, George Cukor, Preston Sturges, Howard Hawks, Billy Wilder, or Nora Ephron. We place these films in the context of other representations of romance, such as Shakespeare’s comedies, and in the context of the changes in American culture, particularly in the role of women. Readings lead students to a deeper understanding of the history of American film, of genre, and of the star system. Ms. Kozloff.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
       Not offered in 2003/04, offered in 2004/05.
 
[218a. Genre: The Western]
(1)
A historical and cultural exploration of the Western film genre, with emphasis on the social, economic, and political conditions under which such films were produced and the relationship between the Western and the central myths of American experience. Specifically, the course examines Westerns directed by such filmmakers as D. W. Griffith, Tom Mix, William S. Hart, John Ford, William Wyler, Howard Hawks, George Stevens, William Wellman, Raoul Walsh, Fritz Lang, John Huston, Budd Boetticher, Anthony Mann, Fred Zinnemann, Sam Peckinpah, Sergio Leone, and Clint Eastwood. Instructor to be announced.
       Two 75-minute periods, plus evening film screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
       Not offered in 2003/04.
 
[219b. Genre: Film Noir]
(1)
The term “film noir” was coined by French critics at the end of WWII to describe Hollywood adaptations of hard-boiled crime fiction (Cain, Hammett, Chandler). In this course we first consider “film noir” as an American genre, defined historically (from Huston’s 1941 The Maltese Falcon to Welles’ 1958 Touch of Evil) and stylistically (hard edged chiaroscuro, flashbacks, voice-over). In order to account for its broad and lasting impact, however, we then follow film noir’s influence on the French New Wave (e.g. Godard’s 1960 Breathless, Truffaut’s 1950 Shoot the Piano Player) and its later return as “new noir” in American and French cinema (Polanski’s 1974 Chinatown, Scorcese’s 1990 The Grifters, Claire Denis’ 1997 I Can’t Sleep). We observe the transformation of recurrent themes, such as urban violence, corruption, the blurring of moral and social distinctions, the pathology of the divided self, and the femme fatale. Readings in film history and theory, including feminist theory. Ms. Arlyck.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 or French 244, 252, or 262 and permission of the instructor.
       Not offered in 2003/04, offered in 2004/05.
 
230a. Women in Film
(1)
(Same as Women’s Studies 230a) Women filmmakers have successfully directed, scripted, and edited commercial, independent, and avant-garde films. The class emphasizes the diversity (aesthetic, ideological, racial, and cultural) among women filmmakers. Class reading assignments delve into a broad range of theoretical perspectives. Instructor to be announced.
       Prerequisite: One unit in Film or Women’s Studies.
       Two 75 minute periods.
 
[231. Minorities in the Media]
(1)
This course studies visual and written texts in which the dynamics of race, gender and sexuality in American life are expressed. Throughout the semester, we analyze films, videos, advertisements, and newspaper articles, as well as other mediated discourse, to assess the way categories of minority identity have been constructed in mainstream society. The course also examines the representation of those who have defined themselves as “majority” Americans. In addition to scholarship by film theorists, black British cultural theorists, African American scholars, and critical race theorists, this course enlists scholarship from the emerging field of “whiteness studies.” Films studied may include: Blackboard Jungle, Slaying the Dragon, Blood in the Face, Black Is, Black Ain’t, Shake, Rattle and Rock, Whiteboyz. Ms. Mask.
       Prerequisite: 210 and permission of the instructor.
       Not offered in 2003/04.
 
232b. African American Cinema
(1)
(Same as Africana Studies 232) This course provides a survey of the history and theory of African American cinema. It begins with the silent films of Oscar Micheaux, and examines the early all black cast westerns and musicals of the twenties, thirties, and forties. The political debates circulating around stars like Sidney Poitier, Dorothy Dandridge, Eartha Kitt and Harry Belafonte are the focus for discussing the racial climate of the fifties. Special consideration is given to Blaxploitation cinema of the late sixties and seventies, in an attempt to understand the historical contexts for contemporary filmmaking. The new wave of late 80’s and early 90’s black romantic comedies, including The Wood, The Best Man and Coming to America, are also addressed. Ms. Mask.
       Two 75-minute periods plus evening screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
 
233a. The McCarthy Era and Film
(1)
This class focuses both on the history of anti-communist involvement with the American film industry and on the reflection of this troubled era in post-war films. We trace the factors that led to House un-American Activities Committee’s investigation of communist influence in Hollywood, the case of the Hollywood Ten, the operation of the blacklist and its final demise at the end of the 1950s. We look at films overtly taking sides in this ideological conflict, such as the anti-Communist I Was a Communist for the FBI and the pro-labor Salt of the Earth, as well as the indirect allegories in film noirs and science fiction. Reading assignments are drawn from a wide range of sources, including HUAC transcripts, government documents, production histories, and genre studies. The course concludes with a look at how later films such as The Front sought to frame our understanding of this era. Ms. Kozloff.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
 
[234b. Film and “The Sixties”]
(1)
The era from Bonnie and Clyde (1967) to Chinatown (1974) can be thought of as a distinct period in the history of American film in terms of the demise of the studio system, the transformation of traditional genres, the influence of the French New Wave, the emergence of new auteurs, and the relaxation of censorship, leading to more explicit sex and violence. This course focuses on directors such as Cassavetes, Altman, Kubrick, Peckinpah, Penn, and Scorsese, as well as films, such as Easy Rider, Shaft, or Diary of a Mad Housewife, which reflect topical subjects. Emphasis is placed on the changes in filmmaking techniques (wide-screen, jump cuts, the zoom lens, improvisational acting), the role of film critics and theorists of the time, the changes in industry economics and demographics, the influence of television and popular music, and the ways in which social change is reflected by the cinema. Ms. Kozloff.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
       Not offered in 2003/04, offered in 2004/05.
 
238a. Music in Film
(1)
(Same as Music 238) A study of music in the cinema from 1895 to the present. The course focuses on the expressive, formal, and semiotic functions that film music serves, either as sound experienced by the protagonists, or as another layer of commentary to be heard only by the viewer, or some mixture of the two. Composers studied range from Prokofiev, Copland, and Walton—known best for their non-film scores—to Tiomkin, Rozsa, Steiner, and Herrmann, specialists in the field. Contemporary figures like John Williams and Danny Elfman are considered. Mr. Pisani.
       Two 75-minute classes a week, plus outside screening.
       Prerequisite: one course in music (not performance) or film.
 
240b. Experiments in Video
(1)
This course explores the ultra-short video form. During the first half of the semester, students concentrate on in-camera video exercises and projects, while during the second half they also learn video editing procedures. In addition, the course examines and discusses the work of a number of distinguished video artists who concentrate on producing videos in the ultra-short form. Open only to students who are not concentrating in film. Mr. Roques.
       One 21/2 hour period.
       Prerequisite: one unit in film.
 
260b. Documentary: History and Aesthetics
(1)
This survey provides an introduction to the history and theory of international documentary filmmaking. The journey begins in 1920 with exploration film pioneers such as Robert Flaherty and Margaret Mead. We continue on to the British documentary movement (1930-1938) inspired by John Grierson. Our next destination is Paris, France (circa 1960) where we chronicle the radical cinéma vérité of Jean Rouch. Upon arrival in America, we witness the developing split between cinéma vérité and American direct cinema produced by filmmakers Richard Leacock, Robert Drew, D.A. Pennebaker, Frederick Wiseman, and the Maysles Brothers. Our itinerary includes readings and paper assignments, which reflect the formal and theoretical distinctions between documentary practices. Instructor to be announced.
       Two 75-minute periods a week, plus external screenings.
       Prerequisite: Film 210 and permission of the instructor.
 
282a. Virtual Reality: Myths, Texts, History and Practice
(1)
(Same as Media Studies 282a) This course is an overview of virtual reality for technical and nontechnical students. We examine the history of virtual reality and compare the myths about virtual reality with what is really possible today. The history ranges from the panoramas that were common at the turn of the twentieth century to immersive technologies such as 3-D movies and more recent versions such as IMAX and Omnimax, to the development of Quicktime Virtual Reality by Apple and totally immersive CAVEs. Critical and social issues around Virtual Reality are examined, from the social consequences of “living your life on-line” to the effects of “virtuality” such as our perception of the Gulf War as being a “virtual” war. The hands-on component includes exploring text-based MUDs (such as Genesis or Angalon and the Vassar MOO), graphic-based MUDs (Ultima Online, Everquest or similar), multi-player on-line gaming, designing your own avatars, and building your own level for games like Quake or Unreal, for those with technical skills, and working in a pre-built environment such as Active-worlds for less technically minded students. Ms. McMahan.
       Two, 75 minute periods.
 
290a. or b. Field Work
(1/2 or 1)
To be elected in consultation with the adviser and the Office of Field Work.
 
298a. or b. Independent Work
(1/2 or 1)
To be elected in consultation with the adviser.
 

III. Advanced

 
300a. or b. Film Research Thesis
(1)
Research leading to a thesis in film history or theory. Open only to students electing the concentration in film. Senior status required. The department.
       Prerequisites: Film 210/211 and permission of the instructor.
 
301a or b. Film Screenplay Thesis
(1)
The creation of a feature-length original screenplay. Open only to students electing the concentration in film. Senior status required. Students wishing to write a screenplay instead of a research thesis must have produced work of distinction in Film 317 (Dramatic Writing). Mr. Steerman.
       Prerequisites: Film 210/211, Film 317 or Drama 317, and permission of instructor.
 
317a or b. Dramatic Writing
(1)
(Same as Drama 317a or b.) Studies of dramatic construction, analysis of, and practice in writing stage plays and/or screenplays. Mr. Steerman.
       Prerequisites: Drama 100 or Film 210 and permission of instructor.
       Writing sample required.
       Open only to juniors and seniors.
       One 2-hour period.
 
319b. Screenwriting
(1)
An exploration of the screenplay as a dramatic form. Students study the work of major American and international screenwriters and are required to complete a feature-length screenplay as their final project in the course. Open only to students who have produced work of distinction in Drama or Film 317. Mr. Steerman.
       One 2 hour period.
       Prerequisites: Film 210/211, Drama or Film 317, and permission of the instructor.
 
320a/321b. Filmmaking
(1)
A-semester: The course concentrates on a theoretical and practical examination of the art of visual communication in 16 mm film. Individual projects emphasize developing, visualizing and editing narratives from original ideas.
       B-semester: Further exploration of a variety of narrative structures from original ideas. Includes working in a partnership with divided responsibilities to develop, visualize and execute films. Emphasis is placed on writing and production planning, as well as how lighting and sound contribute to the overall meaning of films. (Students must concurrently enroll in a 3-hour lab period each semester.) Mr. Robinson, Mr. Roques, and instructor to be announced.
       Fees: see section on fees.
       Prerequisites: Film 210/211 and permission of the instructor.
       One 3-hour period, plus lab.
 
325a. Writing the Short Narrative Film
(1)
Students learn the process of developing original, ten to twelve minute narrative screenplays. Scripts produced in Film 327 are selected from those created in Film 325. Must be taken concurrently with Film 326. Mr. Robinson.
       Prerequisites: Film 320-321 and permission of the instructor.
       One 3-hour period.
 
326a/327b. Documentary Workshop/Narrative Workshop
(1)
A-semester: This is a one-semester class in which student crews make eight-minute documentary videos about a person, place, event, or an issue. Students learn advanced video and sound-recording techniques, using professional grade digital cameras, field lights, microphones and tripods. Post production is done on digital non-linear editing systems. This course addresses the aesthetic, ethical and theoretical issues specific to the documentary genre as students explore a variety of documentary styles.
       B-semester: Student crews create short form 16mm sync/sound narrative films from original student scripts. Individual members of the crew are responsible for the major areas of production and post-production: directorial, camera, editorial, and sound. The goal is a composite release print for each project. Mr. Roques and instructor to be announced.
       Open only to senior film majors who have produced work of distinction in Film 320/321.
       Prerequisites: Film 320/321 and the permission of the instructor.
       One 3 hour period, plus lab.
 
328a/329b. Interactive Multimedia Production
(1)
The theory and production of interactive multimedia. The final project of this class is the production of an interactive multimedia environment which exists on both a website and as a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM.
       A-semester: Students develop essays concerning their personal experience of a topic chosen by the professor. Over the course of the semester each student designs five interactive mini-projects related to the essay’s theme. Projects are incremental in complexity and introduce students to various aspects of interactive multimedia. The final project consists of putting the pieces together into a larger multimedia interactive environment.
       B-semester: Students develop their own topics and production schedules. Teaching is customized to the particular needs of the student through one-on-one meetings with the professor. Students are expected to be more self-sufficient and their projects to be of professional caliber in their design, navigability, and intellectual depth. Instructor to be announced.
       Open only to juniors and seniors. Enrollment limited.
       Prerequisites: 2 units at the 200-level in film and permission of instructor.
       One 3-hour period plus lab.
 
392a or b. Research Seminar in Film History and Theory
(1)
This course is designed as an in-depth exploration of either a given author or a major theoretical topic. Students contribute to the class through research projects and oral presentations. Their work culminates in lengthy research papers.
       May be repeated if the topic has changed.
       Topic for 2003/04a: Peter Weir and Atom Egoyan; National Visionaries. This seminar examines the work of two directors who have played major roles in the development of their respective national cinemas. Weir led the vanguard of the new national cinema movement in Australia in the 1970s and Egoyan is one of the best-known Canadian directors both inside and outside of Canada. Through an examination of such films as Picnic at Hanging Rock, Gallipoli, The Last Wave, The Truman Show, Calendar, Exotica, The Sweet Hereafter, and Felicia's Journey, we explore how Weir and Egoyan create their own distinctive styles. In addition we employ theories of national cinema to examine how these two directors have helped to shape their national cinemas, how their films construct a Second World cinema, and how they reinforce or challenge traditional conceptions of national identity in Australia and Canada respectively. We also assess the impact of Hollywood and international art cinema on these non-American English-language directors, tracing Weir's move from Australia to Hollywood, and Egoyan's shift from a specifically Canadian to a more international context. Using the films as evidence we explore how these two filmmakers utilize, adapt, and challenge Hollywood's stylistic codes and generic conventions. Readings include essays on auteur theory, national cinema, post-colonialism, and the work of each director. At least two novels that have been adapted for screen are read. Weekly screenings may include two films and draw upon the work of additional Australian and Canadian filmmakers for comparison. Ms. Gauthier.
       Topic for 2003/04b: Empire and Sexuality. This senior seminar is designed to examine tropes of empire and sexuality on film. Colonialist discourse and the cinema have a parallel history. The cinematic apparatus has been used to justify the culture of empire, the imperial gaze, and a set of looking relations that continue to inform the travel and tourist industries. The course examines narrative films which reproduce dominant power relations and inform the construction of sexuality along axes of race, nation, and class. Narrative tropes and devices such as the rape and rescue fantasy, the feminization of Third World men, primitivism, and interracial homoeroticism are interrogated. The course employs post-colonial theory, post-structuralism, and Black British Cultural Studies as the framing interpretive models. The work of filmmakers Akira Kurosawa, John Huston, Ranjit Kapoor, Jane Campion, Pier Pasolini, Gillo Pontecorvo, and Sir David Lean are given formal and ideological consideration. Substantial readings, full screenings, and paper assignments required. Ms. Mask.
       One 3-hour period plus film screenings.
       Prerequisite: Film 210/211 and permission of the instructor.
 
399a, b. Senior Independent Work
(1/2 or 1)
To be elected in consultation with the adviser.
       Summer Study
 

Summer Study

 
245-246. Workshop in Screenwriting and 16mm Film Production
(2)
The summer workshop offers an integrated study of both the conceptual (screenwriting) and practical aspects of 16mm film production. The program concentrates on the techniques needed to create effective narrative films. Students develop their original ideas into screenplay form and produce these scripts in 16mm film and/or video. Mr. Robinson and instructor to be announced.
       Special application required.
       Five 3-hour meetings per week plus film screenings.
       Tuition/room/board-$3,100. Tuition/room only-$2,500
       Tuition only-$2,200.
 
345-346 Advanced Workshop
(2)
An advanced workshop concentrating on the writing and production of short synchronous sound films or videos. See Film 245-246 for general summer workshop detail. Mr. Robinson and instructor to be announced.
       Special application required.
       Offered only in case of sufficient demand.