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1 item from 2016

Hacked off: why screenwriters need to stop writing about reporters

15 January 2016 12:30 AM, PST | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

True Story, The End of the Tour, Philomena and now Spotlight: when will film-makers stop shoehorning journalists into the middle of their screenplays?

Exactly two years ago, Philomena was nominated for four Oscars. It already had as many Bafta nods, and the tally kept rising. But now Stephen Frears’s drama has another claim to fame. Looking over the past year’s releases, it seems Frears, along with writers Steve Coogan and Jeff Pope, set a trend for non-fiction films with a new, topsy-turvy perspective.

The film is inspired by Martin Sixsmith’s book, The Lost Child of Philomena Lee. But Frears and his collaborators didn’t solely focus on Philomena Lee (Judi Dench) and her search for her son, 50 years after he was taken from her by nuns. They also addressed whether a disgraced journalist (Coogan) could redeem himself by helping her. There’s no doubt that the interaction »

- Nicholas Barber

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