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Textual Perspectives: Screenwriting Styles, Modes and Languages
  • ISSN: 1759-7137
  • E-ISSN: 1759-7145

Abstract

American storytelling has been dominated by White heterosexual men and such scripts/stories disseminate messages that support their authority by narratively or symbolically subjugating competing identities. Consequently, in order to open texts up to diverse meanings/representations, fans create their own works which better serve their desires/needs (what Henry Jenkins referred to as ‘textual poaching’ in 1992). But what happens when, having been given control of a canonical text, the fan becomes the scriptwriter who modifies the source material to reflect their own civic commitments? How might they differently negotiate White heterosexual men’s hierarchical authority and the subjugation of marginalized identities? The scripts for (NBC 2013–15) allow us to answer such questions. In adapting Thomas Harris’s Hannibal Lecter novels to television, scriptwriter Bryan Fuller reconfigured and reshaped (rather than retold) the source material in a way which reflects the transformational practices of fan fiction. In what ways might Fuller’s reconfigured teleplays provide a platform for marginalized perspectives (and thus challenge the White heterosexual male’s dominance of the source text)? What is the discursive function of the scriptwriter in reshaping source material in order to speak to/for/about diverse and pluralistic identities? How might (and why does) Bryan Fuller’s scripts cannibalize the canon?

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/content/journals/10.1386/josc_00105_1
2022-12-02
2024-07-15
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References

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