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A Different Perspective on Filmic Authorship

Sellors, C. Paul



In this paper I argue that film theoreticians have frequently viewed filmic authorship from the wrong perspective, seeing it as a concept to be derived from a filmic text rather than an act of intentionally causing a text. This has placed theory at odds with those film historians who scour the historical record in an effort to understand how historical individuals relate to film production. Through theories of singular and collective intentional action, I propose a theory of filmic authorship that defends the notion of intention not as a rigid constraint on meaning, but a guarantor of concepts and attitudes behind filmic expression. This view avoids the problem of casting filmic authors as ‘solitary geniuses’ behind texts by characterising film as both a communicative medium and a social practice.

Presentation Conference Type Conference Paper (unpublished)
Conference Name Screen Conference
Start Date Jul 2, 2004
End Date Jul 4, 2004
Deposit Date Mar 13, 2023