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Jubilee: Six Film Scripts

Derek Jarman
Copyright Date: 2011
Edition: NED - New edition
Pages: 240
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  • Book Info
    Book Description:

    From the early seventies until his death in 1994, Derek Jarman made scores of films. Assembled here are six of his unforgettable film scripts: Akenaten, Jubilee, Bob-Up-A-Down, B Movie: Little England/A Time of Hope, Neutron, and Sod ’Em, five of which have yet to reach the screen and all of which confirm Jarman’s reputation as Britain’s leading independent filmmaker.

    eISBN: 978-0-8166-7717-7
    Subjects: Art & Art History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Introduction
    (pp. vii-xiv)
    Michael O’Pray

    Jubileecontains the major unrealized film scripts Derek Jarman wrote between 1976 and 1987, as well as the script ofJubilee,which was made in 1978 but, unlike his other dialogue films, has never before been published. The failure of these brilliant scripts to reach the screen was due not only to Jarman’s reputation for making provocative films but also to the economic plight of the British film industry after the late 1960s.

    It is true to say that, for Jarman, scripts were never simply means to ends. They were always intensely personal writings that expressed strong beliefs and emotions....

    (pp. 3-40)

    Why did I develop a passion for Ancient Egypt? Some desktop Howard Carter cursed with curiosity, a dream of immortality, the Mummy’s Curse.

    In the early seventies I spent hours tracking down books in second-hand bookshops until I had over a hundred, from Victorian travel books to an obscure little pamphlet on the construction of a wig. I started to learn the hieroglyphs, but gave up, though I incorporated them into the little slate paintings I was making.

    Out of my readings the story of the monotheistic sun-worshipping heretic stood out. Its side characters Nefretiti and Tutankhamun almost alive in...

    (pp. 43-78)

    I’ve put in the script forJubileeto show one film in this book which was finished as a reference. Very little changed from the script as you have it here, just a couple of details. Adam, ‘Kid’, was murdered in a photo booth in a tube station - this proved impossible - I cut down the end as it went on too long, though there was one piece I liked, Jordan, ‘Amyl’, outfacing a rhino in the Longleat Safari Park. I wish I had kept that, but we were a long way off in a truck with keepers looking...

    (pp. 81-114)

    I was always a Pre-Raphaelite: William Morris Tennyson. I loved Chaucer, and Piers the Ploughman, what a great film that would make,

    ‘. . . and he screamed for grace

    and I awoke . . .’

    the unicorn tapestries, Ely, now what can beat Ely? My first grown-up book from a shop in Charing Cross Road:The Cloister and the Hearth- the exquisite bright painting irradiated with pure clear colour. At the risk of giving you a reading list, before I abandoned the ‘sources’ for something of my own, I took up with Hildegarde of Bingen, Marjorie Kempe, Richard...

  7. B MOVIE: Little England/A Time of Hope
    (pp. 117-144)

    B Movie was a chance to snap out of the worthyBob-Up-A-Down.Julian Sands, the handsome young actor, was writing a play on John Donne, and was undecided which way his life would take him - writer, film-maker, director. He had appeared briefly in theBroken Englishvideo, but with a skull’s mask, a year or so before. He was great fun to work with.

    This was to be a light hearted ‘Carry On’ ofJubilee.Where do these things come from? The Villian, Borgia Ginz was a good start. Mrs T. had gone mad in the ideological jumble sale,...

    (pp. 147-182)

    Lee Drysdale brought a darker cinematic side to this collaboration, a Jungian Yin and Yang. He was dead good on the drugs and violence, sort of in love with the Krays. Lee had more cinematic knowledge than anyone except Terence Davies. The Revelation of St John a good basis for this paper chase of horror casting. Bowie, Steven Berkoff, who I was helping adapt a play at that time, and Tilda. I hope that doesn’t sound a throwaway ‘and Tilda’. Tilda is what we call an ‘old soul’, sort of eternal She, sparkling like the evening star in the quirky...

  9. SOD ’EM
    (pp. 185-225)

    In Florence to direct Busotti’sL’Ispiratzioneat the Teatro Comunale. I was overwhelmed by isolation. Florence as dead as a dodo, bleak, granitic, like being locked in the Nat West forever. I wrote this fast and furiously using a copy of Marlowe I found in a shop. It didn’t take me more than two weeks, though poor HB spent hours typing it up. The clatter of computer keys haunted our lives at Phoenix House. I thought at the time the script would define the limits of my anger. I never showed it to anyone.

    There is no cast in my...

  10. Back Matter
    (pp. 226-226)