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Lawrence of ArabiaA Film's Anthropology$
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Steven Caton

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780520210820

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520210820.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 26 September 2021

Riding the Whirlwind

Riding the Whirlwind

Scripting the Political in the Spectacle

Chapter:
(p.100) Chapter 3 Riding the Whirlwind
Source:
Lawrence of Arabia
Author(s):

Steven C. Caton

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520210820.003.0004

This chapter discusses how Lawrence of Arabia becomes implicated in a more significant story about Hollywood's embarrassing political history. It shows the changes Michael Wilson (one of the film's screenwriters) made on the script of Lawrence of Arabia, as well as the controversy that surrounded the Michael Wilson affair. It first provides some background information on Wilson and at the same time relates how he learns to become political in his art and the constraints placed upon him by government and industry censorship. It then studies the structure of the final screenplay and describes Lean's reservations about his treatment and Robert Bolt's innovations in dramatic form. The chapter also looks at some of Lean's dissatisfactions with Wilson's artistic treatment and the cuts made in the film that damaged it considerably.

Keywords:   political history, Michael Wilson, controversy, censorship, final screenplay, structure, innovations, dramatic form, artistic treatment

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