Scottish modernism goes to new hollywood: Tracing the script development of Alan Sharp's Night Moves

River Seager

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The work of Scottish screenwriter Alan Sharp embodies the 'New Hollywood' period, with its dark and cynical perspective on Hollywood genre archetypes. Perhaps Sharp's best remembered work is the 1975 neo-noir thriller, Night Moves, directed by Arthur Penn. Sharp, however, was unhappy with the finished film. His discontentment stemmed at least partially from a difficult shoot, during which the writer's relationship with Penn turned sour. Penn was attracted to Sharp's screenplay's lament for the death of Kennedy and American innocence, while Sharp wrestled to maintain the work's autobiographical details, which were emphasized and minimized to varying degrees over the course of the redrafting process. Drawing on previously unseen early drafts of the script held in the University of Dundee archives, this chapter traces the project's development from conception to finished film, and assesses the contributions of Sharp, Penn and other collaborators on both sides of the camera.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Palgrave Handbook of Script Development
EditorsS. Taylor, C. Batty
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9783030822347
ISBN (Print)9783030822330
Publication statusPublished - 4 Jan 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)

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