The Info List - Penelope Gilliatt

Penelope Gilliatt (/ˈdʒɪliət/; born Penelope Ann Douglass Conner; 25 March 1932 – 9 May 1993) was an English novelist, short story writer, screenwriter, and film critic. As one of the main film critics for The New Yorker
The New Yorker
magazine in the 1960s and 1970s, Gilliatt was known for her detailed descriptions and evocative reviews. A writer of short stories, novels, non-fiction books, and screenplays, Gilliatt was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay
Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay
for 1971's Sunday Bloody Sunday.[1]


1 Film criticism 2 Writing career 3 Personal life 4 References 5 External links

Film criticism[edit] Gilliatt began her work as a film and theater critic with London's The Observer, where she wrote numerous reviews between 1961 and 1967. In 1967, she began a column in The New Yorker, in which she alternated for six-month intervals with Pauline Kael
Pauline Kael
as that publication's chief film critic. Gilliatt's column ran from late spring to early fall, and Kael's for the remainder of the year. The contrasting perspectives of Kael and Gilliatt were a significant attraction to the magazine. Gilliatt's criticism tended to focus on visual metaphors and imagery, describing scenes from films in detail in her characteristically grandiose style. She also prided herself on knowing actors and directors personally, and tended to interweave her acquaintance with them into reviews of their films.[2] Many of Gilliatt's readers appreciated her colorful and detailed writing, while other readers saw her style as distracting and superfluous to film criticism, and felt that her description of films was too complete.[3] Gilliatt wrote profiles on many directors, with her favorite directors including Ingmar Bergman, Jean Renoir, Luis Beñuel, Jeanne Moreau, and Woody Allen.[3] Her career as a film critic for The New Yorker
The New Yorker
ended in 1979, after it was determined that a profile she had written of Graham Greene contained unattributed passages taken from a piece about Greene by novelist Michael Meshaw that had appeared in The Nation
The Nation
two years before. The fact-checker had warned editor William Shawn of the plagiarism, but Shawn published the article anyway. Following its appearance, Greene said that Gilliatt’s ”so-called Profile” of him was “inaccurate” and the product of a “rather wild imagination.”[4][5] Although she no longer wrote film criticism for The New Yorker, Gilliatt continued to publish fiction in the magazine.[3] Writing career[edit] In addition to her criticism, Gilliatt wrote short stories, novels, non-fiction books, and screenplays. Most notably, she wrote the screenplay for Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971), an accepting treatment of homosexuality based in part on her debut novel One by One.[2] She won several Best Screenplay
awards for the film, including the New York Film Critics Circle Award, Writers Guild of America, USA, and Writers' Guild of Great Britain. The screenplay was also nominated for an Academy Award
Academy Award
and a BAFTA.[1] Gilliatt wrote several novels, including One by One (1965), The Cutting Edge, A State of Change (1967), and Moral Matters (1983). Her short stories were collected in Splendid Lives, Nobody's Business (1972), and Come Back If It Doesn't Get Better. Gilliatt also published two non-fiction books on film directors. Jean Renoir, on the French director of that name, was published in 1975, and Tati, on Jacques Tati, was published in 1976.[3] Gilliatt's novel Mortal Matters, much concerned with shipbuilding and suffragettes, is largely set in Northumberland
and Newcastle. There are several pages devoted to Hexham, and numerous mentions of Newcastle locations. She celebrates the achievements of the North East, including the vessels Mauretania and Charles Parsons' Turbinia. Gilliatt also praises the Torrens, the Sunderland-built ship on which Joseph Conrad
Joseph Conrad
served for two years from 1891. Personal life[edit] Born in London, Gilliatt's father, Cyril Conner, was originally a barrister. Her mother was Marie Stephanie Douglass. Both came from Newcastle upon Tyne, and divorced after Gilliatt's birth. Gilliatt had an upper-middle class upbringing in Northumberland, where her father was director of the BBC
in the north east from 1938 to 1941, and she retained a lifelong love of the Roman Wall country.[3] Gilliatt attended Queen's College in London
before earning a scholarship to attend Bennington College
Bennington College
in Vermont.[2] Gilliatt married neurologist Roger Gilliatt in 1954, and carried on using his name after their divorce.[6] Gilliatt was then married to playwright John Osborne
John Osborne
from 1963 to 1968, living at 31 Chester Square in central London
in a house designed by architect Sir Hugh Casson. She gave birth to their only child, a daughter named Nolan, whom Osborne later disowned. Following her divorce from Osborne, she was romantically involved with Mike Nichols
Mike Nichols
and Edmund Wilson.[5] The New York Times film critic Vincent Canby
Vincent Canby
was her companion for many years.[7] Gilliatt died from alcoholism in 1993. References[edit]

^ a b "The 44th Academy Awards 1972". Oscars.org Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 2018-03-26.  ^ a b c "The Auteurs' Caretaker". Columbia Journalism Review. Retrieved 2018-03-26.  ^ a b c d e McCreadie, Marsha (1983). Women on film : the critical eye. New York, N.Y.: Praeger. ISBN 0030627680. OCLC 8669618.  ^ Mitgang, Herbert (12 May 1979). "Greene Calls Profile of Him In New Yorker Inaccurate" – via NYTimes.com.  ^ a b Weinman, Sarah (13 January 2012). "The Other Film Critic at The New Yorker" – via Slate.  ^ "Obituary: Penelope Gilliatt". 14 May 1993.  ^ Malcolm, Derek (17 October 2000). "Vincent Canby" – via The Guardian. 

External links[edit]

Library resources about Penelope Gilliatt

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By Penelope Gilliatt

Resources in your library Resources in other libraries

Penelope Gilliatt on IMDb Gilliatt's 1977 review of Star Wars in The New Yorker

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National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Screenplay


David Newman and Robert Benton (1967) John Cassavetes
John Cassavetes
(1968) Paul Mazursky
Paul Mazursky
and Larry Tucker (1969) Éric Rohmer
Éric Rohmer
(1970) Penelope Gilliatt (1971) Ingmar Bergman
Ingmar Bergman
(1972) George Lucas, Gloria Katz and Willard Huyck (1973) Ingmar Bergman
Ingmar Bergman
(1974) Robert Towne
Robert Towne
and Warren Beatty
Warren Beatty
(1975) Alain Tanner
Alain Tanner
and John Berger
John Berger
(1976) Woody Allen
Woody Allen
and Marshall Brickman (1977) Paul Mazursky
Paul Mazursky
(1978) Steve Tesich
Steve Tesich
(1979) Bo Goldman
Bo Goldman
(1980) John Guare
John Guare
(1981) Murray Schisgal and Larry Gelbart
Larry Gelbart
(1982) Bill Forsyth
Bill Forsyth
(1983) Lowell Ganz, Babaloo Mandel and Bruce Jay Friedman (1984) Albert Brooks
Albert Brooks
and Monica Johnson (1985) Hanif Kureishi
Hanif Kureishi
(1986) John Boorman
John Boorman
(1987) Ron Shelton (1988) Gus Van Sant
Gus Van Sant
and Daniel Yost (1989) Charles Burnett (1990) David Cronenberg
David Cronenberg
(1991) David Webb Peoples (1992) Jane Campion
Jane Campion
(1993) Quentin Tarantino
Quentin Tarantino
and Roger Avary
Roger Avary
(1994) Amy Heckerling (1995) Albert Brooks
Albert Brooks
and Monica Johnson (1996) Curtis Hanson
Curtis Hanson
and Brian Helgeland (1997) Scott Frank (1998) Charlie Kaufman
Charlie Kaufman
(1999) Kenneth Lonergan
Kenneth Lonergan


Julian Fellowes
Julian Fellowes
(2001) Ronald Harwood (2002) Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini
Shari Springer Berman and Robert Pulcini
(2003) Alexander Payne
Alexander Payne
and Jim Taylor (2004) Noah Baumbach
Noah Baumbach
(2005) Peter Morgan (2006) Tamara Jenkins
Tamara Jenkins
(2007) Mike Leigh
Mike Leigh
(2008) Joel Coen and Ethan Coen (2009) Aaron Sorkin
Aaron Sorkin
(2010) Asghar Farhadi
Asghar Farhadi
(2011) Tony Kushner
Tony Kushner
(2012) Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke, and Julie Delpy
Julie Delpy
(2013) Wes Anderson
Wes Anderson
(2014) Tom McCarthy and Josh Singer (2015) Kenneth Lonergan
Kenneth Lonergan
(2016) Greta Gerwig
Greta Gerwig

v t e

Writers Guild of America Award for Best Original Screenplay

Original Drama (1969–1983, retired)

William Goldman
William Goldman
(1969) Francis Ford Coppola
Francis Ford Coppola
and Edmund H. North (1970) Penelope Gilliatt (1971) Jeremy Larner (1972) Steve Shagan (1973) Robert Towne
Robert Towne
(1974) Frank Pierson
Frank Pierson
(1975) Paddy Chayefsky
Paddy Chayefsky
(1976) Arthur Laurents
Arthur Laurents
(1977) Nancy Dowd, Robert C. Jones and Waldo Salt (1978) Mike Gray, T. S. Cook and James Bridges (1979) Bo Goldman
Bo Goldman
(1980) Warren Beatty
Warren Beatty
and Trevor Griffiths (1981) Melissa Mathison
Melissa Mathison
(1982) Horton Foote (1983)

Original Comedy (1969–1983, retired)

Paul Mazursky
Paul Mazursky
and Larry Tucker (1969) Neil Simon
Neil Simon
(1970) Paddy Chayefsky
Paddy Chayefsky
(1971) Peter Bogdanovich, Buck Henry, David Newman and Robert Benton (1972) Melvin Frank and Jack Rose (1973) Mel Brooks, Norman Steinberg, Andrew Bergman, Richard Pryor
Richard Pryor
and Alan Uger (1974) Robert Towne
Robert Towne
and Warren Beatty
Warren Beatty
(1975) Bill Lancaster
Bill Lancaster
(1976) Woody Allen
Woody Allen
and Marshall Brickman (1977) Larry Gelbart
Larry Gelbart
and Sheldon Keller (1978) Steve Tesich
Steve Tesich
(1979) Nancy Meyers, Harvey Miller and Charles Shyer
Charles Shyer
(1980) Steve Gordon (1981) Don McGuire, Larry Gelbart
Larry Gelbart
and Murray Schisgal (1982) Lawrence Kasdan
Lawrence Kasdan
and Barbara Benedek (1983)

Original Screenplay (1984–present)

Woody Allen
Woody Allen
(1984) William Kelley and Earl W. Wallace (1985) Woody Allen
Woody Allen
(1986) John Patrick Shanley
John Patrick Shanley
(1987) Ron Shelton (1988) Woody Allen
Woody Allen
(1989) Barry Levinson
Barry Levinson
(1990) Callie Khouri
Callie Khouri
(1991) Neil Jordan
Neil Jordan
(1992) Jane Campion
Jane Campion
(1993) Richard Curtis
Richard Curtis
(1994) Randall Wallace (1995) Joel Coen and Ethan Coen (1996) James L. Brooks
James L. Brooks
and Mark Andrus (1997) Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard
Tom Stoppard
(1998) Alan Ball (1999) Kenneth Lonergan
Kenneth Lonergan
(2000) Julian Fellowes
Julian Fellowes
(2001) Michael Moore
Michael Moore
(2002) Sofia Coppola
Sofia Coppola
(2003) Charlie Kaufman
Charlie Kaufman
(2004) Paul Haggis
Paul Haggis
and Bobby Moresco (2005) Michael Arndt
Michael Arndt
(2006) Diablo Cody
Diablo Cody
(2007) Dustin Lance Black
Dustin Lance Black
(2008) Mark Boal
Mark Boal
(2009) Christopher Nolan
Christopher Nolan
(2010) Woody Allen
Woody Allen
(2011) Mark Boal
Mark Boal
(2012) Spike Jonze
Spike Jonze
(2013) Wes Anderson
Wes Anderson
and Hugo Guinness (2014) Tom McCarthy and Josh Singer (2015) Barry Jenkins
Barry Jenkins
and Tarell Alvin McCraney
Tarell Alvin McCraney
(2016) Jordan Peele
Jordan Peele

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WorldCat Identities VIAF: 113756977 LCCN: n79096930 ISNI: 0000 0000 8315 4451 GND: 119512793 SUDOC: 075024098 SN