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Screening: His Girl Friday (Hawks, 1940)

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Venue: Birkbeck 43 Gordon Square, Cinema

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This event is free and open to all. Register to attend via Eventbrite here

The play The Front Page (1929) had been filmed before Howard Hawks got hold of it. Hildy Johnson, a newspaper’s star reporter, wants to quit so he can get married. His editor, Walter Burns, is determined to keep him. The story that tempts Hildy from the marital straight and narrow concerns the hanging of Earl Williams for shooting a cop, and his possible reprieve. It was Hawks’s inspiration to make Hildy a woman (Rosalind Russell), and to have her quit not just the newspaper, but also her marriage to Burns (Cary Grant) for respectable domesticity with a more dependable husband. What ensues is the story of a double divorce: from an impossible husband and an impossible profession. Words, scripted and improvised, tumble over one another. The war of the sexes has seldom been waged by quicker-witted or faster-talking protagonists. Can Hildy bring herself to abandon it for a sedate life in Albany?

Presenter: James Brown (Birkbeck College)

This event is supported by BIMI, BiGS, Birkbeck Law School, BISR, Guilt Group

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