The Australian film The Dressmaker is currently having a wonderfully successful run in Australian cinemas. It is based on a novel by RMIT University graduate Rosalie Ham, which itself has sold over 75,000 copies. The film is produced by RMIT University School of Media and Communication Adjunct Professor Sue Maslin.
On November 5 2015, RMIT University hosted a seminar about The Dressmaker, and looked at both the novel and the film. Examining questions such as ‘what makes a good adaptation?’; ‘what is the difference between the film and the novel?’; ‘what is the process to adapt a novel to a film?’; ‘How did the characters and the story need to change from the novel in order to become a feature film?’; ‘How do actors deal with a script that is also a novel?’; ‘How do you attract A –list actors?’
This seminar, a presentation in partnership between RMIT’s School of Media and Communication, the AFI Research Collection (AFIRC), the Australian Director’s Guild (ADG) and Women in Film and Television (WIFT Vic), features the key creative team behind The Dressmaker (both novel and film). The seminar reveals the journey from script to screen of producer Sue Maslin, writer/director Jocelyn Moorhouse, and novelist Rosalie Ham. In conversation with RMIT’s Lisa French, they describe the genesis of the film from the inception through to the finished work.
To view the seminar – https://vimeo.com/146529921
Thanks to the seminar panel and to Mark Poole for making this footage available.