NORA EPHRON
MOVIE WOMAN




"If you write a good book, it will get published, but there are all kinds of good screenplays that never get published. There is very little justice in the movie business."
--Nora Ephron




Nora Ephron's career in the movies began when few women were writing scripts and even fewer were directing. She started writing screenplays so she could work at home, and be with her two young sons. In 1983, her first screenplay, Silkwood, was made into a movie. It was nominated for an Academy Award for best orginal screenplay. Six years later, When Harry Met Sally, written by Ephron and directed by Rob Reiner, was released. The film contains one of the most famous movie scenes when Meg Ryan's character loudly demonstrates, in the middle of a restaurant, how a woman can fake an orgasm. Ephron also won an Academy Award nomination for that script.
Ephron, nervous that her career as a screenwriter would follow the fates of others and fizzle out after the age of fifty, made the switch to directing. In 1992, she made her directorial debut with, This Is Your Life, a comedy she wrote with sister, Delia, about a single mother, who is a stand-up comedian. Last Years' You've Got Mail, which she also wrote with her sister,

in a line of work largely occupied by men.
So how has this journalist from New York succeeded in Hollywood? First, it's the kind of movies she makes. They are light, romantic comedies that are popular with female audiences who are largely neglected in a market dominated by action films. Her most recent film, You've Got Mail follows suit. The movie follows the romantic ups and downs of an E-mail romance between two New York bookstore owners. Second, she has the distinct advantage of being a writer first. As a writer, she is not dependent on people sending her scripts and can direct her own work. As writer, she can be passionate about the screenplays she directs.
Her next project is about the 1950's reporter, Marguerite Higgins, and her affair with a rival newspaperman, Keyes Beech. It is scheduled to be released in winter 2000.

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