Pathway: Intertextual Nature of Orlando by Meredith Veach
a look into the production design and the obvious themes of gender vs identity and the need to conform to society.
Watermarked paper, handwritten, with wax seal, Paper, [front] Letter from artist Christopher Hobbs concerning his set paintings for
I find it extremely interesting that Sally Potter asked a painter to create certain scenes for her. I like that I could see them become real when I watched the film. Being extremely interested in production design, I like the way Hobbs says that the looks and effects are attainable, which they certainly were (The big freeze when they are ice-skating, for example).
Watercolour mounted on black card, with b/w photocopy, Paper, Painting of tents on frozen Thames
When I watched the movie, I could see the tents and the Great Frost being resembled by this painting when Orlando was ice-skating with Sasha.
5"x8" colour prints, Photographic paper, Photograph of black-and-silver costume for 1600: Love
1 x colour slide in transparent plastic hanging sheet, Slides, Photographic Slides of Hatfield House location recces, interior and exterior
1 x colour slide in transparent plastic hanging sheet, Digital, Behind the Scenes Images - Sally Potter on location for scene 53
I think the use of the maze was genius for its meaning. It was a portal to transition through time.
Black and white A4 Text Document, Digital, Finished screenplay as published by Faber and Faber
Video file, Digital, Selected Scene Commentary by Sally Potter
Sally Potter gives a great explanation of Orlando and her reasons for certain symbolism and casting. Having much knowledge in drawing and painting, I understood the coloring of the eras when I was watching the film. I like how Sally Potter engorged the historical eras with a restricted color palette. The question of gender is extremely prevalent throughout the story, and the fact that Sally Potter casted Quentin Crisp to play Elizabeth I is an even greater turn on gender.
1 x colour slide in transparent plastic hanging sheet, Digital, Film Stills - Scene 58 - (Tilda Swinton) and Shelmerdine (Billy Zane) in the film
This is by far one of the greatest film stills. The entanglement between their arms and hands may have something to do with the fact that they both represent the other sex. Orlando had gone through a sex change and is still coping with that, while Shelmerdine is shown with long hair and is beautifully handsome.
1 x colour slide in transparent plastic hanging sheet, Digital, Film Stills - Scene 54 - (Tilda Swinton) and Shelmerdine (Billy Zane) in the film
I really like this film still. It shows that, although not being a woman for that long, Orlando has finally fallen in love, but is a bit afraid. The intimacy shown at first meeting is brilliant, them on the ground face to face.
A4 pages, handwritten, Paper, Pre-draft handwritten notes on key scenes
This is a great approach for a film director to capture the "key scenes" from a novel. Going down the list, I distinctly remember them in the film. I like her question mark by the first one, because in the film there was no true vision of them being intimate, but it was certainly insinuated well.
A4 pages, handwritten in pencil, Paper, Handwritten notes on intertitles, with sketches and key quotes
I am not sure if I liked or disliked these categories of splitting up the film, but I understand that Potter wanted the distinctions to be clear. Throughout the novel and film, one can see that Orlando must adjust and conform to society's rules. By the end, Orlando finally realizes that she should just be herself. The intertextuality of the history behind these periods of time, along with Virginia Woolf's overemphasis, and Sally Potter's super-overemphasis allows for the viewer to understand the character of Orlando even more.
1 x colour slide in transparent plastic hanging sheet, Digital, Film Stills - Scene 4 - (Tilda Swinton) in the film
Sally Potter's comedic approach was a bit odd at first, having Orlando talk to the camera with those little snide remarks, but by the end of the film I think it came together well. It was a way of communicating to the audience who was watching the film, along with showing Virginia Woolf's means of satire. This is intertextuality within itself. Furthermore, the look into the camera brings it back to the present time.
Black and white A4 print, Paper, Knole House R&D photograph
"Do not fade. Do not wither. Do not grow old."