Screenwriters have always been Hollywood's stepchildren. Yet, popular impressions aside, screenwriters have been central to moviemaking since audiences got past the sheer novelty of seeing pictures that moved at all. Soon they wanted to know: What happens next? Veteran Oscar-winning screenwriter Norman gives us the first comprehensive history of the men and women who have answered that question, from Anita Loos, the highest-paid screenwriter of her day, to Robert Towne, Quentin Tarantino, Charlie Kaufman, and other paradigm-busting talents reimagining movies for the new century. The whole rich story is here: the imposition of the Production Code in the early 1930s and the ingenious attempts to outwit the censors; the dark days of the blacklist that divided the screenwriting community; the rise of the writer-director in the early 1970s; and the scare of 2005 when new technologies seemed to dry up the audience for movies and forced the industry to reinvent itself yet again.--From publisher description.