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Marcia Mae Jones

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Also Known As: Marsha Jones, Marsha M Jones, Marsha Jones Died: September 2, 2007
Born: August 1, 1924 Cause of Death: complications of pneumonia
Birth Place: Los Angeles, California, USA Profession: actor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

An acclaimed Australian screenwriter, Laura Jones first garnered attention with "High Tide" (1987, directed by Gillian Armstrong), an original and atmospheric character study of a troubled woman who is reunited with the daughter she gave up for adoption. The writer quickly became noted for her adaptations of novels with strong female characters at the center of the story. While her feminist slant to the material she writes has met with some critical opprobrium (chiefly "The Portrait of a Lady" 1996 and "A Thousand Acres" 1997), in general, Jones has proven to be expert at condensing unwieldy fiction to suit the conventions of film.After establishing herself in Australian television, Jones wrote her first, and to date, only original script, the aforementioned "High Tide." She teamed with director Jane Campion for the richly observed three-part Australian miniseries "An Angel at My Table" (1990). Drawn from the autobiographies of writer Janet Frame, Jones managed to avoid the pitfalls of other similar film biographies by not allowing the story to lose its focus from the key role writing played in the life of the writer. The character is followed from childhood through a harrowing misdiagnosis as a...

An acclaimed Australian screenwriter, Laura Jones first garnered attention with "High Tide" (1987, directed by Gillian Armstrong), an original and atmospheric character study of a troubled woman who is reunited with the daughter she gave up for adoption. The writer quickly became noted for her adaptations of novels with strong female characters at the center of the story. While her feminist slant to the material she writes has met with some critical opprobrium (chiefly "The Portrait of a Lady" 1996 and "A Thousand Acres" 1997), in general, Jones has proven to be expert at condensing unwieldy fiction to suit the conventions of film.

After establishing herself in Australian television, Jones wrote her first, and to date, only original script, the aforementioned "High Tide." She teamed with director Jane Campion for the richly observed three-part Australian miniseries "An Angel at My Table" (1990). Drawn from the autobiographies of writer Janet Frame, Jones managed to avoid the pitfalls of other similar film biographies by not allowing the story to lose its focus from the key role writing played in the life of the writer. The character is followed from childhood through a harrowing misdiagnosis as a schizophrenic to a successful adulthood as a published and respected woman of letters. The character's quirkiness and solitary nature is not overlooked or dismissed, nor is presented with cliche. Rather, the episodic structure employed by Jones and Campion, movingly depicts Frame's struggles and triumphs. An edited version was released theatrically.

Continuing to work with the leading female directors of her native country, Jones reteamed with Campion for "The Portrait of a Lady," an exceedingly contemporary spin on James' work. Most critics felt that Campion and Jones imposed a feminist viewpoint to the original material and, though the performances were generally fine, the overall result was misguided, even boring. The screenwriter also came under fire for her adaptation of "A Thousand Acres" (also 1997) directed by Jocelyn Moorhouse. A modern version of "King Lear," adapted from Jane Smiley's Pulitzer-winning novel, the film garnered mostly negative reviews with many faulting the screenplay. Jones, however, fared better with two other literary dramatizations. The Australian-made "The Well" (1997) was a combination ghost story, thriller and relationship drama centered on two headstrong women. "Oscar and Lucinda" (also 1997), meanwhile, saw Jones turn Peter Carey's Booker Prize-winning novel into a satisfying and thoughtful rendering. With director Gillian Armstrong, the screenwriter deftly telegraphed the parallel lives of the central characters, a ungainly Anglican minister and a strong-willed Australian heiress, who both share a penchant for gambling. Jones and Armstrong successfully translated Carey's multi-layer book into a study of fate and managed to preserve as a set piece the central image of the novel, a glass church that is transported through the Outback. Continuing with her streak, Jones had been tapped to turn yet another prize-winner into celluloid, Frank McCourt's childhood memoir of a life in poverty, "Angela's Ashes."

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Filmographyclose complete filmography

CAST: (feature film)

2.
 The Way We Were (1973)
4.
 Chicago Calling (1952) Peggy
5.
 Hi-Jacked (1950) Jean Harper
6.
 The Daughter of Rosie O'Grady (1950) Katie O'Grady
7.
 Arson--Inc. (1949) Betty
8.
 Tucson (1949) Polly Johnson
9.
 Street Corner (1948) Lois Marsh
10.
 Trouble Preferred (1948) Virginia Evans
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