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When granny went on the internet : the screenplay and the search for content and tone in South African screenwriting.

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The development of content and the creation of tone in a screenplay is a challenging task for the screenwriter. This thesis explores, through the writing of an original screenplay, how content is sourced and tone is manipulated in a comic story. The context of screenwriting in South Africa is established and an account is given of the emerging micro-budget filmmaking movement along with a discussion of issues relating to the broadband streaming of films in South Africa. Such factors, along with declining or stagnating cinema attendance, affect how films will be viewed and distributed in South Africa. A major case study was conducted on the South African film Jozi (2010) by director-screenwriter Craig Freimond. The influences, screenwriting process, sources of content and creation of tone in his film are examined through in-depth interviews and structural, thematic and tonal analysis of his work. An original feature-length screenplay, When Granny Went on the Internet (2013), was written. An account is offered of how the content was derived and tone was manipulated. A reflective report of the screenwriting process offers insight into the development of the multi-layered, tonally complex comic screenplay and suggests that a new form of South African comedy may be emerging.


Ph. D. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg 2014.


Screenwriters--Interviews., Screenwriters--South Africa., Motion picture plays., Motion picture authorship., Theses--Media and cultural studies.