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Finding Aid for the Faulkner - Bacher Collection (MUM01714)

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The Faulkner - Bacher Collection is open for research.This collection is stored at a secure location. Researchers interested in using this collection must contact Archives and Special Collections at least two business days in advance of their planned visit.

Finding Aid for the Faulkner - Bacher Collection



Descriptive Summary

PURL: http://purl.oclc.org/umarchives/MUM01714/
Title: Faulkner - Bacher Collection
Dates: 1953-1962
Collector: Bacher, William A.
Physical Extent: 1 box (.417 linear feet)
Repository: University of Mississippi. Department of Archives and Special Collections. University, MS 38677, USA
Identification: MUM01714
Language of Material: English
Abstract: Collection of correspondence between William Bacher and William Faulkner concerning a screenplay for A Fable.

Administrative Information

Acquisition Information

Acquired from Alan Snitow, William Bacher's nephew, 2008.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Jennifer Ford. Finding aid encoded by Jason Kovari, 13 October 2009.

Additions

No further additions are expected to this collection.


Subject Terms

Faulkner, William, 1897-1962
Bacher, William A.
Faulkner, William, 1897-1962. Screenplays.
Faulkner, William, 1897-1962. Fable
Faulkner, William, 1897-1962. Reivers.
Screenwriters


Formats

correspondence
contracts
typescripts


Historical Note

In the summer of 1943, author William Faulkner sat down in discussions with producer William Bacher and director Henry Hathaway about a story concerning the Unknown Soldier as Christ returning to save the world. Hathaway and Bacher had the idea for a while and were shopping around for a writer to do a screenplay. They approached Pierre van Passen, Ben Hecht, Ernest Hemingway, and others until finally Bacher suggested they try their idea on William Faulkner. Faulkner was interested and entered into a verbal agreement with Bacher and Hathaway.

Bacher advanced Faulkner $1000 and Faulkner returned to Oxford, Mississippi to work on the piece. Faulkner began writing the 10,000 word first-draft in January 1944. Though under contract with Warner Brothers, the draft developed into a novel project, published in August 1954 as A Fable, for which Faulkner received the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award.

Correspondence concerning turning A Fable into a screenplay continued until Faulkner's death in 1962.


Scope and Content Note

Correspondence between William Faulkner and William Bacher concerning turning their "modern Christ story", which Faulkner developed as A Fable, into a screenplay. Collection also includes the contract between Bacher and Jill Faulkner Summers for the movie rights. Of particular note in this collection is discussion of Faulkner's views of his ability as a screenwriter.


User Information

Prefered Citation

Faulkner - Bacher Collection, Archives and Special Collections, J.D. Williams Library, The University of Mississippi

Access Restrictions

The Faulkner - Bacher Collection is open for research. This collection is stored at a secure location. Researchers interested in using this collection must contact Archives and Special Collections at least two business days in advance of their planned visit.

Copyright Restrictions

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use", that user may be liable for copyright infringement.


Related Material

Resources at the University of Mississippi

For a description of the William Faulkner archival collections housed at the University of Mississippi, please view our William Faulkner Subject Guide


Container List

Folder 1 TLS. 18 June 1953. William Faulkner, signed Bill, to "Dear Bill" [Bacher]. Oxford, Mississippi (1p. letter and envelope)
Scope: "Working on the big book which came from the idea you gave me years ago. Also, I may have also committeed to do a script from one of my books..."
Folder 2 TLS. 3 September 1954. Bill [Faulkner] to "Dear Bill" [Bacher]. Oxford, Mississippi (1p. letter and envelope)
Scope: Faulkner's desire to not write a script for a book he spent nine years writing
Folder 3 TLS. 19 February 1958. "Bill" [Faulkner] to "Dear Bill" [Bacher]. Charlottesville, Virginia (1p. letter and envelope)
Scope: Putting off a project because of being in the middle of writing a novel and commitment at Princeton
Folder 4 ALS. 30 November 1959. William Faulkner to "Dear Bill" [Bacher]. Charlottesville, Virginia (1p. letter and envelope)
Scope: Passing on a project as he has already "made a book out of it"
Folder 5 TLS. 31 July 1961. Bill Faulkner to "Dear Bill" [Bacher]. Oxford, Mississippi (1p. letter and envelope)
Scope: Commitment to work on the screenplay for A Fable once he finishes his in-progress novel [The Reivers]
Folder 6 TLS. 6 February 1962. Bill Faulkner to "Dear Bill" [Bacher]. Oxford, Mississippi (1p. letter and envelope)
Scope: Faulkner discussing his lack of talent for screenwriting and editing other people's work
Folder 7 TLS. 1962. Bill F. [Faulkner] to "Dear Bill" [Bacher]. Oxford, Mississippi (1p. letter and envelope)
Scope: Discusses Faulkner's editing of a screenplay and the script's dialogue and language
Folder 8 TL. (retained carbon) Undated. [Bill Bacher] to Bill [Faulkner]. (1p.)
Scope: Wants to do "the modern Christ story"; complex they discussed years prior
Folder 9 TLS. 24 July 1962. William Bacher to Mrs. William Faulkner. (2p.)
Scope: Bacher's sadness at Faulkner's passing. Also provides a history of their correspondence and desire to produce the "modern Christ story" (The Unknown Soldier), which Faulkner wrote as A Fable
Folder 10 Contract. Signed Carbon. 13 December 1962. Jill Faulkner Summers, Executrix. (1p.)
Scope: The "preliminary binding agreement between the Estate of William Faulkner and you [William Bacher] and Henry Hathaway for the movie production of William Faulkner's A Fable"

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