Femme Film Fridays: The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie on 35mm

Film Screening and Discussion

January 27, 2017 7:00pm - 9:40pm

Jean Brodie is a free-spirited teacher at a Scottish girls' school during the 1930s. She encourages her young pupils to embrace romantic ideals, educating them about love and art rather than hard facts.

However, her controversial teaching philosophy draws the ire of the school's headmistress, Miss Mackey, and, as Miss Brodie becomes entangled in a love triangle, her behavior towards her favorite students becomes increasingly manipulative.

Event Details

Join the Bullock Museum for a screening and conversation about The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie as part of the Femme Film Fridays series, a film series highlighting the cinematic works of women, both behind and in front of the camera. This inaugural season's theme is 'Choices'.

  • Included with your ticket is a 6:00 p.m. welcoming reception with a cash bar.
  • Film screening from 7:00 p.m.- 9:00 p.m.
  • Q&A following the screening with Caroline Karlen and Donna Kornhaber.
  • Entrance for this screening will be at the IMAX Lobby doors.
Film Details

Rating: PG. However, contains some adult material. Parents are urged to learn more about the film before taking younger children to the movie.
Starring: Maggie SmithRobert Stephens, Pamela Franklin, Celia JohnsonDiane Grayson, Jane Carr, Shirley Steedman
Director: Ronald Neame
Screenplay and based on the play by: Jay Presson Allen
Adapted from the novel by: Muriel Spark
Runtime: 116 min.
Genre: Drama, Romance
Release year: 1969
Format: 35mm

About the Film
  • Though originally released in March of 1969, the film was rereleased after Maggie Smith won an Academy Award for Best Actress in April 1970.
  • Writers Guild of America nominated Jay Presson Allen for Best Drama Adapted from Another Medium.
  • Filmed throughout Scotland and England.
About the Filmmaker

Jay Presson Allen (1922-2006) was an American screenwriter, playwright, stage director, television producer and novelist. She was one of the few women making a living as a screenwriter at a time when women were a rarity in the profession.

A native Texan, Allen spent many hours of her childhood at the movies. After a short stint in acting, she decided she wanted to be the person making the decisions behind the films. Allen used writing as an outlet for independence. Disliking the structured medium of writing committees when she was supposed to be solely responsible for a screenplay, Allen would later become known as a script doctor.

She was awarded the Women in Film Crystal Award in 1982 and received a special tribute at The 79th Annual Academy Awards. Allen is quoted as saying, "almost all of the men I worked with were supportive. If I was getting a bum rap somewhere, I didn’t know it."

About the Lead Actress

Dame Margaret Natalie Smith (1934-present) is an English actress with a varied career in stage, film and television. Smith has over fifty films to her name, and she is one of Britain's most recognizable actresses. Smith left school at the age of sixteen to study acting at the Oxford Playhouse and would begin her career at Oxford Playhouse as Viola in a production of Twelfth Night. Her first film debut was in 1956 (uncredited) and she made her Broadway debut the same year.

Smith won her first of five Best Actress Evening Standard Awards in 1962 becoming a fixture in the Royal National Theatre. On screen, Smith gained first recognition in the film Nowhere to Go (1958). Smith is one of only six actresses to have won an Academy Award in both the Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress categories.

She is known to many as Professor Minerva McGonagall in the Harry Potter film series and also starred as Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham on Downton Abbey. Some of Smith's other accolades include a Golden Globe Award, several Emmy Awards, and a Screen Actors Guild Award. Smith is among the world's most distinguished and famous actresses and continues to be active on screen and on stage.

About the Guest Speakers

A University of Texas MFA alum, Caroline Karlen has worked as a Costume Designer and Production Designer on numerous films and music videos, including The Retrieval, Scenes from the Suburbs and Lovers of Hate. She is also an award winning printmaker (1999 Samuel Fleisher Award) who has had her work shown in galleries throughout the country.

Donna Kornhaber is Assistant Professor in the Department of English at the University of Texas at Austin, where she teaches film. She is the author of Charlie Chaplin, Director (Northwestern University Press, 2014) and Wes Anderson (Contemporary Film Directors Series, University of Illinois Press, 2017), and her work has appeared in Cinema JournalFilm History, and Camera Obscura, among numerous other journals and edited collections.  In 2016, she was named an Academy Film Scholar by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for her project Women’s Work: The Female Screenwriter and the Development of Early American Film.  

About the Texas Spirit Theater and Tickets

The Texas Spirit Theater located on the Bullock Museum's second floor is one of the most beautiful film experiences in Austin and features multi-sensory special effects such as lightning, rain, and other surprises.

Museum Members enjoy free unlimited IMAX® documentary films, discounts on feature film tickets, free exhibition admission, discounts in the Museum Store, and more. Learn More.

Learn about ticket prices, refund policies, and parking (free after 5 pm). For evening programs, please enter through the Bullock Museum IMAX Theatre.