Journalism at The Loft!

An Oscar-winning screenwriter, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author and two icons of The New York Times are among the speakers who will take part in the “Journalism on Screen” series that the UA School of Journalism is launching this fall with The Loft Cinema.

The program begins Sept. 20 with the 1981 drama “Absence of Malice,” a film about a reporter (Sally Field) whose articles falsely implicate a Miami businessman (Paul Newman).  The 2 p.m. screening will be followed by a Skype discussion with Kurt Luedtke, the former newspaper editor who wrote the screenplay.

Organized by Professors Nancy Sharkey and William Schmidt of the School of Journalism in collaboration with The Loft Cinema, “Journalism on Screen” will pair journalists and writers at screenings of their favorite films.

Here is the series lineup so far, which is also sponsored by the UA College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, the New York Times and the Arizona Inn:

· Sunday, Sept. 20, 2 p.m. “Absence of Malice,” Luedtke’s script for the film, directed by Sydney Pollack, earned him an Academy Award nomination. Luedtke subsequently won the Oscar for his screenplay of the 1985 movie, “Out of Africa.”

· Thursday, Oct. 8, 7 p.m. “The Paper,” a 1994 a comedy from director Ron Howard about big city journalism, will be followed by a discussion on stage with Sam Sifton, a senior editor at The New York Times.  Sifton, the newspaper’s food editor, was formerly National editor, restaurant critic and Culture editor. He is the founding editor of NYT Cooking, the paper’s online recipe tool and app.

· Thursday, Nov. 12, 7 p.m. A screening of “Broadcast News,” the 1987 comedy from director James L. Brooks, will be followed by a Q-and-A on stage with Alessandra Stanley, longtime New York Times reporter and critic. Until this summer, Stanley was chief television critic of The Times. She is now the reporter whose beat includes wealth and income inequality.

· Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016, 7 p.m.: ”Selma,” the 2014 drama about the civil rights movement, will be followed by a discussion on stage with Diane McWhorter, a journalist and author, who will talk about covering the civil rights struggle, then and now. “Carry Me Home,” McWhorter’s account about the civil revolution in her hometown of Birmingham, Alabama, won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction.

Tickets for the Sunday matinee of “Absence of Malice” are $6 for students, faculty and Loft members, and $8 for the general public. Otherwise, tickets for Loft films are $7.50 for students and faculty, and $9.25 for the general public.

The Loft is a local nonprofit cinema dedicated to creating community through film, honoring the vision of filmmakers, celebrating ideas and promoting the appreciation and understanding of the art of film.

More information is available at

Published Date: 

09/02/2015 - 1:57pm