"I went to a church school in the Bronx in the early '60s, and I had the Sisters of Charity (as teachers) who wore these very particular, very peculiar Victorian black bonnets; I had an interesting and good experience there. It was a time of great certitude; it was a quieter time, and yet it was on the cusp of great change. There was a big sound coming from over the hill, and that sound was the '60s; it came crashing in shortly after that. ... At the time I wrote the play, again, it was a time of great certitude -- it was the lead-up to the invasion of Iraq, and I didn't feel certain, I felt doubtful. ... I (thought) I wanted to write something... that shows what is lost and what is gained when the world changes."

Playwright and director John Patrick Shanley can tell you where his film Doubt, starring Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Meryl Streep and Amy Adams, came from; as it's being released into a busy Oscar season with high expectations, he can't quite tell you where it's headed. The Oscar-winning screenwriter of Moonstruck and the writer-director of the cult fave Joe Versus the Volcano also talked about the challenges of opening up his play for the big screen, how tough times can mean great opportunities for writers and the pleasure of working with noted cinematographer Roger Deakins. Shanley spoke with Cinematical in Los Angeles; you can listen to the podcast here at Cinematical by clicking below:

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