About the Archive

A glimpse inside the vault.

A glimpse inside the vault.

The Writers Guild Foundation Archive preserves and promotes the art, craft and history of screenwriting, and records the vital memory of the entertainment industry’s first labor union, the Writers Guild of America. The rare and unique collections include Writers Guild of America historical materials, produced and unproduced scripts, letters, photographs, production notes, memorabilia, oral histories, and personal items of film, television and radio writers. During this developmental stage as collections are being cataloged, unprocessed papers are available for research. Users are encouraged to contact the Writers Guild Foundation Archive to learn more about the rich cultural content of the collections.

 Some of the distinguished writers represented in the collection include:

  • Robert Bloch

  • Allan Burns

  • Stephen J. Cannell

  • Leonard Freeman

  • Lowell Ganz and Babaloo Mandel

  • John Gay

  • Jackson Gillis

  • Roy Huggins

  • Hal Kanter

  • George Kirgo

  • Mort Lachman

  • Norman Liebmann

  • Del Reisman

  • Dean Riesner

  • Howard Rodman (Sr.)

  • Mel Shavelson

  • Mel Tolkin

  • Matthew Weiner

  • Billy Wilder

  • Linda Woolverton

Our holdings are arranged primarily by name of writer and can be found in our catalog by browsing Archival Collections or searching by titles and/or individual names. Many of our notable collections are listed at the Online Archive of California and we are continually adding more. Click through to search at OAC.

If you are a writer or the family of a writer or a collector who would like to donate scripts and other archival ephemera, please get in touch by email using library@wgfoundation.org or call the Archivist at 323-782-4680. We welcome new additions to the collections and do all we can to preserve the craft and voices of screen storytelling.

For information on locating primary resources related to entertainment history around the web and across the country, view this guide.

Oral History

Between 1995 and 2013, the Writers Guild Foundation recorded interviews with prominent writers about their careers and about their working lives and practices. In all, 64 interviews were completed in The Writer Speaks series and these are all freely available for viewing in our library and on our YouTube channel. These interviews are fascinating and inspirational glimpses into the minds of some of Hollywood’s most accomplished writers. Edward Anhalt, Walter BernsteinCharles Bennett, Robert Benton, Robert Blees, Irving Brecher, Marshall Brickman, James L. BrooksAllan BurnsJean Rouverol Butler, Lionel Chetwynd, Bob Carroll & Madelyn Pugh DavisBarbara Corday, David Dortort, Julius J. EpsteinDC FontanaDevery Freeman, Lowell Ganz & Babaloo Mandel, Lila Garrett, John Gay, Mel Goldberg, Bo GoldmanWilliam Goldman, Everett Greenbaum, Buck Henry, Austin & Irma Kalish, Fay Kanin, Millard Kaufman, Hal Kanter, Christopher KnopfNorman Lear, Ernest Lehman, William Link, David Lloyd, William Ludwig, Loring MandelAllan Manings, John Mantley, Ann MarcusGarry Marshall, Arthur Marx, Richard MathesonPaul Mazursky, John McGreevey, Frank PiersonAbe PolonskyCarl Reiner, Del Reisman, Bill RichmondLorenzo Semple Jr.Alvin Sargent, Bob Schiller and Bob Weiskopf, Arnold Schulman, Sherwood SchwartzMel ShavelsonSidney SheldonTreva Silverman, Leonard Stern, Stewart SternDavid Swift, Dan Taradash, Robert TowneSaul Turteltaub, and Billy Wilder.

Beginning in 2013, the WGF began co-producing oral history interviews with our friends at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and Television Academy Foundation. We share research and the content from the interviews. The content from Television Academy oral history program, The Interviews, can be viewed in their entirety here. Interviewees completed so far are: Sam Bobrick, Joshua Brand, Ron Clark, Elias Davis, Harlan Ellison, Ron Friedman, Carl Gottlieb, Walon Green, David Isaacs, Arnie Kogen, Rita Lakin, Ken Levine, Thad Mumford, Bernie Orenstein, David Pollock, John Wells, Dan Wilcox, Larry Wilmore, Hugh Wilson, Alan Zweibel.