Film Series

The Paper Chase: Screening and Conversation

October 19, 2008

When a first-year student at Harvard Law School finally begins to gain confidence in the classroom, things quickly go awry when he discovers that he has been dating the daughter of Professor Kingsfield, the law school’s most fearsome professor, portrayed by John Houseman.

Notable scholars and professors, John Jay Osborne Jr. and Paul Bergman, joined FOLCS for a screening and discussion of The Paper Chase.

Watch The Paper Chase: Screening and Conversation here.

See more from FOLCS here.

John Jay Osborn Jr.

John Jay Osborn, Jr., was educated at Harvard College and its law school and clerked on the Federal Third Circuit Court of Appeals. He is the distinguished scholar in residence and professor of law at the University of San Francisco School of Law.

Mr. Osborn is the author of the novels The Paper Chase, The Associates and The Man Who Owned New York, among other books. He has written articles, stories, book reviews and essays that have appeared in the NYU Law Review, the Washington Post, and the New York Times, among many other publications. He has also written television scripts for 20th Century Fox, Paramount, Warner Bros., Viacom/Showtime and many other entertainment companies.

The Paper Chase, written while he was still in law school, was made into a hit movie and iconic TV series starring John Houseman as Professor Kingsfield.

Paul Bergman

Paul Bergman is professor of law emeritus at UCLA Law School. He received his J.D. from UC Berkeley (Boalt Hall). He is the co-author of Reel Justice: The Courtroom Goes to the Movies (2d ed., 2006).

Professor Bergman’s articles that relate to law in film include “Emergency! Send a TV Show to Rescue Paramedic Services,” selected for publication in the Entertainment, Publishing and the Arts Handbook of 2008as “one of the best articles in the fields of entertainment, publishing and the arts of 2007,” and “The Movie Lawyers’ Guide to Redemptive Law Practice,” selected for publication in Lawyers’ Ethics and the Pursuit of Social Justice (Susan D. Carle, ed.). Professor Bergman has given law and film presentations in dozens of venues, including The Today Show (NBC), and Burden of Proof (CNN).

William Michael Treanor
Law School Dean

William Michael Treanor is a former Dean of Fordham Law School. He graduated from Yale College summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa and from Yale Law School, where he was an Article and Book Review Editor of the Yale Law Journal. He also holds an A.M. in history from Harvard University.

Before joining the Fordham faculty in 1991, Dean Treanor served as a speechwriter to the U.S. Secretary of Education, clerk to Judge James L. Oakes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, special assistant to the Chair of the New York State Commission on Government Integrity, Special Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Columbia, and as Associate Independent Counsel in the Office of the Iran-Contra Independent Counsel. From 1998 until 2001, he was Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel in the U.S. Department of Justice. He testified before Congress on the applicability of the Privacy Act to the White House.

A leading constitutional historian, Dean Treanor’s writings have appeared in numerous law reviews and twice he has been cited in Supreme Court opinions.