Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
An Oscar-winning screenwriter who often worked in collaboration with James Ivory and Ismail Merchant, Ruth Prawer Jhabvala first developed her writing craft as an author of acclaimed novels like Esmond in India (1957) and The Householder (1960) that often dealt with the culture clash between India and England. In fact, the latter novel attracted Merchant-Ivory to seek Jhabvala out and hire her to adapt her novel into the 1963 film of the same name, thus commencing one of the most critically acclaimed writer-director-producer trios of all time. From there, Jhabvala wrote Merchant-Ivory films like "Shakespeare Wallah" (1965), Autobiography of a Princess" (1975) and "Heat and Dust" (1983), but commercial success on most of their early films was elusive. It was not until they adapted the works of Henry James and E.M. Forster starting in the mid-1980s that the trio began having great critical and commercial success. Their two greatest triumphs were the lighthearted comedy of manners "A Room with a View" (1986) and the widely praised "Howards End" (1992), both of which won Jhabvala Academy Awards. She continued adapting material for Merchant-Ivory with "The Remains of the Day" (1993), "The Golden Bowl" (2000) and "Le Divorce" (2003), thus cementing her status as one of Hollywood's most gifted and celebrated scribes.