In this course, we will compare legendary director Ernst Lubitsch’s effervescent 1940 screen masterpiece, The Shop Around the Corner, and Nora Ephron’s sensitive & wryly humorous 1998 remake, You’ve Got Mail. Both contain the core idea of making anonymous lonely heart connections via the written word, whether through traditional snail mail or through what was then the 1990s smartest new technology—email. Ephron’s retelling is remarkably true to the spirit of the Lubitsch original—not only in theme, but in settings, staging, and acting performance styles; it also has witty, upbeat dialogue, but with a feminist twist and ingenious use of vintage musical soundtracks. Ephron’s cast, led by Meg Ryan & Tom Hanks, offers nuanced performances similar to those of the earlier version’s Margaret Sullavan & James Stewart. Like its 1940 counterpart, the 1998 update examines the challenges of finding one’s “perfect” match and, also like the original, supports this with hilarious misunderstandings & the screwball elements that one finds in Hollywood’s decades-long take on the foibles of modern romance. Both of these landmarks in couples comedy will be examined within their respective historical contexts, with an emphasis on film as a collaborative art form. Large format screenings complement informal PowerPoint lectures.