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William Capobianco Papers

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: Coll2013-102

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of correspondence, screenplays, drafts, clippings, photographs, slides and other personal documents relating to gay screenplay writer William J. Capobianco (1947-1992). The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence and screenplay drafts.

The first series documents Capobianco's personal life and history. The correspondence documents Capobianco's ties to gay friends, especially in New York, and his relationships with his mother and sister. There are materials and diplomas from schools and theater programs that Capobianco attended. Medical records document the care he received from 1991-1992 for AIDS-related illness.

The second series includes final drafts for Tenebrae (unknown year) and Medea (1978), as well as drafts of other screenplays, such as Body Talk, Windows on the Square and Angelcake. There are short stories and notebooks filled with various writing and drafts.

The photographs show Capobianco at work at the store LA Leathers, his family members and his school-age class portraits.


  • 1947 - 1992
  • Majority of material found within 1978 - 1992


Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the ONE Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives at USC Libraries as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.


William J. Capobianco was born on July 6, 1947 in Brooklyn, New York. Raised in an Italian Catholic home, Capobianco attended Our Lady of Loretto Elementary School and St. John's Preparatory School in Brooklyn. He was interested in theater from a young age and participated in shows during his school-age years. He graduated from St. John's University in 1969 with a Bachelor of Arts.

Capobianco was a screenplay writer in Los Angeles. He wrote the screenplays Windows on the Square (unknown year), Body Talk and Eatz/ Love on the Menu. He co-wrote Tenebrae (unknown year) and Medea (1978), the latter of which was planned to star famous drag queen Divine in an adaptation entitled The Divine Medea. Capobianco also worked at the specialty retail shop LA Leathers, creating leather pieces and clothing.

During the 1990s, Capobianco was diagnosed HIV positive. He received treatment and care starting in 1991 until his death in 1992 in Los Angeles.


2.1 Linear Feet (1 archive box + 2 archive cartons)

Language of Materials



Correspondence, screenplays, drafts, clippings, photographs, health records and other personal documents relating to gay screenwriter William J. Capobianco (1947-1992), who co-wrote Tenebrae (date unknown) and Medea (1978). The collection includes other screenplays and short story drafts, as well as correspondence with Joe Callahan and David Sherlock. Photographs document the retail store LA Leathers in Los Angeles.


This collection is arranged in the following series:

Series 1. Personal papers

Series 2. Screenplays and writings


Date and donor of acquisition unknown.

Separated Materials

Two buttons, "Stop LaRouche No on 64" and "Rawhide NYC," have been separated from the collection and placed with the ONE Archives button collection.

Processing Information

Formerly boxes #103-342 and 103-344. Collection processed by Jennifer Darwent, October 2013.

Finding Aid to the William Capobianco Papers, 1947-1992
Jennifer Darwent
(c) 2013
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Processing this collection has been funded by a generous grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Repository Details

Part of the ONE Archives at the USC Libraries, University of Southern California Repository

909 West Adams Boulevard
Los Angeles California 90007 United States
(213) 821-2771