5 Weeks: June 25 – July 29, 2023
The Screenwriting concentration is built on a foundation of practical application and interdisciplinary collaboration. “A good story well told” is the guiding principle.
Each morning students are scheduled for two Core screenwriting classes. These classes concentrate on the life of a screenwriter: the skills a writer needs to forge a career in the industry, the industry-accepted software and formatting, industry trends, the basics of drama, genre conventions, exploration of Hollywood conventional three act story structure, and analysis of classics both old and new.
“Core classes were amazing and taught me the basics and beyond of screenwriting…I learned a lot about who to write, how to make an interesting story, this also made it easier for me to direct and bring my ideas to life.”
Screenplays are the blueprint that guide production, and therefore the screenwriter must learn all the roles and necessary language of film production. Afternoon elective classes, evening workshops, and lectures expose the screenwriter to the other disciplines and aspects of film production; everything from directing actors to film editing.
By the end of the summer, Screenwriting students should:
- Understand the process of developing a story for the visual medium
- Be familiar with and understand various screenplay structures and forms
- Comprehend the importance of character in relation to plot
- Appreciate the script’s contribution to a successful film
- Better understand the necessary elements of screenwriting (cohesive action, dialogue, etc.)
Attention is also paid to discovering and nurturing the writer’s own “voice.” Through daily writing exercises, scene work, and writer’s room collaboration, students will hone in on the story they want to write and why they are the only/best person to tell it. This is a crucial factor in learning how to tell that good story well.
As the classes move toward the ultimate goal (a five-minute screenplay filmed during Production Week), every student will create an original premise, thorough character biographies, complete story structure, and scene outlines. The end result is a beginning-to-end experience of the working screenwriter, only better because the movie gets made! You can watch a sampling of past students’ work on our Sample Film Work page.
“I had an amazing time and I would do it all over again if I could.”