Writing Movies: Simple Screenplay Structure

This is a course from a previous year. View the current courses

This course is for students either in the midst of or at the beginning of writing a feature length screenplay. While the world of filmed entertainment is changing, with new avenues of distribution creating new formats and venues, some things remain the same—audiences are still hungry for satisfying narrative features to take them away, confront their fears, live out their fantasies, or elevate their consciousness. Paths may differ, but at the end we are all working towards the same goal—successful visual storytelling. This writing workshop requires all students to regularly present pages of either their screenplay or the outline for their screenplay for analysis and critique. The outline, based on the required reading, will form the spine of your film. The outline will be your guide in those moments of uncertainty when you’re not sure where to steer your narrative; it will be the roadmap for the first draft of your screenplay. The outline is a constant work-in-progress and will be revised concurrently with the pages you will write.  Some knowledge of screenplay style and format is preferred, but not necessarily a requirement. Continuing students will finish a first draft of their project, while new students will complete their outlines and the first act of their screenplay. Intermediate.