About the Course
This powerful information-packed day will give you the basic tools and information you need to establish yourself as a screenwriter. The day is part exercise and part lecture, culminating in a live pitching session. We will be covering Writing the Screenplay, talking about characters, story structure and planning, followed by Writing for Low Budgets, a detailed examination of how to write for that first film and how to play with genre.
After Lunch, we go on to talk more about Story Structure and Marketing your Screenplay – including timelines and plot vs concept driven films, as well as how to pitch and who to send your screenplays to – and end with Live! Ammunition!, our very own pitching competition in front of a live panel of industry professionals, where you could be liable to win up to £100 – not to mention some interest for your project!
Who is it for?
This course is for writers of all levels and abilities, from seasoned professionals to aspiring amateurs. We cover both basic rules, such as screenplay formatting, as well as more advanced writing techniques. If you have a project in mind, we could help you hone and sharpen it; If you don’t, we could plant the seed.
Introduction to Screenwriting is not just for screenwriters, however. If you have an interest in storytelling or characters, or how screenplays are read and interpreted, bought and sold, then this is the class for you.
What will I get?
Attendees are provided with a handout full of tips and tricks, resources and more.
10:00 – 11:30am Writing The Screenplay
Have you ever had an idea for a movie? Let Elliot Grove explain to you the basic principles of writing screenplays and demonstrate the powerful storytelling tools used by the professionals.
- Finding an idea
- Playing with story structure
- Creating memorable characters
- Planning your story
11:30 – 11:45 Break
11:45 – 1:00pm Writing for low budgets
Chances are pretty good that the first script you write gets made on a ridiculously low-to-no budget. This is a fact. Use Raindance founder Elliot Grove’s more than 20 years experience working with independent filmmakers in Europe and write a story that fits a lo-to-no budget.
- Creating a story for the budget
- Creating a budget for the story
- Using the tool of genre
- Copyright explained
1:00 – 2:00pm Lunch
2:00 – 3:45pm What is this thing called story structure?
Story structure is a term that gets thrown around by the big-time story consultants like Robert McKee and Syd Field. But what does it really mean and how can it help you? Elliot Grove demystifies story structure and gives you a plain-speaking simple way to build your story from the bottom up.
- Plot vs. concept-driven films
- Restructuring the timeline of a film
- Creating a strong emotional line
- Delivering on your concept
3:45 – 4:00pm Break
4:00 – 5:00pm Pitching Skills Workshop!
If you want to sell your script you are going to need to learn how to sell it (pitch it). This entertaining and informative session will show you how to present your screenplay idea to industry or private investors and demonstrate surefire techniques guaranteed to open doors. Elliot will also listen to your pitches and offer sound and constructive advice in his ‘Pitch Repair’ session.
- The logline
- Selling the sizzle, not the steak
- Visualization techniques
5:00 – 7:00pm Networking drinks
We retire to a nearby bar for networking drinks.
[This optional event has become very popular – bring lots of business cards – find a collaborator]
What is included
Course handout full of useful articles and resources.
Handout includes script format guide used by professional screenwriters
Followup email full of useful links and additional resources.
Coffee will be available during breaks (lunch is not included)
Who Should Attend
Writers, directors, producers, actors, filmmakers, cinema lovers, anyone with an interest in how screenplays are written and how they are marketed and sold.
About Elliot Grove
Few people know more filmmakers and screenwriters in Europe than Raindance founder Elliot Grove. He has presided over the launch of some of this countries most interesting filmmakers. Edgar Wright was his first intern, Guy Ritchie and Matthew Vaughn met at a Raindance course in the mid 1990′s, Christopher Nolan and Gareth Edwards (Monsters) all launched their careers following film training courses at Raindance. Elliot founded Raindance Film Festival in 1993, the British Independent Film Awards in 1998, and Raindance.TV in 2007. He has produced over 150 short films, and 5 feature films. He has written eight scripts, one of which is currently in pre-production. His first feature film, TABLE 5 was shot on 35mm and completed for a total of £278.38. He teaches writers and producers in the UK, Europe, Japan and America. He has written three books which have become industry standards:RAINDANCE WRITERS’ LAB: WRITE & SELL THE HOT SCREENPLAY(Focal Press 2008), RAINDANCE PRODUCER’S LAB: LO-TO-NO BUDGET FILMMAKING (Focal Press 2004) and 130 PROJECTS TO GET YOU INTO FILMMAKING (Barrons 2009). His first novel THE BANDIT QUEEN is scheduled for publication next year. Open University awarded Elliot an Honourary Doctorate for services to film education in 2009.
He has just finished shooting a feature in London, England directed by Ate de Jong (Drop Dead Fred)