Weekly Production Tip #12: Show, Don't Tell - Raindance

The best piece of advice for new screenwriters: Show, Don’t Tell.

One of the biggest advantages film has over other art forms, such as radio or novels, is the ability of the filmmaker to show the audience visual aspects of the story in almost infinite detail. Indeed the first 30 years of film were devoid of all exposition through dialogue, while title cards were few and far between – filmmakers relied on the action and actors to tell the story. The old saying holds true – a picture is worth 1000 words, and what is a movie if not 150,000 pictures shown one after the other? Why would you want to ruin that with talking?

Equally important to what you write is how you write. A screenplay is an art form in its own right, not a technical blueprint for a film. It’s designed to entice and intrigue, to separate producers and financiers and their money. However great your ideas, your screenplay will not do this if it’s not written with flair and creativity.

Watch our video below to find out more about writing action!




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From new and emerging to industry pros, Raindance connects, trains, supports, and promotes visual storytellers through every step of their career.

The Raindance Film Festival runs each Autumn in London's Leicester Square.

Raindance has been delivering film training since 1992. A wide range of Open Classes to a 2 year HND Level 5 BTEC in Moving Images to a Postgraduate Film Degree are delivered to students on five continents, both in person and online.