Learning Screenwriting – Your story’s event, in all its glory

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Learning Screenwriting

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    Join independent film director and screenwriter Mark Tapio Kines as he walks you through the process of getting your screenplay idea out of your head and onto the printed page. Learn how to define your story’s characters, obstacles, and scope; understand the importance of each of the three acts in a traditional narrative structure; and discover how to build tension and reveal key plot points. Lastly, Mark shows you how to format your screenplay to make it readable and well paced, and navigate the legalities of adapting an existing property, collaborating with a cowriter, or engaging in a work-for-hire contract.

    Instructor

    • Click here to view Mark Tapio Kines’ instructor page

      Mark Tapio Kines

      Mark Tapio Kines is an award-winning independent filmmaker.

      After obtaining his BFA from CalArts, he began his post-college career as a professional script reader. Mark then wrote and directed his first feature, Foreign Correspondents , in 1997. He launched a website for the film later that year, which raised $150,000 in finishing funds and established Foreign Correspondents as the first crowd-funded motion picture in history. Mark’s second feature, Claustrophobia, was distributed by Lionsgate in 2004. Mark has also made several short films, including 2006’s The Closest Thing to Time Travel, which won Grand Prize in an international competition sponsored by Getty Images. With eight feature-length screenplays under his belt, Mark has also worked as a copywriter (producing work for literally all the major Hollywood studios), film consultant, art director, graphic designer, and animator. You can read more about Mark’s work—as well as hundreds of movie reviews and an eclectic assortment of lists—at www.cassavafilms.com.

    Skills covered in this course

  • Welcome

    We have now come full circle, back to that very first sticky note you filled out, your event. Now, there’s a saying that once you get going, sometimes your story starts writing itself. It doesn’t always happen, but a logical scene-to-scene progression can become evident as you lay out your script. During this course, you may have had to go back to your event now and then, adjusting it to fit your ever-changing story line. On the other hand, you may have already had a clear idea of your script’s direction from the get-go, and you didn’t have to change your event at all. In either case, that’s fantastic because the point is that you have done it. You have successfully turned your movie idea into an actual story. Now, if your event no longer strikes you as a proper finale for the narrative you have been constructing, you’re free to change it. You also might want to do this if your event doesn’t match the tone of your script. For instance, let’s say that your original event was that your…

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