Hollins University is a little, hidden gem. The gorgeous campus is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia where cicadas buzz about while you sit in a rocking chair on the front porch. It’s mostly known as a women’s college and has some famous alumnae, such as children’s author Margaret Wise Brown. But the university also has fantastic, low-residency, co-ed, graduate programs. Among them is the summer graduate screenwriting and film studies program. Since this unique program runs for only six weeks during the summers, students here have had the opportunity to learn from numerous industry professionals, whether they serve as professors or guest speakers. The specialties of our visiting faculty include horror, children’s television, comedy, drama, minorities in film, and production. While we have many professors who join us summer after summer, no two summers have the same line up of professors, so there are plenty of opportunities to learn from as many industry experts and make as many professional connections as possible from other universities such as UCLA and NYU. Included is the list of professors who have graced Hollins University in past summers and who will be joining us this summer. See any familiar names? Great! Come learn from them here at Hollins.
See the full list of visiting faculty here: Hollins University Summer Graduate Screenwriting & Film Studies Visiting Faculty
See the full list of Program Faculty here: Program Faculty at Hollins Summer Graduate Screenwriting & Film Studies
Lisa Waugh with ScreenwritingU offers writers insight on how to determine whether or not your screenplay is good. With wit and humor, she offers six guidelines to think about as you evaluate your work and prepare to release it into the wild as well as warnings as to what can happen if you share your work too soon.
Read the Full Article Here: How to Know If Your Script Doesn’t Suck
Some of the Hollins University Summer Graduate Screenwriting and Film Studies students made their way to Richmond, Virginia in April to attend the 2018 Richmond International Film Festival (RIFF). One student even got to see the legendary Danny Glover at the Historic Byrd Theater. And, yes, that is, in fact, Danny Glover sitting under the Hollins University logo 🙂
Hollins graduate student Colleen Hahn (right) shared some of her thoughts on the festival:
“One of the great things that happened at RIFF was meeting Tamika Lamison. She is the founder of Make a Film Foundation but also had a feature in the festival called Last Life, an amazing film/allegory on forgiveness and choice related to enslaved people. In addition, her Make A Film Foundation recently funded The Black Ghiandola, also showcased and written by 16-year-old Anthony Conti, who died last December right as this was finished. Tamika gets talent like Johnny Depp, Laura Dern and a cast of amazing people to support, star and direct.
I also went to the opening day of NONA, Kate Bosworth’s film on human trafficking. Her husband, Micheal Polish wrote and directed it. The film offered a unique perspective on the human trafficking issue that dispelled a lot of the current notions presented in media. In addition, he focused on the human side on why and how this happens – and that most of the victims have no idea until it is too late that they are being trafficked. Quite frankly, it changed my perspective on the issue especially since most of the victims of human trafficking in the US are from the US, not foreigners. Many are trafficked by people they know – family members, friends, and boyfriends. I have seen quite a few of these films but the point of view of this feature was focused more on how innocent women are trapped and/or forced into this rather than what the life is – in other words, less about the sex scenes and more about putting a face to the victims.”
Stephanie Forshee with Backstage provides some insight and guidance to budding and aspiring film directors. She answers every question such as what does a film director really do, how to get started, and how to find your artistic style as a director. She discusses several examples of how some of the most famous directors got their start. She reminds readers of one truth of the business: everyone’s path is different
Read the Full Article Here: How to Become a Film Director
Screenwriting is an inspiring, creative, amazing profession with seemingly endless opportunities. However, it can be daunting, especially for the newcomers. There’s a lot to take into account when writing out your movie: the setting, the time period, the genre, which actors will play which characters. The movie business has a lot of moving parts, but unlike writing novels where the novel is the finished product, the screenplay is where the whole journey begins. And that process is often very long and arduous. Stephanie Palmer, author of Good In a Room, provides several infographics to help decipher the screenwriting and process and movie business.
Read the Full Article Here: Screenplay Writing Explained In 7 Infographics
Okay, so you’ve gone to twenty gazillion auditions, it feels like, and you’ve heard nothing yet. But you HAVE to know the results of your auditions. You’re desperate to book work. So what do you do? When should you hear something? Do you follow up? How often should you follow up? To quote Tom Petty, the waiting is the hardest part. So, what should you do while you’re waiting for a “yes”? Rachel with Cast It Talent offers insight for actors on how to stay on their radar in a professional manner as you work your way into the acting business.
Read the full article here: How to Stay on a CD’s Radar (Without Annoying Them to Death
Have you been staring at your computer screen at the blank page as the cursor taunts you with your inability to make it move? Caught yourself doodling on the blank notebook page because the words just. won’t. come. out. Is there a scene you’ve already written but, let’s face it, it’s pure fertilizer. If you have something on the page, you are halfway there. Give yourself a big high five. Don’t worry. Help is on the way! Alex Bloom with Script Magazine offers three “script hacks” on how to fix a broken scene so you can finish the story successfully and be on your way to winning your Oscar.
Read the full article here: SCRIPT HACKS: 3 Kick-Ass Methods To Fix A Broken Screenplay Scene
It seems like the only to be successful in the world sometimes is to start your career when your ten, especially if you aspire to work in the entertainment industry. Sometimes we settle on a career because we think that’s all we can do. Sometimes there’s that one dream that won’t leave us be until we actively decide to pursue it. Sometimes, we don’t decide it’s time to pursue that dream until much later in life. Well, Stephanie Forshee with Backstage offers insight on how to pursue your ambitions of becoming an actor for those who decide to pursue acting at an older age.
It’s never too late to chase your dreams.
Read full article here: How to Become an Actor Later in Life
Ken Miyamoto shares some morsels of inspiration from the brilliant mind of Greta Gerwig, the writer and director of Lady Bird. He shares her insight through a series of interviews with the actress turn writer/director. Here are a few highlights:
- Writing Words that Don’t Look Like They’ve Been Written
- Taking the Time to Prepare Yourself
- Story Structure Is Embedded Within Us All
- You Have to Take the Leap
- Don’t Judge and Dismiss Your Own Writing
- Listen to Your Characters
- Treat Each Character as If They Could Have Their Own Movie About Them
- Great Screenplays Should Be Like Poetry
Read the full article here: Screenwriting Advice From LADY BIRD Writer/Director Greta Gerwig
Writing requires a tremendous amount of work and that work often happens in phases. If you were to look at the first drafts of Hamilton or Harry Potter, they would look undeniably different from their final products. First, you brainstorm. Then you create outlines about your story, the characters, the plot, and every other detail imaginable. Writers do this several times in several different ways. Then they write the first of many drafts. Ken Miyamoto with ScreenCraft discusses the difference between outlines, treatments, and scriptments and how each of them is important to the story development process.
Read the full article here: Outlines, Treatments, and Scriptments, Oh My!