The MacGuffin

Ken Miyamoto with ScreenCraft discusses the MacGuffin, what it is, and how to properly use it to tell your story as effectively as possible. He uses films such as James Bond, Indiana Jones, and Citizen Kane to illustrate how the MacGuffin can be an effective storytelling tool and add conflict to the story.

Read the full article here: How Screenwriters Can Master the MacGuffin

Ten Screenplay Structures That Screenwriters Can Use

Every story is different and there are different ways of telling a story. Ken Miyamoto from ScreenCraft discusses ten different story structures that writers can use to structure their screenplays. Yes, sometimes chronological order works best and makes the most sense. Other times, a different approach proves to be more effective or allows the storyteller to be more creative. All successful stories have a structure to them, but by utilizing different methods of structure, writers can create a more visually fascinating and engaging for the audience.

Read full article here: 10 Screenplay Structures That Screenwriters Can Use

Symbolic: Top Trio

Michael Schlif with The Script Lab discusses the three key characters in a film. Schlif refers to them as the top trio: the shadow, the ghost, and the idol.

Read the full article here: Symbolic: Top Trio

STORY BROADS: 6 Top Tips for Dealing with Feedback

Vicky Hinault with Story Broads uses her delightful brand of humor and wit to deliver insight on how to deal with feedback. Every profession requires that you be receptive to feedback in some way, shape, or form; but it’s especially important in the creative world. Don’t worry, Quentin Tarantino still gets notes.

STORY BROADS: 6 Top Tips for Dealing with Feedback

Screenwriting Lessons: “The Social Network” — Part 2: Narrative Framework

Scott Meyers breaks down the Academy-award winning script of “The Social Network” to discuss the narrative framework and how that can propel your story in a strong direction.

Read the full article here: Screenwriting Lessons: “The Social Network” — Part 2: Narrative Framework

5 Storytelling Lessons from Bill Murray

John Bucher with LA Screenwriter extracts five storytelling lessons from the work of the legendary Bill Murray. He uses examples from films such as Ghostbusters, Lost in Translation, Groundhog Day, St. Vincent, and Rock the Kasbah to help illustrate each point. And seriously, who doesn’t love Bill Murray?

Read full article here: 5 Storytelling Lessons from Bill Murray

Sundance Directors Lab 2016: Pippa Bianco on the Differences Between a Short and a Feature

Pippa Bianco with the Sundance Directors Lab discusses the difference between a short film and a feature film and how they both have their own challenges and how those challenges help you grow as an artist.

Sundance Directors Lab 2016: Pippa Bianco on the Differences Between a Short and a Feature

6 Filmmaking Tips from ‘Wonder Woman’ Director Patty Jenkins

Patty Jenkins became a household name with the 2017 release of the box office annihilating film Wonder Woman. Here are six pieces of advice from the record-breaking director herself.

Read full article here: 6 Filmmaking Tips from ‘Wonder Woman’ Director Patty Jenkins

The Engine of Empathy

Caitlin Durante provides three key rules to effectively convey characters’ emotions in your stories and screenplays. She pulls examples from The Godfather, Kramer vs. Kramer, and Edward Scissorhands to help illustrate the points.

Read full article here: The Engine of Empathy: Three Ways To Convey Characters’ Emotions

The ‘Jane Test’

Angela Watercutter at Wired magazine discusses the “Bechdel Test”, a simple three question test to gauge the level of gender bias (towards females in particular) that a film or story has. Watercutter goes a step farther and introduces what she calls the “Jane test”. The name is inspired by Natalie Portman’s character Jane Foster in the MCU’s Thor films. Following the lead of script reader and producer Ross Putnam, who began posting female character descriptions in scripts on Twitter, she adds three additional questions to consider. The point of the test is to evaluate how female characters are portrayed, not just onscreen, but on paper in the initial script so that female characters can be given the multi-dimensional qualities they deserve.

Read full article here: The “Jane” Test