The Root of Rootability

How to Make your Protagonist Engaging I don’t think I’m the only screenwriter to be frustrated when I’m given the note “Couldn’t the main character be… just a bit more likeable?” My frustration comes partly from the fact that a lot of my protagonists are intentionally not conventionally likeable, and partly from the note having … Continue reading

Can movies cause political change?

Covering how to found a country and the devastating power of the ordinary. In the light of recent and possible future events I have been doing some soul-searching about my filmmaking. The not-so-gradual rise of the far right, both in Europe and America, has lead me to question whether there’s more I could be doing … Continue reading

Writing Movies Within Your Means, pt. 2

Writing Lighting ☛   In my previous piece I discussed how decisions about the location of your screenplay can help bring the budget down. This time I’ll focus on how your general approach to story can save you money on camera and lighting. Time was that picture quality was the first thing that would tell … Continue reading

Looking After the Little Fella

A guide to writing walk-on roles for the screen

Coming Soon, part II

How to make an industry trailer ☛ My last piece was about the trailers that show in cinemas, the ones the public gets to see. However, before a movie’s theatrical trailer or even its teaser has hit the big screen, there may have been a couple of promos already cut for that film. Indeed new … Continue reading

Coming Soon…

The art of the trailer ☛ I’ve always been a sucker for trailers. They invite you to experience all the excitement of a feature film in a couple of minutes, and you get to fill in the gaps with your imagination. As a kid I often found them more fulfilling than the film I’d come … Continue reading

Rekindling Old Frames

Deleted Scenes ☛ I’ve recently locked picture on the movie Sparks and Embers and it’s fallen to me to prepare the deleted scenes. As the editor, I work with the audience in mind so, when deciding which scenes to recommend including, I found myself wondering: what do people get from watching deleted scenes? To answer … Continue reading

Unleashing the Titan

A sneak peek at Red’s new super-camera ☛ Following the release of Red’s ground-breaking Epic Dragon camera earlier this month, I decided to talk to someone from the company to see if I could get an insight into what might be coming next from this most revolutionary of camera companies. I pitched up at their … Continue reading

Snakes, funerals and Clint Eastwood

Deciding on the shape of the frame ☛ Last time I wrote about the shape of movies in terms of story; today I want to discuss a different sort of shape: that of the screen itself. Aspect ratio. Not long ago, Vincent Laforet brought to my attention a very good video examining the history of … Continue reading

The raw ingredients of a story ☛ “Not rules, principles. McKee writes that a rule says you must do it this way. A principle says, this works and has through all remembered time.” – from ‘Adaptation’, Charlie Kaufmann I recently attended a talk given by John Yorke at the BBC Drama Writers’ Festival where he … Continue reading

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