Basics of Screenwriting

Course Description

Introduction to the craft of screenwriting, particularly in regards to the principles of narrative and storytelling, traditional three-act structure, character, and dialogue. Through intensive reading and writing exercises, along with workshop critiques, students produce a finished treatment and the beginning of a feature-length screenplay.

Learning Outcomes

  • Develop view, read, analyze, and evaluate published and produced scripts for the purpose of understanding the major constituent elements of a traditional screenplay.
  • Identify the individual components of a successful screenplay.
  • Understand the traditional three-act structure and its elements, including initial conflict, rising action, climax, falling action, and denouement.
  • Generate a compelling and coherent plot of the level that would sustain a feature- length film.
  • Create multi-faceted and complex characters, and be able to create effective dialogue.
  • Produce a complete and compact treatment, which successfully conveys their script idea in an engaged and compact format.
  • Produce a successful and significant sample of a screenplay draft.

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School of Arts, Letters, and Sciences

“Our faculty are established scholars and creators in their own fields. They are dedicated to making your entry into their disciplines a successful one, preparing you for your career as well as graduate study.”
School of Arts, Letters, and Sciences
Jackson M., Class of 2021, Military Veteran
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