Screen writing research portfolio

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A lecture on conducting research for your screenplay, including the kinds of things writers research


  • 1. Screen Writing Vs. Research
  • 2. Screen WritingWhy do we research?
  • 3. Screen WritingWhy do we research?So our characters, story lines and setups arent tired, cliched, false..
  • 4. Screen Writing A good script is built on great research Like every other part of film & TV screen writing involves research.Events, characters, jobs, places, periods in history, fashion, language & dialect, laws, culture, societies..
  • 5. Screen WritingGood research helps you to write your script.It gives colour & texture to our stories, it adds depth & realism, it makes writing easier, it makes writing better.
  • 6. ResearchYouve already done some research.By the end of this unit I want everyone tohand me a research portfolio, with primary& secondary research inside.Finish it up with a research report (one sideof A4) with graphs & charts.
  • 7. Examples of researchWorking title: The CellSynopsis: A high society Manhattan catburglar wakes up in a prison cell in Rio DeJaneiro
  • 8. LocationWeather: Sunny, hot, bright Fits with the theme of redemption for main character Francis Buckingham
  • 9. Characters job
  • 10. Possible back story?
  • 11. Issues affecting Rios prisons
  • 12. Conditions inside
  • 13. Living Conditions
  • 14. Prisons architecture
  • 15. ResearchETC
  • 16. ResearchYour portfolio should also contain someprimary research: who is your audience?What do they want to see in a film from thisgenre?What research technique can you use to get this info?
  • 17. ResearchYour portfolio should be handed in as a printedhard copy in a folder.Your report should sum up your findings, andhow this has influenced your screenplay.
  • 18. But how much research do I need Iain?I would expect (at a minimum) to have at least20 sides of A4.Print screens of websites / news articles arefine, so long as you annotate them (why arethey useful) and reference them.Secondary research is easy. You findsomething relevant, you print it, you scribble onit, you put it in the folder. Job done.