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Join independent film director and screenwriter Mark Tapio Kines as he walks you through the process of getting your screenplay idea out of your head and onto the printed page. Learn how to define your story's characters, obstacles, and scope; understand the importance of each of the three acts in a traditional narrative structure; and discover how to build tension and reveal key plot points. Lastly, Mark shows you how to format your screenplay to make it readable and well paced, and navigate the legalities of adapting an existing property, collaborating with a cowriter, or engaging in a work-for-hire contract.
I love screenwriting. It's such a thrill to see the words and ideas you put down on paper literally come to life before your eyes. And for me, the screenplay is by far the most important thing in a movie. A good script trumps even the most beautiful cinematography or emotionally-real performance. Telling a story is what filmmaking is all about. And the story begins with a writer. My name is Mark Tapio Kines, I worked in the Motion Picture Industry for over 20 years. I have written and directed two live- action features and over a dozen shorts. I am the author of eight full-length screenplays of my own, and I have read hundreds of scripts written by other people, from Oscar winners to first-timers. I have seen the good, I have seen the bad, and the one thing I have learned is that every aspiring screenwriter can truly benefit from mastering the art of story structure and dramatic conflict. This course is for all writers at all levels, anybody who has an idea for a movie and wants to turn it into a screenplay. What we're going to do is attach a character to your idea. This will be your protagonist. We'll take your protagonist and build the story around them. The story will follow the rules of what we call the Three-act Structure, which is the foundation of all dramatic storytellers. In the first of these three acts, we will introduce your characters and establish your premise. In Act 2 we will take your protagonist and set them on an adventure full of dramatic conflict. In Act 3 we will bring the conflict to a satisfying resolution. After you built out your story, I'll give you some tips on how to format your screenplay. I will even go over some legal issues to help you protect your work. Above all, this course is designed to make you understand your number-one goal as a screenwriter, which is always keep your audience wondering what happens next. So, if you're ready, let's start exploring the fundamentals of screenwriting.
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