This workshop will give you the tools to stop dreaming about screenwriting and start screenwriting! When you have completed this course of study, exchange, and sharing, you will never look and experience screen narratives in the same way.

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Time: eight Thursdays, 18:00 to 20:00

Duration: 11 March - 29 April, 2021

Location: Online via Zoom—, ,

Description

Open to all.

Limited to 12 participants.

When we settle down at the cinema or in front of our TV or computer screens and enter the world of a scripted narrative, we are handed the blue pill of compliance and the red pill of awareness—and we are not even aware that this choice has been offered!

Federico Fellini called the cinema, “A dream we dreamt with our eyes open,” and that is quite true: we sit in the dark, alone in our thoughts even though surrounded by others, and we watch a “world” unfold with the depth, veracity, and dimension of a vivid dream. 

The best gift I can give you during this on-line workshop is the red pill of awareness. Our journey will give you the tools to stop dreaming about screenwriting and start screenwriting! When you have completed this course of study, exchange, and sharing, you will never look and experience screen narratives in the same way.

How do screen narratives work? What is narrative structure? How do we take narratives from other sources—short stories, diaries, plays, magazine articles—and reimagine them for the screen?

Prior to the start of the workshop, participants will select a short story or narrative—either their own or from another source—that they would like to adapt, and deposit it to a Drop-Box file. These will be made available to all participants, who will have the first two weeks to read and begin thinking about them. 

At the first session we will screen and analyze two short films adaptations, followed by a basic introduction to screenwriting. Over the remaining sessions, we will follow a professional course of ideation and brainstorming, treatment writing, and several versions of a dialogued draft of your script. Individuals must be prepared to present their work aloud.


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Workshop leader

Credit: Carla Clarke
Jacob Potashnik has spent the last 40 years following two streams of activity: producer and line-producer of documentaries, television series, commercials, web content, and films of every genre; and award-winning screenwriter, script doctor, consultant and educator. Jacob is the recipient of the WGC award for the best screenplay for, “Stardom,” and is the author of The Golem of Hampstead, a collection of stories short-listed for the QWF’s Concordia University First Book prize. In 2019, Jacob co-produced “Pink Lake,” a feature film that screened at the international film festivals at Vancouver and Hamilton.

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