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Writing the Character-Driven Screenplay: Alexander Payne Style

At a Glance

  • We will break down the ways Payne’s films present their main characters
  • We will look at how elements of story force characters forward, scene by scene
  • We will break down the style of writing these scripts use

ABOUT THE WEBINAR

As we work on a script project, we may know what the movie is about, what some of the plot movements ought to be, but not know all we need to about our characters.  Understanding our characters in relation to the story is crucial. If we ignore who the story is happening to, the emotional logic of the script will, of course, suffer. The constant question we face as screenwriters is: How do we build our characters so their relationship to the story is inevitable?

Alexander Payne has co-written, adapted and directed some of the finest films of the last ten years, including The Descendants, Sideways, About Schmidt and Election. His movies offer great roles for actors because they are essentially character-driven. Plot matters in his films, but always in relation to character. No matter what kind of scripts you write, what genre or size, the methods used by Alexander Payne to develop story through character can be useful to your writing process.

WHAT YOU’LL LEARN:

  • How to write better characters
  • Means to create stronger plot development
  • How story and character are interrelated
  • Ways story and place create opportunities for strong characters
  • Explore ways to improve your writing style

WHO SHOULD ATTEND?

  • Writers who want to write better characters
  • Writers who seek to build out character-driven stories
  • Writers working on low-budget feature projects
  • Writers involved in TV series creation
  • Writers looking for resources for stronger story development
  • Writers wanting to push the boundaries of their storytelling
  • Writers who want to explore the work of fine filmmakers/screenwriters

Product Details

  • Date available: 05/19/2014
  • Publication date: 05/19/2014
  • Return policy: This item is not eligible for return.

Return Policy

Your satisfaction is our top priority. If you are not satisfied with your purchase, please return the item(s) for an exchange or refund within 30 days from the purchase date, unless otherwise noted on the product page.

Ship the item(s) to The Writers Store via a traceable and insured method. You will be responsible for return shipping fees.

Please include a completed Return Form with your shipment. Refunds take up to one week to process once we have received the item(s).

Software returns must be deactivated and uninstalled from your computer before a refund may be issued. Please contact the software manufacturer if you need assistance uninstalling or deactivating your software.

The following items are not returnable: Hollywood Creative Directories, DVDs (opened), and Gift Certificates.

Meet the Author: Tom Benedek

Tom Benedek wrote the screenplay for Cocoon, The Adventures of Pinocchio, and other films. In addition to teaching the craft of screenwriting, Tom has interviewed dozens of agents, managers, production execs, working screenwriters for his Network Hollywood class at ScreenWritingMasterClass.com. He has written screenplays for Robert Zemeckis, Lawerence Kasdan, Lili Fini Zanuck and Richard Zanuck, David Brown, Ron Howard, Martin Scorsese, Sydney Pollack, Richard Rush, Harold Ramis, Lauren Schuler Donner and Richard Donner, Ray Stark, and many more.

He is a member of the Writers’ Guild of America, West and the Writers’ Branch of the Academy of Moti...

$79.99