Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Brian Helgeland: Screenwriters Lecture

Writer Brian Helgeland (42, Robin Hood, Green Zone, The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3, Man on Fire, Mystic River, A Knight's Tale, Conspiracy Theory, Payback, L.A. Confidential) explains what it feels like to win an Oscar and a Razzie on the same weekend, why he thinks writer's block is a myth, and reveals Clint Eastwood's unique powers of persuasion.


1 comment:

Kathy Smart said...

These interviews are worth taking the time to watch. Here we have yet another great writer speaking to scriptwriters to pass on knowledge. First: Brian Helgeland is not a scriptwriter, he is a filmmaker. If he wanted to write words, he would be a novelist, if he wanted to write dialogue, he would be a playwright. He makes movies for a living.

• Never be cynical about the work. Do work that is worth writing about, compelling and commercial.

• A screenplay is theoretical. Filmmaking is brutally practical. Money runs out, locations change. You can’t make the movie you want by sitting at home and putting it on paper.

• Screenwriters have to fight. Be good at what they do, and never give an inch. Screenwriters and directors need each other and can be each other’s greatest allies in making better movies.

• To make a great film, you need to risk making a bad film.

• There are no shortcuts to writing scripts. Each work has its unique troubles and satisfactions.

• Movie dialogue is how people wished they talked. Get the rhythm, say it out loud, say it often. Set yourself a task to make 10 lines into 7. Actors want less.

• For every scene, think of how to tell the story without words.