Dear Fellow Screenwriter:
I don't know what inspired me or if there was a particular film that got me interested in filmmaking. There was no magical movie experience that had altered the course of my life. I had not met a superstar that caused me to be so overtaken by his or her presence that I knew I wanted to be in showbusiness. As a child, I was not particularly artistic, and I was a horrific actor – at least according to my parents. In fact, I hadn't seen many movies during my childhood. Sure, I was amazed by the splendor and spectacle of “The Wizard of Oz.” And the theme to “Rocky” tickled my imagination. But I didn’t want to write another Oz or another Rocky.
So it was a curious moment for me when, one day a high school teacher asked me what I wanted to do with my life about a week before graduation. At that point I didn’t know. Or so I thought.
“I want to be a filmmaker.”
It just…popped out of my mouth. To be honest, maybe I was inspired by a movie we had seen in class entitled “Hollywood Shuffle.” I had heard how the director, Robert Townsend had to raise his own money to make the film because no one would give the him money to produce it. I remember laughing out loud with the same intensity that I had for “Revenge of the Nerds.” Townsend had written, directed and produced the film.
Now, I didn’t make a pact with myself that I’d make films. I wasn’t quite aware of the fact that that movie had had an impact on me. Maybe I spoke out of respect for the Director’s story and wanted to accomplish something on my own terms too.
Looking back at it now, I believe more and more that that film was the catalyst for me and my desire to be a filmmaker. From that standpoint, I’ve come to believe that screenwriters are filmmakers just as much as directors. More than any other collaborator in the filmmaking process, screenwriters have the power to create something from nothing.
The power to create something from nothing… In this course, you will learn how to do that. You will learn how to craft a classic film based on a screenplay paradigm that stands the test of time.
After taking this course, you will no longer view writing a screenplay in the same way. Come join us…
We discuss the screenplays opening scenes and how it sets up our screenplay for the big things that happen in the future...
We discuss the parts of Act II before diving into specifics.
We've come so far! We discuss the parts of Act III.
We discuss the climactic moment in our screenplay!
Chidiki Whitley is an award-winning writer of primarily short screenplays. He's also a non-fiction writer and instructor. He was born and raised in Washington, D.C., and now lives in New York, NY. He has written books on the subject of film (as Chike Camara) including "Short Film Structure: Secrets" and "40 Compelling and Scalable Short Film Ideas" - both available on Amazon. A filmmaker, writer, father, husband, and life enthusiast, Camara spends most of his time viewing life from a skewed position with love in his heart.