Centre for Continuing Education

Screenwriting Course: From Concept to Feature Film Script

Film. Focus on cinema.

Appreciate and learn about film the smart way with Film courses at CCE, the University of Sydney.

For anyone contemplating a career in screenwriting or filmmaking, or for those simply interested in a greater appreciation of how films are put together, this course is a must. You will learn how to write a screenplay, about the fundamentals of writing for a particular market, and the writer’s relationship with the director and producer. You’ll also learn how to structure a screenplay, create captivating film characters and use dramatic strategies effectively. Writing a film is a craft, and once you learn the guidelines you will have the confidence to begin your own film story.

Outcomes

By the end this course, you should be able to:

  • determine ideas that are likely to be successful movie ideas
  • tell a visual story
  • approach the writing process as a professional
  • describe the component parts of a script and how they support one another
  • judge the worth of a script by its essential parts.

Content

This course covers the following topics:

  • writing for a market
  • understanding genre
  • creating a premise
  • creating a ‘logline’ to sell your concept
  • the importance of plot and character arcs
  • creating a step-outline and understanding why you start with the ending
  • understanding how to introduce your 3D characters
  • writing a synopsis as an industry tool
  • creating a ‘beatsheet’ with clusters of scenes
  • writing a treatment for a feature film
  • formatting a screenplay
  • the scene as a mini-movie
  • trouble-shooting the first draft
  • copyright, options and agents.

Intended Audience

Anyone interested in writing their own screen story, or for those who would like a greater understanding of how film scripts are written.

Delivery Style

Delivered as a series of interactive workshops where active participation is encouraged.

Recommended Reading

Read screenplays of movies you’ve seen.

Materials

You will receive pages of a professionally written script that the trainer has written. You will also see a film as a case study.

Who teaches this course?

Marc Rosenberg has been an active member of the international film industry for over thirty years. As a screenwriter, he has won Australian Writer’s Guild Awards for the films Dingo (starring Miles Davis) and December Boys (starring Daniel ‘Harry Potter’ Radcliffe).

Marc has produced three of the seven films he has written. His last movie, Elevator, was made in the US and has sold all over the world. As an academic, Marc has taught screenwriting and film production at a number of universities in the United States, India, Norway and Australia.

Features

  • Expert trainers
  • Central locations
  • Small class sizes
  • Free, expert advice
  • Student materials – yours to keep
  • Statement of completion

What others say.

  • The presenter is experienced, knowledgeable and very engaging. I thoroughly enjoyed the class and would recommend it to anyone with an interest in film.

  • Very pleased with the degree of information, insight and guidance. The content regarding subjects, strategies, formatting and various aspects regarding the industry, were all great. Everything was conveyed clearly and accurately. A lot of solid information overall. Practical and compelling delivery from the tutor. Happy with the experience, very helpful.

What others say.

  • Presenter is extremely knowledgeable and experienced, and has a warm and encouraging teaching manner. The printed notes handed out are excellent resources. The last class especially, showing video excerpts from films to illustrate film techniques was brilliant. All in all, loved attending every week.
  • I found the course incredibly helpful and I'm excited to use what I have learned to help me write.