Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The State of Screenwriting Education Today, Part 1

Let's start with an example . . . 

Tell me what this has to do with traditional screenwriting education:

HOW TO DO IT by Monty Python

Cut to:  

a sign saying 'How to Do It'. Music. Sitting casually on the edge of a dais are three presenters in sweaters - Noel, Jackie and Alan)

Alan: (John Cleese) Hello children.

Noel: (Graham Chapman) Hello.

Jackie: (Eric Idle) Hello.

Alan: Well, last week we showed you how to be a gynaecologist. And this week on 'How to Do It' we're going to learn how to play the flute, how to split the atom, how to construct box girder bridges and how to irrigate the Sahara and make vast new areas cultivatable, but first, here's Jackie to tell you how to rid the world of all known diseases.

Jackie: Hello Alan.

Alan: Hello Jackie.

Jackie: Well, first of all become a doctor and discover a marvelous cure for something, and then, when the medical world really starts to take notice of you, you can jolly well tell them what to do and make sure they get everything right so there'll never be diseases any more.

Alan: Thanks Jackie, that was great

Noel: Fantastic.

Alan: Now, how to play the flute. (picking up a flute) Well you blow in one end and move your fingers up and down the outside.

Noel: Great Alan. Well, next week we'll be showing you how black and white people can live together in peace and harmony, and Alan will be over in Moscow showing you how to reconcile the Russians and the Chinese. Til then, cheerio.

Alan: Bye.

Jackie: Bye-Bye.

-         -     -

We'll continue the discussion next time when we talk about The Mechanics of Mystery.

Stay tuned!