April 7 - May 31
Screenwriting: Core Elements (Apr. 2020)
Registration is open until April 7, 2020
Michael Urban

The application period for the course has ended. Watch the Sundance Co//ab newsletter for updates on future course offerings.


Learn the core elements of writing a screenplay for a feature film, with an accomplished screenwriter as your guide. In this live, online course, you will develop a new script idea into an outline that can be used to write your first draft. The eight weeks will cover character development, theme, story arcs and visual storytelling. Sessions include presentation, discussion, and interactive exercises. The course concludes with a one-on-one mentoring session focused on your project.


The course will be held live in our virtual classroom. All sessions are recorded for registered participants who are unable to attend live.

  • DURATION: Eight weeks, April 7 - May 31 
  • SCHEDULE: Tuesdays, 9am - 11am PT
    • Extended first class session: Tuesday, April 7, 9am - 12:30pm PT
    • Extended last class session: Tuesday, May 19, 9am - 12pm PT
    • One-on-one mentoring sessions are held between May 24 - 31 

Instructor
Michael Urban has been a working screenwriter since selling his first screenplay in 2001, just six months after graduating from the American Film Institute with a Master of Fine Arts Degree in Screenwriting. In 2002 production began on that screenplay, resulting in the MGM/UA feature film, SAVED! Premiering at the Sundance Film Festival, the film went on to win accolades at South by Southwest and the Gen Arts Film Festival. more...
Advisor
Éva Gárdos is an award-winning film director and editor born in Hungary which she left at the age of six. Francis Ford Coppola gave Gardos her first job in film, working as a production assistant on Coppola’s epic APOCALYPSE NOW in the Philippines. “That was my film school.” She went on to establish a career as a film editor (VALLEY GIRL, MASK, BASTARD OUT OF CAROLINA) working with distinguished directors such as Barbet Schroeder, Peter Bogdanovich, and Anjelica Huston. “All of the films I worked on had a dark side,” she recalls. “I’m always attracted to books, movies, art and music that are dangerous, oddly beautiful and funny in weird ways.” Éva’s screenwriting and feature film directorial debut, AN AMERICAN RHAPSODY, starred a young Scarlett Johansson. The film is based on the true life events of Éva’s family escaping from Hungary in the 1950’s and being forced to leave their infant child (Éva) behind. more...
Advisor
Matty Rich, highly regarded as one of the pioneers of Black Filmmakers burst onto the Hollywood scene in the early 90’s, gaining major recognition as 19-year-old acclaimed writer/director/producer in his award-winning film STRAIGHT OUT OF BROOKLYN. Mega Director Jonathan Demme discovered Matty Rich and STRAIGHT OUT OF BROOKLYN during an editing session for SILENCE OF THE LAMBS. He immediately took him under his wing and the movie went on to be a huge success winning the Sundance Film Festival’s Grand Jury Prize Award for his critically acclaimed film STRAIGHT OUT OF BROOKLYN in which he was wrote, directed, produced and acted in. Samuel Goldwyn Films distributed the movie theatrically. The film would go on to win the Independent Spirit Award, the NAACP Image Award and The Producer’s Guild Award. Shortly thereafter, Matty was inducted into the Directors Guild of America (DGA) by African American Hollywood icons Sidney Poitier and Bill Duke. more...

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