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Script Development - TFT00046M

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  • Department: Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media
  • Module co-ordinator: Mr. Andrew Vickers
  • Credit value: 20 credits
  • Credit level: M
  • Academic year of delivery: 2020-21

Module summary

This module explores the story development process for film and television projects from idea and concept generation, to development in treatment form through to the creation of a first draft script.

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching cycle
A Spring Term 2020-21

Module aims

To develop and enhance a range of creative and technical film and television script development skills through an understanding of the underlying issues relating to preparing a concept for production.

To develop an understanding of script development as a collaborative process - working with other writers, producers, and film or television executives.

To develop and encourage professional production values through technical expertise and reflective learning.

To emphasize the importance of creative and technical collaboration for the effective management of the pre-production process in terms of use of time, working with other personnel and problem solving.

Module learning outcomes

Subject content:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of how to identify and build story concepts targeted at specific audiences, while retaining an individual approach and vision in storytelling.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the techniques used to sell concepts to commissioning agents and other funding bodies to facilitate development and production.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how to express visual, aural, dialogue and story action attributes in written form using industry-standard formats.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how the script functions in the pre-production process, including script breakdown for logistical requirements, budgeting and scheduling.

Academic and graduate skills

  • Demonstrate an ability to project manage, organising all required elements in a systematic way and managing time effectively to complete the development tasks to schedule.
  • Demonstrate an ability to critically reflect on the script development process including discussion of both aesthetic and technical aspects of project creation.

Assessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
Essay: Outline, Treatment, First Draft Script
N/A 75
Essay/coursework
Presentation: Pitch
N/A 25

Special assessment rules

None

Reassessment

Task Length % of module mark
Essay/coursework
Essay: Outline, Treatment, First Draft Script
N/A 75
Essay/coursework
Presentation: Pitch
N/A 25

Module feedback

Oral feedback for formative presentation; detailed written feedback for summative presentation by spring Term, Week 8; detailed written feedback for written assignment by Summer Term Week 1

Indicative reading

Quinn, E & Counihan, J 'The Pitch' Faber and Faber, 2006, ISBN: 0571227414

Vogler, C 'The Writer's Journey: Mythic Structure for Writers' Michael Wiese Productions, 2007, ISBN 978-1-932907-36-0

Flinn, D 'How Not to Write a Screenplay', Lone Eagle, 1999, ISBN 1-58065-015-5

Yoneda, K 'The Script Selling Game' Michael Wiese Productions, 2002, ISBN 0-941188-44-2

Alberstat, P 'The Insider's Guide to Film Finance' Focal Press, 2008, ISBN 978-0-240-51661-5

Levinson, L 'Filmmakers and Financing: Business Plans for Independents' Focal Press, 2007, ISBN 0-240-80828-2

Litwak, M Dealmaking in the Film and Television Industry From Negotiations Through Final Contracts Silman-James, 2nd edition, 2002, ISBN: 1-879-50566-5

Donaldson, M 'Clearance and Copyright: Everything the Independent Filmmaker Needs to Know' Silman-James, 2nd edition, 2003, ISBN: 1-879-50572-X

Adcock, D et al. 'Marketing Principles' Financial Times/ Prentice Hall, 2004 ISBN: 0582849551

Simon, D 'Film and Video Budgets', Michael Wiese Productions, 2010, ISBN 1-932-907734

Singleton, R 'Film Scheduling: Or How Long Will It Take to Shoot Your Movie?' Lone Eagle, 1997, ISBN 0-943-728398

Singleton, R 'Film Budgeting: Or How Much Will It Cost to Shoot Your Movie?' Lone Eagle, 1996, ISBN 0-943-728657

Glebas, F 'Directing the Story: Professional Storytelling and Storyboarding Techniques for Live Action and Animation' Focal Press, 2008, ISBN 0-240-810767

Katz, Steven, 'Film Directing Shot by Shot' Michael Wiese Productions, 1991, ISBN 0-941188-10-8

Vineyard, J 'Setting Up Your Shots' Michael Wiese Productions, 2000, ISBN 0-941188-73-6

Davies, A and Wistreich, N 'The Film Finance Handbook: How to Fund Your Film' Netribution Ltd., 2007, ISBN 0-955-014328

Baumgarten, P et al. 'Producing, Financing and Distributing Film' Limelight Editions, 2004, ISBN 0-87910-108-3



The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.