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Hanna Wellish '12, a student in the JBS Environmental Health and Justice Program, creates a short video about the students' work with Worcester Roots.


Filmmaking: From Script to Screen

Used by Media Technology Services

At a Glance

Program Overview

Have you ever wanted to create a movie from start to finish? Now is your chance to gain a sound understanding of all three phases of the filmmaking process--screenwriting, production, and editing. Put this knowledge into practice, working in a small group to write, produce, direct, and edit a 20-30 minute short movie.
Develop an enhanced understanding not only of the elements of narrative moviemaking but also of the rigors of a collaborative enterprise that requires intensive planning, organization, and communication.
In the first two weeks, students will engage in scene study through readings and viewings and will learn the structural principles of narrative filmmaking. They will complete focused activities in story development and motion picture editing, designed to prepare them to undertake the larger collaborative creative enterprise.
The third and fourth weeks will be workshop based. Students will master screenplay format by each writing a short original script. Additionally, they will receive hands-on instruction in the techniques of movie shooting including camera operation, image composition, lighting and cinematography, and sound recording. They will put these techniques into practice by producing a pre-existing script, learning how to work as a production team, coordinate roles, execute the specs of a screenplay, stage action and direct actors. All students will have the opportunity to explore a variety of specialized post-production tasks, including logging, trimming, sound effects editing, mixing, compositing, and color grading.
The remaining four weeks will be devoted to the main project of the semester. One short (20-30 page) script will be selected from the students’ original work, and all students will collaboratively refine it and prepare it for production. This movie will then be shot at arranged locations according to a production schedule. The production will be a large-scale experiential learning activity in which students will enact the roles of a professional movie crew: director, assistant directors, director of photography, cameramen, gaffers, grips, set decorators, and sound recording personnel. The experience will conclude with an organized post-production effort, in which students will specialize in order to maximize efficiency in the finishing phase of their film--trimming, integrating graphics, adding titles, mixing sound, grading color, adding music, and delivery of assets in formats suitable for exhibition.
Students will walk away from the program with a final movie production and valuable skills in filmmaking. Ideally the final project will show sufficient merit to be submitted to film festivals.