Day of the Writer

Day of the Writer

Running Time: N/A

Click on any of the 'Day Of' links below to get more information.

Day of Distribution | Sight, Sound & The Dollar Sign - Day One | Day of Writer | Sight, Sound & The Dollar Sign - Day Two

These not-to-miss presentations from industry leaders expose filmmakers and film fans to the people and technologies that aid the creation and delivery of Maverick, independent and international cinema. As Chris Gore, author of The Ultimate Film Festival Survival Guide has stated: ?This festival is one that sets the trends and is actually ahead of the trends. Other festivals are copying Cinequest; I see it all the time?You find the future of film at Cinequest.? Empower yourself via exposure to cutting-edge technologies as well as insight and how-to knowledge from leading film professionals. Cinequest is able to bring film makers, students and lovers of film these groundbreaking forums at such affordable prices due to the generosity of its forum sponsors: Intel, Panasonic, Canon, Avid, AlwaysOn and the San Jose Mercury News.

Note: $15 Ticket price for each ?Day of? forum includes entrance into all of that day?s presentations / parts. Single presentation / part tickets may be purchased for $10 at the box office.

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Day of The Writer ? Friday, March 7 - $15

Day of the Writer is comprised of Part I, Part II and Part III. All three parts are included in the $15 ticket price. Choose either option A or B for Part I and either option C or D for Part II. Everybody participates in the same event for Part III. A single part may be purchased for $10.

9:30 am - Part I, Option A ? Story Development: Scott Sublett
9:30 am - Part I, Option B ? Master Class: Robert G. Phelps

11:00 am - Part II, Option C ? Story Development: Barnaby Dallas
11:00 am - Part II, Option D ? Master Class: James Dalessandro

1:30 pm - Part III, Cinequest Maverick Spirit Event ? A Conversation with Academy Award® Winner Michael Arndt. Moderated by screenwriting legend Richard Walter.

Part I, Option A: Prepare to Succeed: The Right Idea for the Right Writer

9:30 am - 11:00 am ? San Jose Repertory Theatre

Cinequest favorite and San Jose State University professor Scott Sublett returns to entertain and inform. Sublett?s inspiring lecture will ease you through the all-important first step of screenwriting: selecting your material and shaping it into a sharp idea that will write quickly and easily. Aimed at beginners but utterly relevant to advanced writers, too, Sublett?s methods make the whole process easier, whether you?re indie or Hollywood.

Prof. Scott Sublett (MFA UCLA) heads the screenwriting program at San Jose State University. He has written and directed two feature films: the first, ?Generic Thriller,? will be distributed by Cinequest later this year. The second, an animated satire entitled ?We Bombed in Baghdad,? is about the run-up to the war in Iraq and will debut this spring. His feature screenplay ?I Was a Teenage Sumo? was optioned by Disney, and his musical play ?Die, Die Diana? was presented at the New York Fringe Festival in 2004.

Part I, Option B: Fargo?s Foreplay: Emotional Rhythm in Screenwriting

9:30 am - 11:00 am ? Camera 12 Cinemas

Engaging emotional rhythm is the raison d?etre of traditional screenwriting elements. Using clips from the Coen brothers? Academy Award® winning masterpiece, Fargo, Mr. Phelps will teach writers to look beneath the surface structure of screenplays in order to pinpoint and create emotional rhythms that not only whet but satiate viewer appetites from start to finish. After this innovative lecture, you will have producers and directors begging you for more screenplays.

Robert G. Phelps is an attorney with the Santa Clara County Public Defender Office. He is a screenwriter and lecturer who has written for ScreenTalk Magazine. As a feature writer, he has covered skysurfing for Parachutist Magazine and the San Jose SaberCats for CNN/Sports Illustrated and the San Jose Mercury News. At Cinequest, he created the Day of the Writer.

Part II, Option C: Structure, Structure, Structure

11:00 am - 12:30 pm ? San Jose Repertory Theatre

Barnaby Dallas?s powerful presentation will take you and your idea through the outlining phase, supported by conflict, linearity, and the simplest, clearest explanation of three-act structure you?ve ever heard. Whatever your personal style, solid plotting gives your story muscle and meaning, and doing it in advance prevents blocks.

Barnaby Dallas is Director of Film Production for Spartan Film Studios. He teaches screenwriting at DreamWorks Animation and is a screenwriting instructor and produces film and theater for San Jose State University?s Department of Television, Radio, Film and Theatre.

Part II, Option D: Great Movie Scenes

11:00 am - 12:30 pm ? Camera 12 Cinemas

?I could have been a contender.? We have all seen them and quoted them repeatedly. What makes a great scene, an indelible moment? What is often lost in the impact of these memorable moments is how these scenes affect the entire movie, lifting the film to almost mythic proportions. Showing film clips from some of the finest movies ever made, screenwriter and filmmaker James Dalessandro expands on last year?s film clips for Breaking the Rules and brings us back in touch with our favorite film adventures with a fun and informative 90 minutes.

James Dalessandro is a regular contributor to the Day of the Writer. He is the author of the best selling novel, 1906, and screenwriter of the Warner Brothers epic of the same name, now in production. In his 25-year WGA career, he has sold more than 20 feature films and currently has three screenplays in pre-production, including The Italian Girl, which he will produce, and San Joaquin, which he is directing. His documentary, The Damnedest, Finest Ruins, won four film awards in 2006 and 2007.

PART III: Cinequest Maverick Spirit Event ? A Conversation with Academy Award® Winner Michael Arndt


1:30 pm - 3:00 pm ? San Jose Repertory Theatre

?I wrote Little Miss Sunshine when I was unemployed, living in a small, one-bedroom walk-up in Brooklyn and slowly burning through my hard-earned savings. I had quit my job and given myself a year off, hoping to write a salable script in that time. It was the financial equivalent of jumping off a cliff and trying to build an airplane on the way down. I had never made a dime from creative writing. I had no credits, no agent, no publishing history. I was?in every external?a complete and total loser?. What I did have, though, was an enormous sense of happiness and purpose?(finally, I could write full-time!) and boundless, delusional self-confidence.?
?Michael Arndt, Academy Award® Winner Best Original Screenplay (2006) Little Miss Sunshine. From the forward of Little Miss Sunshine: The Shooting Script

Cinequest is proud to invite you to share Michael Arndt?s inspirational creative journey and his insights on screenwriting. Moderated by the dynamic Richard Walter.

Richard Walter is an author of bestselling fiction and nonfiction, and a screenwriter who has written for virtually all of the major studios and networks. He is a professor at UCLA where for thirty years he has chaired the graduate screenwriting program in the film school. His students have written National Treasure, War of the Worlds, Sideways, Spider Man, Real Women Have Curves, Gossip Girls, Everybody Loves Raymond, The Office, among hundreds of other films and television productions.

Note: Cinequest 18 Screenwriting Competition winners will be announced from the stage at the beginning of this event.

Cinequest 18 Screenwriting Competition

Cinequest 17 Screenwriting Competition received submissions from hundreds of screenwriters. Ten finalists have been choosen:

Black Box by Ashia Chacko
The Bridge by George Chumo II
Dark Fables - Kiss of the Kill by Nicholas Siapkaris, Jack Sojka
The Iconoclast by George Chumo II
The Orchard by Diane Stredicke
The Paper Boat by Joshua Grover-David Patterson, Stephen Unger
Switchback by Bill Schreiber
Vera by Caitlin McCarthy
Wonder Drug by Caitlin McCarthy
Where the Dead Go by Mark Kratter

Finalists will have their scripts read by an outstanding jury including the following individuals. (Listed alphabetically by last name of juror).

  • Erik Bauer, Publisher, Creative Screenwriting
  • Nate Bolotin, Senior Executive/Lit Manager: Packaging/Financing and New Media, The Collective
  • Joanna Burish, Production, Distribution, Acquisitions, Imageworks Entertainment
  • Gilles Chiasson, Director of Development, Moresco Productions
  • Marla Halperin, President of Publicity and Promotion, Magic Lamp Releasing
  • Jens Michael Hussey, Director, Public Relations, Cinequest Inc.
  • Janet Jeffries, Development Executive, Lawrence Bender Productions, A Band Apart Films
  • Eugene Mandelcorn, President, Film Artists Network
  • Lucy Shuttleworth, Co-Founder of Traveller Film's, Former Head of Development, Spice Factory
  • Nancy Rae Stone, First Light Films, Independent Producer

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Cinequest Film Festival 18