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BAFTA Screenwriters' Lecture Series

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London, United Kingdom


Without great scripts, films are nothing. This special podcast strand from the BAFTA and BFI Screenwriters' Lecture Series brings together inspiring talks from practitioners at the top of their game.




Beau Willimon: Screenwriting Lecture

The playwright and screenwriter, best known as writer and showrunner of BAFTA-nominated Netflix series House of Cards, delivered a thoughtful lecture about his career in film and TV, his political influences and the concept of power in his work.

Duration: 01:11:14

Jimmy McGovern: Screenwriting Lecture

The BAFTA-winning writer of Cracker, The Street, Accused and Banished talked to journalist Miranda Sawyer about his passion for people, his politics and what makes a great screenplay. In an impassioned lecture Jimmy McGovern discussed his career and marrying real life with drama to tell captivating, hard-hitting stories about working-class people.

Duration: 01:25:07

Andrew Bovell: Screenwriting Lecture

Playwright and screenwriter Andrew Bovell delivered a remarkably honest and insightful lecture that touched on the purpose of his filmmaking and what he learned writing in Hollywood. For Bovell, it’s the universal nature of film that makes screenwriting both appealing and difficult; there’s a never-ending question of a writer's responsibility and the purpose of cinema: “Do we aim to give expression to the themes of the day, or should we just tell a damn good story?”

Duration: 01:21:58

Nick Hornby: Screenwriting Lecture

In the first lecture of the Screenwriter's Lecture 2015, Nick Hornby delivered an insightful talk, in conversation with BBC film journalist Francine Stock. The screenwriter talked about adapting other people's novels, the collaboration between a writer and director and the difference between writing novels and writing for film.

Duration: 01:10:08

Steven Knight: Screenwriting Lecture

Steven Knight made his BAFTA and Oscar-nominated feature debut with crime thriller Dirty Pretty Things. He followed this with historical drama Amazing Grace, and the David Cronenberg-directed gangster tale Eastern Promises. As co-creator of TV gameshow Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Knight recently returned to the medium with hit drama series Peaky Blinders. His feature directing debut Hummingbird was followed by the original and gripping drama Locke, starring Tom Hardy. In the closing...

Duration: 01:16:40

Tony Gilroy: Q&A

The writer of the Bourne films and Michael Clayton talks to journalist Mark Salisbury after delivering the penultimate lecture in the 2013 series. Recorded at the BFI Southbank on 29 September 2013.

Duration: 00:38:51

Tony Gilroy: Screenwriting Lecture

In the penultimate lecture of the 2013 series, American screenwriter Tony Gilroy (the Bourne films, Michael Clayton) talks about the journey to his first script sale aged 30, his outlining, writing and editing process, and why 'the quality of your writing is absolutely capped by your understanding of human behaviour'. Recorded at the BFI Southbank on 29 September 2013.

Duration: 00:33:42

Susannah Grant: Q&A

Screenwriter Susannah Grant speaks after her lecture with Briony Hanson, and takes questions from the audience. Recorded at BFI Southbank on 28 September 2013.

Duration: 01:21:22

Susannah Grant: Screenwriting Lecture

In the third lecture of the 2013 series, American screenwriter Susannah Grant (Erin Brockovich, Pocahontas, The Soloist) talks about the importance of the screenplay's integrity and 'unique voice', the necessary hard work (rather than genius) screenwriting entails and why the endeavour 'guarantees humiliation and abuse'. Recorded at the BFI Southbank on 28 September 2013.

Scott Frank: Screenwriting Lecture

The second lecture in the 2012 series is delivered by Scott Frank, a diverse writer whose films include Dead Again, Out of Sight, Get Shorty, Minority Report and Marley & Me. Recorded on 1 October, Frank spoke about the idea of theme, collaborating with authors, and why 'rules are something you cling to when ideas fail'. Chairing the Q&A was Mark Salisbury.

Duration: 01:14:35

Julian Fellowes: Screenwriting Lecture

It's 2012, and the BAFTA and BFI Screenwriters' Lecture Series is back for another run. First up in this season is Julian Fellowes: writer of Downton Abbey, Gosford Park and the TV drama Titanic. The talk was recorded at the BFI Southbank on 26 September 2012.

Duration: 01:11:27

Charlie Kaufman: Screenwriting Lecture

One of modern cinema's most celebrated writers, Kaufman's work includes surreal fantasy Being John Malkovich, cerebral sci-fi Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and comedy drama Adaptation. This lecture, recorded at the BFI in London, is already a viral hit and an absolute must-download for anyone interested in creativity.

Duration: 01:09:56

Frank Cottrell Boyce: Screenwriting Lecture

The Liverpudlian writer has proved a deft hand in a range of genres, from powerful family drama Hilary & Jackie to family adventure Millions, sci-fi drama Code 46 and comedy biopic 24 Hour Party People. In this lecture held at BAFTA on 27 September 2011, he discusses the techniques of writing for the big screen.

Duration: 00:59:46