Todays lecture was all about the protagonist and their need.
Their internal need and their external need
"Story comes from character."
I like this quote. I think I'm going to write it out and stick it somewhere I can see when I'm writing.
That is what went wrong with my failed film. The story did not come from the character. Hence it failed.
Characters are not cogs for your story
The story is a platform for your characters
Ben has given us permission to become weird and start talking to our characters when trying to write and develop them. I tried having a conversation with my protagonist a while ago and we didn't hit it off. But I still love him.
Some questions to consider when developing your character:
What is your characters role/position in you story world?
What are his/her key strengths?
What are his/her key weaknesses?
How does your character overcome or fail to overcome his/her flaws?
Conflict is an important factor too. Conflict needs to come from other characters. Of course with the external conflict comes and internal conflict too. Same as the inner/external need.
As an example of great characterisation, Ben played us this short scene from the film Kramer vs Kramer.
I had never seen the film and for those who haven't the premise is the wife has just left her husband and son.
The scene could be a short in itself when you think about it. The world is simple, the situation is simple, the stuff going on inside Dustin Hoffman's character is ridiculously complex and you feel his turmoil. I will have to go and watch the film.
We watched everybody's short documentaries and discussed how they were made, what problems we came across and style etc., It's always a great feeling watching what you made with an audience and feeling the reaction. Our Ghost Walk film made most people jump so I say, therefore, it has been a success.
Then we had to get together in our teams and discuss what the 5 most important aspects of production are.
Teamwork came up quite a lot. Teamwork and communication. Technicality came lower down the lists in all of the discussion. More people had issues with the way their team worked than with the actual equipment or shooting itself. I suppose that's true really. If you can't communicate the idea to your team, not all of you can work to create the final outcome. Discord equals disaster...