Writing a short film

Course Dates: 05/05/24 - 12/05/24
Time: 10:30 - 13:30
Location: Online
Would you like to write a script for a short film? This short course offers an insight into the fundamentals of screenwriting through tutor input, writing exercises, group work and discussion.
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
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Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00

Writing a short film
  • Course Code: HW225
  • Dates: 05/05/24 - 12/05/24
  • Time: 10:30 - 13:30
  • Taught: Sun, Daytime
  • Duration: 2 sessions (over 2 weeks)
  • Location: Online
  • Tutor: Sharmila Chauhan

Course Code: HW225

Sun, day, 05 May - 12 May '24

Duration: 2 sessions (over 2 weeks)

Any questions? writing@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 4582 0415

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Centre for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

Some of the best cinema today has been created in the short form. From the powerful tension of Matt Kirkby's The Phone Call to the humour of Jim Cummings' Thunder Road, the short film can achieve a lot with a little. Far from being just a stepping stone to feature length work, the short film challenges writers be creative with constraint and precision. This course can help you learn how, through guided exercises that will explore screenwriting fundamentals and unlock your creativity.

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

- What makes a good short film?
- Different types of short film
- Generating ideas
- Basics of screenwriting craft such as dialogue and structure.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Give and receive feedback with sensitivity
- Analyse short films with confidence
- Understand some of the basic principles of screenwriting
- Start working on a short script.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

The course is suitable for all those with an interest in the short film. A good grasp of English is essential.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

Interactive tutor presentation, practical exercises, reading scripts and viewing dvds of various shorts.

All writing courses at City Lit will involve an element of workshop. This means that students will produce work which will be discussed in an open and constructive environment with the tutor and other students. The college operates a policy of constructive criticism, and all feedback on another student’s work by the tutor and other students should be delivered in that spirit.

For classes longer than one day regular reading and writing exercises will be set for completion at home to set deadlines.

City Lit Writing endeavours to create a safe and welcoming space for all and we strongly support the use of content notes in our classes. This means that learners are encouraged to make their tutor and classmates aware in advance if any writing they wish to share contains material that may be deemed sensitive. If you are unsure about what might constitute sensitive content, please ask your tutor for further clarification and read our expectations for participating in writing courses at City Lit.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Please bring a pen and paper.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Continue your screenwriting journey in one of our screenwriting course. We recommend Ways into screenwriting for beginners and Developing your screenwriting for those with a bit more experience. If you have a draft of a script, you might also be interested in Pitching your screenplay treatment.

All students are invited to join us at Late Lines, our regular performance night for City Lit writers. Students are also encouraged to submit their work to Between the Lines, our annual anthology of creative writing. For the latest news, courses and events, stay in touch with the Department on Facebook and Twitter.

Sharmila Chauhan

Sharmila Chauhan is a screenwriter, playwright and prose writer, featured on The Brit List 2022. Her plays include: The Husbands, which toured nationally and completed its run at London’s Soho Theatre (Kali and Pentabus Theatre), Born Again/Purnajanam (Kali Theatre, Jan 2012) and 10 Women (Avignon Festival, France, 2014). She has had two short films produced and written two features. Most recently, her short film Oysters was commissioned by Film London (2016) and her feature Mother Land is currently being developed by Cinestan International and has been long-listed for the Sundance Writers’ Lab.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.