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The Screenwriter Activist

Writing Social Issue Movies

The Screenwriter Activist by Marilyn Beker
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Hotel Rwanda. Philadelphia.  Silkwood. Some of the most important films ever made have tackled real-world social issues, from genocide to homophobia to corporate greed. As storytellers, activist screenwriters recognize that social issues make great stories that can be gut-wrenching, heart-tugging, funny, tragic, and interesting to watch. The Screenwriter Activist helps screenwriters tell those stories in compelling, non-preachy, and inspiring ways.

The Screenwriter Activist is an in-depth, practical guide, appropriate for students in intermediate or graduate screenwriting courses in Film and English Programs as well as professionals who want to write a movie that can make a difference in the world. Using examples from classic and recent popular films, The Screenwriter Activist:

  • Explores the motivation and sensibility a screenwriter needs to embark on a social issue project
  • Gives techniques for choosing compelling subjects
  • Provides historical context for social issue movies
  • Explains how characters legitimize social issue themes
  • Puts forward specific models for structuring advocacy screenplays
  • Lays out a roadmap for how screenwriters can get a social issue movie made

If you care deeply about social issues and recognize that films can be highly effective platforms for motivativng audiences to civic involvement and social action, this is the one screenwriting book you need to read.

Taylor and Francis; August 2012
200 pages; ISBN 9781136506628
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Title: The Screenwriter Activist
Author: Marilyn Beker
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