Monday, July 27, 2009

Story - Robert McKee

Robert McKee's Story seminar couldn't have come at a better time just as we're beginning the pre-production semester at Animation Mentor where story development is the assignment. Robert McKee's book "Story; Substance, Structure, Style and the Principles of Screenwriting" is one of the recommended reading material at AM and this timely seminar helped me purchase the book (in hard cover only per Mr. McKee's specific instructions because this is a reference book and not some book to be read once and discarded), CD audio (since I don't like to read) and the script to the movie Casablanca because it was being offered as part of a package at the seminar. The seminar was three days long, 12 hours a day event at the Gateway Holliday Inn on Van Ness in San Francisco. 12 hours a day of sitting in an auditorium that Mr. McKee requested the temperature be lowered so that we won't fall asleep was brutal but his entertaining style of delivery kept everyone's attention. However, this is the last of the three day seminars for Mr. McKee has opted for the 4 day seminars that he used to gve in Italy where they cherish their longer lunch break.

There is not much I can say about the content of the seminar since no recording was allowed but I did come away with greater appreciation of what makes an entertaining story and how to apply the principles of great stories to my own work. The information in the seminar was overwhelming in their quantity and quality, but having the book close by makes it easy to keep the principles I learned accessible. I have already changed my short film story based on the lessons I learned and I am glad I did.

If there is anyway you can attend Mr. McKee's seminar, I highly recommend that you do. It will be worth it.

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