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Lecture 1a:Introduction. Professor Daniel Cutrara. Syriana (2005) Robert Baer (novel) Stephen Gaghan (screenplay). Professor Daniel Cutrara. Assistant Professor, Film and Media Studies , Arizona State University M.F.A., Cinema & TV, USC

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lecture 1a introduction
Lecture 1a:Introduction

Professor Daniel Cutrara

Syriana (2005)

Robert Baer (novel)

Stephen Gaghan (screenplay)

professor daniel cutrara
Professor Daniel Cutrara

Assistant Professor, Film and Media Studies, Arizona State University

M.F.A., Cinema & TV, USC

Teaches courses in Screenwriting; Story Analysis; Religion and Film.

Lecture Hint: Pause the lecture and click on one of the hyperlinks (text that is underlined). Return to the lecture after you have visited the site.


in this lesson
In This Lesson
  • What kind of distance learning course is this?
  • How can you succeed in this course?
  • What is the course about?
what kind of distance learning course is this
What Kind of Distance Learning Course is This?

Lesson 1a: Part I

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005)

Written by Roald Dahl(book) and John August (screenplay)


a unique distance learning experience
A Unique Distance Learning Experience

This is not an automated course.

This is not a self-paced course.

This course emphasizes interactivity:



Participation is to your success!

Threaded Discussions on the eBoard


the advantages of this course
The Advantages of this Course

Flexibility… not limited by space

Study materials available 24/7

Lectures (streaming audio w/ PowerPoint)

Websites & other resources


Structured like a traditional course

Complements multiple learning styles

Lots of interactivity


the disadvantages
The Disadvantages

Students that learn best through face-to-face debate can struggle in this environment.

Ways to compensate

Arrange for real-time meetings with classmates

Students that are not well organized tend to not do well in this environment.

Meet all deadlines

Study in advance of assignments


online evaluation
Online Evaluation

Pause the lecture and take the Self-Evaluation of Online Students. It will help you better understand how your learning style meets the demands of this environment.

Juno (2007)

Written by Diablo Cody


how to succeed in this course
How to Succeed in This Course

Lesson 1a: Part II


how do we define success
How do We Define Success?

Improving your ability to analyze story.

Learning how to write studio coverage.

Leaving the course with a treatment or development notes.

Becoming more adept at giving and taking constructive criticism on the Eboard.

Getting a high grade: A or B


course organization
Course Organization

Each lesson contains:


Reading Review


Interactivity (Discussion Board)




forms of interactivity
Forms of Interactivity

Threaded discussions on the eBoard with classmates and professor

Office Hours (if possible)

Online Chats with professor


Click (2006)

Written by Steve Koren and Mark O’Keefe



how we will engage
How We Will Engage

We will engage with passion and rigor.

We will be respectful of each other.

We will keep in mind that our goal is to help one another develop the skills necessary to compete in the film and television business.


what is the course about
What is the Course About?

The Player (1992)

Michael Tolkin (novel) Michael Tolkin (screenplay)

Lesson 1a: Part III


the lessons
The Lessons
  • We will develop the necessary skills for story development.
    • The Exercises
  • We will learn the business of the story analyst.
    • Writing Coverage
  • We will build on what we learn.
    • The Final Project
end of lecture 1a
End of Lecture 1a

Next Lecture: Tracking the Story

Transformers (2007)

Roberto Orci & Alex Kurtzman