Film Making 101 - 5 days

Language: English

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Knowledge Tower | Floor 8 Class 1


Suitable for 16+ years.

In this 5-day workshop, participants will learn how to generate the idea for a film and draft its logline, how to write character descriptions and a short synopsis, plan for production, view and discuss footage; and plan for the editing films

Participants will finish the workshop equipped to begin envisioning and executing short film projects

Day One

Theme: Generating Ideas Goal
Participants will generate the idea for a film and learn how to draft a logline.
Participants will also be divided into teams for the sake of future exercises.

Topics covered:

  • Where do we find ideas for stories?
  • Identifying target audiences
  • Writing a logline; tailoring the logline for different audiences and situations
  • The importance of character descriptions Exercise: Write three loglines. 


Day Two

Theme: Story Structure Goal: Participants will learn ways to analyze a film’s structure and will begin to write a short script (1-2 pages) as a team.

Topics covered:

  • Character backstories and traits: physical, social, and psychological
  • Identifying the key obstacle facing the main character
  • Act structure: Why we need it - How do I introduce conflict into the story? Raising the stakes
  • Writing scenes that advance the film’s plot
  • Translating story to script: Screenwriting formatting.


Day Three

Theme: Audiovisual Techniques & Practical Tutorials Goal: Participants will consider art aesthetic principles and learn basic techniques for achieving them from both a camera and sound production perspective. Teams will review and finalize a basic plan for their 1-2 page script.

Topics covered:

  • Aesthetic practice in painting, photography, and cinema
  • Composition: balance, rule of thirds, depth-of-field
  • Shot angles: close-up, medium, wide, and everything in between
  • 180 degree rule, 30 degree rule, “writing and shooting for the edit”
  • Camera practice
  • Sound design and practice.


Day Four

Theme: Production Day Goal. Participants will shoot a 1-2 page script.

Topics covered:

  • Watching a short film and discussing its narrative and aesthetic choices.
  • Production time (2-3 hours)
  • Collecting, organizing, and reviewing footage.


Day Five

Theme: Post-Production Goal. Participants will view and discuss footage, and start editing their films, ending the day with a screening of rough cuts of the produced 1-2 page short films.

Topics covered:

  • Editing techniques and best practices
  • Where and how to distribute your film?
  • Narrative causality, visual cues, and “show, don’t tell”
  • Entering a scene at the latest possible moment, leaving at the earliest
  • The stages of post-production and professional timelines for releasing a film.

Workshop Level: Beginner
Workshop Prerequisites: Participants are kindly requested to bring their own DSLR camera (not mobile camera) to the workshop.
Trainer: Bentley Brown

Bentley Brown holds a PhD in emergent technology and media arts practice, M.A. in Communication and a B.A. in international studies. Brown speaks three languages fluently, which are Arabic, English and French. The trainer was a Film Making lecturer at Effat University. Brown participated in several film festivals, and is multi-time awards winner locally and internationally, wrote and directed various films, and is an author of multiple films.