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Shaibu Husseini
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A feel for the lines before tape rolls….
Berlinale Talent Campus 2008

With 12 selected writers, plus 8 actors and a mentor, Alby James, the stage was set for Between the Lines: Script Station Presentation. Though essentially designed to give screenwriters the opportunity to pitch their works, the Script Station, a hands-on sector of the Berlinale Talent Campus, has become an appropriate platform for writers to see actors slip into the personality of the characters they have created, even as the work is still in progress.

James explained at the start of the presentation that the process begins with the submission of ideas by writers. A few of the ideas are subsequently selected and the writers are then invited to work with a mentor during the Berlinale. Similarly, acting talents are invited and are guided to discover and understand the characters the writers have created.

That was exactly what played out on the second floor of Hau 2. The writers took turns pitching their ideas. Then the acting talents read out selected scenes from the Script Station screenplays, most times coming close to actually playing the roles. David Thompson, former Head of BBC films, who moderated the pitching session, was impressed by the presentation made by each of the writing talents. He observed that their presentations sounded promising but stressed the need for the talents to keep their presentation short at future pitching sessions. "What is important is the main idea," he said. "Try and identify and stress on the main idea." Thompson also observed, as did James, that there is no connection between a good pitch and a good film. "We have seen good pitches that have turned out flat," Thompson said.

Rodrigo Guerrero, a writing talent from Argentina whose script was read at the session, found the exercise of having actors pre-test scripts in front of a live audience very rewarding. He noted that such an exercise will enable writers to "feel and test the pulse and the mood of the characters" they have created. Also, Guerrero continued, writers will be able to determine the appropriateness of the dialogue and the scenarios they have created.

Although the pitches were roundly impressive, it will take the end product to determine whether the scripts will be as appealing and engaging as they sound.

By Shaibu Husseini

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   liens artistes

Mauch Bärbel

Wenner Dorothee


09/02/2008 > 14/02/2008
festival |Allemagne |
Berlinale Talent Campus 2008

   liens structures

Guardian (The)
Nigeria | LAGOS

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