Monday, February 22, 2010

Aspiring filmmaker, Ryan McPherson

Today we're talking with aspiring filmmaker, Ryan McPherson--a student at SUNY Brockport.

Ryan, tell us about how you develop a script.

What I have done in my short time writing, is taking an idea, an image, or even just a small detail, and trying to run with it. Generally I try to stick with things that are at least somewhat familiar only because I feel more confident in what I'm writing when I actually know what I'm writing about.

What kind of stories do you think translate well into film?

I have always felt that the stories that adapt best to film are ones with really strong and unique characters. I feel like good dialogue and good character development can make any idea into a decent movie. My favorite scene in film history is the beginning scene of Reservoir Dogs. The fact of the matter is that it really doesn't "do" anything for the film and it's not vital to the rest of the story, but it gives you some insight on who the guys are. After that scene you almost want to root for these guys. Without that scene the rest of the movie might have just been a typical gangster film that would easily have been forgotten.

You are currently in pre-production on a project, what are your next steps?

I have been trying to put together a film project for the past couple of years. I have found quite a few interested people in both acting and working as crew members on the film. I have been trying to accumulate funding for such a project. After finding funding I would try to push something right into production.

What do you think about the filmmaking community in the Rochester area?

I don't know as much about the filmmaking community in Rochester as I do about the film community. The film community seems to be a rich one. Every time I go to the theaters be it a megaplex or an independent theater there is usually a huge crowd. I think the filmmaking community is growing with the great programs at the area colleges and the new possibilities there are for independent filmmakers.

Any advice for other aspiring screenwriters or filmmakers?

I am quite new at this myself, so I would feel bad giving advice to people who aren't far behind me. I guess I would say read and watch films. Some great filmmakers never spent a day in film school. You can get a lot of experience with a movie rental and library card. See what people are doing and what their writing and making. I haven't gone to film school (yet?), but I have seen thousands of movies and read dozens of scripts and books about filmmaking.

You can contact Ryan at:

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