Making History Modern: Writing Your Standout Historical Script

"I must say I learned more in 90 minutes with Mr. Richter than I had in the previous 90 weeks!" -Jim M.

You may have heard the old adage that truth is stranger than fiction, but how does that hold up when you’re trying to write a screenplay based on history? Whether you’re writing a true story with real people as your major players, a la The King’s Speech, or creating your own protagonist and setting them in a real time and place, a la Gangs of New York, you will have to overcome some obstacles specific to these kinds of stories.

How much of the actual history do you keep? What do you cut? What do you change? What part of someone’s life do you focus on? And how can you make sure your feature or pilot brings something to the conversation?

And you thought inventing characters and story was hard. But don’t worry! Frederic Richter is here to walk us through all of this and more!

This 90 Minute Webinar Will Cover:

  • True stories that merit adaptation, and the ones that don’t 
  • When to take artistic liberties, and when to stick to the facts 
  • How to imbue cinematic structure 
  • Whether a story should go the feature or TV route 
  • The importance of bringing something new to the conversation 
About Your Host:

Frederic Richter is Director of Development at Tradition Pictures, an LA based production company focused on bringing stories alive that need to be told in film, TV and other media. He has worked on TV shows for Showtime, The History Channel and The Investigation Discovery Channel. Frederic has worked as a Story Analyst and consultant for numerous production companies and financiers, including QED International, Black Label Media, Covert Media and The Black List. As a writer, his screenplay APPEARANCES, won 1st place in the Slamdance Screenwriting competition. His script, BLIND, co-written with Joe Novoa, is in pre-production with Parallax (Sally Hibbin) producing. Another feature he wrote and is producing, AFPAK is currently in development with independent producers. Frederic has worked as a writer, producer and consultant on a number of other independent feature film projects in development and pre-production. His AFI thesis film, MACHSOM, was screened at over twenty-five festivals, and won numerous grants and awards. He was always a history nerd and studied history, film, and literature at Sarah Lawrence College. He was a screenwriting Fellow at The American Film Institute (AFI) where he earned his MFA. He has taught classes on screenwriting, film history and the entertainment industry at Sarah Lawrence College, NYU, Mercy College and The Ghetto Film School. He is a Teaching Artist at The Ghetto Film School, an Instructor at NYU SPS, The Writing Institute at Sarah Lawrence and The International Film Institute. He is on the Alumni Board at Sarah Lawrence College, and the Board of the Hollywood Radio Television Society-- Associates N.Y.


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