Blog

2018 Winter Courses & Workshops

  Registration is now open for BlueCat’s new slate of screenwriting courses and workshops for the winter! Are you rewriting your script or developing a new one? Would you like a dedicated structure to reboot your writing habits? Join Gordy and the BlueCat community of writers and work towards a stronger script and change your […]

The Blade Runner Year: Has Writing Movies Run Its Course?

The Sequel Slump.    The sequel to Blade Runner has officially been declared a bomb at the box office, at the tail end of the worst summer for the movies in over a decade. Movie after movie has under-performed all year despite high scores on Rotten Tomatoes. Aside from GET OUT, blockbusters are not original […]

Writing A Genre Screenplay: Biopics

Is biopic a genre?   A question debated by film critics and historians alike. The boundaries are certainly more blurred than that of an action or thriller, but nonetheless, audiences approach a biopic with a set of expectations that must be met by the screenwriter.   We expect a biopic to offer insights.   Take […]

Writing A Genre Screenplay: Horror

  Writing within Genre    When you write a spec screenplay, strategize to work within a recognizable genre paradigm. Within film, a paradigm is a typical model formed by pre established audience expectations. So first, understand your genre. Then, all you have to do is fill in the blanks with the specifics of your narrative, […]

What’s The Ideal Length of An Action Block?

A fun sit-down with Gordy Hoffman, founder and judge of the BlueCat Screenplay Competition, answering questions from up and coming filmmakers and screenwriters. In this episode, Gordy talks about the action block, advising writers to say more with less. Don’t wear out your readers.   Keep things simple, clean, and precise! One of the best […]

Theme: What Am I Trying To Say?

    The question of theme is one many writers forget to ask before starting a draft: what’s this story about? Now, don’t confuse theme with plot. The question of plot looks more like: what happens in my story? The question of theme goes a bit deeper. Theme deals with emotion, where plot deals with […]

BlueCat’s 2017 Winners & Finalists

Congratulations to the 2017 BlueCat Screenplay Competition Winners & Finalists!  Feature Winner  Cadaver Dog by Judy Soo Hoo & Isaac Ho    Feature Finalists  Spree by Laura Allen The Townhouse by Baruh Benjamins Chico Grande by Jesus Celaya Westchester by Sachin Mehta   Fellini Award Winner – Best International Screenplay Unpromised by Jason Chan    Pilot […]

To Hire or Not To Hire: That Is The Question of Transgender Talent

  Transgender stories and characters are popping up now more than ever. From Transparent to Orange Is The New Black to The Fosters, trans storylines are the stuff of controversy and of intrigue. As a trans filmmaker (we do exist!) I am simultaneously excited and reluctant to see platforms venturing outside of cisgender* story land. […]

How To Write A Telephone Scene

A fun sit-down with Gordy Hoffman, founder and judge of BlueCat Screenplay Competition, answering questions from up and coming filmmakers and screenwriters. In this episode, Gordy breaks up some formatting myths about screenwriting pertaining to the ‘telephone scene’. Connection is key.    What is the correct format for writing a telephone scene? It doesn’t matter, […]

The Hero’s Journey: How War for the Planet of the Apes Gets it Right

  The third installment of the Planet of the Apes reboot brings the trilogy to a dramatic close and comes as a beacon of light for the future of Hollywood’s studio output. After a slew of mishandled and poorly received attempts at reboots  — Power Rangers and King Arthur to name a few — it […]

What Should You Do When You Get Out Of Film School?

A fun sit-down with Gordy Hoffman, founder and judge of the BlueCat Screenplay Competition, answering questions from up and coming filmmakers and screenwriters. In this episode, Gordy talks about what you should do when you get out of film school.  Be proud and keep going.   Graduating film school is an accomplishment in itself. You’ve […]

A Ghost Story: Suspension of Disbelief in a Supernatural World

By: Andrew L. Schwartz   Of all the quasi-thrillers examined in the past few months, A Ghost Story, a film written and directed by David Lowery, typifies the kind of post-modern thriller that has dominated the summer circuit so far. In the same vein as The Beguiled or It Comes At Night, the thrills in […]

Reader Tip: How to Use Music in Your Script

  Intertwining Soundtrack and Narrative  By: Andrew L. Schwartz    Baby Driver is a non-stop thrill ride full of high-octane chase scenes expertly choreographed to a fast-paced soundtrack, and it comes highly recommended. For screenwriters, Baby Driver displays use music not only as a way to convey the tone/feel of the script but also as a […]

Location, Location, Location: How The Beguiled Uses Setting To Tell a Story

By: Andrew L. Schwartz   Using Setting as a Vice.   Director Sofia Coppola has long toyed with the notion of binding characters to their environment. From Versailles in Marie Antoinette to the suburbs of Los Angeles in The Bling Ring, her characters have often built sanctuaries to shelter themselves from the real world. The […]

“The Bad Batch” – BlueCat Alum’s Ana Lily Amirpour’s Latest Triumph.

by Breana Harris   Last summer, when trying to finish a script, I struggled to figure out why I was so unhappy with it. I loved my characters and premise, but something wasn’t right. That’s when I decided to re-watch Ana Lily Amirpour 2014 debut film, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night. The visceral black-and-white […]

The Art of The Script Rewrite

A fun sit-down with Gordy Hoffman, founder and judge of the BlueCat Screenplay Competition, answering questions from up and coming filmmakers and screenwriters. In this episode, Gordy tackles the always challenging rewrite. Make it better than the last.   Rewriting is a continuous process. There’s always room to make your script better. The key is […]

How to Overcome Writer’s Block

A fun sit-down with Gordy Hoffman, founder and judge of the BlueCat Screenplay Competition, answering questions from up and coming filmmakers and screenwriters. In this episode, Gordy tackles the ways of overcoming writer’s block.  Just keep writing.   Writer’s block is perceived to be a soul-crushing force encountered by many writers throughout their professional careers. Many who […]

10 Things You Don’t Need to Write A Screenplay

by Gordy Hoffman People are always telling you what you need to write a screenplay. Even I will tell you what’s required or demanded or unavoidable in writing screenplays. But I want to remind myself, and you, what you don’t need, specifically what you absolutely will never need to write a screenplay and become a […]

The Handmaid’s Tale: A Voice-Over Exception that Works

by Breana Harris       Do’s and Don’ts: The Voice-Over, just don’t.      Whether you have taken extensive screenwriting classes or simply read a book or two on the subject, you have probably heard the longtime industry consensus on voice-over narration in your scripts: don’t do it.  Despite this unwritten rule, tons of […]

Gordy Hoffman explains how important is genre to screenwriting.

Genre: How important is it?

A fun sit-down with Gordy Hoffman, founder and judge of the BlueCat Screenplay Competition, answering questions from up and coming filmmakers and screenwriters. In this episode, Gordy explains the value of good storytelling when it comes to genre. Follow your passion.   Don’t restrict yourself to a genre when you write. Let your story dictate […]