Monday, December 21, 2009


Having just completed the 2009 Champion Screenwriting finalist workshop with Jim Mercurio, I’m happy to say I left with a deeper understanding of my screenplay as well as how my script fits into the current business state of affairs in Hollywood.

Working in an intimate setting, Jim will analyze your screenplay beyond the usual structural considerations in an attempt to push you to extract and exploit all aspects of story, including openings, endings, theme, symbolism and how these relate to the intersection of plot and character.

Jim’s approach is not dogmatic, nor is this a five-day lecture. There’s plenty of room for questions, differing points of view and input from the attendees. This makes for a thought-provoking, dynamic workshop guaranteed to push your creative boundaries. In essence, it’s a relaxed but intense master class.

If you’re fortunate enough to make it to the finalist level, I believe you’ll find Jim’s class informative, inspiring, and energizing.

- Mark Penberthy

Thank you so much for the fantastic opportunity you gave me and the other Champion Screenwriting Contest finalists to attend your A-List "Immersion" class this weekend. And what an immersion it was! I can truly say I got more out of those three days than I have in other writing courses that have lasted for months. The principles you teach are so essential to good screenwriting and you somehow managed to make them all so clear for me - I now know what I need to do to make my writing better. I really appreciate this amazing gift you've given to me. I will definitely be spreading the word about what a great contest this is - I feel so fortunate to have found Champion Screenwriting!

Sharon Clark

Jim Mercurio is a whirlwind of energy and enthusiasm, a bracing blast of insight into how to make every scene, every line of dialogue, every beat and every blade of grass serve your story. Immerse yourself and emerge a transformed writer.
- John Dummer
The practice of writing anything is a very nuanced, very detailed subject. I'm skeptical of anyone who says they know how to teach it because so much of the craft of creation is ineffable and utterly intangible. But after taking his class, I was impressed by Jim's ability to touch on almost every aspect of screenwriting. He has an incredible sense of what constitutes a good story, a good sequence, a good scene, a good action, a good line or dialogue. He draws parallels in all of these things, compressing over a semester's worth of knowledge into succinct, poignant examples. He also has an intuitive ability to break down and deconstruct a series of pages and rebuild it in the most polished, gripping way possible. He's able to engage in a discussion on any topic or genre and find what's below the surface.

This is excellent for someone in any stage of writing. If you have a completed, polished, ready to go script - this class will help you. If you have a blank page and an idea in your head - this class will help you.

Think of it as the Rosetta Stone of screenwriting. You learn by instruction, observation, deduction, and extrapolation - not pages of notes and definitions. Even to a seasoned writer, this class will allow new gears in their brain to turn. And as any artist knows, a new angle, a new way of thinking is the first step to a reative windfall.

- Matt Zbrog  

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