Writing a Winning Rom-Com - 10 Essential Elements You Need in Your Screenplay

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Taught by Amanda Johnson-Zetterstrom

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Who Should Attend:

  • Screenwriters
  • Authors
  • Playwrights
  • Producers looking to understand the elements of a successful rom com
  • Directors understanding how to shoot rom coms
  • Executives who want to make sure that their scripts fall in line to be successful
  • Actors looking to understand what it takes to provide a successful rom com performance
  • Rom com lovers

This Next Level Education class has a 92% user satisfaction rate.

Class hosted by: Amanda Johnson-Zetterstrom

Writer (Netflix's YOU), Producer (SHORT TERM 12)

Amanda is an writer based in Brooklyn. She most recently re-wrote Daniel Arsham’s directorial debut FUTURE RELIC. This indie sci-fi film imagines a world where tides have risen so high that cities are drowning, forcing the powers at be to take drastic measures to save mankind. The movie stars Juliette Lewis, James Franco, and Mahershala Ali. James Frey at Full Fathom Five has also hired Amanda to work on film and television treatments. Before venturing out to work on her own projects, the bulk of her career was spent working in development and production. She helped to found Animal Kingdom – and there, she co-produced Destin Daniel Cretton’s SHORT TERM 12, which won both the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award at SXSW 2013. She was also an incremental part of seeing films like David Robert Mitchell's IT FOLLOWS, Justin Tipping's KICKS, and Joachim Trier's LOUDER THAN BOMBS move into production - and optioned David Carr’s THE NIGHT OF THE GUN. Full Bio »

Summary

From epics like Annie Hall to classics like When Harry Met Sally and Pretty Woman to modern day movies like The Big Sick, Crazy Rich Asians and Last Christmas, romantic comedies have provided us with some of the most memorable films in cinema history. And now, especially thanks to streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, Disney+ and more, rom-coms are not only back en vogue, but hotter than ever. And the demand for great rom-com scripts is at an all time high. If you have a rom-com or are thinking about writing one, you have to understand all the elements that make up the formula that has been so successful for the most profitable rom-coms that came before. We're here to help you achieve just that.

You have a great love story you want to tell. You have a great setting, characters, plot and dialogue you know is going to pop off the page. And you also know that love is a universal language and that your idea will be appealing to romantics all over the world. But, did you know that almost all successful romantic comedies have 5 set up elements and 5 plot elements that are necessary to make it a winning formula? You need to know these 10 elements and how to apply them in order to make your script go from the shelf to being greenlit.

Amanda Johnston-Zetterstrom is a writer on Netflix’s hit series, YOU – today’s most modern version of an obsessive dark love story. She was a producer on Brie Larson’s debut Short Term 12 and worked on Friends with Kids starring Jon Hamm, Adam Scott, Kristen Wiig and Maya Rudolph. She’s had a storied career taking love stories in complex worlds and bringing them to the screen. And, now, you can learn about her formula on what makes a good romantic comedy screenplay become a great romantic comedy screenplay.

In this two part class (over 4 hours of instruction!) Amanda will go over the 10 crucial elements to write a good rom-com, what makes existing romantic comedies work, how to make your script stand out from the pack, what differentiates a good rom-com from a bad one, how to hone your own voice and how to originate a great idea/hook.

You will get the tools you need to write a funny, heartfelt, PRODUCIBLE romantic comedy – so that you can see your name in lights (and let’s be real… get paid!)

 

"Wow. This class was so comprehensive. Between the dozens of case studies and the practical tips and applications I can't imagine there is a better romantic comedy class anywhere in the world." - Gwen B.

 

"Amanda is like a walking Encycolpedia of all things love and rom-com. It's amazing how she made writing this format so easy to understand. She gave me so much to think about when diving into my script. Thank you Amanda. I will definitely take any class you offer on Stage 32!" - Kaustubh P.

What You'll Learn

Part 1 – THE SET UP ELEMENTS

A Strong Lead

  • Breaking Down Famous Films that Showcase the A Strong Lead
  • Qualities Your Lead Needs to Have
  • 5 Tips to Creating a Strong Lead
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating Her Lead Characters

The Love Interest

  • Breaking Down Famous Films that Showcase the Love Interest
  • Qualities Your Love Interest Needs to Have
  • 3 Tips to Creating Your Love Interest
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating Her Love Interests

The Best Friend

  • Breaking Down Famous Films that Showcase the Best Friend
  • 5 Tips to Determine if you Need a Best Friend Character
  • 2 Tips to Creating The Best Friend
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating Her Best Friend Characters

The Great Hook

  • 3 Tips to Craft a Great Hook
  • Breaking Down Famous Films that Showcase the Best Friend
  • 3 Tips to Come Up with a Logline
  • 5 Tips to Come Up with a Great Title

Q&A With Amanda

 

Part 2 – THE PLOT ELEMENTS and THE CRUCIAL ELEMENT

The Cute Meet

  • Breaking Down 4 Famous Films that Showcase the “Cute Meet”
  • 3 Tips to Creating The Cute Meet
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating Her Cute Meets

The Moment of No Return

  • Breaking Down Famous Films that Showcase the Moment of No Return
  • 3 Tips to Creating Your Moment of No Return
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating Her Moment of No Return

The Break Apart

  • Breaking Down Famous Films that Showcase the Break Apart
  • 3 Tips to Creating Your Moment of No Return
  • What Questions Do You Need to Ask?
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating Her Break Apart

The Epic Moment

  • Breaking Down Famous Films that Showcase the Epic Moment
  • 4 Elements an Epic Moment Should Have
  • 4 Tips to Creating Your Epic Moment
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating Her Epic Moments

The Final Crucial Element Uncovered

  • 9 Tips to Nail This Element
  • Amanda’s Own Process on Creating This Element

Q&A With Amanda

About Your Instructor

Amanda is an writer based in Brooklyn. She most recently re-wrote Daniel Arsham’s directorial debut FUTURE RELIC. This indie sci-fi film imagines a world where tides have risen so high that cities are drowning, forcing the powers at be to take drastic measures to save mankind. The movie stars Juliette Lewis, James Franco, and Mahershala Ali. James Frey at Full Fathom Five has also hired Amanda to work on film and television treatments.

Before venturing out to work on her own projects, the bulk of her career was spent working in development and production. She helped to found Animal Kingdom – and there, she co-produced Destin Daniel Cretton’s SHORT TERM 12, which won both the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Award at SXSW 2013. She was also an incremental part of seeing films like David Robert Mitchell's IT FOLLOWS, Justin Tipping's KICKS, and Joachim Trier's LOUDER THAN BOMBS move into production - and optioned David Carr’s THE NIGHT OF THE GUN.

FAQs

Q: What is the format of a class?
A: Stage 32 Next Level Classes are typically 2 to 4 week ongoing broadcasts that take place online using a designated software program from Stage 32.

Q: Do I have to have to be located in a specific location?
A: No, you can participate from the comfort of your own home using your personal computer! If you attend a live online class, you will be able to communicate directly with your instructor during the class.

Q: What are the system requirements?
A: You will need to meet the following system requirements in order to run the class software: Windows 7 or later Mac OS X 10.9 (Mavericks) or later.
If you have Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion): The class software does not support these operating systems. If you are running one of those operating systems, please upgrade now in order to be able to view a live class. Upgrade your Windows computer / Upgrade your Mac computer 

Q: What if I cannot attend the live class?
A: If you cannot attend a live class and purchase an On-Demand class, you will have access to the entire recorded broadcast, including the Q&A.

Q: Will I have access to the class afterward to rewatch?
A: Yes! After the purchase of a live or On-Demand class, you will have on-demand access to the audio recording, which you can view as many times as you'd like for a whole year!

Questions?

If you have a generic question about Stage 32 education you can take a look at our frequently asked questions section on our help page, or feel free to contact support with any other inquiries you might have.
 

Reviews Average Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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