How to Write a Unique, Commercial Horror Script

Writing a Genre Film that Delightfully Scares Executives
Taught by Stuart Arbury

$250

On Demand Class - For immediate download. Unlimited access for 1 year.

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Class hosted by: Stuart Arbury

Director of TV & Episodic Content at Ramo Law

Stuart Arbury is the Director of Development Captivate Entertainment. Captivate is a production company run by Ben Smith and Jeffrey Weiner. Captivate has a first-look deal with Universal and is based on the Universal Studios Backlot in Universal City, California. Captivate is most known for managing the movie rights to Robert Ludlum's series of Bourne novels. Prior to joining Captivate, Stuart Arbury was a Creative Executive with Weinstein's Dimension Films and worked in the creative department at Good Universe. Stuart is one of the co-founders of Wolf Knife TV, an award winning online comedy channel. His TV producing and writing credits include Couchers and Bonnie Blake: Parole Officer. Full Bio »

Summary

4 part class taught by Stuart Arbury, Director of Development at Captivate Entertainment (Universal)!
AVAILABLE ON DEMAND!

The number one genre we hear most executives look for is horror. Horror written in any language can be easily enjoyed by any viewer from around the world. It's the most universally acceptable genre out there, and it's where filmmakers go to cut their teeth (Sam Raimi, James Gunn, Oliver Stone, Peter Jackson, Francis Ford Coppola, James Cameron, Zack Snyder, and Steven Spielberg all started in the horror genre). But writing a fresh, commercial, scary horror is getting harder as executives continue to see familiar tropes and generic set pieces. What a writer sees as a fresh idea, is one that an executive has probably seen in some variation many times over.

Stage 32 Happy Writers is excited to bring you the previously-recorded 4 part class: How to Write a Unique, Commercial Horror Script taught by Stuart Arbury, Director of Development at Captivate Entertainment (Universal). From choosing a concept to picking an antagonist, from strengthening the emotional crescendo to amping up the scares in your project – Stuart covers all in this 4 part intensive class.  

**Plus! You'll get a copy of the HALLOWEEN script in your resources!

 

Purchasing gives you access to the previously-recorded live class.
Although Stuart is no longer handing out or reviewing the assignments, we still encourage all creatives to participate.

What You'll Learn

"Very informative and enjoyable. Look forward to putting what I've learned into action!" - James A.
"Enjoyed the course, the content and look forward to putting it all into use." - Louise A.
"Fantastic wrap up to an informative and enjoyable class." - James W.

Part 1 - Horror

Stuart runs through his personal experiences in the genre, and how his clients have made money maneuvering through it. He discusses the types of horrors that studios and companies are looking for, the volatility of the horror market, the difference between wide release concept and a limited release concept (with examples), the concept of “elevated horror” and more. You'll get a copy of the HALLOWEEN script as a resource!

Part 2 - Tone

Stuart explains the importance of the emotional crescendo of a horror script, when the scares should start, and how to implement a successful crescendo that will have the scares build on top of each other. He also discusses the difference between jump scares and atmosphere, the importance of a sharp inciting incident, and runs through a series of examples where the emotional crescendo worked.

Part 3 - The Antagonist

Stuart explores the Antagonist in detail, including an in-depth look into “Creature Features”, inner demons and more. He covers everything from when to introduce your antagonist to how to use a creature to affect the tone and sophistication of your script. He then explores human antagonists before discussing how to layer your horror and how to find a proper balance between keeping it scary and making sure the characters are continuously relatable and compelling.

Part 4 - Pitching and Marketing

Stuart explains how to successfully pitch your genre film and how to market your horror script when completed. He covers tips on how to get an agent, productivity steps, how to increase the value of your material, getting a director attached, filming a short and more. He also gives case studies on how other careers got launched.

About Your Instructor

Stuart Arbury is the Director of Development Captivate Entertainment. Captivate is a production company run by Ben Smith and Jeffrey Weiner. Captivate has a first-look deal with Universal and is based on the Universal Studios Backlot in Universal City, California. Captivate is most known for managing the movie rights to Robert Ludlum's series of Bourne novels.

Prior to joining Captivate, Stuart Arbury was a Creative Executive with Weinstein's Dimension Films and worked in the creative department at Good Universe. Stuart is one of the co-founders of Wolf Knife TV, an award winning online comedy channel. His TV producing and writing credits include Couchers and Bonnie Blake: Parole Officer.

Testimonials

"Very informative and enjoyable. Look forward to putting what I've learned into action!" - James A.
"Enjoyed the course, the content and look forward to putting it all into use." - Louise A.
"Fantastic wrap up to an informative and enjoyable class." - James W.

Questions?

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Reviews Average Rating: 4.5 out of 5

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