The Top Five Reasons A Studio Passes On Your Project

Producers don’t usually fail due to weaknesses in networking or deal making skills; they more often fail because they don't understand how to shape a movie story to sell in their genre - and how to effectively communicate that vision to their co-collaborators. The Iron Man franchise is a recent example of a great movie that was “saved” by being beautifully shaped by its producers.  Come learn about that process through clips, how to turn your own project passes into recommends and how to use these five simple rules to be a better producer.

Peter Russell is a master story teacher and script doctor who has helped shape film story for Brian Grazier and Ron Howard at IMAGINE "Einstein Project", Alex Schwartz and Cary Granat at WALDEN FILMS "Chronicles of Narnia", Sunta Izzicupo at CBS Television Movies of the Week, as well as PARTICIPANT MEDIA, "Ocean Warrior", VIACOM, and many others.

In 2005, Peter discovered a true passion when he began teaching film and television story at UCLA's Entertainment Division of the Extension School.

Peter's energy, entertaining style and true passion for his subject won him UCLA's Teacher of the Year in 2009.

In 2009, Peter created HOW MOVIES WORK a film school that now teaches film classes all over the world, as well as in classrooms in Venice and Beverly Hills, California. Recently HMW has begun to offer movie classes online as well, at howmovieswork.com. Screenwriters who have graduated from HMW include Vladimir Nagorney and Hal Oszan,  both of whom credit HMW for helping them sell screenplays to major producers here in LA and to international studios in 2012.

Peter's book HOW MOVIES WORK, is coming out in 2013 on Focal Press.

In Peter's earlier career as a script reader he read over 5,000 scripts for the studios and developed a set of tools based on the patterns that he saw in the very best of these stories. Peter's seminars have become legendary because he teaches using these original tools -- and believes that the best way to teach them is to show how the greatest contemporary moviemakers use them. Peter's classes use many clips from recent hit movies to illustrate his points. The proof, he believes, is in the pudding -- and showing students how the patterns he's discovered actually work in movies like

DJANGO UNCHAINED and INCEPTION, in SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK and ONCE, are the best way to drive home his lessons.

In fact, there is nothing Peter loves more than showing aspiring movie story makers just how hit movies work. It's his true passion. In his classes, people tell always tell him "I finally get it!" His students take the same class two or three or four times. His lectures get read, and re-read, viewed and re-viewed, time after time. Because they work. Because the patterns he shows his students help them make original stories.

There's no higher compliment Peter could receive than that. He loves his work!

And making his students love their own work, and up their own storytelling game, is his ultimate pleasure.

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  • Renata G.

    Peter Russell was engaging and really excited about storytelling.

    September 26, 2013

    • Lissette

      Hi Renata, I'm glad you enjoyed the meetup! :) Peter will be back with new topics.

      October 1, 2013

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Rafaël

We just grab a coffee and speak French. Some people have been coming every week for months... it creates a kind of warmth to the group.

Rafaël, started French Conversation Group

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