23: Write a Film Treatment

Films start as an idea, shared through a short, descriptive piece of writing called a film treatment. It's written in prose - not description or essay, but actual story:


Fade In:


A high school student is on a field trip to a laboratory where scientists are bombarding spiders with radiation. As he backs away from a girl he's had a crush on, one spider has escaped and is dangling just above his neck...


Get it? The treatment for an early version of Spiderman would go on from there elaborating on the plot - start to finish, introducing all the characters and settings along the way. This is all about story - no camera moves described yet.


Your challenge - and it's an essential one for everyone signed up for spring college credit - is to write a film treatment for a short film. The second half of the challenge is to create a shotlist for the film; that'll come out on Wednesday.


Your film treatment should be 1-2 pages long, max. No shorter than 1 page. Think about a film that is about 4-5 minutes long. Use proper formatting (see the link below for details).


For inspiration, watch this short trailer produced by students two years ago. Both are now studying film at different colleges:


The Water is Deep


For a little help with this, watch: How to Write a Treatment (especially watch the example linked in the article)


If you have any questions about this, reach out to me and definitely, attend our Zoom meeting Tuesday at 2 p.m. See the Remind message for details.



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