MasterClass Aaron Sorkin Screenwriting Class Review

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MasterClass provides in-depth and engaging classes taught by experts in various fields. The classes are designed to bring your favorite experts to your home in an engaging online experience, which includes state of the art pre-recorded videos, workbooks, and stimulating assignments. Your Annual Membership gives you access to 85+ world-renowned instructors on Film and TV, Culinary Arts, Design, Photography, Fashion, Sports, Science and Technology and so much more. Instructors include world-famous chef Gordon Ramsay, bestselling author Margaret Atwood and many more. The classes have about 20 lectures, each about 10 minutes so you can watch and re-watch at anytime. Video lessons can easily be watched on the MasterClass mobile app, on your desktop, Google Chromecast, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, and Roku devices.

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This is a review of the Aaron Sorkin Teaches Screenwriting class from MasterClass!

The MasterClass Instructor – Aaron Sorkin

This class opens with an introduction to Aaron Sorkin and what viewers are going to learn throughout this class. He talks about how the most important part of a story is having a strong clear intention and a formable obstacle. Once intention and obstacle are established, viewers will then dive into critical of foundational skills, learn from Aaron’s successes and more importantly his failures, and lastly learn how to use these skills to just dive in and be creative.

For those who are not familiar with Aaron Sorkins, he is an award winning screenwriter who is most known for his stageplay, A Few Good Men, television shows, “Sports Night” and “The West Wing”, and his award winning screenplay, The Social Network.

Aaron Sorkin was born in 1961 and raised in New York City. As a youth, he discovered an early love for the theatre and dialogue. Aaron devoted his life to stagecraft and studied acting at Syracuse University where he graduated with a degree in the subject. While searching for work as an actor, Aaron’s fascination with dialogue boiled over, and he began to explore dramatic writing. After many misses, he wrote the stageplay, A Few Good Men, which became an instant hit on Broadway. He later adapted the story into a feature length screenplay. Upon the film version’s release, Aaron’s Hollywood career exploded. He eventually turned to TV and created “Sports Night,” a critical hit. Aaron then created the cultural phenomenon, “The West Wing.” More recently, he penned The Social Network, which netted him an Oscar for best-adapted screenplay, Moneyball, Steve Jobs, and the HBO series, “The Newsroom.”

Aaron Sorkin has created an in-depth class that provides the foundations for screenwriting, along with great insights into the writer’ room of “The West Wing” and how to approach group feedbacks and read-throughs. The foundational tools taught include lectures on understanding how to really develop a story, how to develop characters, and then how to create captivating dialogue.

Screenwriting – Who is it for?

This class is for anyone who wants to improve their screenwriting skills. If you are someone who is interested in screenwriting for any platform, whether it be television, Broadway, or films, this class goes through all of the foundational skills, along with sneak peaks into the writers’ room and read-throughs. The class also goes through a lot of important life lessons and advice for those who want to pursue a career as a screenwriter.

MasterClass Aaron Sorkin – Main Themes

  • Grip it and rip it
  • Practice
  • Take chances
  • Inspiring

MasterClass Workbook – Aaron Sorkin

The workbook for this class will be your reference guide and key to developing your own writing skills. Each video lesson has a review, take it further, and assignments section. The reviews are brief and beneficial for referencing back to, while the take it further section provides resources for further learning and great examples. Lastly, the assignment section which encourages viewers to explore their creative screenwriting style while also challenging them to put the fundamental skills taught in the lessons into practice.

MasterClass Screenwriting Key Takeaways

Aaron Sorkin has created in inspiring and in-depth class that really tackles the fundamentals of screenwriting, while also providing great insights into his writing process, style, and inspirations. Aaron uses a lecture style class structure to really dive into the fundamental topics, but viewers also get a variety of case studies that allow Aaron to take a deeper look at scenes he has written. Some of the fundamental topics covered include the rules of a story, how to engaged the audience, and how to create scenes with great momentum. Following the more fundamental lessons, Aaron dives into group workshops that focus on a variety of topics like writing action scenes, being careful of feedback from close-minded studio execs, and how to create an intriguing opening scene.

Go ahead and take chances because that’s the only way you’re actually gonna find out where your sweet spot is.

What I really enjoyed about this class was the two-hour writers’ room on season five episode one of “The West Wing”. It was a great way to see Aaron interacting with other student writers and to see his thought process when writing a television show. Aaron not only goes through this process himself, but he guides the other students in the room on how to research certain ideas, brainstorm ways to resolve obstacles, and then how to start new plot lines to further the season.

Final Thoughts Aaron Sorkin’s MasterClass

I loved this class from the very beginning! Aaron Sorkin has created a fantastic class that provides great foundational lessons, along with intriguing insights into his own experience and screenwriting process. If you are looking for a class that will challenge your screenwriting skills, this is the class for you!

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