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Visual Representations of 15 Over-Used Movie Poster Clichés

Ever wondered how to design your movie poster? Wonder no more, here are the Visual Representations of 15 Over-Used Movie Poster Clichés via @flavorwire


Have you ever felt like you’re seeing the same movie poster over and over again? Well, you are, in a way. As it turns out, film posters have several very simple tools (color, text size, figure placement, etc) to signify what kind of movie they’re advertising without you really even having to read its name or tagline. The ever-observant Roxane Gay linked to this article over at HTMLGiant, which led us to these incredible visual representations of some of the movie poster clichés and tactics that are reused over and over (and over) again, masterfully compiled and designed by Christophe Courtois. Click though to see fifteen incredibly repetitive movie poster design clichés, and let us know if you can think of any more!

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Emma Coats (@lawnrocket) 22 Basic Rules of storytelling.

  1. You admire a character for trying more than for her or his successes.
  2. You gotta keep in mind what’s interesting to you as an audience, not what’s fun to do as a writer. They can be very different.
  3. Trying for theme is important, but you won’t see what the story is actually about till you’re at the end of it. Now rewrite.
  4. Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.
  5. Simplify. Focus. Combine characters. Hop over detours. You’ll feel like you’re losing valuable stuff, but it sets you free.
  6. What is your character good at, comfortable with? Throw the polar opposite at them. Challenge them. How do they deal?
  7. Come up with your ending before you figure out your middle. Seriously. Endings are hard — get yours working up front.
  8. Finish your story, let go even if it’s not perfect. In an ideal world you have both, but move on. Do better next time.
  9. When you’re stuck, make a list of what wouldn’t happen next. Lots of times the material to get you unstuck will show up.
  10. Pull apart the stories you like. What you like in them is a part of you; you’ve got to recognize it before you can use it.
  11. Putting it on paper lets you start fixing it. If it stays in your head, a perfect idea, you’ll never share it with anyone.
  12. Discount the 1st thing that comes to mind. And the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th – get the obvious out of the way. Surprise yourself.
  13. Give your characters opinions. Passive/malleable might seem likable to you as you write, but it’s poison to the audience.
  14. Why must you tell this story? What’s the belief burning within you that your story feeds off of? That’s the heart of it.
  15. If you were your character, in this situation, how would you feel? Honesty lends credibility to unbelievable situations.
  16. What are the stakes? Give us reason to root for the character. What happens if they don’t succeed? Stack the odds against.
  17. No work is ever wasted. If it’s not working, let go and move on — it’ll come back around to be useful later.
  18. You have to know yourself: the difference between doing your best & fussing. Story is testing, not refining.
  19. Coincidences to get characters into trouble are great; coincidences to get them out of it are cheating.
  20. Exercise: take the building blocks of a movie you dislike. How d’you rearrange them into what you DO like?
  21. You gotta identify with your situation/characters, can’t just write ‘cool’. What would make you act that way?
  22. What’s the essence of your story? [The] most economical telling of it? If you know that, you can build out from there.


Twitter | Stephan Bugaj ( has analysed these 22 basic rules in a Bugaj’s free eBook.

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Why the word ‘matter’ is problematic in @BetsySharkey’s “30 Under 30 Who Matter” with @Equill

I think some of the actors and actresses on Sharkey’s list are absolutely incredible but if you’re going to bandy about an idea that places value on a list of actors that are white-than-you’d-like, you can only contribute to the issue not solve it.

I’m particularly keen to watch the careers and choices of Desiree Akhavan, Katie Leung, Quvenzhane Wallis and Adam Bakri as they develop. Here’s a link to a LA Times | Desiree Akhavan the LA Times recent article on Desiree Akhavan too.

And this is Erin Quill’s blog post “This particular matter does matter, matter, matter – an answer to “30 Under 30 Who Matter”.”

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Writing is…

Writing is hard work.

I get asked when I first started writing. I used to think it was a breakthrough at uni. It wasn’t. I ploughed through my memory: I wrote my first illustrated novella at 6 about a dinosaur and the impending birth of her baby brother. I also wrote a French comic strip at 9.

Writing is found in different forms.

I spent countless hours daydreaming and creating worlds and dialogue for people I didn’t know but kinda, sorta did.

Writing is not always on paper.

I wrote countless scraps of stories that I deemed gobshite and threw away (as that was back in the day when we all worked with pen & paper as standard). I’ve written countless poems and songs; I am a writer. I just don’t feel like it. I don’t feel like it because I don’t think I’m very good so I get frightened.

Writing is scary.

The best writing I know is a process whereby you lay out your deepest, darkest thoughts and feelings about the world and hand them over for someone else to interrogate.

Writing is feeling naked.

I sat down with a dramaturg today and told him about me, my thoughts and my experiences.

Writing is cathartic.

In there, somewhere amongst the scribbles and the illegible scrawls, is the dog whistle that will help me unlock the play I’ve been working on for almost two years now. I feel like I’m getting closer to the seed of the play; I’m also getting closer to working out who I am as a writer.

Writing is a journey.

I currently have several project on the go so I need to focus. When an idea or a spark comes to mind, I need to start noting it down and putting it to one side, not go off on a tangent.

Writing is a war with many battles.

There is no magic secret to writing. It is a massive arseache at times. It has to become habitual for me and I need to start writing every day, without fail, but I wouldn’t have it any other way and there’s only one way to get better:

Writing is writing, and rewriting.

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May 2014 Salon

GAP Salon

The next meeting of the GAP Salon will take place on Tuesday, 13 May at 6:30PM.

An online discussion forum and details of future meetings can be found at the GAP Salon Facebook groupPlease join the group or email us for location details.

The GAP Salon (Gender and Performance) aims to connect, sustain, and inspire a community of artists and advocates working for gender equality. We facilitate conversations within this collective and support initiatives that come from GAP Salon members.

These initiatives so far have included performance projects like Bite The Apple and a co-hosted WOW Party at the Southbank Centre’s Women of the World Festival, as well as group theatre trips to see gender-conscious plays around London. What’s next? Come and propose an idea.

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BFI Education’s Nicky North retires


The legendary Nicky North, mainstay of BFI Education since the 1970s, will retire next week. Over the years, Nicky was responsible for producing groundbreaking study materials and organising events that built the foundations for the BFI’s central role in UK media education. Many of us owe her a great deal.

bfiwatch wishes Nicky a happy and fulfilling retirement.

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