I recently found myself writing a short “creative manifesto” in collaboration with a performance course and my thesis screenplay. The manifesto could have been about any part of my creative work, but I decided to dedicate it to my work as a screenwriter and cinematic storyteller. It’s entitled “Human Stories: A Manifesto on Cinematic Storytelling, Identity, and Humanity”. It tackles the idea of adding too much identity to our characters and how the more “unnecessary” traits we add on, such as gender, race, nationality, and sexuality, the more we potentially alienate a different audience. It’s a very experimental, abstract idea but I consider this concept whenever I write my characters. I thought I would share my conclusion of it here with 4381 Productions; hopefully, it gives you guys more insight into my own creative process.
It would be ignorant of me to say that all films, even all of my films, should do away with all demographic identities. Many stories that focus on identity need to be told, especially by those whose stories have been underrepresented by the entertainment industry. However, with these stories, I feel it best that they are told by the artists who experience them, rather than me telling stories that are not mine to tell. With that said, rather than telling stories of people who have been overrepresented for centuries, I have dedicated my storytelling to fixating more on our commonalities as human beings. As I continue to grow as a screenwriter and director, I plan to implement this concept in my work as naturally as I can. Even now, as I work on a thesis screenplay that combines the coming-of-age genre with the losing-grip-on-reality trope, I find ways to emphasize the psychological rather than the physical. My hope with this practice is to not only create relatable and engaging stories for the present but also to make progressive strides in cinema and storytelling for the future.
With my focus being on this manifesto and other projects at the moment, I, unfortunately, don’t have a thesis screenplay update for yall. Hopefully, the holiday will give me a clear head to focus on this script once again.