• Holly

Raindance Saturday Film School Review

Here's one from the archives...

Now I have re-launched my blog I am looking through my older posts. A few years ago I attended the Raindance Saturday Film School. This course is still going now, so here is what I thought of it...

On a very hot Saturday in July I travelled to King’s College, London, to attend Raindance’s Saturday Film School. It was advertised as a one-day filmmaking class, claiming to introduce you to the basics of screenwriting, directing, shooting a film and launching your career, all in one day. I was really interested in the scriptwriting part of the course, I was also hoping for a boost of motivation and inspiration.

When I arrived at Kings College, I couldn’t see a way to get in. The main entrance was locked. Eventually I was joined by a group of fellow attendees in the same predicament. When we eventually found our way inside to what seemed to be a science department seminar room.

The day was split into four 90-minute sessions- ‘Writing the Screenplay’, ‘Making the Movie’,’So you want to Direct?’, and ‘Breaking into the Film Industry.’ Three of these sessions were presented by Elliot Grove, founder and face of Raindance. 

The first section, led by Elliot, ‘Writing the Screenplay’, was the part of the day I was most looking forward to, and it did not disappoint. I found it informative and picked up some tips I had not heard before. This was all illustrated well by the handouts we were given.

The second talk, ‘Making the Movie’, was presented by Patrick Tucker. This again was really interesting, but felt a bit rushed. Either the time had overrun or there was too much content for the slot. 

After a break for lunch, Elliot presented two talks; ‘So you want to Direct?’ and ‘Breaking into the Film Industry.’ Elliot was an inspiring, enigmatic and knowledgeable speaker. As well as telling us information he also told us stories from his life, and those of his famous film maker friends. I really enjoyed all his stories and anecdotes, they really made the day. He also reinforced the idea that all the people in the room could be successful in the film industry, they just had to work hard, and there was no excuse not to get a bunch of your friends together and just make an independent film. 

In between the four sessions a member of staff came around talking to the hundred or so attendees of the day, asking if anyone had any ‘shout outs’, these were then read out to the whole group. These included actors advertising themselves as available for films, filmmakers looking for collaborators and people with specific filmmaking skills advertising their services. 

After the course ended Elliot and the rest of the Raindance team went to a pub and invited the audience with them for a networking event. I didn’t attend the networking event myself, but have heard they are very popular. I left the day feeling inspired and motivated to start writing more screenplays. I also had a heavy bag full of Raindance merchandise and books which I had purchased.

Would I recommend the course? In a nutshell YES. If you want to have a fun day out, learn the basics of filmmaking and have the chance to network or meet those with similar interests then this course is ideal. It is also good for anyone who needs to be inspired, I certainly left the day feeling very motivated!

I paid £39 (Usual price is £129) for the Saturday Film School on the website Groupon

This post has not been sponsored by Raindance, or Groupon. However the link to Groupon is a referral link. All opinions are my own.