Intro to Final Draft & Movie Magic with Aaron Graham (In Partnership with the Directors Guild of Canada – Manitoba District Council)

Location: Film Training Manitoba Training Space (204-245 McDermot Ave.)
Date: July 20, 2024 (10:00 AM – 4:00 PM)
Registration Fee:
General pubic: $60.00
DGC members & permittees: $30.00

About the workshop:

This course will serve as an introduction to the basics of both programs as well as the specific techniques of each. You will learn the essential formatting, terminology, and pros and cons for these commonly used screenwriting programs.

One of the most critically important tasks while working in the Production Office is to turn newly revised pages over in an expedient fashion for both cast & crew. Once the writer or director has approved pages, it is necessary for the designated person in the office to make sure the page numbers match up with the currently approved draft and to ensure that new pages are released to the necessary individuals in the proper colour order.

This tutorial will provide a comprehensive guide on the two programs that are most commonly used on film productions: Final Draft and Movie Magic Screenwriter.

These programs have been fluidly designed to assist and provide simplicity in the creation of a finished screenplay for the budding writer, but there are crucial built-in functions and shortcuts that you will need in order to issue revised pages with ease.

This course is targeted for two types of participants:

1. Those interested in simply learning the programs so that they can put into practice the writing of their own screenplays.

2. Those interested in figuring out the shortcuts needed to know of the programs in order to get pages ready for final approval on film productions.

Topics covered will include:

— Discussion and examination of the practices of each
— The Pros and Cons
— Formatting and Structure
— Shortcuts
— The Intricate Settings of Each: Settings, industry standards in regards to font and size
— Covering the concept of script revisions and the colour order
— How to integrate different files into each different program and clarify/simplify the process of what to change so that the pages are “approval ready”
— Field examples and common problems that may occur with both programs
— Stressing how important it is to double-check that all information is correct before prepping the file for the Assistant Director(s) on the production

About the instructor:

Aaron Graham is a full member of the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC) and was elected to serve on executive of the DGC Manitoba’s district council. He has served as a Production Coordinator and Assistant Production Coordinator on such Winnipeg-based productions as “Midnight Sun”, “Sunnyside”, “The Pinkertons”, and “A Dog’s Purpose”.

Aaron also has an extensive background in freelance film writing including the publications Screem Magazine and Art Decades. A partial list of his interview subjects includes Terry Gilliam, John Landis, James Gray, Richard Franklin, Charles B. Griffith, Stuart Gordon and Richard Linklater. Graham was also selected to the Berlinale Talent Campus at the 2009 Berlin International Film Festival.


FTM is a non-for-profit charity and member of the Province of Manitoba’s Sector Council program funded through the Economic Development, Investment, Trade and Natural Resources. FTM builds a highly skilled and adaptable film industry workforce to support the activities of Manitoba production companies. FTM collaborates and partners with members of the film industry to identify training needs to support workforce development.

-->