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Tell stories the way people want it

Stories all year round, stories above all: writer and director Lance Weiler shares his faith in the art of storytelling.


Lance Weiler

After a panel on storytelling, “The Indie Filmmakers’ Guide to Cross Media,” presented as part of the Berlinale Talent Campus, the award-winning writer and director Lance Weiler spoke with Talent Press member Espéra G. Donouvossi, sharing his ideas about finding new approaches to storytelling to reach the largest audience. Weiler is viewed as a pioneer for the way he makes and distributes his work. His first feature, THE LAST BROADCAST, was distributed in more than 20 countries, and a later film, HEAD TRAUMA, premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival in 2006.

Tell us about you and about your presence here today.
I am a screenwriter and film director and I’ve been writing stories for almost 15 years. I strongly believe that good storytelling is the key to the success of a film. We don’t need to tell stories the way we want it but the way people want it. I am fascinated by telling stories and connecting many people from various areas. When I start a new project, my first preoccupation is how to reach the largest audience. Telling a story should provoke a fusion between two worlds, the artistic world and the public world.

What are the main qualities of good storytelling?
For me, first, any storytelling is supposed to be a kind of life experience; I could even say kind of a social game. There is a need to be a good listener and be attentive to what’s happening around you, since life is an amazing source of inspiration. The good storyteller must know what the traditions are and from there find out what can please the universal public. Good storytelling takes some big risks and can work on any subject. Conflicts and conflict resolution, for instance, are topics that interest the public. The public needs information and is thirsty for change, and any storytelling that respects and fulfils these needs stands the chance of being a good one.

What is your advice to the Talents?
I should just say that this programme is very important and they should be careful and not mess up. Their future collaborators are sitting with them now. They should profit from this opportunity to develop social networking and work hard. I am still working. Currently I am a part of a new programme where the slogan is 365. That means each day, somebody writes a story.



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