Rakhshan Banietemad

Rakhshan Banietemad

Rakhshan Banietemad, screenwriter and director of drama and documentary movies, talks about her view of cinema education and what compelled her to make films. The difference between documentary and narrative film, examining social cinema and its impact, how to come up with new ideas, the importance and etiquette of research, character creation, screenwriting, choosing actors, casting and directing actors, filming, art design, theatrical makeup designs, the sound of the film, the personal etiquette of the filmmaker and everything that should be considered to make a movie, especially a drama, are taught in this course by Banietemad.

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Course Content

01۱ Rakhshan Banietemad biography and introduction of the course

We get to know more about Rakhshan Banietemad, screenwriter and director of fiction and documentary films. She is the creator of notable pieces such as ‘Under the Skin of the City’, ‘The Blue Veiled’, ‘Narges’, ‘Tales’, etc. Banietemad is a member of the Academy Awards, winner of the Venice Award, and dozens of international awards. In ‘Safheye No’, Banietemad tells us more about her view on cinema education, especially social cinema.

02۲ What drove me to make a movie

Banietemad tells us about a path that has led her here. In this lesson, she describes how her personal experiences as a teenager and youth helped her to find a job as a filmmaker.

03۳ Social cinema, from filmmakers point of view

The foundation of social cinema is the reflection of social and cultural conditions on human destiny and the reaction to these conditions. In this lesson, she explains the relationship between people and social situations and the importance of social film as a lasting document.

04۴ Documentary vs. fiction

The difference between a documentary and fiction – from Banietemad’s point of view, who mainly considers herself a documentary filmmaker was discussed in this lesson. The difference between drama in these two genres of cinema are the topics that we will be acquainted with on this page. Furthermore, a case study of the two films “The Blue Veiled” and “The May Lady” also says what determines the choice of film structure.

05۵ How to come up with new ideas

The filmmaker refers to various sources of inspiration, such as books, newspaper events, orders from the producer, etc. In this lesson, Banietemad looks at the films ‘Gilaneh’ and ‘Personal Narrative’; she points out her sources of inspiration and how to process ideas.

06۶ The Importance of research in social cinema

Rakhshan Banietemad believes that research allows the filmmaker to understand the subject thoroughly. For example, she talks about her experience in researching and directing ‘Mainline’ and how to research to achieve the desired goal.

07۷ Research etiquette

This page will talk about the etiquette and do’s and don’ts of research. The filmmaker shares tips on the professional, behavioral, and ethical principles of approaching people and reminds us of the proper use of tools that could help us along the way.

08۸ Creating characters

The creator of the character ‘Nobar Kurdani’ talks to us about being inspired by real people to reach the characters in the film. On this page, she discusses the creation of characters in cinema by analyzing the characters of ‘Nobar’ and ‘Pigeon’ in the movie ‘The Blue Veiled’. She explains how it is possible to understand the circumstances of human beings in the heart of an actual dramatic situation when writing a script.

09۹ Screenwriting

The course instructor goes on to explain how to turn an idea into a story and why she believes the story is the last step to writing a screenplay. The role of dialogue in gaining the script, creative representation of reality, and the experience of co-writing a screenplay are other topics in this course.

10۱۰ The director’s association with the producer and the investor

This lesson includes: the difference between the producer’s expertise and the investor, how to choose them, the filmmaker’s responsibility towards them, the necessity for having a complete script to negotiate with the producer, time and budget management by the director, etc.

11۱۱ Selecting a group

How important is it to select collaborators and build a cohesive team in filmmaking? Banietemad tells us about creating a healthy, friendly, and constructive atmosphere behind the film’s scenes, the executive role of the filmmaker, and the importance of morals along with expertise.

12۱۲ Acting

On this page, we will learn from the course instructor how to choose the right actor, inductively lead the actor, how to help the actor understand the situation of the script, the importance of reading and rehearsing before filming, and the reasons for using non-actors alongside professional actors.

13۱۳ Decoupage, storyboard

Cinema lovers have heard various definitions of how to use decoupage and storytelling in cinema. What is Banietemad’s idea of these concepts? The filmmaker tells us about the importance of decoupage in choosing the location and forging a sense of order in the director’s imagination. She explains the use of storytelling as a roadmap for group members.

14۱۴ Director, cameraman, and art designer triangle

Banietemad considers the triangle of director, cameraman and art designer as the most critical part of the film’s visual identity. In this lesson, we will learn about the role of the cinematographer as the director’s eye and the importance of the art designer in unifying the components of the film.

15۱۵ Actor tools

The impact of the actor’s experience on the character’s ambiance and costume, the comfort of the actor with their costume and makeup, the limitations of covering the female actors, and how to reduce the impact of these limitations are some topics we will learn about on this page.

16۱۶ Editing, revitalizing the movie

Does the editing process shape the movie? Banietemad does not consider movie outcome to be the result of montage; according to her, “revitalizing the movie” is the task of editing, and the shortcomings of the decoupage and filming time should not be imposed on the editor. In this lesson, we will hear the course instructor’s narrative about the internal rhythm of the shot, the degree of editor’s authority, and the importance of asking experts’ views.

17۱۷ Movie sound effects

Rakhshan Banietemad considers the value of film sounds as substantial as the image. According to her, recognizing the sound capabilities by the director is also effective in writing the script and choosing the location. On this page, we also review the effect of sound design and the importance of the material and its perspective to induce the desired feeling to the viewer.

18۱۸ Who are these films aimed at?

It is not ok to make a movie that you know won’t be authorized here; explaining this view, Banietemad considers the life of the film, especially the social film, to be seen and influenced. In this lesson, she talks about how to overcome limitations.

19۱۹ The originality of film and the international market

On this page, the teacher talks about the local tone and narrative, the world language, and the impact of festivals on the director’s work. In this lesson, we will learn about making an original film and the director’s personal style and expression.

20۲۰ Personal etiquette

Banietemad considers maintaining communication with people an asset for the director and emphasizes the importance of work-life balance. She believes in gender equality in filmmaking.

21۲۱ The last page, the last words

“Any experience is better than no experience”; Rakhshan Banietemad, considers the filmmaker as a full-time student and offers helpful suggestions for those interested in filmmaking and cinema.