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Story Punch

Story Punch is a podcast about learning to tell better stories and interviewing people with interesting stories of their own.
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Dec 2, 2017

Today we're talking with 17 year old filmmaker Ethan Paisley. Hailing from the North Bay, Ethan is here to discuss his new sci-fi short film Indelible about a war veteran who returns home with PTSD and must deal with adapting back to civilian life. Indelible has been playing at a number of film festivals across the country and Ethan has some great insights to share on his personal approach to storytelling and filmmaking.

LINKS

Ethan's Website

MVFF Filmmaker Profile

Oct 3, 2017

Today we welcome San Francisco filmmaker Jayson Johnson to talk about his new short film Redress. Jayson shares his heart behind the film and why he decided to tackle the tough issues of race, justice, and the Alt-Right.

For more information about Redress and Jayson, check out the following links:

Sep 11, 2017

Neighbor is a short film about a homeless man who witnesses a kidnapping in the heart of suburbia. Written and directed by Tony Gapastione, the film deals directly with the uncomfortable issue of human trafficking happening here in the United States.

On today's episode of Story Punch, we talk with some of the actors behind Neighbor who generously donated their time and traveled to Redwood City to make this project a reality. Along with the director, we'll hear from actors Bruce Beatty (Straight Outta Compton), Anjelah Johnson (Not Fancy), and Dove Meir (NCIS: LA).

Visit NeighborFilm.com to find out more!

 

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Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

May 9, 2017

On June 2nd, Patty Jenkin's Wonder Woman enters the fray of summer blockbuster season. Featuring an iconic character with 75 years of history, the film is a watershed moment for the superhero genre. But why is Wonder Woman such an anomaly and how did we get here?

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

 

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Nov 6, 2016

Ryan A Bell is a digital storyteller and tech lover.  Today he's here to talk about making movies in virtual reality, and the future of technology.

Follow Ryan on twitter at @ryan_a_bell

 

More links

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

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Oct 11, 2016

On today's episode we are talking with Gideon Kennedy, the Alabama-based writer and co-director of Limo Ride. Limo Ride tells the story of a ragtag group of friends who find themselves in over their heads after renting a sketchy limousine during their annual New Year's festivities

Gideon shares about the genesis of the film, its basis in real life Southern bar stories, and his research into rite-of-passages stories.

Limo Ride is available Oct. 14 on iTunes, Vimeo, and directly through their website.

Find out more at http://www.limoridemovie.com/

 

ADDITIONAL LINKS

Sep 28, 2016

Cameo Wood is an independent filmmaker based in San Francisco. Combining her passion for artificial intelligence, neuromarketing, and filmmaking, she recently directed her first short film Real Artists based on a short story by Ken Liu. On today's episode, she shares about the film and how it came about.

Follow REAL ARTISTS on Seed & Spark and help them get to 1000 followers!

Additional links:

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

 

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Sep 26, 2016

Stories can cause us to feel a wide range of human emotions, but they can also be strangely manipulative. If storytelling is designed to lead an audience into an emotional experience, how do we tell the difference between real emotions and fake ones? And how do we make sure to write the real stuff?

Works referenced include:

  • The Walking Dead Season 6
  • Big Hero 6
  • Captain America Civil War
  • Carrie and Lowell

Further Reading:

Sep 21, 2016

Every great movie has memorable moments. These are the scenes that end up on the poster and splashed all over the trailers. The ones you talk about for years to come.

Today we are talking about the other half. The parts of the story that don't get the limelight but actually draw the audience into the characters and their situation. The human elements that actually make movies work and transform them into something larger than the sum of their parts.

Movies discussed in this episode include:

  • Home Alone
  • Aliens
  • Jaws
  • Rear Window
  • Star Trek
  • Guardians of the Galaxy

 

Thanks for listening!

 

music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

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Sep 9, 2016

Last week Netflix dropped a brand new animated series, Kulipari: An Army of Frogs and it’s actually pretty good! Here's a non-spoilery breakdown of season one.

Wondering where Story Punch has been lately? I'm hoping to have more episodes for you very soon. Been a little overwhelmed lately!

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

 

Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word!  

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal

Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com

Jun 22, 2016

There are common mistakes that people make in their stories that prevent them from being the best they could be. Sometimes a crutch can be characters who don't get a chance to be real characters. Other times they can be tired cliches we've seen before. Often it's weighty exposition that interrupt the narrative flow.

In today's episode we'll look at a few examples of how your story can go terribly wrong and what you can do to fix it.

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

THANKS FOR LISTENING
 
Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word!
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
May 6, 2016

I've been spending more time lately working on a few stories of my own. It seems like every day I'm learning the difference between picking apart and analyzing someone else's story and the much harder task of writing something of your own.

When we critique someone else's work, we usually forget the long process that went into bringing that narrative to life. All we see are the flaws and the mistakes and we overlook the fact that even a bad movie is still a finished movie. A poorly executed story that's finished is still superior than that great idea that only exists in your head.

Everyone has an opinion on what makes a great story, but very few people have what it takes to create a compelling story of their own. Why is that and what might be the reason for that?

Could it be that storytelling is actually much harder than we all assume?

Find out on today's episode of Story Punch!

THANKS FOR LISTENING
 
Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word!
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
Apr 20, 2016
Today we are talking about where stories come from, specifically how they emerge out of our personal experiences and unique perspective. We'll talk about the inspiration behind The Hunger Games, Spielberg's aliens, and the critically panned Cars 2.
 
When I say that stories come from people, I mean that stories are also inseparable from their creators. They communicate a point of view, a collection of values, and the specific life experiences of their authors.
 
I mention a lot of different films in this episode so here are my sources if you want to know more:
 
Suzanne Collin on the Inspiration for the Hunger Games
 
http://www.slj.com/2008/09/interviews/under-cover/a-killer-story-an-interview-with-suzanne-collins-author-of-the-hunger-games/#_
 
http://www.scholastic.com/thehungergames/media/qanda.pdf
 
David S Goyer's Screenwriting Lecture
 
https://soundcloud.com/bafta/david-s-goyer-screenwriting-lecture
 
Scott, Linklater, and Russell's Personal Experiences 
 
http://flavorwire.com/395372/the-true-stories-behind-10-directors-most-personal-films
 
John Lasseter on Cars 2
 
NYT John Lasseter of Pixar defends Cars 2
TIME Q&A with Cars 2 Director John Lasseter
LA TIMES - http://articles.latimes.com/2013/jan/05/news/la-trb-route-66-cars-land-disney-california-adventure-11201228
Telegraph - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/filmmakersonfilm/8637538/John-Lasseter-interview-What-drives-the-man-at-Pixar.html
Movies Online - http://www.moviesonline.ca/2011/06/interview-talk-cars-2-john-lasseter/
 
THANKS FOR LISTENING!
 
Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word!
 
Mar 25, 2016

 

0:00 - My thoughts before watching the movie

16:00 - Non-spoiler Review

26:00 - Spoiler-filled Review

 

THANKS FOR LISTENING!
 
Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
Mar 1, 2016

Creativity is something we all hope for and aspire to. No one wants to recycle secondhand ideas or fall back on tired rote stories. We long to make something fresh and exciting to share with the world. Something original. Something personal.

In today's episode we're talking about creativity, where it comes from, and how to live a life conducive to creative ideas. Hopefully you'll be encouraged wherever you're at and be reminded that you have something to offer creatively.

Thanks for listening!

 

Homework Assignment:

Charlie Kaufman's Screenwriting Lecture - SoundCloud - iTunes

 
 
Articles referenced in this episode:

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

 

THANKS FOR LISTENING!
 
Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
Feb 12, 2016

How do you tell a story based on real life? What details are you allowed to change?

In this episode we look at what principles should guide the telling of a true story. We'll also look at the following movies and how accurate they are:

  • Apollo 13
  • The Blind Side
  • Erin Brockovich
  • The Theory of Everything
  • Remember the Titans
  • Moneyball

 

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC-BY SA

THANKS FOR LISTENING!
 
Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
Jan 22, 2016

Twist endings. Multiples protagonist. Complicated storylines.

How does structure help a story and do you have to follow it?

On today's episode we'll look at what kind of rules you need to follow in a story and why you might want to consider breaking them.

Also this week I made a guest appearance on the Making Movies Is Hard podcast. Check out that episode here.

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

THANKS FOR LISTENING!
 
Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
Jan 12, 2016

Conflict is a crucial part of every story. It's the driving force that moves the narrative forward. Without conflict, there can be no story.

On today's episode we look at three different sources for conflict in a story:

  • interpersonal conflict
  • environmental conflict
  • inner conflict

 

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

THANKS FOR LISTENING!

Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
Jan 6, 2016

A great story doesn't just grab your attention. It also makes logical sense.

On today's episode, we'll talk about the two different layers in a story: how it makes sense in the moment and how it makes sense in terms of overall plot.
 
Sometimes an exciting story falls apart as soon as you stop and think about what is happening. Sometimes a thoughtful well planned out story just isn't interesting. How do you find that balance? How can a story make sense but also keep the audience's interest?
 
 
Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA
 

THANKS FOR LISTENING!

Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Jan 5, 2016

SPOILERS for Episode VII

Marc and Churro talk about The Force Awakens what they liked and some of the things they didn't like.

Thanks for listening!

 

You can find Marc and Churro on Twitter at @marcmadrigal and @churroatschool

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

Dec 29, 2015

December has been a busy month! I'm hoping to write and record some new episodes for you very soon. In the meantime, check out Marc and Churro's Top 10 Movies from this past year.

Thanks for listening!

 

Find Churro on Twitter.

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

Dec 1, 2015

Feedback is perhaps the most underrated aspect of writing stories. In this episode we talk about why it is absolutely critical to get feedback on your stories early and often. Without other people helping you gain perspective and find creative solutions to your problems, your stories won't be able to live up to their full potential.

In this episode we discuss:

  • The 2009 Nobel Peace Prize
  • Creativity Inc. by Ed Catmull
  • Pixar's Braintrust
  • Actual feedback that Marc has received on his writing
  • The limitations of feedback
  • How to give good feedback

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

THANKS FOR LISTENING!

Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com

 

Nov 26, 2015

It's been 38 years since Star Wars first captured the world's collective imagine in the epic story of stars and wars. Does Episode VII recapture that magic once again?

On today's episode, we'll discuss what went right and what went wrong on J.J. Abram's newest take on Star Wars. This review may contain multiple spoilers!

Ok by now you must have realized this review is totally fake. It did come out in November so I don't feel that bad!

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

Nov 25, 2015
It seems like more and more people want to harness the power of stories for the purposes of marketing. But is that really what stories are for? I could have sworn they were about something else besides selling products.
 
In today's episode we talk more about the purpose of stories and look at how maybe telling great stories might be less important than listening to other people's stories.
 
#SlackDown: A lesson in brand interaction by Jason Meeks
 
Check out Tony's film project:  

 

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

THANKS FOR LISTENING!

Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
Nov 18, 2015

Theme is the driving force behind a good story. It gives focus and direction to the many disparate elements in a narrative. Finding your theme means picking a big idea and sticking with it. In today's episode, we'll be talking about what a strong theme requires and looking at several different film examples.

Movie examples include The Phantom Menace, Batman Begins, Skyfall, and Godzilla.

This episode's story is called The Kid in the Eucalyptus Grove.

Music by Jahzzar (betterwithmusic.com) CC BY-SA

THANKS FOR LISTENING!

Enjoying the show? Please leave a REVIEW on iTunes to help spread the word
 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/storypunch/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarcMadrigal
Website: http://storypunchpodcast.com
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