On November, 21 st Christopher Vogler gave his first master-class in Moscow. It was held at VGIK, during the 33 rd VGIK International Film Festival. Before the master-class Mr. Vogler had been greeted by Mr. Popov, VGIK-Debut Company CEO and Ms. Tursunova, Head of the International Affairs Department who expressed gratitude for his consent to speak to the students and share his reach experience.
Mr. Vogler studied filmmaking at the USC School of Cinema-Television, the alma mater of George Lucas. Like Lucas, he was inspired by the writings of mythologist Joseph Campbell, particularly by his book “The Hero With A Thousand Faces”, and Vogler’s theory about a journey that makes the protagonist of any story is based mostly on this research. Christopher Vogler refined Campbell’s model and adapted it for the cinema in his book “The Writer’s Journey: Mythic Structure For Writers”, which became a guide for screenwriters all over the world.
As a consultant, Vogler worked with major studious, took part in the work on the script for “The Wrestler”, “Black Swan”, “The Lion King”, “Fight Club”, “Thin Red Line”. At the meeting at VGIK he spoke about his concept of storytelling, and noted that he had been inspired not only by the works of Campbell, but by those of Syd Field and Vladimir Propp as well. Vogler tested his ideas on the Disney movies. He advised the young screenwriters to study psychology thoroughly: “Knowledge of psychology proves helpful when creating a character and working with the actor”. The master stressed the need for the contact with the audience: “Every viewer must feel that this story is about him too”. Christopher Vogler urged the students to be attentive to their feelings and body reactions (goosebumps, tears etc.) while watching a movie and listening to the music. “Study your body, observe how it reacts to terrible or beautiful things”. The filmmaker said that the story is not good enough if it does not make us laugh or cry. Christopher Vogler made a point of creating a negative or positive character, which should cause sympathy. Students did not only listen to mr. Vogler, but asked interesting questions, which provided a live dialogue.