Arts & Culture / Mosaic / January 22, 2020

Student screenwriter talks about film

Veronica Langley making adjustments to a puppet. (Photo courtesy by Veronica Langley)

Veronica Langley, junior, has always been interested in storytelling.

“I knew from a young age that I wanted to be a writer of some sort, but I didn’t know that it would be specifically screenwriting. Growing up, I wanted to be a novelist and I wanted to win the Newbery Medal (…) As I’ve gotten older, I’ve branched out,” Langley said.

Her love for storytelling led her to want to pursue film and screenwriting, another thing fostered in her childhood years.

“The first movie I ever loved was The Incredibles. It was the first movie where I realized that it wasn’t just fun to watch, there was also a beautiful story underneath the fancy animation,” she said.

Within screenwriting itself, Langley finds herself gravitating most often towards sci-fi and she has grown to love the genre alongside her dad. She also enjoys filmmakers like David Lynch and Edgar Wright who have a distinct style that can be focused on and examined, but who also value storytelling and filmmaking overall.

“The movies I gravitate towards are the ones that are just created with love and with the intention of giving the audience something to think about days, weeks, sometimes years after they’ve seen it,” Langley said.

At Knox, serving as the vice president of Film Club has been something Langley really values and it has given her a space to discuss film with a lot more like-minded individuals.

That aspect of collaboration is something she also values within the creative writing department. Touring Knox before committing and sitting in on an English class during the workshopping process made Langley want to attend because it highlighted the importance of collaboration within the department and the willingness of other Knox students to support the ideas of their peers.

One of the best aspects of the workshop is the ability to see individual thoughts come together on a page and form something bigger.

“I just like the feeling of synthesis, of taking nothing and turning it into something with just the ideas that I have in my head. It’s a great feeling to have something fully developed in your brain and just watch it flow out onto the page. That’s so rare, but it’s the feeling that I keep writing to chase,” she said.

Despite her love for screenwriting and filmmaking, Langley knows that a lot of movies have changed into something she doesn’t necessarily like.

“It does make me a little sad to see movies that are designed specifically to satisfy an audience that already exists, like with reboots and sequels to things we didn’t need. Some of those sequels are great, but all of them are made to make money. It’s really disheartening to me to see that industry which ­Ñ to my knowledge Ñ has been a place for experimental storytelling since the beginning of film to be used as a cash cow, essentially,” she said.

However, Langley isn’t going to let that stop her from writing the types of stories that she wants to see within the industry.

In the future she sees herself living in a big city and working in the film industry in some capacity.

Though she doesn’t know if she will be working as a personal assistant in five years or working as a showrunner or even working on a movie, Langley knows that she will do whatever she can to stay in the film industry.

“My only dream is to work with people I respect and who are very cool to work with,” she said.

Tags:  Artist of the week film screenwriting

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