Sam Rosenberg: Screenwriting + Filmmaking

Sometimes you want your passions to fit onto a screen…or in the paper! With a love for writing, production, and film as a whole, Sam Rosenberg is constantly working on something cool. Read his #PassionPreview: “Screenwriting and filmmaking. I got invested in film and TV at a very early age, as I've always been a visual learner. Both mediums shaped my artistic identity, sharpened my creative spirit, and exposed me to the fascinating complexities of the world we live in. My parents encouraged me to pursue this passion when I was young and bought me a Flip Video Camera and an iMac G5 to help foster my creativity. I used both devices to record fun, short home videos of myself and my friends, but what I really wanted to do was write stories, though I found more success in writing about different facets of pop culture. “

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“During sophomore year of high school, I started a music/movie review blog and later joined the newspaper, where I would continue to write about albums I just listened to and movies I had just seen. Once I got to college, I immediately joined the Arts section of my university's newspaper, The Michigan Daily, and since then, I have written (and edited) over 100 reviews and opinion pieces on TV, movies, music, social media, and other pop-culture-related topics. Writing for the Michigan Daily not only improved my writing, but gave me the analytical tools to hone in my own voice, a skill that helped me in my English, screenwriting and film production classes. Currently, I'm finishing up my second-to-last semester as a senior at the University of Michigan, where I'm double majoring in English and Film, Television, & Media (with a concentration in Screenwriting) and have just finished my editorship at the newspaper.”

Why screenwriting + filmmaking? “I love watching and telling stories. I love seeing a narrative unfold through the the back-and-forth of dialogue and the eyes and actions of a character. I love being immersed in and entertained by the strange, exciting worlds depicted in cinema and television. I love screenwriting and filmmaking because actualizing such passions was a challenge for me growing up. I had a learning disability that inhibited my speech and language skills, and essentially from articulating my ideas and thoughts through coherent, accessible means. What pushed me to overcome these obstacles and pursue writing and filmmaking were several demanding but ultimately rewarding years in intensive speech and language therapy. It's funny how the things that I've had the most difficulty with as a kid only made me even more impassioned and motivated to succeed and bring my ideas to life. I guess in order to truly love something, you have to struggle with it first.”

To someone not interested in screenwriting + filmmaking: How do you sleep at night?

To someone interested in screenwriting + filmmaking: “Start as soon as possible. Don't wait to get permission. Just do it. Write down all of your ideas either in a journal or notebook, on your computer, in the Notes app on your phone — whatever works for you. Find other people who are just as passionate as you are about writing and/or filmmaking and make projects together. Share your drafts with people you trust and ask them for critical feedback. Giving your work to someone else can definitely be very scary and vulnerable, but it's the best and easiest way for you to grow as a writer. Make sure to watch as many movies and TV shows with different types of genres, directors, and writers as you can. The more diverse your film/TV consumption is, the wider array of perspectives you will be able to internalize and mold into your own craft. Learn to appreciate the process more than the product. A lot of this will also require tons of self-discipline and patience; you will be tempted to start and stop and start again (something I'm very guilty of), so make sure to pace yourself. It took me three months to write my first feature-length screenplay and I'm currently writing the second draft (which has also taken three months).”

Passion Emoji: 😎