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About the Course Creators

Lynda Heys & Steve Turnbull

Lynda Heys, an Australian director and international speaker, has presented sessions on screenplay development to over 80,000 students, teachers, lecturers and professional filmmakers. Lynda studied at AFTRS (The Australian Film, Television and Radio School) and received a Masters in Fine Arts (Film Producing) from the University of Southern California. After working in development within the Hollywood studio system, she returned to Australia to co-write and direct the $4 million Australian feature, TACKLING ROMEO (co-starring Radha Mitchell and Martin Henderson).

Steve Turnbull co-developed and manages the team's sessions in screenplay development around the world. A working screenwriter for fifteen years, Steve completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Media Studies at Deakin University and was writer and AP on the award winning ABC doco BLACK GOLD KINDRED SPIRIT. He joined forces with Lynda on TACKLING ROMEO working on re-writes to secure financing, and going on to form Faraway Films in the late 90's. Faraway Films actively develops feature projects for the US, Hispanic and Australian markets.

Lynda and Steve's professional course on storytelling in film has evolved over the past decade and constantly challenges them to continue to share their passion, understanding and love of story with other filmmakers united in the struggle that is "development hell."

The course originated as "The Second Act Story" in a living room in Los Angeles. After growing to conference venues in Los Angeles through Carmelina Pictures, "The Second Act Story" toured Australia in the mid to late 90's and into 2000.

In 2007 Jeremiah Comey Film Acting Studios, based in Studio City, brought it back to the USA to expand it as a professional development program for studios and independent filmmakers. Arenas Entertainment has taken over since September 2010.

In early 2008, animation studio PIXAR (TOY STORY, FINDING NEMO, CARS, WALL-E, UP) ran sessions over 6 weeks for its employees in San Francisco. The feedback from Pixar attendees was that it was the best approach to story they had ever had. Disney Studios immediately organized to bring the course to its animators in Los Angeles in November/Dec 2008. Lynda returned to Pixar in Sept 2009 to present SLAYING THE DRAGON as a Master Class and to Disney in 2010. DreamWorks Animation has recently booked a week of new sessions for early 2011.

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Linda Heys & Steve Turnbull - Slaying the Dragon Seminar Creators