The Daily Iowan

Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

Scott+Beck+and+Bryan+Woods%2C+UI+alumni+and+co-writers+of+A+Quiet+Place%2C+speak+in+the+Pappajohn+Business+Building+on+Monday%2C+April+9%2C+2018.+%22A+Quiet+Place%22+stars+John+Krasinski+and+Emily+Blunt%2C+and+topped+the+box+office+during+its+opening+weekend.+%28The+Daily+Iowan%2FOlivia+Sun%29
Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, UI alumni and co-writers of A Quiet Place, speak in the Pappajohn Business Building on Monday, April 9, 2018.

Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, UI alumni and co-writers of A Quiet Place, speak in the Pappajohn Business Building on Monday, April 9, 2018. "A Quiet Place" stars John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, and topped the box office during its opening weekend. (The Daily Iowan/Olivia Sun)

Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, UI alumni and co-writers of A Quiet Place, speak in the Pappajohn Business Building on Monday, April 9, 2018. "A Quiet Place" stars John Krasinski and Emily Blunt, and topped the box office during its opening weekend. (The Daily Iowan/Olivia Sun)


Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






UI alumni Scott Beck and Bryan Woods, screenwriters of a new hit movie, visit the UI and speak about the development of their careers and the process by which they write and produce their films.

Paul Elwell

[email protected]

University of Iowa alumni and Hollywood screenwriters Scott Beck and Bryan Woods visited the UI on April 9 to discuss their professional careers and their cowritten, just released film, A Quiet Place, directed by John Krasinski.

Beck and Woods took the opportunity to talk about their careers from the ground up, as well as the influence the UI has had.

The beginnings of the duo’s career took place in a middle-school lunchroom in Bettendorf. Woods approached Beck’s lunch table, and they bonded over Wood’s interest in making short films with his Star Wars action figures.

“You would have changed the course of history if you sat somewhere else,” said cinematic-arts Associate Professor Christopher Harris, a moderator of the discussion.

Their friendship continued, and they ended up attending the UI, making various connections that proved valuable in their upcoming careers.

“Coming from Iowa, that’s a leg up; it’s something we find very special to this very day,” Beck said. “Anytime we run into somebody from Iowa, there is a kinship there but also a creativity that’s shared, a unique perspective that you don’t necessarily get if you come from somewhere else.”

Beck and Woods have worked on most of each other’s major projects collaboratively, something they attribute the quality of their writing to.

“What makes having a writing partner nice is that you are never precious with your work; it always feels like someone else’s work, so we never fall in the trap of thinking that it’s better than it is,” Woods said.

After some time in Hollywood, Woods and Beck developed a relationship with MTV films, where they would frequently send pitches, one of which being a TV pilot called “Spread.” It did not get picked up by the network but proved helpful in developing their shared philosophy of filmmaking.

“If we want to write something, and nobody wants to make it, that we are still passionate about, we would come back to the UI and film it,” Woods said.

The two did return to the UI and film “Spread,” tapping into their connections to get aid in the production. It was a difficult task, Woods said, because the UI did not exactly want them filming on campus.

Following “Spread,” Beck and Woods also wrote and directed another film, titled Nightlight, in 2015. After that, their next major project was A Quiet Place, released on April 6.

They wrote the film based on a simple premise: If you make any noise, you die. Drawing on silent filmmakers such as Charlie Chaplin for inspiration, they produced an initial 67-page script including only three lines of dialogue.

Fortunately, everything fell into place for them, and not only was the project picked up by Paramount Pictures, they also got their first choice of actors on board. They also were able to remain involved on the production side as well as executive producers.

Such as with the case of “Spread,” they had plans to produce A Quiet Place here in Iowa on a lower budget if nobody picked it up.

Comments

comments

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    Mayflower operates at 60% capacity to give returners on-campus living space

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    UI students petition for birth control

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    UI faculty promoting healthier habits to reduce Iowa’s high obesity rate

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    UI Student Security kicks off third year of operations

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    Fulbright Scholar studies water quality in Romania

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    New program through UI center seeks to end farming-related accidents

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    Hawkeye Service Teams hopes to modify Alternative Spring Break

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    UI Counseling Service’s Old Capitol Mall location becomes increasingly popular

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    Students now required to apply for UI Honors program

  • Screenwriters of A Quiet Place speak at the UI about their careers as filmmakers

    Campus

    University of Iowa no longer a top-20 party school