This Method Always Leads To Original Story Ideas – Guido Segal

Film Courage: Where does the creation of a great story begin? 

Guido Segal, Screenwriter, Journalist, Film Critic, Instructor: I feel like every creative has a different source of inspiration or motivation. Maybe it’s a feeling, maybe it’s an image, maybe it’s a memory, maybe all of them combined. To me there’s usually an image and that image is going to guide me along the way when I feel lost in the story. I go back to that and that image usually contains at least one emotion that I don’t fully understand but I will explore through the story. I would say an image or a series of images that contain in them the whole story and it’s the most mysterious thing because I can’t fully explain it. Suddenly I’ll be talking to someone or I’ll be reading something or listening to music, to a song or someone will tell me a story like the other day I bought this doll and I gave it to my daughter and suddenly I hear there are coordinates that make me resonate. I know that because I keep thinking about it. If after a couple of days I keep thinking about it and I’m talking about original stories. It’s very different if you get a commission like Please write this story if it’s an original thing. If I keep thinking about it and especially if I can tie that to other elements that I’m interested in, you start building a world. I know for example when Hitchcock did North By Northwest there was no story originally. He had a series of scenes he wanted to shoot and then he brought in Ernest Lehman who’s one of the best writers ever and then they came up with a story to tie those scenes together. What he knew at first is he had these images, a guy hanging from Mount Rushmore…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).


Guido Segal was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Before moving to Los Angeles to pursue his  MFA in Screenwriting at UCLA, he was a journalist and a film critic, selected as a Juror at la Semaine de la Critique, during the 2014 Cannes Film Festival. Segal has worked as a documentary filmmaker for History and Discovery Channel covering political topics (Asylum Seekers; Sicarios). He also has vast experience as an assistant director and screenwriter for films and TV. Segal co-wrote the Argentinian films Leones (2012) and Kékzsakállú (2016). He was also staffed as a TV writer in three shows: Un Año Para Recordar (2011-2012); La Asombrosa Excursión de Zamba (2014-2016); and Siesta Z (2016). The last two animated shows were nominated for International Emmy Awards in the Kids category. Segal has lived in Argentina, Spain and Finland, and taught Screenwriting and Film Analysis in Universidad del Cine (Buenos Aires), Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona), TAMK University (Tampere, Finland) and UCLA. 






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