206 episodes

Welcome to Creative Principles, I'm your host Brock Swinson. Here I'll be speaking with writers, directors, actors, musicians and more. We'll discuss the habits, routines, and methods of a creative life.

Creative Principles Creative Principles, with Brock Swinson

    • TV & Film

Welcome to Creative Principles, I'm your host Brock Swinson. Here I'll be speaking with writers, directors, actors, musicians and more. We'll discuss the habits, routines, and methods of a creative life.

    Ep206 - Andy Greenwald, Showrunner Rosario Dawson Series ‘Briarpatch’

    Ep206 - Andy Greenwald, Showrunner Rosario Dawson Series ‘Briarpatch’

    “I loved writing about TV and speaking to people I admired to learn how the sausage was made, but I wanted to leave [entertainment journalism] and work on getting a spec made,” said screenwriter and former critic Andy Greenwald.

    In addition to writing for publications like Entertainment Weekly, Spin, ESPN: The Magazine, and The Washington Post, Andy Greenwald is the author of Miss Misery: A Novel and Nothing Feels Good: Punk Rock, Teenagers, and Emo.

    Greenwald decided he no longer had the same passion for music, but really carried about the types of stories being told on television. “I really cared how the story got made and the process. It was really a lightbulb moment. I had always had this interest, but didn’t put two and two together.”

    After interviewing Noah Hawley (Fargo, Legion), Greenwald was invited to come write for ‘Legion.’ Thanks to the success of this job, Sam Esmail (Mr. Robot, Homecoming) reached out to see if Greenwald had any samples, so his agent sent over the spec for Briarpatch.

    On the new USA series, Rosario Dawson stars as Allegra Dill, an investigator who returns to her hometown in a Texas border town to try and solve the mysterious death of her sister, a police officer who died in a car bombing.

    In this interview, Greenwald discusses lessons he learned from Sam Esmail, how to expose genre, what he loves about the surrealist world of ‘Twin Peaks,’ how his career as a critic influenced his showrunner position, and why screenwriters need to take big swings and make risky, artistic choices.

    If you enjoyed this interview, look for the print version on Creative Screenwriting’s website, and join thousands of viewers for the new YouTube video essay series, Creative Principles, which dissects new films, series, and more: bit.ly/2FARJz5

    • 21 min
    Ep205 - Philip Harder, Writer-Director ‘Tuscaloosa’

    Ep205 - Philip Harder, Writer-Director ‘Tuscaloosa’

    “I was really influenced by punk bands in the 80s and 90s. I liked they were screaming about things I had in my head,” said Philip Harder, who got his start as a music video director.

    Working with artists like The Cranberries, Foo Fighters, Incubus, and Prince, he learned how to tell stories and capture emotions in short formats. “I joined a band, bought a Super 8, and that led to a music video career.”

    In Harder’s latest film, ‘Tuscaloosa,’ college graduate Billy Mitchell (Devon Bostick) finds his plans change when he falls in love with an inmate who has multiple personalities (Natalia Dyer), who lives at his father’s mental institution.

    Based on the novel by Glasgow Phillips, the story stood out to Harder because of the way it “weaved a love story with humor during a pretty intense racial time period in the early 1970s.” He added, “This was something I felt would make a fascinating movie.”

    In this interview, the writer-director talks about involuntary spontaneity on set, how Prince’s “Cinnamon Girl” influenced ‘Tuscaloosa,’ how to work in “overtime mode,” the importance of total immersion, how to survive the “witching hour,” and why casting is everything.

    If you enjoyed this interview, look for the print version on Creative Screenwriting’s website, and join thousands of viewers for the new YouTube video essay series, Creative Principles, which dissects new films, series, and more: bit.ly/2FARJz5

    • 28 min
    Ep204 - Francis Annan, Writer-Director Daniel Radcliffe Film ‘Escape From Pretoria’

    Ep204 - Francis Annan, Writer-Director Daniel Radcliffe Film ‘Escape From Pretoria’

    In ‘Escape From Pretoria,’ writer-director Francis Annan uncovers the true story of how two real-life political captives escape from Pretoria during the tumultuous apartheid days of South Africa. The film stars Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) and Daniel Webber (11.22.63).

    In this interview, Annan discusses creating empathy in these characters, why these real life subjects debated the issue of escaping or staying, how he made the jump from shorts and docs to a full feature, dealing with overtime, and why Daniel Radcliffe loves the process of acting.

    If you enjoyed this interview, join millions of viewers for the new YouTube video essay series, Creative Principles, which dissects new films, series, and more: bit.ly/2FARJz5

    • 17 min
    Ep203 - Benedict Andrews, Director Kristen Stewart Film ‘Seberg’

    Ep203 - Benedict Andrews, Director Kristen Stewart Film ‘Seberg’

    ‘Seberg’ is inspired by true events about the French New Wave darling and Breathless star, Jean Seberg (Kristen Stewart), who in the late 1960s was targeted by the FBI because of her support of the civil rights movement and romantic involvement with Hakim Jamal (Anthony Mackie), among others.

    In Benedict Andrews’ noir-ish thriller, Seberg’s life and career are destroyed by Hoover’s overreaching surveillance and harassment in an effort to suppress and discredit Seberg’s activism.

    In this interview, the director discusses the importance of defending your time to work, his transition from live theatre to evergreen filmmaking, why you make a film three times, and how wonderfully difficult it is to bring ideas to the screen.

    If you enjoyed this interview, join millions of viewers for the new YouTube video essay series, Creative Principles, which dissects new films, series, and more: bit.ly/2FARJz5

    • 17 min
    Ep202 - Wes O’Donnell, Public Speaker & Author ‘Own the Crowd’

    Ep202 - Wes O’Donnell, Public Speaker & Author ‘Own the Crowd’

    Wes O’Donnell is a writer, a TED speaker, a multi-branch military veteran, a journalist, and a speaker for veterans. But, above all else, he’s a storyteller.

    As such, Wes writes on a little of everything, from military issues to personal productivity to intermittent fasting to content strategy to data journalism and unstructured data, along with how to become a public speaker.

    In his latest book, ‘Own the Crowd,’ the author discusses the moments in life that must be pursued. Wes believes, “Public speaking is much more than delivering content from a podium. If you want your ideas to be memorable, you must become a performer.”

    In this interview, Wes discusses emotional responses behind the written word, his work as a veteran speaker, why he started IF, and why the best ways to be productive are actually priceless.

    If you enjoyed this interview, join millions of viewers for the new YouTube video essay series, Creative Principles, which dissects new films, series, and more: bit.ly/2FARJz5

    • 22 min
    Ep201 - Anthony Jerjen, Director Josh Hartnett Film ‘Inherit the Viper’

    Ep201 - Anthony Jerjen, Director Josh Hartnett Film ‘Inherit the Viper’

    A product of the Spielberg era, Anthony Jerjen directed shorts like ‘The End,’ ‘Trained’ and ‘Immersion,’ before he stumbled upon a script called ‘Inherit the Viper.’

    As a European, Jerjen wasn’t particularly familiar with the opioid crisis, but he saw a universal connection with the story.

    Andrew Crabtree’s script for ‘Inherit the Viper’ is a crime thriller about three siblings in the Appalachian Mountains who get by as local opioid dealers. Somewhat forced into the family business, the kids try not to get lost in the spiral of violence from the business.

    This is essentially the debut film for the screenwriter and director. The movie stars Josh Hartnett, Bruce Dern, Owen Teague, Margarita Levieva, and Chandler Riggs.

    In this interview, Jerjen discusses his jump from shorts to a full feature, what attracted him to the story for ‘Viper,’ how large crews mean compromise, why we romanticize films, and why he shoots in a traditional manner.

    If you enjoyed this interview, join millions of viewers for the new YouTube video essay series, Creative Principles, which dissects new films, series, and more: bit.ly/2FARJz5

    • 14 min

Customer Reviews

SwinTim ,

Really enjoyable!!

Great articles and interviews.

Brockswin ,

Highly Recommend!

Very detailed interviews and great questions.

Jessica Mays 88 ,

Love it!

Great interviews!

Top Podcasts In TV & Film

Listeners Also Subscribed To