Directing The Comedy Film

Course Dates: 13-14 June 2018
Course Tutor: Col Spector

Course Overview

“Dying is easy; comedy is hard.”

Comedy is a serious business. It’s easy to get it wrong and hard to get it right. As Ricky Gervais once said about the state of comedy filmmaking in the UK, “We have a good TV comedy track record but it doesn’t usually translate to the big screen.”

This seminar based course is for anyone who wants to direct comedy shorts or features. It aims to reveal the crucial steps to making distinctive comedy films that will connect with an audience.

If you have a script or outline for a short or a feature you are invited to bring these along to work on.

This course covers

Day One looks at the first things you need to do as a director; working on the script, finding the theme of your film (and subtext of your scenes), discovering who your characters are, and knowing what sort of film you are making.

Day Two looks at the final stages for you as a director; from casting, to rehearsing, to planning the shoot, to deciding the shots, to editing.

Subjects covered include:

  • Writing your logline
  • What do you have to say as a director?
  • The difficulty of writing a comedy script
  • The difficulty of reading a comedy script
  • Directing the romantic comedy
  • Casting your film
  • The difficulty of finding a great leading comedy actor
  • To storyboard or not to storyboard?
  • Finding your appropriate visual style


This course is led by Col Spector, an award-winning documentary and feature film director whose credits include 'Honeymooner' (launched at the Edinburgh Film Festival) and 'Someone Else' , the Variety Critics Choice at Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, widely released in the UK and USA through IFC Films and the Sundance Channel. He wrote and directed the comedy short, 'New Year's Eve' (starring Stephen Mangan & Keira Knightley) which won several prizes including Best British Short at the UK’s largest short film festival. He is currently developing his latest comedy feature, 'I'm Not in Love'.

Additional information

Comments from last course include:
Tutor was enthusiastic & engaging
Really practical & inspiring!
Amazing course – thanks so much
Left full of enthusiasm

Number of places: 12
Duration: 2 days

Freelance Rate: £335
Corporate Rate: £675

How To Apply

Please complete the application form to apply for a place on this course. 
Email or call us on 0141 422 6461 if you need assistance with your application.

Bursary Information

If you wish to apply for a bursary to contribute to the costs of your course, please read the bursary guidelines below carefully to confirm your eligibility. Once you have applied for your course, bursary applications should be submitted, along with a diversity monitoring form, to Please see the individual course details for bursary deadlines. 

NFTS Scotland Bursary Guidelines

NFTS Scotland Bursary Application Form

NFTS Scotland Diversity Monitoring Form 


Be part of the story.

Be part of the story.

Find a course