Issue 1: Hello and Welcome!

As you might have guessed, this is the first issue of Reel Screen Life. Every two weeks, we’ll bring you a selection of articles, news and analyses all about films based on (or inspired by) real life. By this, we mean films whose inspiration or source material is a real event or an episode out of the life of a real person. If you’re thinking this is a pretty narrow remit, you couldn’t be more wrong…

…Goodfellas, Lincoln, Psycho, Lawrence of Arabia, The Sound of Music, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, The French Connection, 10 Rillington Place, Dog Day Afternoon, The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Full Metal Jacket, The Untouchables, Schindler’s List, Boogie Nights, Saving Private Ryan, Erin Brockovich, A Beautiful Mind, 8 Mile, Touching the Void, The Aviator, American Hustle, 12 Years a Slave, American Sniper, The Theory of Everything, The Imitation Game….

This is just a small, random selection of films whose roots lie in reality…and it is these types of films that appear on RSL‘s radar.

In the first issue we’ve got for you:

  • an introductory feature: Why Tell a True Story?
  • analysis of American Sniper 
  • a short article: Ten Forgotten Classics
  • a round-up of news and film releases

While anyone can (and hopefully will) get something out of RSL, if you’re a screenwriter with an interest in adapting real life for the screen, you’ll hopefully get even more out of each issue.

As well as a noticeable screenwriting slant to every article, we’ll be running a series of lessons which cover the whole process from selecting material and securing legal rights through to structuring, (re)drafting and selling your finished screenplay. There’s also a regularly-updated list of resources.

In short, if you want to learn more about watching, writing and enjoying real life adaptations, RSL aims to be your first port-of-call and a road map through the mass of information that’s available out there.

So, welcome and feel free to look around.

If you’d like a bi-weekly preview of each issue, sign up on our ‘subscribe/contact’ page.

You can contact us about anything you’d care to at: You can also find us on Twitter (@reelscreenlife).

Issue 2 will be out on 8 June.