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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

In Conversation with Guillermo Arriaga

A discussion with the Mexican godfather of screenwriting behind works such as 21 Grams, Babel and Amores Perros.
By Stephen Heard
June 30, 2015
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By Stephen Heard
June 30, 2015
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After stuffing our minds with invaluable knowledge at last last year's Big Screen Symposium, award-winning Mexican screenwriter Guillermo Arriaga will return to further enlighten New Zealand audiences with tales about his writing philosophy, craft, and process.

Self-defined as "a hunter who works as a writer," Arriaga is known for grabbing words by the jugular, and the use of multiple narratives in his scripts. He is responsible for the screen plays of some of the biggest films of recent times, including Oscar-nominated films 21 Grams and Babel (both by Oscar-winning Birdman director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu) - and The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, for which he received the Cannes Best Screenplay Award.

After closing the book on his career as an athlete, Arriaga took his first shot at writing a feature length film. Amores Perros was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Feature Film in 2001 and went on to win the BAFTA Award for Best Feature Film, along with a host of other Best Screenplay and Best Direction awards at film festivals around the world.

In the director's chair he has made the feature film The Burning Plain, as well as several other short films. He has also written three novels and a book of short stories.

His latest discussion is presented by Script to Screen and the New Zealand Writers Guild, and will be led by local actor Robyn Malcolm.

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