The Comedy of the Coen Brothers

The Comedy of the Coen Brothers

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How do you build a successful screenwriting career in Hollywood with real staying power? How do you consistently produce the most strikingly original work every time you write a script? How do you attract top actors with one-of-a-kind characters and dialogue? How do you make your name a fixture of the industry’s top award shows year after year? The answer to this riddle is somewhere inside the career of the Coen Brothers, whose movies have dazzled audiences and critics for over 30 years.

If you want to learn anything, you study how the masters of the craft do it, and there are few masters who have dominated as many diverse genres as the Coen Brothers. Known for their quirky, unpredictable plots, their outrageous characters, snappy dialog, and unique genre mixing, the Coens body of work revels true wisdom about the craft of storytelling, particularly as it relates to quirky indie-style comedy with mainstream appeal.

Join The Onion’s founding editor and #1 New York Times bestselling author Scott Dikkers as he deconstructs five of the Coen Brothers’ most successful comedies, and shows you how you can skillfully apply some of their tricks of the trade to your own work.


  • The importance of defining your genre
  • The power of planning
  • How to create colorful characters
  • How the Coens make classic character archetypes feel fresh
  • What makes a comedy “quirky”
  • Six dialog techniques the Coens use to keep an audience riveted
  • Ways to use symbolism to deepen a story
  • The 3 biggest mistakes screenwriters make before they write the first word of their script
  • The difference between comedic and dramatic structure and why every writer must understand both
  • How the Coens write dialog that sparkles with originality


  • Writers who want to tackle the most difficult genre of them all -- comedy
  • Directors and producers who want insights into fixing and enhancing any screenplay
  • Anyone who appreciates a truly original cinematic vision, and wants a deeper understanding of the craft behind it

Please note: This webinar is neither endorsed by nor affiliated with Joel Coen or Ethan Coen or any related parties in any way. All views expressed during the presentation are those of the presenter.

The Writers Store does not offer any refunds for the webinar. All sales are final.