Purpose: To get yourself in the habit of starting with a story.
Basis: Far too often a good movie idea fails because it was merely an idea and not a story.
Directions: Choose a genre (or three) and write three short stories in that/those genre(s). The goal here is not to come up with an original tale. Do not try to be original at all. If you choose to write a love story stick to the basics: Guy meets girl, they fall in love. You could certainly add in the bits about how they dislike each other at first, or how they don't realize they are related or are mortal enemies, or whatever. But do not deviate from the basic story. The point here is to learn what it feels like to tell a complete, albeit short, story. Once you know how to tell stories you can start to tell them on film. Until you know how to tell a story your movies will not be compelling. Don't waste time making a bunch of flops. Instead, write up three short stories (no longer than a page each, as short as a long paragraph).
One more note: You will be shooting at least one of these stories, so don't include anything you don't have access to already (including actors, locations, or explosions). Write three stories that you could shoot today.
Looking Forward: Your next assignment will be to begin the process of writing a script for one of your stories. Do not start writing a script. Write three short stories that follow the form of a genre. We'll get to scripts in a bit.
What to Watch: "Egghunt" This short drags a bit (it would have been better if it were a minute shorter), but the story is simple and yet compelling.
View Sample: Assignment 5 Sample