Lots of excellent stories, no matter whether instructed through the written phrase or on the silver display, share a frequent thread—a hero’s journey. The Hero’s Journey is a narrative composition that has been a basic aspect of storytelling for hundreds of years, and it carries on to be a strong device in filmmaking.

1 of my favourite screenwriting guides is ‘The Writer’s Journey‘, which details Joseph Campbell’s journey via storytelling and can take the writer’s POV.

This was the very first reserve I study on screenwriting and one particular of the best.

Christopher Vogler wrote the e book, and he was recently on the Film Crux podcast talking about these ideas. So check out the podcast and we’ll talk right after.

https://www.youtube.com/observe?v=N2r7rZDgNKAThe Writer’s Journey | How to Publish Good Stories | Christopher Voglerwww.youtube.com

What is the Hero’s Journey?

What is the Hero's Journey?

‘Star Wars’

Credit: Lucasfilm

I figured that soon after the podcast you might will need a refresher on Joseph Campbelland his strategy of The Hero’s Journey. This not a new idea it dates back again to historical mythology and has been used by countless cultures all over historical past.

Campbell was a scholar of comparative mythology and wrote a reserve identified as “The Hero with a Thousand Faces.” He discovered a popular pattern in myths and stories from close to the entire world, a pattern he known as the monomyth or the Hero’s Journey.

The Hero’s Journey is a template that outlines the levels a hero typically goes by way of in a tale. Whilst there may well be versions and diversifications, the core framework continues to be regular.

It begins with the hero’s everyday world, adopted by a call to journey, a journey into the mysterious, encounters with allies and enemies, a transformation or revelation, and lastly, a return to the common earth with newfound wisdom or gifts.

A Diagram of The Hero’s Journey

A Diagram of The Hero's Journey

The Hero’s Journey Diagram

Wikipedia Commons

The Hero’s Journey is generally depicted as a circular diagram, with each phase connected to the subsequent in a cycle. there are several distinctive names for the tale beats in the circle.

The image above is from Wikipedia.

Here is a linear representation of Campbell’s plan with beats I use when crafting.

  1. Normal Globe: The hero’s typical everyday living just before the journey commences.
  2. Phone to Adventure: The hero gets a simply call to go away their standard earth and embark on a journey.
  3. Refusal of the Phone: The hero hesitates or resists the connect with initially.
  4. Meeting the Mentor: The hero encounters a mentor or guideline who gives suggestions or aid.
  5. Crossing the Threshold: The hero commits to leaving the ordinary environment and getting into the unidentified.
  6. Assessments, Allies, and Enemies: The hero faces issues, will make allies, and encounters adversaries.
  7. Approaching the Cave: The hero gets nearer to the central problem or conflict.
  8. Ordeal: The hero faces a main take a look at, normally their most substantial obstacle.
  9. Reward: The hero overcomes the ordeal and gains a reward or insight.
  10. The Highway Again: The hero starts the journey back to the common globe.
  11. Resurrection: The hero faces 1 final, climactic obstacle.
  12. Return with the Elixir: The hero returns to the ordinary environment, remodeled, and provides anything valuable again.

Examples of The Hero’s Journey in Movie

Examples of The Hero's Journey in Film and TV

‘The Matrix’

Warner Bros.

A lot of iconic films have embraced the Hero’s Journey structure to great influence. In this article are a handful of examples:

  1. Star Wars: George Lucas drew seriously from Joseph Campbell’s operate when developing the Star Wars saga. Luke Skywalker’s journey from a farm boy on Tatooine to a Jedi Knight follows the Hero’s Journey sample intently.
  2. The Lord of the Rings: J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic fantasy trilogy, adapted into movies by Peter Jackson, showcases the Hero’s Journey as a result of Frodo’s quest to demolish the One Ring.
  3. The Matrix: The Wachowskis applied the Hero’s Journey to manual Neo’s transformation from a laptop hacker to “The One particular” who can conserve humanity.
  4. The Wizard of Oz: Dorothy’s adventure in the Land of Oz is a traditional Hero’s Journey, full with a simply call to journey, allies, adversaries, and a return residence with newfound wisdom.

How Filmmakers Use the Hero’s Journey


  1. Creating Relatable Characters: One particular of the most substantial benefits of the Hero’s Journey in filmmaking is its potential to generate relatable characters. Audiences hook up with heroes who confront troubles, make sacrifices, and working experience individual advancement. By next this narrative construction, filmmakers can craft figures that resonate with viewers on a deep emotional degree.
  2. Setting up Rigidity and Conflict: The Hero’s Journey presents a created-in framework for tension and conflict. As the hero progresses by way of the a variety of phases, they encounter obstacles, adversaries, and setbacks, holding the viewers engaged and invested in the story’s result.
  3. Participating Audiences on an Psychological Level: The Hero’s Journey is not just about actual physical problems it’s also about the hero’s inside journey. Filmmakers can use this framework to discover the hero’s emotions, fears, and wants, allowing the audience to connect with the character on an emotional stage.
  4. Crafting Memorable Endings: The return of the hero to the normal environment at the end of their journey often leaves a long lasting impression on the audience. Filmmakers can use this minute to provide effective messages, resolutions, or open up-ended conclusions that leave viewers thinking very long immediately after the credits roll.

Additional Examining on The Hero’s Journey

More Reading on The Hero's Journey

The Lion King (2019)


This is No Movie University, of program we’ve published about this concept lots of situations in advance of. so listed here are some content for you to peruse as very well…

The Hero’s Journey is a storytelling archetype deeply embedded in our collective consciousness. It provides filmmakers with a potent tool to engage and captivate audiences.

By knowing and utilizing this narrative framework, filmmakers can develop compelling tales with relatable people, tension, and emotional depth.

Whether or not you might be crafting a house opera or an personal drama, the Hero’s Journey remains a timeless blueprint for effective storytelling in filmmaking.

Enable me know what you assume in the reviews.

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