Screenplay storytelling, writing, formatting, and how to put it all together.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

6
votes
5answers
153 views

How do screenwriters incorporate song scenes into a screenplay for a musical?

If the song is already written, sure, easy question. But say you're sitting down to write The Lion King before any composers have even been brought aboard, before pre-production has even been dreamt ...
2
votes
2answers
342 views

Can you specify camera angles in your screenplay?

So I guess camera action is up to the director. Would I ever be allowed to pan if it is important? Would I not be able to pick certain angles? If I can, what would be the best way to specify --for ...
3
votes
2answers
81 views

A Background Voice Heard Over A Phone

There's a running dialogue between two of my characters. However, I am not using INTERCUT and only one of the two characters will be in frame. The other will be heard through V.O.. Now, here's my ...
0
votes
2answers
70 views

Film script - writing scene transition from TV Broadcast to story reality

I'm writing a script that has a news broadcast sequence to establish the background of the story, and then we see the main character is watching this news broadcast to transition from worldbuilding to ...
5
votes
2answers
5k views

How to handle screenplay revisions in Final Draft?

I need to revise a screenplay in Final Draft, and I'm finding that the revision features in the program are poor. Are there any ways to introduce revision features in to Final Draft, similar to Track ...
2
votes
2answers
123 views

Rapid Cross-Scene Cuts in Screenplay/Script

In a screenplay I'm writing, I want to use a rapid cut-together sequence of reaction shots from characters in several different locations already established earlier in the script. Is it still ...
0
votes
3answers
37 views

How can a screenplay writer learn to write a novel?

I am the sort of person that is really great at coming up with amazing ideas, plot-lines, worlds, etc. for stories, but I'm not so good at putting them to paper - at least not in a novel. I'm really ...
1
vote
6answers
85 views

A good idea but I do not know how to develop it

When you have a good idea for a book or screenplay, but you do not know how to develop this idea on paper, what do you do?
0
votes
1answer
32 views

Feature film and finding a co-writer

I've written a few scripts for film, but think I need to collaborate with someone. I always run out of ideas. Where would I find a co-writer?
1
vote
2answers
42 views

Photos in Screenplays

I cannot seem to find any information about this question. Is it appropriate to include photos of characters in a biographical screenplay?
1
vote
2answers
95 views

In play writing, script writing or theatre is there a name for some exchange of dialogue between characters that is supposed to make a point?

Suppose you want to show that two characters have some animosity towards one another. In some scene you set up a meeting between the characters in the elevator and an exchange of lines occurs. This ...
5
votes
8answers
160 views

I'm unable to figure out the logical solution to a problem; how do I keep writing?

I'm outlining the plot for a scifi screenplay. I have the main characters, premise, the first half of the story, and the climax thought out. I don't want to bore you with details, but the story ...
0
votes
4answers
79 views

How can one establish a discipline of sticking to a writing schedule?

I currently have three stageplays, a comic strip, one screenplay and posts on writing blogs (not to mention NaNoWriMo) that I have to stay on top of, and yet my mind gets scattered, although I find ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

Playwriting: What is the difference between parentheticals and stage directions?

Coming from the World of Screenwriting, it proves difficult for me to discern the usage of parentheticals from the usage of stage directions in a play I'm writing. I need to know which is for what and ...
3
votes
4answers
4k views

Why are some words in screenplays set in all caps?

I believe I understand this and I'm looking for confirmation. Examples: It has become a tugging match with the Weird Man shouting, "I'll take you to a taxi... I'll take you." Ahead, a group is ...
3
votes
3answers
77 views

How Much Descriptive Information Is Enough For a Locale In A Screenplay?

First out, my question pertains strictly to screenplays. Secondly, it deals with a spec script. Now, there seems to be surprisingly scant information on the internet in regard to how far you should go ...
1
vote
1answer
73 views

Are non-speaking characters in a screenplay introduced in all caps?

For example, if a guard enters a room and watches someone but does not speak, is this character introduced in all caps as GUARD? What if the character's role is even more limited: a little girl hands ...
0
votes
3answers
67 views

Does a writer have any rights to a work that has been completely rewritten by another writer?

Does a writer have any rights to a work that has been completely rewritten by another writer? The rewriter used the original work as a blueprint, but ended up changing most of the details and ...
0
votes
2answers
57 views

Describing camera movement in the ACTION?

Is it okay to write a bit of camera movement in the ACTION? I don't mean the camera movements such as PUSH IN or ANGLE ON. What I mean is something like the following: Through an **aerial view**, we ...
2
votes
3answers
124 views

What is the meaning of the dictum that the third act should contain the greatest crisis?

I am working on a screenplay in which the protagonist has to surmount a crisis in each of the three acts. That is, a physical crisis in Act I, a social crisis in Act II, and a psychological crisis in ...
0
votes
3answers
160 views

Should I be a Novel Writer or a Screenwriter?

Should I be a Novel Writer or a Screenwriter? This question is intended for the beginning writer, who is unsure if he should start with writing physical books, or with writing scripts for movie ...
9
votes
5answers
3k views

What is the process for turning a story into a “movie” script?

This is probably a slightly vague sounding question, but I'm curious as to how "stories" go to the point of becoming a film production (at least to the point of becoming a script).
8
votes
2answers
788 views

How does one go about successfully getting their movie script, or screen play, into the right hands?

How does one go about successfully getting their movie script, or screen play, into the hands of top level Hollywood producers? Does one need a literary agent? If so where does one find one that ...
0
votes
2answers
195 views

Possible To Introduce A Character Through A Dialogue?

In a screenplay, would it be okay to introduce a character through a dialogue? The character in question isn't given a background (in the ACTION) in the start since his first appearance is one where ...
1
vote
2answers
4k views

Is there a way to import a script from Celtx into Final Draft?

Is there a way to import a script from Celtx into Final Draft? Going to switch and it seems as though my script is "locked" into Celtx's format. I'm hoping this is possible and that there isn't a huge ...
-1
votes
3answers
100 views

Getting past a dead end

I've been working on a screenplay for a while now. But I seem to have reached quite the dead end. My question is, what do you guys do, to get past a sticking point. Especially when you don't want to ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

Writing the role of the actor in a movie/play

When writing a script / screen play would you write it as 'Vin Diesel says:...' or as the character i.e. 'John Smith says:...'
1
vote
1answer
41 views

Which is the best resource to learn how to write a sitcom?

Can anyone suggest me the best resource to learn comedy screenwriting for Sitcoms? I have read Melvin Helitzer's "Comedy writing secrets" book and learnt a lot from it. But I want to know in depth ...
0
votes
2answers
49 views

Use Of '!?' In Screenplays

Is it okay to use !? for emphasis in dialogues in a screenplay? I understand that it cannot be used in the ACTION or the PARENTHETIC, but I assume that the rules are a lot less stringent when it comes ...
0
votes
2answers
59 views

Describing The Sky In A Screenplay

This might seem worthy of scorn for some of the seasoned screenwriters around here. Google wasn't helping me a lot with this question, so I thought of putting it here. I am wondering how good a ...
0
votes
1answer
107 views

How do you make page numbers in google docs? [closed]

I really need to know how to make the page numbers in google docs look like a real book. I know how to do the page numbers, but how do you do them half on the right side and half on the left (like an ...
0
votes
3answers
80 views

What type of writing is suited to an aspiring professional storyteller?

What I want to do professionally is tell stories. I consider myself a storyteller, but I don't know if I should be a novelist or if I should write a manga, graphic novel, screenplay or something else. ...
0
votes
1answer
77 views

How to sell a screenplay?

I have written a screenplay for a short film. I want to sell this to someone who is interested to produce and direct it. What is the best strategy to sell a screenplay?
2
votes
2answers
248 views

In a screenplay, how do you show people talking over each other?

When writing a script where you have two (or more) people talking at the same time, how is that formatted? Side-by-side columns? Some other vertical grouping? Notes? Does it vary? Examples would be ...
3
votes
4answers
108 views

Quantity of Writing Needed to Find Representation For a TV Serial

I have reached a point in writing a TV serial where I'm considering looking for an agent to represent me, but I'm not sure how much I should have to show in order to do so. Obviously in order to find ...
1
vote
3answers
129 views

Are some literary devices better suited to screenwriting than others?

I'm an aspiring screenwriter, but have never been much of a printwriter nor do I aim to be. I appreciate the value of literary devices in screenwriting but am not trained to identify them while ...
0
votes
3answers
351 views

Screenplay format: Can character names be shortened after the first mention?

For example: TED DIBAR, (40s) swings his cape to the side, as he approaches Felix. Do I need to continue to use the character's full name, or can I shorten it in subsequent mentions?
1
vote
2answers
544 views

Chopped sentences with too many conjunction, and repeating the subject again and again

I have tendency to write chopped sentences with too many conjunctions, repeating the subject again and again. I don't want that but I'm not skilled in English. For example how do write the following ...
4
votes
7answers
17k views

Differences between script and screenplay

There is usually a lot of confusion when it comes to these two terms. Some sources say that there is no (practical) difference between the two while other sources talk of various kinds of differences. ...
3
votes
3answers
99 views

Which are the Best resource to learn comedy screenwriting?

Can anyone suggest me the best resource to learn comedy screenwriting for movies? I have read sydfield's screenwriting book and learnt a lot from it. But I know that comedy genre follows entirely ...
0
votes
2answers
2k views

Hollywood script vs Bollywood script

I was comparing between the formats of scripts from both Hollywood and Bollywood. Following is the first page of the script of Pulp Fiction. And following is the first page of a Bollywood film, Jab ...
3
votes
2answers
132 views

Should “plot” or storyline be the main determinant of what goes into a story?

In writing a screenplay, I created a bunch of scenes, with about twice as much material in total as I needed. So the job was to cut things down to size. In so doing, I found that a number of scenes ...
4
votes
3answers
615 views

Can your current work of fiction be influenced by a sequel?

Most works of fiction are influenced by back stories. Can that also be true for envisioned sequels? I was working on a screenplay in which a female suit rises to the top of the company and is ...
0
votes
1answer
215 views

What is the most important element of a drama, beside its message? [closed]

I am participating in a skit in school about superstition and science. How much will the presence of emotion attract the attention of the audience? What are other important things to attract ...
1
vote
3answers
49 views

Writing about a real place

I am writing about a real place and the real history of a family. However, there are some things I want to include that aren't the truth. Is this legal to do? Many thanks, Ciera
1
vote
2answers
43 views

What are some common pitfalls when adapting a novel (thematic autobiographic in this case) to a screenplay?

I am working on an adaptation of a book into movie format, and I would like to know what experience and guidelines exist for this, so I can improve my way of doing this where possible.
3
votes
3answers
6k views

Should you specify camera action in a film script?

Some scripts I read specify the exact camera angle of every shot-- where the camera starts, what we see, how it will move during the scene. And some scripts are a little less specific. Is this only ...
8
votes
3answers
779 views

I'm afraid of [accidental] plagiarism

I've recently written a screenplay about an alien invasion. A friend immediately commented that he found similarities (some general ideas, plot devices) with Half-Life 2: Ep 2, which I haven't even ...
3
votes
3answers
212 views

Writing a short documentary about a medical clinic

I'm new to documentary writing and would like to write a script for a short film. The subject is a local free medical clinic for folks who don't have medical insurance. It's run by a local ER doctor, ...
2
votes
1answer
363 views

Criteria for a good screenplay [closed]

I read a few screenplays and i am a bit confused how the quality of a screenplay is judged by the Osacar panel. It is not as obvious to judge the quality of a screenplay as opposed to the quality of ...