month : 06/2017 9 results

Despicable Me 3 Writers on Pitching: “They Can Smell Your Desperation”

Every Tom, Dick and Mary in Hollywood has a screenplay. But very few writers can get one made, let alone be a critical and box office success. Even fewer writers can write two successful sequels and build a franchise. Cinco Paul and Ken Daurio are part of that elite group. Writing team Paul and Daurio didn’t meet in film school or at a ...

Writing What’s Not There: Subtext in Film

For many of us, just hearing the word subtext gives us a flashback to our high school English class. In that class, the teacher probably discussed subtext in terms of dialogue and left it at that. But, subtext really refers to all that is not spoken and encompasses much more than simply dialogue. Subtext is important in all genres but works ...

How One Writer Used Fairytale Structure for her Script about Cannibals

For writer/director Ana Lily Amirpour, her latest screenplay, The Bad Batch, started with a single image. “The first thing I wrote – and I didn’t know how she was going to get the skateboard – but I just had this image of a girl, missing an arm and a leg, rowing herself on a life boat in a sea of dirt in the middle of nowhere. And then ...

My Cousin Rachel: How a Writer Sustains a Mystery

Everyone loves a good mystery. And My Cousin Rachel is just that – mysterious from the beginning to the end in the most delicious way. But keeping an audience in suspense for two hours is no easy task. Just ask writer/director Roger Michell. For him, it was all about character.

How grieving a father’s death became a horror script

Shults says that when he was writing the film, he had no idea where all the dark thoughts were coming from. “But now, after talking about it so much and psychoanalyzing it, I think I understand where it all came from. It’s weird.”

Five Things You Should Never Do In A Pitch Meeting

You’ve polished your script, found someone interested, and gotten a meeting. A producer or buyer has invited you to come to their office and tell them a bit about your spectacular idea. This is what everyone in Hollywood is here to do. You are going to pitch your idea. Congratulations! If you are part of the few insane people who enjoy ...

The art (and pain) of writing a Netflix movie backwards

Shimmer Lake isn’t your ordinary crime drama about a bank heist gone wrong. It’s a multilayered examination of revenge, loyalty and plain old bad luck. Oh, and did I mention the story is told in reverse?

What is the Narrative Question?

The narrative question is what’s happening in the audiences’ mind or, more specifically, what you want happening in their minds. At any given point in a film, there is a question in your audience is thinking about. As the writer, you should know what that question is. And, you should have put it there.

Turning Nostalgic TV into Film Franchises is Risky Biz

Hollywood has a tendency to cannibalize itself. Most of the superhero reboots are empty-calorie action flicks with too much CGI, (do we really need another Spider-Man this July?). While superhero films are here to stay - at least for the next decade - the other recycling trend with which Hollywood seems obsessed is rebooting nostalgic TV shows ...
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