Video: The secret to writing a fantastic, fun, fabulous kids movie from Paddington 2 writers

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Paddington, the adorable, marmalade-munching bear is back for Paddington 2. This delightful, feel-good film follows the original from 2015 (based on the book series by Michael Bond), and sees the return of director Paul King who’s joined by actor Simon Farnaby for the screenplay this go-around. With a rating of 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, this live-action, slapstick comedy appeals to both children and adults alike.

In my chat with King and Farnaby, they explain why a writer should never gloss over even the smallest character in a screenplay and discuss the importance of creating character descriptions that will hook actors when they first read the script. They also confess why they were nervous to send the script to Hugh Grant, who plays the film’s villain Phoenix Buchanan – a role Grant was born to play.

You may also be surprised to learn that Paddington’s virtuous nature and plight was inspired by Jimmy Stewart in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, while his clownish physicality was modeled on Charlie Chaplin. If you’re writing in the family genre, this film is a must-see. I hope you enjoy this interview.

 

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Shanee Edwards graduated from UCLA Film School with an MFA in Screenwriting and is currently the film critic for SheKnows.com. She recently won the Next MacGyver television writing competition to create a TV show about a female engineer. Her pilot, Ada and the Machine, is currently in development with America Ferrera's Take Fountain Productions. You can follow her on Twitter: @ShaneeEdwards

3 Replies to "Video: The secret to writing a fantastic, fun, fabulous kids movie from Paddington 2 writers"

  • comment-avatar
    William Sommerwerck January 15, 2018 (4:16 am)

    Walt Disney said he didn’t make movies for children, adults, or families. He was looking for something universal (though I don’t remember the exact word he used).

    Aiming a film at children is a sure-fire route to artistic disaster. The “Rocky & Bullwinkle” approach — telling a story the writers enjoy, but will also appeal to children — is the way to go. You show no respect for people’s taste — or elevate it — by writing down to them — regardless of their age.

  • comment-avatar
    David January 15, 2018 (5:27 pm)

    Your heart melted Shanee?

    Good to hear your cynicism has not fully taken over your worldview 🙂

    And thanks for a great interview.

    Cheers-
    David

  • comment-avatar
    Shanee Edwards January 15, 2018 (5:59 pm)

    Thanks David! The movie is just so sweet and Hugh Grant is amazing.

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