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 example --that a character is fixing his/hair in the mirror from the mirror's point of view? My instinct is to just simply say: From the mirror's POV (character's name} fixes his/her hair in the reflection. Can anybody think of a better way?

  • 1
    One question at a time please. I'm editing out your second question --not because it's disgusting, but because it's off topic. You should ask it on english.stackexchange.com instead. Feb 2, 2016 at 13:55
  • Note tgat writing a detail -- even a large detail -- into the screenplay is no guarantee that the director/actors will follow that suggestion. Camera angles are usually set at the storyboarding stage, if not later. (Ditto with blocking directions for stage performance, of course.) It's a collaborative and interpretive art, as most arts that involve more than one oerson are. If you want that level of control, become a director and/or learn to animate.
    – keshlam
    Feb 2, 2016 at 22:28

3 Answers 3


The current fashion in screenwriting is to avoid mentions of camera angles and focus on storytelling, but you can certainly mention POV. Some people do this with a slugline.



Bill fixes his hair in the mirror.

But if you're going to do the trick where a mirror image turns out to be the real one, you don't need to mention POV at first.


Bill smiles. 

  You mean everything to me. Everything. 
  I love you, and I'd do anything for you. 

A WIDER ANGLE shows Bill is talking into the bathroom mirror.

As a general rule, write it whatever way it works best for a reader. This is more important than making the details clear for a director (who will ignore it anyway).

  • Hopefully I can bother you one more time. Would I still put
    – Brandon
    Feb 2, 2016 at 15:41

Never put camera angles/shots in your screenplay, it screams amateur.

You can however cheat to create visual clues. Example:


A pair of shackled FEET shuffle down the hallway.


Screenwriters who put in camera direction label themselves as amateur. OTH, do NOT leave out the time of day at the end of the slugline. CONTINUOUS is meaningless, and rarely useful. DAY/NIGHT is crucial and must not be inferred; time of day must be explicitly stated. DUSK/DAWN require a short page count because there is a very small amount of shooting light for true Dusk or Dawn. Transitions should be CUT TO: when necessary, ignored otherwise. Leave out suggestions of DISSOLVE:, SMASH CUT:, JUMP CUT: and other meaningless phrases the director will ignore anyway.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.