If you have a conversation of whispering in a screenplay do you have to put:


Beneath each character’s name.
I’ll add that the situation mandates whispering and could be understood easily I think.

2 Answers 2


From my experience, the name and any special instructions are printed in the margin beside the spoken lines, which are themselves in a block of text and indented.
I take it that such is what you meant when you said “beneath”.

Use of abbreviations can be done — e.g.


— but should not be necessary unless you are conserving space or substrate i.e. paper.

A screenplay is meant to be accurate in conveying information to the director and the performers. They will use marks and highlighting as necessary to help them learn the lines; but, unless you provide such necessary information in the first place, how will they know it?

If an entire dialogue is done in a certain mode, then you can make such a note prior to the entire sequence. E.g.

The dialogue in this scene is done entirely in whispering.

Phrase that however is best.


Use parentheticals to establish that each character is whispering. It should then be implied that they continue in the same mode until one of them speaks up — at which point, you likewise establish that they speak up.

                     How should I introduce you?

                     By my name.

                     Right. Makes sense.


                         (speaks up)
                     Hey, Larry, this is John.
  • I hope you don't take my edit to be commandeering your answer; I simply thought that it could stand for some improvement. Commented Jun 4, 2018 at 7:00
  • Well, I did misspell “use,” so... Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 15:14

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