Questions tagged [screenwriting]

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

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1answer
57 views

News shot in screenwriting

I'm writing a screenplay that incorporates various news shots. I plan to use various news shots as expositions. My story takes place in the future, and I want various news shots that display the top ...
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2answers
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Do screenplay writers work by an established plot, or do they improvise without one?

In writing in general, there are discovery writers and outliners, planners vs. pantsers. I am very curious to know how screenwriters create screenplays. Do writers start with a basic plot and then ...
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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 ...
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3answers
254 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 ...
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3answers
6k views

How do you estimate the length of your screenplay in screentime?

The title says it all. I'm talking about a feature-length film here, although I'm sure the techniques are universal.
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8answers
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Why write a book when there's a movie in my head?

Around a decade ago, I had a dream. An actual middle of the night dream. An entire movie played in my head, all I had to do was write it down. I did a fair bit of research on the topic then I spent ...
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1answer
89 views

Adapting dialogue from a novel into a screenplay

I would like to adapt a novel I wrote into a screenplay, and I was wondering if there are things to take into consideration before taking the dive. The novel doesn't have a lot of dialogue and I think ...
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2answers
8k views

Why is the format of a Bollywood film script so different from that of a Hollywood movie?

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 ...
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1answer
124 views

Writing a phone call scene in a screenplay

I’m writing a scene that is on a phone call. I don't want to hear one person in a voiceover. Instead, I want to cut back and forth between the two people speaking. Do I have to use a new scene ...
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3answers
250 views

How to keep writing?

I really love writing, mainly screenwriting. I can also come up with ideas and start writing. But there is one problem, I just start writing them and never take up the work again. What do you do to ...
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1answer
551 views

Sluglines for same location but different periods, real and imagined

I'm writing a short film that has the vast majority scenes set in a pub, with the main male character about to approach a woman, and he imagines/projects some of the possibilities of this - it goes ...
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4answers
158 views

Screenwriting Techniques: Emotional Projection

NECESSARY INFORMATION Recently I saw someone on the internet say that Revenge Of The Sith was so powerful because of an effect called "Emotional Projection." This means that when you see the movie, ...
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1answer
330 views

Recommendations for short film script [closed]

I would like to take a part in screenplay competition. The main goal is a script for a short film (8 - 10 minutes). I have several questions about it: How long should the script be? How many ...
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2answers
108 views

Formatting for a visual medium: Screenplay or transcripts?

I have a specific way of writing when it comes to describing things in a visual medium, like video games, movies, or shows. I'm not a prose writer; I always wanted to write for visual media, not ...
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2answers
254 views

Does every story really represent a life-story, as McKee advises?

In Robert McKee's book STORY, he says that a whole life story of a character must become a story well-told. So, it seems that the concept of "story told" is a representation of a "life story" that ...
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1answer
525 views

Can the Final Draft 11 software handle foreign screenplay formats?

I am considering buying Final Draft 11. Of special interest to me is that this version can handle 95 foreign languages, including Japanese. My question is, can FD11 handle foreign (read: non-...
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1answer
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Where to Find Screenwriters? [closed]

I'm currently searching for a new screenplay. So I'm looking for forums/pages where I can find writers. They can or maybe should be non-professional, because the movie is micro-low budget to low ...
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4answers
2k views

How do you make a scene “tasteful”?

Let's say you have a scene that contains nudity. There are many ways to do it wrong and have it just be a pervy scene, but there are also ways to make it "tasteful" in a way where it's slightly less ...
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3answers
157 views

I have no artistic skill, but I want to write for animated shows/movies

See title. I love writing stories, but I usually imagine how they are like in show/movie form, specifically 3d animated ones. I don't feel like I have the skill to write a good book, but I do think I ...
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1answer
120 views

Introducing characters in a screenplay [duplicate]

In one of my scenes, I introduce "GUEST" at a party. Later, each guest is introduced by name. So if I capitalized GUESTS, do I have to capitalize their name later?
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How do you write 2 or more characters saying almost the same thing in unison

When 2 or more characters speak in unison you can generally do something like this "awwwww, she's so cute!" the girls said in unison in near perfect harmony but what about when the line is only ...
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2answers
102 views

How do I make a repetitive element in a play interesting?

I am writing a playscript these days which includes various characters that are frequently related throughout the story. They all hold special orbs/keys that help the main protagonist progress further ...
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3answers
131 views

Screenwriting using codenames

I'm currently writing a script where a woman is in a group that only uses codenames when with each other. I was wondering how I should address this in format. Her real name is known to the audience ...
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2answers
127 views

Class/Course Names in Fiction

sorry if this has already been asked. But how are course or class names written in fiction (both prose and screenplay)? For example, if someone has a second-level algebra course on their schedule, ...
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1answer
2k views

How to show a flashback in a screenplay?

I’ve searched the questions and couldn’t find this. I don’t quite understand how to notate/show a flashback in a screenplay. Not just the format, but also the actual text and tense. I don’t know if ...
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3answers
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How to write dates shown on screen

I’m wanting to know how to enter dates that will be shown in text on the screen in a screenplay, I’ve see. Several ways to do it so I wanted clarification, thx for any help
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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 ...
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1answer
101 views

How do I write transitions between thinking and speaking?

I've just downloaded an open-source script-writing program, and have started converting the scripts for an anime I've been writing into industry-standard formatting. There are a few points in the ...
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4answers
599 views

Respecting classic dramatic structure in a documentary

I'm planning on shooting a documentary on a potentially important shift in a friend's life. In an attempt to educate myself a little bit before shooting the events, I'm reading about the classic ...
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1answer
76 views

Example screenplays on the web

Wondering if there are any good "open source" screenplays available on the web, ones that provide a good introduction to screenplays and have lots of "features" of screenplay writing. I would like to ...
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2answers
87 views

Including (public domain?) lyrics of a song in my screenplay?

In my screenplay, the lyrics of "Shenandoah", a traditional American folk song, are heard once. May I publish a few lines with the words?
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5answers
596 views

How can I get started screenwriting/playwriting?

I have some experience writing stories, but would like to beginning screenwriting. Are there any online guides to show how to get started and transition into writing for the stage, where ideas need to ...
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3answers
120 views

How to write an online screen name in dialogue?

Might be a bit nitpicky - but I really want to get the formatting correct - especially because this is one of the first lines in the script. The screen name is: ArgyleMan29 Like this? JACK: Online I’...
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925 views

Should I use a series of shots for this scene?

Should I use a series of shots for this? (context- Joe previously raged in his room - knocking things over) INT. JOE’S ROOM Joe stands up the nightstand. Plugs in the lamp. Takes the alarm clock, ...
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2answers
151 views

Transitioning from novel writing to screenwriting?

I've been studying writing for several years, and I feel fairly confident in my ability to write a novel. Before I take the plunge and go for it though, I was curious about a slightly different path: ...
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2answers
2k views

How to write long conversation of (whispers) when screenwriting?

If you have a conversation of whispering in a screenplay do you have to put: BATHSHEBA (whispers) Beneath each character’s name. I’ll add that the situation mandates whispering and could be ...
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2answers
191 views

WYSIWYG-type editor for dialog?

I'm writing dialog for my game in a format kind of similar to screenwriting. I have dialog, mixed with a little "action", like this: John: Can you pass me the salt? Sally: Sure! ACTION: Sally ...
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2answers
309 views

Dialogue from a distance

How do I indicate dialogue 'from a distance'? Two characters and riding down a field on a quad bike, one asks a question of the other, who answers. They're visible but you can't see their lips move. ...
4
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1answer
104 views

Do I need a star's permission to write a fiction TV series inspired but not exactly as his life?

I want to write a fiction TV series inspired by a true love story between a star and his fans except that I'm going to represent the fans as an actual female character and make it a romantic series. ...
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1answer
100 views

How firm is the 120 page limit on a screenplay?

How close to that do I need to get? I’m sitting around 132. It can be cut, I think, but 120 would be losing major content. Would something in the range of 125-127 be okay?
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3answers
8k views

How are descriptions and character thoughts handled in a screenplay (versus a novel)

I wonder if you write descriptions in a screenplay the same way you write in a novel. For example, I see writers describe the physical effects of the emotion of anger rather than just saying 'angry', ...
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6answers
473 views

How to tell a story with the least amount of writing?

I love to invent stories and come up with ideas, but I don't have the patience to fill out all the details that is usually a part of a novel. (For those of you familiar with Myers-Briggs or Jungian ...
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3answers
4k 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 ...
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1answer
74 views

How to write a time-lapsed style scene in a screenplay?

This is a brief example, but it gets the point across ... deep in thought Bathsheba shakes off her zoned thoughts by dipping her brush into the green paint and beginning on the canvas with her three ...
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1answer
88 views

Leaving out names/pronouns to speed up the flow of a script?

Example: Jane digs in the flowerbed for her ring. Moves to the yard. I’ve seen this a bunch of times, but it still feels sort of wrong when I do it. I just want to know if this is “normal”. ...
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1answer
92 views

In a script - Is it ok to have a general description of a character “YOUNG MAN”, then the actual description?

For example: A YOUNG MAN drifts into a bar. Something absent in his yes. His varsity jaket, dirty and torn. Blood still drips down his face from the accident. This is -- JAMES SMITH, 17, the boy next ...
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4answers
260 views

How to describe a character with changing features?

I’m writing the pilot for a Crime/Mystery/Thriller. When we first meet the lead detective character - he is depressed about not being able to work. Not at his best, but that is about to change for ...
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2answers
93 views

What are the best methods to keep your ideas in order?

Usually my ideas come very suddenly and I don't have paper or pencil by hand so I forget them; also, I do not know how to order these ideas in physics since they are for a novel in process, there are ...
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2answers
50 views

Are there any theaters that are receptive to manuscripts for monologues from the author/performer?

First, a caveat: I am only the author of the "play" in question in a sense of the word; since much of the monologue is drawn verbatim from the writings and speeches of Mark Twain, I am really just the ...
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7answers
2k views

Screenplay vs Novel [duplicate]

Now I know, that this question could be tagged too broad or opinion based, and that it might even be closed down. But I have been struggling over this for quite some time now and I want to get an ...