How to Write a Movie Script
Key Idea: You must visualize your story before you write it.
Summary: Assuming you have an original idea, you need to visualize your story. Close your eyes and work it out mentally. Don’t rush for paper and pencil until you have placed each character and each scene in your mind’s eye. The art of visualization is necessary to the success of your movie script. It is a training of the imagination and a first aid to becoming a scenario writer. When the idea has been developed in your mind, it is then ready to be set forth on paper. Logically develop your scenes. Study continuity, and keep away from confusing complications.
- A Fertile Imagination
- A fertile imagination is necessary to write a successful movie script.
- Logically develop your scenes and study continuity to avoid confusing complications.
- The Art of Visualization
- The art of visualization is necessary to the success of your movie script.
- Visualization is a training of the imagination and a first aid to becoming a scenario writer.
- When the idea has been developed in your mind, it is then ready to be set forth on paper.
- Logic in Scene Development
- Make sure your scenes are logical and easy to follow.
- Pay attention to continuity to avoid confusion.
- Use your imagination to visualize the story.
- Continuity in the Script
- Continuity is important in order to keep the story clear and concise.
- Visualizing the story before writing it down can help to ensure that all elements are in place.
How to Write a Plot
Key Idea: A screenplay must have a “punch.” This is the most important factor in making a salable screenplay.
Summary: A good story must have a strong plot that builds up to a climax. The climax should be the most exciting part of the story, and everything should lead up to it. Without a strong plot and exciting climax, your story will not be successful.
- The Three Parts of a Plot
- A plot should have a clear beginning, middle, and end.
- The plot should be worked out from the first to the last scene.
- The climax should be the big situation.
- The Conflict and Resolution
- The plot should have a clear conflict.
- The resolution should be clear.
- The resolution should be satisfying.
- The Central Event
- The plot should have a central event or “punch” that drives the story forward.
- The climax should be the biggest and most exciting moment in the story.
- The scenario should be well-planned from beginning to end, with each scene leading logically to the next.
- Following the Plot
- The plot should be easy to follow, from the first scene to the last.
- The plot should have a “punch” – a big, exciting situation that drives the story forward.
How to Write a Screenplay
Key Idea: A story must have both punch and action to be successful.
Summary: The punch of a story is its most important element, as it is the heart, lungs and vitals of the scenario. Action is also essential in developing the plot and scenes. Therefore, it is important to have both punch and action in a story.
- The Importance of Punch
- Punch is the heart of your scenario – it is what gives your story life.
- Action is the motive of screen pictures and is essential in developing your scenes.
- The Importance of Action
- Action is essential to developing scenes in a screenplay.
- Without action, a screenplay will not be successful.
- Action is the key element to creating a successful film.
- Establishing the Characters
- You must introduce the hero and the villain early on in the story.
- You must familiarize your audience with the characters and their environment.
- You must know when and how to introduce the heroine.
- Familiarizing the Audience with the Hero and Villain
- It is important to introduce the hero, villain, and all other characters early on in the story in order to familiarize the audience with them.
- It is also important to establish the characters in their proper environments in order to give the audience a better understanding of them.
How to Write a Scenario
Key Idea: Your story must be believable. It must have a human interest angle that will make it of interest to the scenario editor and to the audience for whom it has been written.
Summary: The scenario editor wants a story with real human interest, something that carries an appeal by the very reason of its heart interest.
- The Importance of a Scenario
- A scenario is a story outline for a film, play, or other work of fiction.
- It is important to make the characters in a scenario as realistic as possible.
- Dialogue is not necessary, but can often add to the realism of a scenario.
- Making a Scenario Realistic
- The plot should be interesting and have human interest.
- The dialogue should be realistic and add to the scenario.
- The Role of Dialogue in a Scenario
- Dialogue is not essential for a scenario, but can add to the realism of the story.
- Realism is important for a scenario to be successful.
- Dialogue can help to emphasize an important scene.
- Keeping a Scenario Concise
- A scenario should be concise, without too many unnecessary details.
- A scenario should be realistic, with believable characters and events.
How to Write a Movie Script
Key Idea: You should not try to cram too much action into your scenes. A good rule of thumb for writing action scenes is to keep them to five or six lines per page, so that they are easy to follow and the reader does not get lost in the details.
Summary: Most movie script writers have their own way of developing scenes. I have read over 50,000 scenarios, and I find that many writers will give a detailed description of the surroundings and characteristics of each character. Others will state only the necessary information about each scene. It is best to find a balance between too much and too little information.
- The Importance of Reading Movie Scripts
- The Various Methods of Writing Movie Scripts
- The Ideal Amount of Scenic Action
- The author believes that it is a good idea to have neither too much nor too little scenic action.
- The author believes that striking a happy medium is the key to writing a successful script.
- The Best Movie Script Writers
- The author has criticized scripts written by some of the best known movie script writers.
- The author finds that most movie script writers have an individual method of evolving their scenes.
The author suggests that writers strike a happy medium between too much and too little scenic action.
The Benefits of a Good Night’s Sleep
Key Idea: Your climax should be the result of the coming together of two distinct plot threads; this can be a difficult task to accomplish, but it can result in a more impactful and satisfying climax.
Summary: The writer mentioned is skilled in taking two separate plot threads and weaving them together to create a single, impactful climax; this is not an easy feat, but with years of practice, the writer has perfected the art.
- Approaching the Climax with Two Plots
- Weaving the Two Threads Together
- The Trained Workman
- The writer is a trained workman.
- The writer has many years of experience.
- The writer is skilled at weaving together two distinct plot threads into a single, cohesive climax.
- Forming the Climax
- It is difficult to form a climax out of two distinct threads.
- Few writers can successfully accomplish this task.
The writer always approaches his climax with two plots.
The writer has had many years of experience as a professional writer.
How to make an exciting reel that will get you noticed
Key Idea: A scenario must have a plot of sufficient importance to make it worthy of the editor’s eye.
Summary: One of the most popular questions among amateur filmmakers is “How many scenes to a reel?” The answer to this question depends entirely on the length of the scenes. A reel is typically about 10 minutes long, so the number of scenes in a reel will depend on how long each scene is.
- The Number of Scenes in a Reel
- A reel should have a plot of sufficient importance.
- The production must have “punch.”
- The Length of Each Scene
- The Importance of the Plot
- The Excitement of the Production
- A production needs to be exciting in order to be successful.
- A production needs to have “punch” in order to be successful.
A scenario should be made up of important plot points, not just a series of incidents.