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June 3, 2009 at 11:26 PM #40369
As I said that I am new in this industry .I write scripts but I always feel that there is the way it has to be written. (eg. like a CV has always common layout)
Now I want know if scriptwriting has a guide lines or principles that people Have to follow in writing it or one can just write on his own way. Please help meon this.
June 4, 2009 at 2:22 AM #173382GilbyGoodParticipant
This is a good screenwriting program that will automatically format your screenplay. If you read the help file it will answer all of your questions.
June 4, 2009 at 11:42 AM #173383
Wow!!!!! that is nice man thank you so much this will help. please be giving me more tips.
June 4, 2009 at 3:46 PM #173384Luis Maymi LopezParticipant
You can read movie script here (http://www.filmscriptwriting.com/samplescripts.html) Pirates of the Caribbean is fun to read. Another program you could try is Celtx (http://celtx.com/download.html) is free and easy to use. Also, I have a step by step script guide, but is in my computer (pdf). Send me your email and I will happily send it to you.
June 4, 2009 at 5:00 PM #173385composite1Member
Your script will have to conform to the traditional Screenplay or Television (long & short form) style scripts. If it’s not properly formatted, it will be obvious and the majority of producers will pass on it early no matter how well written. Formatting should not be a problem as there are many good software programs like Movie Magic and Final Draft that will automatically format your script for you. Also, there are tons of sites and info on the web on how to properly format a script.
The toughest part about scriptwriting isn’t formatting, it’s translating a story into a script compelling enough to make the reader (i.e. potential investor, producer, director, actor) want to put forth the effort to make it into a film. We’ve all seen movies and TV shows we didn’t like if not outright hated. But, those as well as the one’s we loved were all successful because they all got made!
So except for the formatting, there aren’t any hard and fast rules about writing scripts. There are some ‘guidelines’ though.
Be consistent. Maintain a ‘believable flow’ with your characters and events. Nothing makes a movie suck more than having those ‘WTH’ did that come from? moments in it.
Don’t rip off other writers. There’s a huge difference between an ‘homage’ and straight up theft. Few scriptwriters in the last 50 years can not say they haven’t taken influence from other films. You can however parody (make fun of) a scene from another movie or use a similar situation in your own script. Better make sure it’s obvious that’s what you are doing lest you run into copyright infringement at max and your audience calling you a ‘rip off artist.’
Write your story your way. The scripts that always stand out were written from the creative perspective of the writer. That may sound vague but it works.
Oh, and don’t be afraid to ‘kill your baby.’ Be in love with the script you’re writing but don’t get attached to any specific part of it. By doing that you’ll be more likely to make clearer editorial judgements. Parts of the script may not flow well, make sense or just have holes in the plot that semi-trucks could drive through in tandem. When that happens, you’ll either have to rewrite or cut out that portion altogether. Also, it prepares you for the pain when changes are made during production and post-production. Rarely does a script go from writer to theater unchanged.
June 4, 2009 at 6:01 PM #173386XTR-91Participant
It is a good practice to follow the rules of a traditional Hollywood screenplay. This website helps you analyze the details as well as formatting your own script. The “What Makes a Good Story?” article is also very useful.
Now about special software for writing and formatting a script, I personally wouldn’t bother. From what I heard, screenwriting software is not cheap, and it would probably be better to spend twenty minutes learning the correct way to write a script.
June 4, 2009 at 11:41 PM #173387composite1Member
XTR is correct about Screenwriting Software, it can get expensive particularly when you’re starting out. Learn the basic format first and type it in Word or a similar word processing program. I’ve written scripts in both Word and Movie Magic. Word takes a bit longer until you get the flow of the format, but when typing out your screenplay it ‘measures out’ correctly (1 page = approx. 1 minute of screen time so 10 pages is approx 10 minutes.) A Movie Magic script measures out in traditional 1/8ths (the smallest fraction of a screenplay page) so if you have to transfer a Word script into Movie Magic, you will lose 1-2 pages (i.e. the 10 page Word Script put into Movie Magic will become a 9 or 8 page script.) I’m not sure what the ratio for Word to Final Draft is, but I suspect a similar loss of pages.
The good news about writing your script in Word (for the sake of example) is, if properly formatted, nobody can tell whether you used an expensive program or not. Primarily, I write using the Screenwriting software, because it will catch format things I zone out on in the heat of writing. However, when I have to send out a script to other producers I transfer it into Word to make it available to those who don’t have screenwriting software. Knowing how to do both comes in handy, but if you know how to properly format a script that’s a significant part of the battle.
Here’s a link to a scriptwriting template in Word:
June 4, 2009 at 11:57 PM #173388
I really dont know how to thank you all on this topic. thank you so much for helping me out for this start. I am really proud to be in this forum and especially a congolese.
it is amazing I hope this is my university, please keep it up. we dont have all these in our country, so people will also learn from me.
God bless you all.
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