How to Write a Screenplay

A moviegoer has certain expectations of a film’s journey, whether conscious or subconscious. The execution of the concept has to deliver. Besides simply “good writing,” producers are looking for scripts with proper format and stories that follow a three-act structure. Discover the essential techniques that grab an executive’s attention and make the execution of your story as good as the hook, all while taking the audience on an emotional ride. Learn outlining, writing dialogue, crafting memorable scenes, proper screenplay format and more.

Shooting Script

Why Spec Scripts Fail: Shooting Scripts vs. Spec Scripts

Stewart Farquhar holds Screenwriting and Advanced Screenwriting certificates from the Professional Program at The UCLA School of Theatre Film and Television. Stewart has analyzed over 4,000 scripts for private and studio clients. Shooting vs. Spec. A conundrum. There is a lot of gnashing of teeth by a variety of well-meaning critics and pundits when...

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Writing the Documentary

There are no set rules for writing the documentary film. However, you do need to make clear choices in order to convey your subject matter. You can choose to follow the traditional 3-act structure or a nontraditional narrative format. Or you can choose to present your ideas subjectively or objectively. You can include stock...

Multiple Themes in The Wild Bunch

Writer’s Edge: Multiple Themes

One of my favorite films of all time is the acclaimed masterpiece The Wild Bunch by director, Sam Peckinpah. It’s affectionately been described as “aging outlaws running out of banks to rob and badlands to ride.” It sports a veteran cast starring William Holden, Robert Ryan, Edmond O’brien and Ernest Borgnine. The dialogue is...

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Submissions Insanity: Cliché Clanger Dialogue

. So, the average spec screenplay has waaaaay TOO MUCH dialogue in and are often highly theatrical: screenPLAYS, if you will. We all know this. But worse than that, within that script will be cliché clanger dialogue lines script readers read SO often, it can amount to a one way ticket to PASSville. True story. So...

period piece

History In Action: Writing the Period Piece Script

Jon James Miller is a screenwriter, novelist and frequent online presenter. His first novel, a historical fiction based on an original screenplay, will be published Spring 2015. For more information, go to: www.jonjamesmiller.com Writing the historical, or, period script is one of the hardest genres to pull off successfully. It takes an incredible amount...