character

yvette-yates-02-401x600

Actress Yvette Yates and the Depth of Character

Yvette Yates (In the Blood, Without Men) real life depth of character reveals a new way of viewing how actors and actresses in the New Millennium are sophisticated, immensely talented and exceptionally well-trained. According to grocery store fanzines, it would seem most people are only interested in the dirty laundry of actors/actresses. You know…...

Do you have a personal connection to your screenplay?

Back to the Chalkboard: Personal Connection

Have you ever had to write something you didn’t care about? Think back to high school, college, grad school, or even your job – there must have been some paper or assignment that you simply could not motivate yourself to write until the last possible minute. Or, you actually started writing this burden of...

Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst in Spiderman

Peter Parker: Nerd, Love-Sick Teenager, Diehard New Yorker (THE AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2)

“With great power comes great responsibility.” Uncle Ben’s words have guided Peter Parker for decades, and they provide the thematic backbone of The Amazing Spider-Man and The Amazing Spider-Man 2, as well as the previous Sam Raimi-helmed Spider-Man trilogy. Uncle Ben’s wisdom and tragic death are an immutable part of Spider-Man’s origin, going back...

female characters

The Taming of the Shrew: Writing Female Characters & Archetypes

One of the biggest topics discussed in entertainment this year, especially the last few months, is the decrease in the number of women in the industry and especially the lack of female directors and female protagonists in cinema. Despite there being a number of films with female leads that have become massive hits, there...

worried cat

The Wide Margin: Tell the Cat to Beat It!

Writers today are obsessed with structure.  I’m not talking about the traditional beginning-middle-end style structure.  I’m talking about the micromanagement of page counts as typified by anal retentive “techniques” like “saving the cat.”  I’m pretty sure Paddy Chayefsky never thought in terms of a beat sheet, assigning plot points to script pages with a...

magicformula

Story Talk: Plot=Character=Story—The Magick Formula™

Recently, I was teaching a workshop on premise line development. In that class I defined the terms “character,” “plot,” and “story” (as I use them; a bit differently than many). The resulting chaos this caused among the writer-students was startling.  Okay, I have developed my own interpretation of these classical terms d’art, and this...