Author Topic: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure  (Read 17341 times)

1SO

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1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« on: December 17, 2012, 02:11:51 PM »
I debated opening this thread because the odds are heavy that this will not end well. However, there seemed to be enough going on or about to happen that this may be of interest to some people. Of course, many of the specifics I'm not allowed to discuss. I'll start by reposting a couple of comments I made on other boards.

A final revision of my script before I turn it in. I've made notes and now I'm going through scrutinizing every line of dialogue, every piece of description. Trimming the fat and making sure it flows like a page turner. I'm 55 pages into this 122 page script. (This is why I haven't been watching movies.) When it's done I plan to gift wrap it (as a Christmas present) and hand it off to the management team that hired me.

Then I'll go back to watching movies.

revised up to page 77, and it's increased a bit to 123 pages. The progress is good, but I feel the deadline looming as well as Christmas. Plus, my other regular job is going to be extra busy these next few days.


What a process. Someday I'll ask you what was the most difficult thing you had to leave out of the script, but for now I'm cheering you on over the finish line.

Thanks for the support. Right now I'm leaving nothing out. It's the 4th Draft of what becomes known as the Writer's First Draft. I can put it all in so long as it makes sense. (Once I hand it in there's going to be a lot of notes requesting cuts and changes. Maybe I'll be involved in them or if they feel I can't do it, we will settle on a price and my work will be done.) The job right now is discovering and then fixing plot holes, smoothing out dialogue and finding better ways to say things.

Sandy

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2012, 02:22:19 PM »
This thread makes me happy. :)
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Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2012, 02:28:22 PM »
As someone who has written a couple of pretty terrible openings to a screenplay, I admire that you finished one, let alone edited it. I look back at what I churned out and it's so flat and I only realized recently that half the movie would be visually bland.

I know you can't say much, but writing the screenplay, did you ever try to consider making the settings visually interesting or do you just trust that the crew will be the ones making those decisions? Or are you planning to direct your own screenplay?

Melvil

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2012, 02:49:47 PM »
Yeah, it's really awesome to hear about you getting this stuff done, which in itself is a huge accomplishment. Good luck, can't wait to hear more!

1SO

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #4 on: December 17, 2012, 03:00:47 PM »
Now onto the new stuff.

I turned in the script to the producer this morning before work. As promised, Mrs. 1SO gift wrapped it (including ribbon and a candy cane.) I already heard back from the producer who liked it quite a bit. This is already unusual because producers/agents/managers/actors take forever to read a script.

As typically happens there are a handful of notes. A couple of which I completely agree with, a couple I don't agree with but I understand where he's coming from, and a couple I absolutely don't agree with in any way. (My first thought on those is that I didn't convey properly in the script what I was going for, so it's importance and meaning was misunderstood.) He still thinks the story is solid and thought it moved very swiftly, just those few moments where he didn't feel the behavior was consistent with the characters.

He thought I got a lot of little moments just right but could use some more offbeat humor overall. (I know he's going for a tone like "Monk" and casting is such a big part of that.) Also thinks there's too much dialogue, which is a common note, especially when the script is 120 pages and the writer is a fan of The Coen Bros, Aaron Sorkin, Shane Black, Joss Whedon and Quentin Tarantino.

I was ready for "you tried" or "I'm going to bring in my own guy", but so far it looks like I'm staying on. (Think of it like a game show where the longer I survive the larger the potential award at the end. So I survived Round 1.) He wants to get together a couple of times to talk about fixing the problems, plus he'll email me notes. (Honestly, I have more problems with the script than he does.)

The next step is getting it ready for the Agent and Management Team. If I'm still on board at that point we probably won't start going to Production Companies until Late Spring.

MartinTeller

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #5 on: December 17, 2012, 03:15:04 PM »
Nice!

Lobby

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #6 on: December 17, 2012, 03:18:11 PM »
The screenwriting process is something that really interests me. I've listened to a ton of Jeff Goldsmith's Q & A podcasts with screenwriters for that reason, even when it's movies I haven't seen and won't see. I just want to hear the story of the screenwriter. I'm actually often more interested in hearing about the screenwringing behind the scenes than I am to hear about the director.

I'm so going to read this thread.
http://thevelvetcafe.wordpress.com/  - where I think aloud about movies

1SO

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #7 on: December 17, 2012, 03:18:46 PM »
Thank you, Melvil. Just remember everyone, these adventures usually end in tears. This is script #11 for me. 4 of them I made a small amount of money on. None have made it into production.


@Sam
I always see the script in my head. There is a look to them, but I rarely convey any of that in the script. Only in meetings afterwards. My stuff's pretty reality-based so there isn't much to describe visually beyond some fights. I know crew will formulate a visual strategy which will likely be completely different from what I imagined. There's a recent great podcast with Tarantino talking about what Tony Scott did with True Romance. He called those visual ideas, the Tony Scott Pass, ideas he never even would have thought of.

Have you found a copy of any of Malick's scripts? I thought The Thin Red Line was available to read online.

I'm 99% positive I will not be directing this script, if it goes into production.

Melvil

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #8 on: December 17, 2012, 03:34:14 PM »
Thank you, Melvil. Just remember everyone, these adventures usually end in tears. This is script #11 for me. 4 of them I made a small amount of money on. None have made it into production.

That's largely what I find so admirable. Having realistic expectations is certainly a good thing, but frankly I find it hard enough to stay committed to finishing creative/artistic pursuits without all that added stress waiting for you! ;)

Glad to hear it has gone over pretty well so far!

Sam the Cinema Snob

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Re: 1SO's Screenwriting Adventure
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2012, 04:27:34 PM »
Glad to hear things are moving along and you're still able to work on your script.

I asked more because I have a terrible visual sensibility when it comes to writing scripts. More than once I had to explain how things would look, then again my images were a lot more fantastical in nature. I imagine for something as grounded as what you are writing, it's probably not a big deal. I wouldn't even bother reading a Malick scripts because I'm pretty sure he builds his films in the editing room. The script it probably just something he writes to get production greenlit.

 

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