Craig and John talk readers and coverage, centering their discussion on profound_whatever’s infographic charting 300 submissions and the lessons screenwriters can take from it.
Aline Brosh McKenna joins John and Craig to discuss watching movies with an open mind and why it’s important to befriend other writers.
Craig and John love women and jeopardy, but folks, we gotta stop kidnapping girlfriends as plot devices. We discuss ways to avoid this trope.
Craig and John head to the Austin Film Festival for another live edition of Scriptnotes. Everything is bigger in Texas, including the crowd for this packed show featuring Looper writer/director Rian Johnson and Saving Mr. Banks screenwriter Kelly Marcel.
This week, John and Craig go big to look all things blockbuster. First, Anita Elberse’s new book Blockbuster argues that giant movies are a comparatively safe bet for Hollywood. Meanwhile, Gravity is the movie on everyone’s lips, but will we learn the right lessons, or just try to put more movie stars in space?
Explicit language warning! Even the titles of this week’s Three Page Challenge entries are filthy, so John and Craig let the f-bombs fly.
Craig and John go back to basics with an all advice episode, looking at the Dear J.J. recommendations for Star Wars, Tony Gilroy’s advice to screenwriters and whatever’s up with Max Landis.
John and Craig discuss what it feels like to finish a project — the combination of excitement and relief, joy and sadness — as Craig advises John which project he should write next now that Big Fish is set to open.
A listener makes the case that modern screenwriting style has changed how scenes themselves work.
John and Craig reveal their Myers-Briggs secrets as they discuss Kevin Spacey’s comments on the state of television, Eric Garcetti’s plans to address runaway production, and the WGA election.
Jake Malooley tracks down writer-director Paul Brickman, who more or less vanished after Risky Business.
John and Craig discuss the impact of author Orson Scott Card’s personal toxicity on Ender’s Game, and what it means for that movie and how it will this affect studio decisions moving forward.
John and Craig discuss Damon Lindelof’s interview about how plot stakes have escalated lockstep with budget, perhaps to the point of absurdity.
Craig and John take a look at one investor’s campaign against Sony Pictures, and George Clooney’s strong reaction. From there, we examine why studios have multiple labels — TriStar is back! — and how that affects writers.
John and Craig are joined by Aline Brosh McKenna and Rawson Thurber for the 100th episode of Scriptnotes, recorded live at the Academy Lab in Hollywood. It was a great night with an amazing audience.
John and Craig discuss the Apple ebook price-fixing lawsuit and its lessons for Hollywood, before segueing to the new credits system for producers. Then: Have movies gotten too long, and would making them shorter really save money?
Have first acts gotten shorter, or does it just feel that way? John and Craig discuss the pressure on screenwriters to “get to it” faster, and why that’s often the wrong goal.
John and Craig discuss the death of the film industry as foretold by four prominent filmmakers. Is the way we make movies unsustainable? Is the system fundamentally broken, or just changing into something new? And why don’t we make romantic comedies anymore?
John and Craig tackle the bursting mailbag, answering listener questions on topics ranging from the variable length of the TV season to underachieving agents to embarrassing IMDb credits.
John and Craig discuss the polarizing potentate of Deadline Hollywood Daily, then segue into what a healthy entertainment journalism ecosystem might look like.
Justin Marks offers a look at what it’s like to be a working screenwriter you’ve never heard of.
How you get from one scene to the next can be just as important as the scenes themselves. Craig and John talk techniques and tactics for making those cuts count.
Has a statistician cracked the code on successful screenplay formulas? John and Craig cast a skeptical eye at a New York Times article on Vinny Bruzzese, who claims to have done exactly that.
John and Craig discuss when to stop rewriting a project and accept that it’s just not going to become a movie. Then we go bigger to look at when to give up on the dream of being a screenwriter — which starts with a hard look at why people seek out the career in the first place.
Craig leads the discussion on how to survive a notes meeting. As screenwriters, our instinct is to defend, deny and debate — but these are almost always the wrong choice. By reframing the discussion about the movie rather than the script, you can often end up at a better place.