John and Craig look at the implicit contract made between screenwriters and readers — and ultimately, movies and their audience. That’s a natural introduction to our Three Page Challenge and the three new entries we look at this week.
In this special bonus episode, John and Craig answer listener questions from the 100th episode with help from guests Rawson Thurber and Aline Brosh McKenna.
It’s a week of pondering other people’s opinions. First, Craig and John take a look at the Bechdel Test: is it a useful metric for screenwriters, or just meaningless checkbox-ticking?
To some degree it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy: if you make most of your blockbusters PG-13, most blockbusters will be PG-13.
I’ve only just started reading Danny Rubin’s How to Write Groundhog Day, but it’s promising enough that I think many screenwriters will want to take a look at it this weekend.
Theresa Couchman wishes Pixar hadn’t played into princess tropes for their first female-driven movie.
In the spirit of the season, let us say thanks to Wikipedia for this comprehensive list of fictional diseases.
Wait, how did I not know the Manic Pixie Dream Girl existed as a trope?
NY Times has a nice piece on Aline Brosh McKenna, screenwriter of “the BlackBerry 3.”
Superhero movies continue to make money, but the rise of very profitable R-rated comedies is the box office story of the summer.
Bruce Sterling publishes a list of Lovecraft’s undeveloped story ideas.
The Lazy Self-Indulgent Book Reviewer asks why graduates of Starfleet Academy lug around physical cylinders that emit light from one end? Why don’t they all have chip implants in their palms that glow when activated?
Tad Friend points out that funny women in movies must not only be gorgeous; they must fall down and then sob, knowing it’s all their fault.
It’s remarkable how much my appreciation for Google has shifted over the last year or two. I use their products, but I don’t love the company anymore. In fact, I’m kind of nervous about them.
While I’m worrying about higher education as philanthropy, Samuel Arbesman dares to question the value of a Hogwarts education.
You have to make us care whether the two lead characters end up together, which is really two requirements.
Machinima offers a lot of potential for making cool projects, but you need to match the idea with the style.
How to format the script for faux-documentaries like “The Office.”
Screenwriters benefit from worst-case scenario thinking.
In real life, people do say this. But in movies, maybe they shouldn’t anymore.
Having worked with many emerging filmmakers through the Sundance Institute and other programs, I’m convinced it’s usually the wrong choice.
The Academy is hosting a Monday night screening series focusing on film noir of the 1940′s. I’ll be handling “The Dark Mirror” on July 12. (Olivia de Havilland! Twins! Murder!)
Joseph Shoer looks at some of the uncomfortable science behind these science-fiction mainstays:
Useful suggestions for screenwriters working on their first animated feature
Zombies are more than the walking dead. They’re a useful paradigm for a range of common scenarios in many genres.