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.
Is it a good idea to focus on making a movie for Christian audiences?
This compilation clip demonstrates what a hoary cliché it has become to explain why movie characters can’t use their cell phones.
An observation made halfway through a five-hour meeting in Beijing: in the movie Groundhog Day, it is never explained why Bill Murray’s character is stuck in a time loop.
An LA Times article about the island of Pagasa makes a great case study in the difference between an interesting setting and an actual movie idea.
We’ve got a winner and a slew of honorable mentions in the Superheroic Scene Challenge.
Brian Lowry cautions against [taking Comic-Con buzz too seriously.
I’m busy working on Preacher, and it’s no spoiler to say that it features a gunfight or two. Last night, I twittered to ask what people’s favorite gunfights were, Western or otherwise. I got a lot of replies, but one name that kept coming up was Michael Mann. He consistently finds ways to send thousands […]
I really had no idea what people were getting paid for short stories, so I asked Matt to dig up some numbers.
What makes one high-concept idea more execution-dependent than another?
Your hero doesn’t have to fix The Big World Problem by the time the end credits roll.
Don’t turn up your nose to actual paid writing for a company that makes movies.
The New Yorker has a terrific piece about screenwriter-director Tony Gilroy.
Traditional period costume drama + alien crash landing = the definition of high concept.
Short answer: yes. But be realistic about the chance of it getting made.
A short film, like a short story, can’t waste any time. Here’s what to include, and what to leave out.
A writer can get away with quite a few things on stage that are tough to pull off in movies.
An episode of Grey’s Anatomy might have the same title as your spec. That’s not even close to being plagiarism.
If you’re looking to put your story out into the world, paper beats film, hands down.