John and Craig welcome back Aline Brosh McKenna to talk about writing projects outside the familiar constraints of screenwriting. We discuss the surprises and adjustments involved in the creative processes of different media: Aline’s graphic novel Jane, Craig’s HBO miniseries Chernobyl, and John’s original song, “Rise.” We also dig into why screenwriters sometimes need to […]
Craig and John debut a new segment: This Kind of Scene, looking at how different movies handle similar situations. The Hudsucker Proxy, The Devil Wears Prada, Hidden Figures and Training Day all need to introduce their heroes to their new workplaces. We examine how those scenes work, both on the page and on screen. We […]
France doesn’t have black beans. And this is a problem for someone who eats them every day.
I’m not here for work, or to escape this nightmare of an election. Rather, this sojourn has been in the planning stages for several years, going all the way to back to a screenwriters trip organized by Film France back in 2009. My daughter is attending sixth grade here. We’ll head back to Los Angeles for seventh.
For buyers in United Kingdom (and other countries in Europe), Writer Emergency Pack is now sold on Amazon.co.uk.
John and Craig discuss the WGA election results, and take a look at the issues that dominated the campaigns. What is a paper team? Do screenwriters really retire? And why does it take us so long to get paid?
Craig and John open the mailbag to answer questions on acronyms in dialogue, off-the-air specs and international WGA jurisdiction. Plus we look at the growing trend of non-disclosure agreements on studio projects, and whether the nature of film requires less complex characters.
Craig and John look at how movies are translated, including an interview with a guy who does subtitles for a living. Plus, how Pixar and other companies are localizing movies for international audiences, and what happens when China becomes the largest film market.
Canadian screenwriter Ryan Knighton joins John and Craig to discuss how you sustain a career writing for Hollywood studios while living a flight away. Knighton’s first screenplay was the adaptation of his memoir about going blind. He’s since written for several studios, including a new project for Ridley Scott.
Bronson Watermarker PDF is our first effort at internationalizing an app. The process was mostly smooth, but not without some surprises.
Today’s First Person demonstrates an important point: you can’t pick the single moment at which you’ve “made it.”
Could a Canadian screenwriter with a criminal record sell specs in Hollywood?
Story is free, now in Spanish.
Since I was name-checked twice this interview from the top-ranked Wharton School of Business, I feel some responsibility to point out a few fallacies and follies.
A handy and scary glossary to terms from the Mexican drug war.
Somewhat remarkably, the top two movies in America have subtitles. Lots and lots of subtitles.
At the gym yesterday, we were discussing which language would be the best foreign language for a native English speaker to learn. Specifically, can you make a compelling case for any language other than Spanish or Mandarin?
A parallel set of articles written in a subset of English is remarkable cool.
Generally, no. Try to make terms understandable in context.
Changing the subtitles for Let The Right One pissed off a lot of fans.
In a precautionary move to ward off pirates, Paramount supplied only dubbed prints of “Monsters vs. Aliens” to Russian and Ukrainian theaters.
It’s time for the studios to meet the demands of the international audience and avoid piracy at the same time.
Along with nine other WGA writers, I’ll be headed to France in November to get a backstage tour of Paris and Marseille, in the hopes of finding cinematically interesting people and places. It’s all sponsored by Film France in the hopes of getting more big Hollywood movies shooting there. It’s a clever idea, one I […]
What are the pitfalls for a foreigner trying to break into Hollywood?
I’m back from the Venice Film Festival, where The Nines had its international premiere. The movie screened three times, but the main public debut was 2:30 p.m. on Monday. At lunch that day, both the sales agent and the publicist separately pulled me aside to say, “So, John, you should know that if the audience […]