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A lesson in scriptwriting


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A lesson in scriptwriting

  1. 1. A Lesson in ScriptwritingAn example of a scenario:"Seduced by the Dark Side!"An old (yet wise) person and a young (but curious) person are outsidea movie theater where they have just seen the movie "Star Wars". Nowthey stand looking at the movie poster on the wall outside thetheater.The younger person says, "That was a great movie... but I dontunderstand one thing." The older person says, "Hum, whats that?".The young person says, "I dont understand how anyone can be seducedby the dark side".The older person thinks for a while and then answers, "What computerdo you use at home?"The young person immediately responds eagerly, "A Macintosh."Then the older person slowly says, "But what computer does yourfather use at work?"The young person thinks for a while and then smiles in amazement,exclaiming loudly, "Seduced by the Dark Side!"The older person smiles knowingly at the young person.The young person is very happy knowing he has just learned a veryimportant lesson. Now the two have formed a bond that will last alifetime.They begin walking slowly home together.
  2. 2. A Lesson in ScriptwritingOnce you have a scenario, you can break it down into theelements required for a script. This is how:1. What is the Location?Scene Introduction(INTERIOR vs. EXTERIOR)?Exterior which is abbreviatedEXT.The Location? Simply say Movie Theater! for thelocation.The Time? The time will be Night since mostmovies end at night. However, wewill probably film at dusk sowell have better lighting.2. Who are the characters in this story?There are only two speaking rolesin our movie. Extra people suchas people in the background arenever listed in a movie script.The old and wise person will besimply called OLD PERSON.The young person will be calledYOUNG PERSON. We dont want tolimit our choice to one gender.3. What is the dialog for this story?We need to write down just thewords that are spoken. This isthe meat of the script.The older person saysWhat computer do you use at home?The younger person saysA Macintosh.The older person saysAnd what computer does yourfather use at work?The younger person saysSeduced by the Dark Side!!!4. What are the actions in this story?The actions are what goes on inthe story that is not dialog. Fora movie script, this must be veryshort. Notice how much of thestory is eliminated and notincluded in the actions.At the beginning of the scene,all you need to say isActionAn old and wise person and ayoung person stand in front of amovie poster.ActionThey begin to walk away.5. What is the ending transition for this story?At the end of the scene, all youneed to say is:TransitionFade Out
  3. 3. A Lesson in Scriptwriting