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The Short Screenplay Your Short Film from Concept to Production

by
Edition:
1st
ISBN13:

9781598633382

ISBN10:
1598633384
Format:
Paperback
Pub. Date:
11/20/2006
Publisher(s):
Cengage Learning PTR
List Price: $20.00

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Questions About This Book?

What version or edition is this?
This is the 1st edition with a publication date of 11/20/2006.
What is included with this book?
  • The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any CDs, lab manuals, study guides, etc.

Summary

With the growth of film festivals, cable networks, specialty home video, and the Internet, there are more outlets and opportunities for screening short films now than at any time in the last 100 years. But before you can screen your short film, you need to shoot it. And before you can shoot it, you need to write it. The Short Screenplay provides both beginning and experienced screenwriters with all the guidance they need to write compelling, filmable short screenplays. Explore how to develop characters that an audience can identify with. How to create a narrative structure that fits a short time frame but still engages the audience. How to write dialogue that's concise and memorable. How to develop story ideas from concept through final draft. All this and much more is covered in a unique conversational style that reads more like a novel than a "how-to" book. The book wraps up with a discussion of the role of the screenplay in the production process and with some helpful (and entertaining) sample scripts. This is the only guide you'll ever need to make your short film a reality!

Author Biography

Dan Gurskis he currently chairs the Department of Film at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York

Table of Contents

Introduction xi
Chapter 1 Shorts 1(20)
Key Concepts
3(2)
The Fundamentals
5(2)
Keep your screenplay focused
5(1)
Limit the time frame of the action
6(1)
Limit the number of characters
6(1)
Visualize
6(1)
Say more with less
7(1)
Make it new
7(1)
What to Avoid
7(3)
The extensive use of special or visual effects
7(1)
Multiple subplots
8(1)
Resolution through death (either murder or suicide)
8(1)
Weapons
8(1)
Serial killing
8(1)
Parodies and mockumentaries
8(1)
Dreams and fantasies
9(1)
Characters who are obviously walking contradictions
9(1)
Film and Theater
10(1)
The Writer's Goals
11(3)
The Script
14(1)
Film and Television
15(3)
Chapter One, Take Two—Chapter Review
18(3)
Chapter 2 Character 21(22)
Key Concepts
23(1)
Character and Characterization
24(2)
Why Are Character Choices Active and External?
26(2)
Putting Your Characters in Charge of the Action
28(2)
Objective and Need
30(2)
Adding Depth to Your Characters
32(2)
Outlook is the way a character views the world
32(1)
Attitude is the way the world views a character
32(1)
Arc is the growth or the change that a character undergoes during the course of the film's action
33(1)
Types of Characters
34(4)
Secondary Characters
38(2)
Chapter Two, Take Two—Chapter Review
40(3)
Chapter 3 Narrative 43(26)
Key Concepts
45(2)
Character vs Character
45(1)
Character vs Self
46(1)
Character vs Society
46(1)
Character vs Nature
46(1)
Character vs Fate
46(1)
The Three-Part Nature of the Screenplay
47(3)
Setting
47(1)
Backdrop
47(1)
Tone
47(1)
Protagonist
47(1)
A hint of the conflict to come
48(1)
The direction of the plot
48(1)
The inciting incident
48(2)
Rising Action
50(4)
Some Additional Devices
54(1)
Condition lock
54(1)
Plant and payoff
54(1)
Red herring
55(1)
Climax
55(2)
Resolution
57(1)
Scenes
58(6)
Scene-protagonist vs Scene-antagonist
61(3)
Creating the Scene
64(2)
What is the dramatic point of the scene?
64(1)
What is the major beat in the scene?
64(1)
Which characters do I need to make the scene work?
65(1)
Who is the scene-protagonist?
65(1)
What does the scene-protagonist want in the scene?
65(1)
What is the form of the conflict in the scene?
65(1)
What is the subtext for the scene?
65(1)
Where will the scene play?
65(1)
At what time of day will the scene play?
65(1)
Chapter Three, Take Two—Chapter Review
66(3)
Chapter 4 Dialogue 69(18)
Key Concepts
71(1)
The Goals of Film Dialogue
72(1)
Move the plot forward
72(1)
Reveal character
72(1)
Provide story information
72(1)
Establish tone
72(1)
Convey theme
72(1)
Add to the backdrop of the story
73(1)
The Characteristics of Film Dialogue
73(2)
Writing Effective Dialogue
75(3)
Write dialogue that's dynamic and progressive
75(1)
Be concise
75(1)
Keep lines simple
75(1)
Keep speeches short
76(1)
Take care in the way that you represent a dialect or an accent on the page
76(1)
Don't turn every beat through the dialogue
76(1)
Don't write "on the nose"
77(1)
Avoid filler phrases
77(1)
Avoid stammering or stuttering except when the dramatic situation absolutely demands it
77(1)
Don't be inflexible (unless you enjoy extreme frustration)
77(1)
Making Every Word Count
78(4)
Keeping Dialogue Concise: A Case in Point
82(3)
Chapter Four, Take Two—Chapter Review
85(2)
Chapter 5 Development 87(24)
Key Concepts
89(1)
Where Do Film Ideas Come From,
90(3)
Character
90(1)
Plot
90(1)
Setting
91(1)
Theme
92(1)
Development
93(1)
The Stages of Development
94(16)
Premise
94(1)
Concept
95(1)
Title
96(1)
Character interview
97(2)
Synopsis
99(2)
Step outline
101(2)
Scene outline
103(1)
Sequence outline
104(1)
Treatment
105(1)
First draft
106(1)
Revisions
107(1)
Common problems in the setup
108(1)
Common problems in the rising action
108(1)
Common problems in the resolution
109(1)
Principles of rewriting
109(1)
Chapter Five, Take Two—Chapter Review
110(1)
Chapter 6 Production 111(24)
Key Concepts
113(2)
Pitfalls and Money Pits
115(13)
Too Many Roles
115(2)
Critters
117(1)
Kids
118(1)
Stunts
119(1)
Nudity
119(1)
"Scenery Chewing"
120(1)
Locations (too many)
121(1)
Locations (too public)
122(1)
Vehicles
123(1)
Weapons
124(1)
Weather
124(1)
Clearances
125(3)
Working with Others
128(5)
Locking the Pages of a Script
130(2)
A Brief Word about Rehearsal
132(1)
Chapter Six, Take Two—Chapter Review
133(2)
Chapter 7 Format 135(28)
Key Concepts
137(1)
Scene Headings
138(6)
Scene Directions
139(3)
Character Cues
142(1)
Dialogue
142(1)
Parenthetical Directions
142(1)
Transitions
143(1)
The Standard Industry Format (Traditional)
144(3)
The Standard Industry Format (Updated)
147(2)
The Title Page
149(2)
Special Situations
151(6)
Some Simple but Essential Rules of Punctuation
157(2)
Chapter Seven, Take Two—Chapter Review
159(4)
Appendix A Genres 163(6)
Appendix B Glossary 169(16)
Appendix C Sample Screenplay: Early Draft 185(12)
Appendix D Sample Screenplay: Shooting Script 197(14)
Appendix E A Filmmaker's Dozen: Thirteen Short Films Every Filmmaker Should See 211(8)
Index 219


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