I wanted to write a screenplay or at least a spec script that has a high concept but the problem is that I don't how to work around some ideas or how to execute them well.
Anyone got any advice on this?
Copy the link below to share this page:
Just take every scene header/slugline and add "in Space" to the end before the "Time". Just kidding of course. Maybe this will help:
The concept is just the setting and rules of the world. There is no special formatting or tricks. You'll have to show the world and the rules as if you are the director.
I found "Save the Cat" very useful. Try it!
What is your definition of "high concept" and what genre?
Go read Terry Rossio's articles on word player site.
I'm reading "Bright" script by Max Landis. It's a high concept buddy cop story.
1 is human. The other Alien. And I dont mean illegal Alien but "Alien from outer space."
The 2 cops are doing every day police work.
Find out about the loglines of high concepts like The Gladiator, you would be amazed. There are are no special theatrics. Just convey the turning points in your story, leave the rest.
Gladiator is not "high concept" . Again, ask people working
Well, @Dan Maxx. It depends on your definition of "high concept". Tangled web like storylines dont really classify.
I think people equate high concept to high budget. This, in my opinion is not necessarily the case. High concept is an idea that can be said in one quick line. -Die Hard under water. Castaway on Mars. All is lost, in space.
Let's give general industry definition and use of the term "high concept," not personal definition. High Concept is about the premise, not the story, per se. High Concept means a premise is easily understood and the potential is obvious—at the logline. High Concept is pitch driven, not necessarily story driven. A High Concept premise should be unique, original. A High Concept premise has to have mass audience appeal, and a specific "twist" that can easily be visualized by anyone. Don't confuse "high concept" as meaning something complex, or character-driven, or artistic, or something highly intelligent. Rather the opposite. Lol! GLADIATOR is not High Concept, but SNAKES ON A PLANE is indeed. ;)
Hm. That's interesting, Erica. I agree not to equate high concept to high budget but would think high concept is a story like Back to the Future, innovative, perfectly told and with surprising and most creative twists and in this case even (obviously) with informations from Silicon Valley about how our technical standard will be in the future. Even the camera "Doc" used in BBTF III looks like an iPhone, so there must have been connections and this - for me - is a high concept.
The 5,000th version of Romeo and Julia, today on the Moon, tomorrow dying as junkies, is no high concept in my opinion.
Okay, Beth, your comment appeared after I wrote mine. :)
Dan M, wasn't there a TV series years ago... A cop/detective and an Alien cop (Newcomers) working together? It was ALIEN NATION, right? ...Hmmm, I don't know... Max Landis' "Bright" doesn't sound that original. Perhaps he's put a twist on an old twist. Lol!
It is called a "homage." Landis' BRIGHT is TRAINING DAY with Will Smith and an Alien partner.
Dan MaxXx You mean "Bad Boys"?
No, I mean TRAINING DAY or END OF WATCH.
David Ayer is reinventing Will Smith.
Beth Fox Heisinger . While I'm in the same opinion that complex stories aren't necessarily high concepts. Is the Spiderman movie a high concept?
Dan MaxXx Sorry Dan, it was a bad joke in reference to your "Will Smith and an Alien partner".
All good, Chad. Pray they lens Bad Boys 3 by Fall 2017. Do a high concept cross over. Bad Boys 3 fighting pirates of the Carribeans, with help from Top Gun fighter pilots and Transformer robots.
Psst, Jerry Bruckheimer- call me! I wrote the treatment!
Christian, it's not so much an opinion, but rather the general (somewhat tricky) definition of High Concept—a term that has come mostly from execs in the industry. Whether SPIDERMAN is considered High Concept or not is rather irrelevant. Sure, perhaps when it first appeared, years and years ago, it would be considered as such. But now it is a tent-pole franchise from a well-known property with a long history. Sure, its premise is easily understandable, it's visible, and has mass appeal, but it certainly isn't original (these days) because it is so well known and has a huge loyal fan base. It will be a hit at the box office, regardless. The term "high concept" is usually applied to premises that have not been seen before, that have obvious potential. High Concepts are innovative. They easily and quickly capture imagination. A High Concept can be sold by its pitch, rather than its execution. ;)
Excellent explanation, my dear BETH. Thank YOU as always.
@Beth. I quite agree about high concepts being innovative. But don't you think as Spiderman, Gladiator was once fresh out of the oven in its 2000 release?
Christian, it's not about "fresh." GLADIATOR is not High Concept. It just isn't. And it wasn't in 2000. One could say GLADIATOR is Low Concept. It is more execution and character driven. There's no big premise twist there. It's about a Roman general who is betrayed, who is forced to fight as a gladiator, and fights for the freedom of his people. It's an epic historical drama. I already commented about SPIDERMAN. JURASSIC PARK, the very first film, on the other hand, is (was) High Concept. An island zoo theme park populated with cloned dinosaurs from prehistoric DNA runs amuck when the predators break free and hunt their creators. Big new premise twist, never seen before idea, a zoo with prehistoric, DNA-cloned dinosaurs. Wow! Simple. Original. Creates an instant image. Mass appeal. Christian, this is just an industry catch phrase/term. It's not really something that determines whether an idea/story is good or bad. Perhaps think of High Concept simply as a premise that needs little explanation; it's easily stated, a succinct premise. Low Concept is more concerned with character development or character driven stories that may not be as easily summarized. I hope that helps!
Well, then I wasn't that wrong with my example of Back to the Future being a high concept.
You'll are bandying about buzz words that few (self included) fully understand. Perhaps someone can succinctly tell me precisely what a High Concept, Four Quadrant, Tent Pole script or film is.
Well, if a script with a High Concept gets made and does really really well at the box office, its probable sequel(s) would more than likely be designed to build a big, four quadrant, tent-pole, blockbuster franchise. JURASSIC PARK, baby! -- just to name one. Lol! :)
But you're right, Doug. It's really just a bunch of industry catch phrases mostly thrown around by execs. Lol! :)
Beth, the vast majority of those execs have no idea about what they are talking about, but eager writers listen to 'em annyway. Sad, it's like trying to learn something from a Mocking bird.
High concept is story as star - the idea itself is so amazing that people want to see it even if it stars Adam Sandler. These are imaginative ideas - so it takes creativity and imagination to come up with them. Thankfully, both of those are basics in creative writing.
Here's an article that is now a chapter in my IDEA MACHINE Blue Book:
...Yeah, that can be the case, Doug. But I've met some generous, incredible, very smart industry people who have certainly counseled me on such concepts. I've had great discussions. I think it's beneficial to learn the lingo, know the meaning/use of various terms, especially from those folks on the other side of the table. Gain their perspective. One never stops learning. ;)
Special thanks to William! Thank you so much, by your explanation I got it, William.
Thank you Beth Fox Heisinger, you are one of the best around here. I think its clear. Please, check out my three loglines. I have reworked on them following your advice.