Screenwriting : Logline advice by Huss Rasit

Huss Rasit

Logline advice

Hi All

I'm doing some final prep before sharing my TV pilot on here and Script Revolution. I've been sent some loglines as part of feedback but feel like they make my comedy sound like a drama.

I've read up on any advice I could find but most talk about condensing your story into 25 words or below. I wanted something that sounded snappier. I like playing with words and ideally would like my logline to be a joke itself. Has anyone seen that before?

I thought I'd share my personal attempt at a logline to see what you thought.

Logline: On a plane, everyone can hear you scream! An aviophobic pilots quest to fly again.

Anthony Moore

The problem with this logline is that you are trying to incorporate a derivative of the "tagline" for the movie "Alien" into it. No wonder it sounds like a horror movie! Try this one on for size:

"A former pilot is ready to get back to work when he's offered a lucrative contract to work for a newly formed airline, unfortunately he discovers that he hasn't gotten over his fear of flying right after take off."

CJ Walley

It needs to be quite business like and mechanical. Basically, the story concept has to be so compelling a completely dry explanation still makes someone want to see how it pans out.

You've steered a little too far town the tag-line road here with what feels like a marketing statement from a poster. I recommend backing up and bringing it more inline with a typical logline, not because it's bad but because it's doing the wrong job.

Tell us why this pilot needs to fly. What's the boon?

Tony S.

"On a plane, everyone can hear you scream!," this is a tagline that's also derivative of ALIEN ("In space no one can hear you scream"). "An aviophobic pilots quest to fly again." this is part of a logline. Stakes? Obstacles?

Phil Clarke

As others have said, what you've written is more of a tagline and doesn't contain some of the essential components of a logline. I did put together a helpsheet on loglines for my writers some time ago. If you'd like me to send this to you, let me know.

Huss Rasit

I took this approach because I thought most loglines sounded boring. Even the ones that belonged to big hits. I've obviously misunderstood how they are used so will go back to something like:

Logline: Reeling from a devastating breakup, a goofy pilot struggles to find

his footing after having his wings clipped.

I'll mull over this for a few days. Thanks for the feedback.

Huss Rasit

Yes please Phil Clarke

Nick Assunto - Stage32 Script Services Coordinator

Yeah like everyone is saying, loglines are clinical. They're the least creative part of the process you'll do, and you shouldn't try to be original or unique with it. Loglines need to very simply and clearly guide people into the story.

Doug Nelson

The tagline is a marketing tool used to sell tickets to a film's showing; a logline is a marketing tool used to sell a script.

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