Screenwriting : Paranthetical shortcut? by Tony McFadden

Tony McFadden

Paranthetical shortcut?

My friends...

I have about a page and a half of dialog between two characters who need to be whispering/soto voce for the entire conversation. I don't want parantheticals (whispering) for each time they talk. Is there a better way?


Tiyan Newman

Put a note. For ex. (NOTE: The two whisper for the remainder of the scene.) Then just carry out the conversation.

Craig D Griffiths

Or stick it in action line. Steve can hear someone outside, fearfully he whispers.

Andrew Bruce Lockhart

in the action line... A whispered conversation takes place. Or as Craig/Tiyan says

Michael E Wolfe

Add a physical attribute like a twitch or jerk, smirk or raise of eyebrows. Maybe even the rolling of eyes?

Jody Ellis

I'd just add it before they start conversing in your scene heading, ie; "The two put their heads together, whispering."

Dan Guardino

If you know they are supposed to be whispering won't the actors and the director be able to figure that out from what is happening in the scene. If so then you don't need any actor's directions.

Travis Sharp

Action lines.

Steve scoffs and looks off for a moment.

Bob nods slowly and rubs his chin.

The president stops paying attention and tweets on his phone. Etc...

Chad Stroman

In the action as others have said or a note. I prefer as a simple action "Bob and John put their heads close together and begin whispering" then dialogue. Same for if the whispering ends in the same scene and transitions "Bob nods at John in agreement. They turn and address the other lawyers at the table."

May not be right but it's clear at least if not bordering on directing however.

Doug Nelson

Show it in your scene - you don't need to tell me or your actors. Film's a visual art form - SHOW ME.

Dan Guardino

I agree with Doug.

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