Screenwriting

From structure to content to representation to industry trends, this is the place to discuss, share content and offer tips and advice on the craft and business of screenwriting

Claude Gagne
Scripts

There are just two acceptable times of day: “DAY” and “NIGHT.” Unacceptable times include “THE NEXT DAY,” “LATER THAT MORNING,” and “THAT SAME MOMENT.” No matter when one scene takes place relative to another, all that's evident on screen is whether it's day or night.

You see, if it's night-time out...

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M LaVoie

As a DP, I appreciate DAWN, DUSK along with a reference somewhere at somepoint to the season and location the story is taking place in. 4pm in November in LA looks different to 4pm summer in NYC. Wint...

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Robin Gregory

Got it @Pat Alexander. Thank you so much. That's very helpful.

Dan Guardino

Sometimes a scene must be shot during dusk or dawn. Also, you can use later or moments later

Matthew Kelcourse

Be consistent without being confusing. Easy-peasy. If time of day or night is important to the scene or story (dusk, dawn, etc...) use it. Same for Minutes Later, Next Morning, etc... No one is going...

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Stephen Robinson
Help! The dreaded "7" zone on Black List

So I seem to be stuck in the dreaded "7" zone on the two scripts I've posted to the black list. I don't want to chase the "8" but I also want to be open to the notes given to me by the two readers of my latest script.

I would be incredibly appreciative for any thoughts on the evaluations (see below)...

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Stephen Robinson

Matthew Kelcourse Thank you for that advice. Which sites do you suggest exactly?

Matthew Kelcourse

Hi Stephen. Outside of 32, one of the best (and often visited by pros looking for projects) would be Coverfly. Joining is free, reviews with notes by third parties ($), script exchanges with other spe...

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Craig D Griffiths

Franklin Lenard is on Reddit. He says something like 75% of screenplays get a 7. So it is not a bad thing, just average. So a good place to start from.

Sallie Olson

Although I'm new to screenwriting, I have been through the beta reading process with my five books and a handful of short-stories, as well as doing a LOT of beta reading myself, for many other authors...

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Christopher Phillips

The Black list uses professional industry readers, not casual feedback.

That being said, there are two goals: get decent 8+ ratings that will generate producer reads from the professional members and m...

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Maurice Vaughan
Ask Me Anything (AMA) with Sean Keller – “Writing a Great Horror Feature”

Sean Keller is having an all-day AMA in the Writers’ Room Lounge, focused on “Writing a Great Horror Feature.”

Sean is a genre screenwriter with over 20 years of experience writing for Blumhouse, Hulu, ABC, SyFy, Lionsgate, and more. He’s written screenplays for Horror masters Dario Argento, John Car...

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Bill Brock
Now that I've typed "THE END" in my new horror script, I'm searching for some great competitions to enter. Any suggestions?

This is my first horror script, so I'm aware of a few that cater to the Horror genre-- NIGHTMARES FILM FEST and CRIMSON SCREEN HORROR FEST. Any others I should look into?

Amar R Sovasheya

Sounds Good and best of luck for your Project

Bill Brock

Amar R Sovasheya Thank you, Amar! It's time to pick my baby up from the crib and show it the world! : )

Amar R Sovasheya

you are most welcome.

So Excited

Dan MaxXx

Forget comps Mr Brock. Cash out your 401K and max out credit cards and make a horror movie; we got a member who made a $78,000 dramedy movie. Stop asking for permission, Boss. You'd be ridiculously shock at feedbacks when peers know you are funding a project.

Bill Brock

Dan MaxXx HA, DAN!!! I'm busting a gut over here! You are so damn funny! Max out my credit cards?!! I need to start dating rich old ladies!!!

Bill Brock
A Fantastical, Otherworldly, Bizarre, Strange and Beyond All Human Experience Story.... But one that MUST be told!

How WEIRD is this? A majority of my latest screenplay, HORROR-FEST, takes place at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood. I had enjoyed my stay there in 2019 when THE DRESS was nominated at the Bev Hills International Film Fest.

In HORROR-FEST, there are a few scenes that occur in the lobby and I was har...

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Maurice Vaughan

"In HORROR-FEST, there are a few scenes that occur in the lobby and I was hard-pressed in remembering the dimensions of the room." You could look up videos of the lobby in the Roosevelt Hotel, Bill Br...

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Bill Brock

Richard "RB" Botto Agreed, RB. BHFF is the most CONVENIENT film festival on the planet! So, stay at the hotel located at Ground Zero Hollywood, cross the street to the Chinese for the film venue / var...

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Bill Brock

Dan MaxXx OMG, Dan! How funny! What was your costume?

Bill Brock

Maurice Vaughan Agreed, Maurice. I could have, but was so wrapped up in the script, I just decided to rely on memory. Can't wait to walk into the lobby again to see how close it comes to what's on the...

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Maurice Vaughan

Bill Brock You could do that for your next script (watch videos). Looking at online photos of locations helps too.

Maurice Vaughan
Introduce Yourself Weekend

It's Introduce Yourself Weekend again!

Friday through Monday

IYW is a great time to meet people, build industry relationships/network, catch up with friends, and share your projects/goals. Even if you’ve introduced yourself before, you can introduce yourself again.

www.stage32.com/lounge/introduce_yo...

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Maurice Vaughan

Since it’s Introduce Yourself Weekend, here’s a great blog to check out. It has tips for getting the most out of IYW.

www.stage32.com/blog/navigating-stage-32s-introduce-yourself-weekend-3460...

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Maurice Vaughan

Karen “Kay” Ross (Stage 32’s Community Manager) talks about how to polish your Stage 32 profile in today’s blog. She also made a video tutorial version. The video link is in the blog.

www.stage32.com/...

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Maurice Vaughan
Take The “Work” Out Of Networking - The Importance Of A Polished Stage 32 Profile

Karen “Kay” Ross (Stage 32’s Community Manager) talks about how to polish your Stage 32 profile in today’s blog.

Karen also made a video tutorial version. The video link is in the blog.

www.stage32.com/blog/take-the-work-out-of-networking-the-importance-of-a......

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Claude Gagne
Santa Movie

My first draft is done. A total of 97 pages. One hour and thirty-seven minutes. I wanted to reach 105/7 minutes but it's pretty intensive in its overall production. I figure in some scenes a bit of rolling time will be needed to bring it into focus. I'm going to read a bit to take my mind off of the...

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Rutger Oosterhoff

Double congrats Claude!!

Claude Gagne

Candina Ann I watched The Peacemaker with George Clooney and Nicole Kidman. Terrorists with nuclear bombs and it was filled with a lot of action.. Add another 30 pages to the page count. (97) The scre...

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Christopher Phillips

Claude Gagne In general, each page is approximately 1 minute of screen time. The Peacemaker clocks in around 124 minutes, so the screenplay should be about 120 pages or so, which includes the action....

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Maurice Vaughan

You're welcome, Claude Gagne. Glad you enjoyed your birthday.

Eric Boles
Landing Representation

Hi, all! What are your tips on landing a rep? How did you land your representation? What do you think helped you? Do you know any agencies looking for clients?

Any wisdom you can offer would be greatly appreciated!

Tasha McLemore

I look for those who have their personal emails on there. Because realistically, first projects may or may not go to a major production company nor will the major agencies answer, no matter how well y...

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Dan MaxXx

forget imdbpro & queries and win over peers. If you don't know legit writers, actors, filmmakers, crew - that's a you problem. Get busy winning ppl with skin in the game; Ppl whose interest is seeing you as a benefit to their own careers.

Maurice Vaughan

Eric Boles Build relationships/network with reps (that's how I got a manager), write a solid portfolio of scripts, win contests that get you meetings with reps (like Stage 32's contests: www.stage32.c...

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Pat Alexander

Most of the time anyone I've known who got repped had written something really great, like transcendent from the rest of their portfolio and because this was easily recognizable, the script was passed...

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Ewan Dunbar

One thing you can do is to keep writing and educating yourself in your craft. Getting representation isn't a one-way street, the representative wants to be confident when putting you up for jobs as it...

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Xavion Niles
My First Nearly Perfect Pitch Session

I've been doing pitch sessions on Stage32 for about a year now and I think the most frustrating thing I've encountered is the re-writing process and trying to incorporate the feedback from different execs with different wants/needs. How do you please everyone in just 2 pages while also making your p...

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Maurice Vaughan

Congratulations on receiving all 5's and one 4, Xavion Niles! Very impressive! Hope you find the right exec for your script and get the contest W!

Karmin Mosley

Congratulations on your positive feedback! You can feel down with not making progress in your field. I've had several script requests, and sometimes waiting on a "yes" and receiving a "no" can break y...

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John Mezes
Special Guests on the Thursday Night Pitch Practice Happy Hour!!!

Hello, Stage 32!!

Our Thursday Night Pitch Practice "Happy Hour" on Feb. 29th (5:30 pm PT/8:30 pm ET) for Writers' Room members will have two very special guests during the first hour of the event! Amanda Grace Jenkins, an accomplished actress known for her roles on hit TV shows like Rosewood, Roadie...

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Asmaa Jamil

Sounds like a great session. I hope to join. Thank you for posting.

John Mezes

Hope to see you there, Asmaa!

John Mezes
Special Guests on the Thursday Night Pitch Practice Happy Hour!!!

Hello, Stage 32!!

Our Thursday Night Pitch Practice "Happy Hour" on Feb. 29th (5:30 pm PT/8:30 pm ET) for Writers' Room members will have two very special guests during the first hour of the event! Samora Smallwood, an accomplished actress known for her roles on hit TV shows like Star Trek Discovery...

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