Learn To Write Movies: Screenwriting Step by Step | John Watts | Skillshare

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Learn To Write Movies: Screenwriting Step by Step

teacher avatar John Watts, Writer/Director

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      What is your concept?


    • 3.

      Making your goal compelling.


    • 4.

      Connecting with your hero.


    • 5.

      Creating empathy.


    • 6.

      Your hero's transformational arc.


    • 7.

      A good baddie.


    • 8.

      Contrast and villains.


    • 9.

      Understanding theme.


    • 10.

      Theme case study.


    • 11.

      Supporting characters.


    • 12.

      Why use Structure?


    • 13.

      Act 1 - The First 10 Pages


    • 14.

      Act 1 - The Inciting Incident


    • 15.

      Act 2 - Part 1


    • 16.

      Act 2 - Part 2


    • 17.

      Act 3


    • 18.

      The two deadly sins of Screenwriting.


    • 19.

      The key to great description.


    • 20.

      What goes into making a great scene?


    • 21.

      Keeping your readers enthralled.


    • 22.

      Dialogue techniques.


    • 23.

      The end?


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About This Class

Have you got a great idea for a movie but are unsure how to write the script? Think screenwriting is too hard? Or maybe you've always wanted to be a script writer but didn't really know where to start... Well, I've got you covered.

Learn to Write Movies takes aspiring writers through the art of screenwriting, step by step. It covers all you need to know, from coming up with concepts and creating characters to theme, employing structure and writing techniques. With a mix of theory, examples from modern movies and worksheets to fill out as you go through the course, it will give you the confidence to write a great script, first time.


Each section of the course concentrates on a particular facet of your screenplay.

  • Concept  
  • Hero/Protagonist
  • Villain/Antagonist
  • Theme
  • Supporting Characters
  • Structure
  • Writing
  • Constructing Scenes
  • Dialogue

We will go over each area in detail so that by the time you have completed the course and filled out the included worksheets, you will have your entire movie planned out and have all the knowledge you need to finish an amazing script.

The presentations can be downloaded here: Learn To Write Movies Presentation

By the end of the course you will:

  • Have all the knowledge you need in order to write a great screenplay.
  • By filling in the worksheets as you go, you will have planned out your entire movie by the end of this course!
  • Create 3 dimensional, memorable characters that will get a Producer's attention.
  • Understand theme and how to use it to take your writing to the next level.
  • Structure your movie to Hollywood standards.
  • Write captivating scenes and keep your readers on the edge of their seats.
  • Get the most out of your ideas and turn them in to winning concepts.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

John Watts



Hi All,

My name is John and I have been working in the film and television industry for 20 years. I started my career with the BBC, ITV and various Sky channels before moving over to the film industry where I am now a professional Writer and feature film Director for Netflix and others. I hold a masters degree in Screenwriting, have sold scripts in the USA, UK and China and have been a script doctor to countless more.

I am passionate about helping others get into the industry and making great stories.

See full profile

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1. Introduction: Hi, everyone. My name is John Watts and thank you for taking a look at this course with all the new digital platforms and TV channels that are coming out every single week. It's never been a better time to become a writer, and as we all know, the one aspect behind every great film and TV show is a great script. I've been in the TV and film industry for nearly 20 years now, and I wanted to make this course to share with you all the information I'd learned over that time. More importantly, I wanted to give you the knowledge I wish I'd had when I first started writing. In this course, we're going to cover everything you need to know to write a successful script. We're going to start with coming up with concepts and designing characters, move onto theme and structure and actually, how to write the script itself. By the end of this course, you're gonna feel confident in your ability to write a great script and get it to the right people. I'm so excited to be doing this, and I hope you'll join me 2. What is your concept?: Hi, everyone. Welcome to the course, and I'm so pleased that you've joined us. What we do first is before we even write a word, we're gonna have to think of something that's very, very important. I'm going to start with that. It's the concept, the concept. Another word for the idea. What the story's about. Jeffrey Katzenberg, who was an executive at Disney, actually wrote an internal memo that's now become very, very famous. It said, In the dizzying world of moviemaking, we must not be distracted from one fundamental concept. The idea is King. If a movie begins with a great original idea, chances are good. It'll be successful even if executed only marginally. Well, however, if a film begins with a flawed idea, it will almost certainly fail. What does that mean? Well, basically, it's saying that if you've got a fantastic idea for a script and you've got a great script itself, it doesn't matter if you've got mediocre director or actors. It was still shine through the idea and that the story itself will showing through. However, if you turn that round, say you've got Steven Spielberg and you've got Matt Damon and Christie and bail to be in your film, but it's a terrible idea. I mean, Steven Spielberg wouldn't do it, even with the actors. But even if you had all these guys and you managed to persuade them to do this film, if it's a bad idea, it's a bad concept is gonna turn out rubbish. Okay, even the best of you in the world can't make it good. So our job starts with thinking of an idea for our script, something that's compelling on something that grabs you as soon as you hear the logline. If you don't know what Logline is, no problem. You all have seen it. It's that sentence or two, which encapsulates what the movie is about. So you see them in magazines and on websites like I am DB or whatever. They have a little couple of sentences, which described that the movie and that's called the Log Life. Here's some examples, so have a look through now and see if you can tell what movies their from. Okay, Did you get all those? They weren't exactly hard, were they? A good logline gives us a glimpse at the protagonist or the hero is there also known their goal. The main conflict that they might face and what stakes might be. The real test of a logline is, Does it make you want to see a movie? The problem with a lot of writers when they start out as they get all excited and they write the script on, then when someone asked them, or what about they can't put it in this couple of sentence logline. They start to ramble and say, Oh, it's about this And then they this person goes on this journey and it's about this inner whatever and they can't pinpoint what it is. They can't say it's about a person. Give another person idea or whatever the case may be. This is what we've got to do. We've got to make sure that it we know what our stories about in a couple of sentences on what's more, if you tell someone that they actually want to go and see it, remember, people are gonna pay to watch movies. Movies cause millions of pounds to make. You have to persuade every single point along your journey. For someone, Toe read the script to pay for the script to make the script on their other people to go to the cinema and pay their hard earned money to watch it. So this is the point where we can really concentrate on what our idea is and make it compelling, make people go. I want to go and see that if that's out, I want to see it. As I say, some people I've known actually have sold their concepts with never making the script because it grabbed people that went, What a fantastic idea. That sounds an awesome movie. I'll buy that idea off you, so it's really important that we actually do this first. The other thing about writing a script is it can be very time consuming. I mean, it normally takes a few months. It takes for me about 12 weeks, about three months to write a script, usually, but it could take all the way up to a couple of years. One script I wrote took a year and 1/2 because you go through rewrite you send to produce is they then send you back, notes acted or send notes that they want specifically all this kind of stuff. It can take a long, long time I know Aaron Sorkin, who's written a few good men, The West Wing Social Network. An amazing writer off one of the best in the world, he said. It takes him nearly two years to write a script. Two years, That's a long chunk of your life, so we've got to make sure that the idea we've got is worth it. Imagine doing two years of work on. Then someone saying, What? I don't really like the idea. It's not very compelling. Doesn't grab anyone. What's the point in it? You have just wasted your time. We need to make sure we've got a good concept to start off with. So how do we do this? How do we build a good concept? Well, there's a number of things which will go through to really get the most definitional idea. So that's correct over the 1st 1 And that is your hero. Also known as the protagonist. Your heroes goal your heroes. Gold is the thing that they want to obtain. Accomplish Win Rescue, for instance. They might want to save the princess or find the treasure or kill the bad guy. Is that thing that you can say in a sentence. What does the hero want to do? He wants to rescue his daughter. He wants to find the hidden gold. He wants to go and kill the Matthew boss. Whatever the gold is, we need to make sure it's compelling. The reader has to be gripped from the first page to the last. So there's no point having your heroes gold to be something like going to the corner store to buy a pint of milk. Who cares? No one. No one wants to see that. Don't write something like that. It's just wasting your time and read it. Or producers will just blacklist you from there, because if you send them something like that, that is going to go. What a waste of time. No more from this person. We also need to make the goal visible on. What I mean by this is that we need to be able to see when the hero is actually accomplished it. So whether this could be killing the Big Barcelo, recovering the treasure or saving the hostage, we can physically see that the hero has reached their endpoint. And one, let's contrast this with the goal, which is invisible so something like finding self worth or feeling love. If you're sitting in an audience or even as a reader, how do you know that the hair I was achieved, that it's an anything you know, we're not writing a book here. We're writing predominantly a visual medium, so we need to be able to see the hero has achieved their goal again. This is a floor and a lot of new writers. They say, Well, it's about this person coming of age, which is fine, tohave that in the in the character, and we'll discuss that later on. But that's not the heroes gold is it. That can't be their goal. How do you know when they come of age? What's that point where you can physically say, Oh yeah, I can see that look that conveys just there. This is the point. It has to be physical. You can certainly have all these different ones for your character, light coming of age or feeling love on. And that's part of the transformational art which will go on about later. But for now, it just make sure that you've got a hero's goal, which is an outer visible one now we've gotta go. How do we check if it's compelling? Well, let's make up an example here. Say we're going to write to movie where our heroes gold is to make two people fall in love . Is this a physical goal that we can see? No, we can't. We can't see if two people have fallen in love. So that's not physical gold. So how can we change it? Okay, let's say that the goal is to make them kiss for the first time. That's visible. We can see if the two people case if the hero commit the two people kiss, we can see them do that, so that could be a visible goal. However, would you pay your hard earned money just to watch that? No, I don't think so. I I certainly wouldn't pay £10 or whatever is now to go to the cinema. I think I'm watched something the other month, and it cost me £17 to go to the cinema. You know that that's that was at $20 is not cheap. So what else can we do to make this goal? We've just set more compelling. Well, that's what we're gonna find out in our next job, so I'll see you name it 3. Making your goal compelling.: Welcome back, everyone and carrying on for my last lecture. We are talking about how we can make our gold more compelling. So what can we do? Well, the first thing we can do is add some steaks. Now the stakes are what the hero stands to lose if he fails in achieving his goal. The higher the stakes, the more compelling the goal. Nothing comes higher than death, so this could be the death of the hero himself or another character such as Taken or ransom . It could be the death of a whole, an entire town. So 30 days of night or the rock Or it could even be the death of everyone on the Earth, such as Armageddon or Deep Impact. We've got to make sure that our steaks are as high as possible to make the outcome compelling. We want our audience to be willing, our hero, every step of the way to succeed. And that's what the stakes are. Four you might be thinking. What about other genres, like romantic comedies? You don't have people dying in them, do you? Well, we don't know, but we have a symbolic death, and that's of losing your one true love on, therefore your chance of happiness. So if you're writing a script which doesn't obviously fit in with the sense of death, think of it in the this kind of psychological way. It could be the loss of innocents, the loss of hope, the loss of morality. All of these kind of symbolic deaths could be considered as high stakes. We've also got to ensure that the hero desperately wants to achieve his goal on this is where the high stakes helps again. I mean, what would be the point in watching a film where the hero isn't particularly bothered? If he wins all the you know he loses? If he doesn't care, no one else is gonna care. In our movie, let's say that if the hero doesn't achieve his goal of making the two people kiss, he and other members of his family are gonna die. Okay, that sounds a bit more compelling, but strange for a bit more compelling, doesn't it? Look, we do next. Well, we all know that every movie needs a bad guy on bad guys, also called antagonise. We're gonna discuss what makes a good antagonist in a later chapter But for now, let's just remember that the antagonist has to be in direct opposition to our hero. They either want the same things, our hero. So, for example, in a James Bond film, the villain might want to get these nuclear codes. But James wants them as wells there in direct opposition, and they want the same thing. Or they might stand in the way of our hero attaining they go. So whatever the hero wants, they've got to get through the antagonist first before they can get it. In our movie idea, let's say that the antagonised wants the girl for himself. No one of the two people that were meant to fall in love. What's more, he wants the hero out of the picture. So both of these things are therefore going to stop our hero from reaching his goal. Now let's add a genre, Andi, if we can an original twist. I'm always one for saying that you should probably right in the genre you love. I mean, if you hate watching horror, for instance, why would you consider writing one? Having said that, sometimes it's actually fun to play around with genre, especially at the this ideas staged this concept stage. Maybe you could find an original concept and make your move even better just by switching genres, For example. There's always been a lot off zombie movies, you know, survivalist movies such as, like 28 days later. But Simon Pegg and Anger, Right, decided, well, let's make a comedy version of his zombie film on. They gave a short of the debt, which did really, really well. Another one is You got all your standard Westerns. But Robert or Key and Alex Kurtzman decided to write an alien version of a Western, and they vote. Cowboys and aliens in minor are not being that great film, but it was a good concept. We'll hear about a romantic horror, such his audition by Dai Suki to anger. This is your idea stage to let your mind play about? What would your movie be like if it was a Western or horror or a SciFi or an action or romantic comedy of exactly the same idea? You never know. You might come up with an even better concept, so let's make our movie a sci fi adventure. We already have a hero whose goal is to make two people kiss or else his family are going to die. That's the stakes. The antagonist is trying to stop him and wants the girl for himself. Now we're going to add our SciFi elements. Let's say our heroes being sent back in time. And the couple are in fact, his own parents. Yes, you've got it. We're getting back to the future. But what I'm trying to point out is that all movies, even the best ones, have very simple cause to them. There are very simple, basic idea. In our case, it was Get two people to fall in love or get two people to kiss. Because, remember, fall in love is not a visible goal. Get to be able to kiss on, then, by adding a steaks and antagonised a genre on an original twist. You can make amazing movies such as Robert Zemeckis did with Back to the Future, but it's a very, very simple core idea. Inception is based on putting an idea into someone's head. There's nothing more to it than that put an idea into someone's head. But then, obviously Christopher known and added stakes for Cobb, he added, an amazing sci fi genre on amazing original hook of it being in dreams. This is the stuff you could add on to your core idea. It's hard to come up with. No one is saying it is easy. It's no easy. But by thinking this through in those different things stakes antagonised genre an original twist you can add on to that basic goal on Make something that is an amazing concept. What if we taken this core idea and actually decided to make it a thriller or horror? Think how the same story would have Bean if we'd simply change that genre. So imagine if it had been a haunted house story where a spirit you know, an evil spirit like you get you always get in these haunted house today, where an evil spirit wants toe, break your family apart and on drive them to murder each other on. Then it's up to the hero to bring them together and, you know, by making two people kiss. Then it breaks the evil. I know we're making it up, but you get the idea. It's taking that simple core try in a different genre. Try it with the different steaks try it with a different twist on it, and then to see what you come up with. We want to come up with a lot of different options here. We contest them out when our friends, our family, see what they want, would like to see. That's important as well. You want toe check that people would actually pay money to watch your script. The next thing we need is the movie needs obstacles, and we need lots of them. It is easy for our hero to reach. Their goal is gonna make a very boring movie. Our audience wants to be taken on a journey of ups and down he's going to reach his girl. They're not gonna reach that goal. They are. They know it's actually this. Yes, he will succeed. No, we won't succeed sequence That's actually gonna drive all of our act to There's a quote by a famous story analyst called Michael Hague on It's a very good one, and he wrote that your story must enable a sympathetic character to overcome a series of increasingly difficult, seemingly insurmountable obstacles and achieve a compelling desire. That's a very good encapsulation of what was a good story is on, we gotta therefore make sure obstacles get harder and harder to overcome as the movie progresses. Let's look at some of the obstacles in back to the future. We've got the DeLorean runs out of power. Doc Brown doesn't know who Marti's. Marty's mom falls in love with him rather than George. His dad, George, too shy Biff and his gang have it in for Marty, etcetera, etcetera. There's loads and those of obstacles that Marty has to cut, overcome to carry on and reach his goal, then where you'd have to come up with them all. Now, I'm not asking you to think of them all now, but just think of the broad strokes. We just want to get an overall feel for our movie idea at the moment. Just think. What could the obstacles possibly be that my hero has to face in order to reach his goal? Finally, will add a ticking clock. Now we've all seen ticking clocks in films. It can be the literal, ticking clock of like a bomb waiting to go off in a James Bond film. Or it could be a ticking clock liking crank where Jason stay thumbs racing against his heart basically to get cure before his heart stops ticking. Clocks are important because if the hero can put off doing his gold until next week or next month, there's no tension in the film you not willing for him to do it because there's no real hurry in it is This is our, well, do it whenever you're like this knows no problem. So there's no tension in the audience for him to achieve. It now has to be immediate. Now we've got we've got to get it done. So he needs to have a ticking clock that he can fight against, and it needs to be short and imminent in back to the future. There actually to ticking clocks. The first is that Marty must get his parents to kiss at the enchantment under the Sea Bowl on. This is great because Marty's got that picture off his family that is slowly disappearing. So you've actually got a visual reference to the time ticking away, you know, Is it they his brother goes or assisted, goes and then he's actually going a swell. And so it's the audiences, Really. Can Marty get his parents to kiss before he disappears. And that's the end of his future. The second ticking clock is whether Marty will get the DeLorean to 88 miles an hour. Justus, the lightning strikes the clock tower. And in this section, we actually got all sorts of those. Those obstacles we were talking about for him to get over. I mean, Doc Brown can't connect the cables. Marty's late, the DeLorean dies, you know it just as he wants to start it up on. It won't go. You know, this is the kind of stuff that makes your reader flip those pages. They want to see how you're gonna get out of this or what's gonna happen next. So that's why it's so important. Ticking clock doesn't have to be set at the beginning of the film. It can come at any time in the second or even third act. It can be it. The first act. It could be all throughout the movie. But as the point is to create tension, you know that kind of Willy Won't he succeed? Kind of feeling. You know what you do in time? Will you not do in time? It's best to give the clock sometime to take. I mean, if it's just, you know, one minute, then it's no, really You can do that in the scene. You could have, like, you know, a little oclock in the seat, and that's a good thing to have deacon clocks in scenes. But the general ticking clock itself, the overall one, does need some time to take. And that's it. That's all that there is to fleshing out your concept. So we've got a hero with a visible goal stakes if he doesn't achieve that goal, antagonised to battle against obstacles to overcome on a ticking clock to be, and that's all wrapped up in a nice genre package. So with that in mind, our final concept logline for Back to the future would be something like when a high school student, Marty McFly, I that's our hero is accidentally sent 30 years into the past. In a time traveling DeLorean. He must make his parents fall in love again at the goal and find a way to return to the future before he ceases to exist. And that's our steaks. It's avago, turning your concepts into log lines. Andi, remember, test them out when your friends. Would they pay to see your movie? Take your time, Please take your time. Don't I know is everyone wants to go on Dwight the script, but I don't want to waste your time here. I don't need to get halfway through a script on You've spent weeks doing it and then you give it to someone to read and they say, Well, I don't really like the idea. Take your time on this and I promise you it will save you later. So he's just a recap of the the different things that you should go through. We've got the goal, which is what is your heroes? Goal. The stakes. What happens if he or she fails to reach his goal? One of the worst, the better. So it is usually death in one form or another. Got the antagonised who's trying to stop your hero? The obstacles which what stands in the way of your hero, achieving their goal on the ticking clock, which you know what ticking clock and the tension and what's the hero got to race against reach their goal before the end of the ticking clock and finally, genre. What genre you writing in and test it out. One different genres and Steve, it would make it better. And that's it for concept. So take your time with it, go through all the different steps on. Then when you've got a good idea, we're going to go on our next lecture into coming up with our hero and designing our hero. So I'll see you then. 4. Connecting with your hero.: Hi, guys. And welcome back. Okay, We're gonna now talk about the hero. The hero is also known as the protagonist. So if someone says protagonist to you, don't get confused. It means hero. They're both interchangeable. Okay, so just so that you know that hero protagonist, same thing. So I think we'd all agree that the hero is the most important character in the script. But why do we need one? Could we get along without one? Do we have to write a hero in? Well, the answer is simply, yes, we do need a hero. And I'll tell you why Imagine you're watching a film where there is no one hero and the story is going to jump around between different characters on. You wouldn't know what's really going on. You'd be confused, Wouldn't you see, as an audience member or a reader, we need to feel grounded who want to be shown one person's story and how other characters interact with that story. And that protagonist, that's the role of the hero. They're the ones that are guiding us through the movie. It's their script their story on were experiencing what he or she experiences now in order for us to care about what happens to this person and therefore what happens in the movie. We have to be able to connect with them as writers. We want the audience on, in our case, our readers to root for our hero. We want them to feel dismayed when the hero goes through a rough patch and overjoyed when they get back on top. So how do we get our audience to care about our protagonists toe? Empathize with them? Well, fortunately for us, there are a number different ways to make your audience connect with your hero. But here, with the three that generally accepted to be the most effective, number one is, give the hero undeserved misfortune. Number two is get the hero to pet the dog on number three is make the hero funny, cool, quirky or awesome at their job. So now we're gonna go through each of them individually on. Then we can see what each one means. Number one is undeserved misfortune, and this is perceived is probably the most effective technique for an audience to connect with the character. It is used in so many films as we'll see, but what does it mean? Well, quite simply, it means that the hero or character has had something bad happen to them that was not of their own doing. You see, as an audience member or as a reader, this instantly makes us feel for them. We can imagine what it must be like to be in their situation. And so we empathize. So what is empathy? Well, I've got a quote here from the Oxford English Dictionary, which says empathy is the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Therefore, if you can feel a character's hurt or lasts or pain, we connected with them. Okay, let's go through a couple of examples because that sound a bit strange on this will show you what I mean through films that you will have seen. First up, we've got Harry Potter. But what's the first things we know when we start the movie? Okay, we know that poured. Harry has lost both parents. He lives in a cupboard under the stairs, on the ders Lee's body and remorselessly. Okay, So did Harry deserve any of that happened to him? No, of course he didn't. He's just a young lad. He doesn't deserve any that he didn't do anything wrong, so that makes us instantly feel for him. We want to take him under our wing and look after him on. That is empathy because we're caring for him, cause weaken, feel how he must feel. Does that make sense? Feel how he must feel? Yeah, I think so. So we want him to succeed right from the officer straight away. Were given a character that we care about and we want to win. Or how about Finding Nemo now? Like many Pixar films, Finding Nemo uses undeserved misfortune Really, really well on Pixar. Does this a lot. If you go through, the Pixar films will do another one in a minute that you'll see this a lot used because it's so effective now. In the beginning of Finding Nemo, we see Marlin, Who's the Chiron fish on? He's going to become a dad for the first time. You see him with his wife and loving relationship, and you see all the eggs laying in the plant on Is there the picture of happiness is what more could you want? But then a barrack who becomes Andi knock smiling out on When he wakes up, he finds that his wife's gone. Andi. All his eggs have been eaten as well. There's only one left. That's knee. That will be Nemo. So we again instantly empathize with Marlon. Did he deserve that toe happen? Did he deserve for his wife to be eaten in his Children to be eaten? Course he didn't. Okay, we feel sorry for him. Completely sorry for him. We can imagine how he must feel what it must be like. And therefore we instantly connected with him. Next, we've got another Pixar film which is Wally on. We are introduced to award. He was a cute little robot, Onda. He's all alone on earth, clearing up after everybody basically isn't it. Okay? And he watches TV by himself on on the TV. There are couples getting together in loving relationships and that's what he wants. He's alone on Earth, but he longs for companionship. He didn't deserve to be left alone like this. So again we feel for him. We connect with him even though he's a robot because we know a part of what he's feeling. Okay, I'm sure everyone in their lives have felt a bit like that at some point, has felt alone and wanted to be around someone. And it's not alone feeling that we connect with on a human level on an emotional level on That's empathy because we're connecting with this character because we can feel how he must be feeding at that time. He's alone and we know what it's like to be alone. So we connect with him. We've got ET on any T He's left alone on an alien world. On that, he watches his family take off. You know, that's pretty heartbreaking, isn't it? I mean, imagine that if you were in his shoes, if you were like a child and used Teoh, saw your parents leave you alone. You know you feel for him. It's heartbreaking. You feel for him, and we've got Forrest Gump Now. Forest has learning difficulties on. He's mocked by the other kids in the neighborhood. They try and, you know, attack him and run after him. He's the little guy we feel for him. We feel sorry for him because got these bully to contend with on there. They're mocking him. They're going to go with him. How about Rose in Titanic this Is it different? Once again, she's trapped in a loveless relationship. She's desperate to to be free on DTI live life as she wants. But she stifled by the Victorian values in her mother, who's pushing her in tow. Marriage it with cow to get more money and more status. We feel weather because we know what she wants. She wants to be free, but she can't. She's trapped. So as you can see I mean, the list goes on and on. It is such an effective technique. Have a look at the DVDs on your shelf. See what movies used this technique, for example. Look, if you got any sports films, I mean karate kid, mighty ducks, all these kind of sports films. They all use this technique as well, don't they? Because it's about the little guy, the underdogs, that people that are bullied and told they're going to be worthless, and they're they're never gonna win. And then we rooting for them to succeed because we like the underdogs to to beat the bullies. Okay, but there are mean this doesn't work for every film. Don't don't get me wrong. You don't have to force this into any film. And please don't try and force it into every film because some situations, it just won't work. Now there are other things that we can use on that. So we're gonna go through next. So next up in the next lecture, we're gonna go through pet the dog. 5. Creating empathy.: hi, everyone, and welcome back. We're going to continue with our next technique to create empathy in connection with character, which is called Pet the Dog. Now this one sounds really strange, I know, but it is actually quite a good tool to have in our arsenal. There was a book by Blake Snyder, which is a famous book called Save the Cat. Andi. That's actually named after this technique as well. So pet the dog saved the cat again. You'll probably hear both. It's the same thing. So what does it mean? Well, it means that the hero either does something kind to or help someone more vulnerable than themselves. Most the time you see it with the hero interacting with Children or animals on. We kept with them because of it. Let's do a couple of examples that we kind of get where this is going. Our first example is hunger games. Here. We've got Katniss Everdeen on. She steps in to replace her younger sister as the chosen girl for the games. And it's this act of Sicily love, which makes us feel empathetic towards her. You see, she could have let her younger sister go on the game is that she was the chosen one but her younger sister. But I would have died on DSO. Katniss steps in instead of her. So again we connect with them straight away because we feel feel that she's a good person and that she's looking after someone more vulnerable than herself. We then got Fletcher in the movie Lyell ia. Jim Carey plays Fletcher Andi. At first, it seems quite unlikeable character. He's a lawyer on. He'll do anything Teoh win his case, including lying a lot. So you would think initially is quite hard for us to connect with him. We don't know what it's like to be a lawyer, and we try our best not to lie in order to get benefit over someone else. So how do we connect with him? Will be used. Pet the dog. In this case, it is through his son, Max, although Fletcher is there hard nose lawyer. He's actually a really good dad, and he clearly loves his son very much. And we see this, especially in the scene where Fletcher uses declawed to tickle Max and so we can see the bond between them on At last, we see something good in Fletcher's character, and therefore that is the connection that we confined on the bit of good that we can latch onto as the reader or the audience. The last technique I've actually split into two to make a little bit easier for us. The 1st 1 is to make the hero funny or cool. Now, why would this work? Well, well, like hanging around people that make us laugh for a very charismatic. We want to be with them. We want to be like them on. That's the same feeling that we want to put into our characters and we will connect with them because of that feeling. We want to be close to them. We want to be like they are in the movie Pulp Fiction, Jules and Vincent killers. Now they're not exactly nice people. You can't say what great people I want to be like that they're killers. So they used this technique to get over that fact. Even though they're killers, they're funny, they're cool and they have great dialogue and they play off each other and they make us laugh. So we connect him with the characters, even though they're not likeable. Then how about current is like Deadpool Indiana Jones, Axel Foley, Jack Reacher? They're all uniquely funny, quick witted and cool. They've got great lines, snappy lines that they can shoot back at people who doesn't want to spend a couple of hours rooting for these guys. You want to be like them, and that's why you connect with them. The final technique is to make the hero awesome at their job. This has seen a lot in action movies but is not limited to Action movie, so you can use it in anything you want. But think of Arnie in Predator or Russell Crowe in Gladiator, Matt Damon and Jason Born Angelina Jolie in Salt Because if we got Tom Cruise mission Impossible. James Bond. All these characters are amazing at their job. They can breaking to anywhere. They can kill anyone. They can do all the things that you basically could never do. But you want to be able to do. You would like to be like that. You'd like to. We had a kick ass in Dr Aston Martins drink martinis, go to tropical places. All have all the knowledge that they have. How toe hack security systems. You want to be like them, and that is the connection once more. You're drawn to them because of their skills and how awesome they are at their job on you. You wish you were like that, and that's why you're drawn in towards them. A lot of times they can couple this technique with the other ones. So you could have this with with pet the dog or commonly seen. Is this with undeserved misfortune? I mean, let's take, for example, Russell Crowe in Gladiator. When we first see Maximus, it's at the start of a battle. Onda. We can see he's respected. He's a general. He kills ALS, the Germanic forces almost single handedly. And he's the one that turns the battle to the Romans win so we can see the usual somebody's job. He's amazing fighter. He has respect on the emperor himself, loves him. But then the undeserved misfortune comes in because Commodus, who is the Emperor son he is that his father has offered Maximus the job off being the next emperor instead of him. And so Commodus sentences Maximus to death and goes and kills his wife and son. Now, did Maximus deserve that. No, of course he didn't. He was just being a great warrior on doing his job. He was awesome at his job. So we have undeserved misfortune on top off him being an awesome warrior. Therefore, we have a double connection to him. And that's one of the reasons why Gladiator was such a successful film. We're rooting for him right from the word go, because we can't stand what Commodus has done to this loyal and brilliant soldier. It's worth noting as well that these techniques actually work for anti heroes as well as your standard hero. If you're not sure an anti hero is, it could be described as a flawed hero, so they could be anything from liars to misguided individuals to do even murderers. But we can still empathize with the anti heroes through these same techniques, even though they're not necessarily nice people. We could still connected them. If we can understand their feelings and why they're doing things. Let's take the example of John Wake. So in this movie, we've got Chiana Reeves, who plays a retired hitman on the mob on Gangsters around the city, are all scared of him. He's like a legend. So for someone like this who has killed so many people, how can we connect with them? You know, I mean, I hope none of you have killed people, so we can't understand how what that is like. So how can we connect with him? Well, we're gonna use the same techniques that we've just done. And actually, in this film, they use all of them. The 1st 1 is undeserved misfortune on in John Wick, we've got John's wife, who's actually just died of cancer. It was for her that he actually left the job in the first place and decided to quit it'll because he loved her. And he wanted just just be with her then is the last gift after she died, she actually attend him a puppy on this is his symbol of hope. And so we see his caring side as he starts to look after this pet. So here we actually see pet the dog. Literally. However, the son of a mobster then comes to his house. He's seen his car in a Gary. Jenny likes it, and he wouldn't. And John Wick wouldn't sell it. So the mobster comes to his house. He beats John unconscious On Worst of all, he kills the dog. We got undeserved misfortune once again. Now we've also got our third technique, which is being awesome at his job. We already know that he's an amazing killer and we see shortly thereafter him getting 20 people without batting an eyelid. So we also connect with him because of this we want We'd love to have the skills that he couldn't do that we have a kick ass like he can. So here we've got a film which hits. All of these techniques were all were connected with him. We want him to win. We want him to get back at this monster that's done this to him and we want him to win. And that's how we can get an anti hero to be empathized with. Let's do one more. Let's pick from dusk till dawn. In this film, we've got Seth and Richard, who's played by George Clooney and Quentin Tarantino himself. Onda amazing, their evil. They go across Texas and they kill. They rape and they bully everyone to Teoh. Give them the money and they want to get into Mexico. So how Can we empathize with people like that? Well, first of all, they're really cool on their funny. The dialogue that Quentin Tarantino gives to the pair of them is hilarious. Andi, we can see them quipping backwards and forwards, and Seth is very sharp in his wit. Andi, we like that. I mean, that's that's really cool to be around. The other thing is, they have a relationship that we can relate to meet and connect to. From six point of view. It's actually pet the dog, because Richard is. I don't have his mentally challenged, but he's his little brother, he said has to look after him, and he feels this need to look after him on on the reverse. We've got Richard, who wants to please his big brother. He wants him Teoh to think that he knows what he's doing and that he's worthy off being around him on dso this relationship, the connection that they've got between them we can relate to. If you know you have any siblings, you might be out of relate to this. So putting these two together is another way that we can connect to both of these characters, even though on paper, they're quite nasty people. They're killers and they will do anything to get their money. And to get question to Mexico. Okay, here we've got a list off anti heroes from some well known movies. So what are you to do is you go through them and you think yourself what of these three techniques with which of them are used for each person to make us connect with them, to feel empathy towards thumb on, Maybe in the questions and answers on the forum, you can give your list. You can see what you think the answers are and other people there's no right or wrong here . There really isn't. So it be interesting to see what different ideas people come up with and how we're connecting with each of these anti heroes. So let's do that on. Basically, we're done with hero and collecting with the hearing. We're not done with our hero yet, but we're done with connecting with them. So we've got our three techniques. We've got undeserved misfortune. We've got pet the dog on. We've got being called funny or awesome at their job, So those are techniques and those are what you should be trying to use in your hero to get the audience toe or your readers to connect with your hero in our next lecture. What we're gonna do is we're going to move on on. We're going to talk about character ARC, which I'm sure everyone has heard off but might not quite fully understand or might not get it as much as they would like to. So let's stop here. I'll see you in a minute. 6. Your hero's transformational arc.: Welcome back, everyone on and in this lecture we're gonna go through character arc on, specifically the hero's character out. So I'm sure everyone's heard of current rocks in movies, but what are they? And do we actually need one character arcs away. Your character has one set of behaviors and beliefs at the start of the movie and pretty much the opposite. By the end, it's a gradual process where the events and the relationships that the character has over the course of the movie will slowly change him or her. Then the transformation is also the driving force, which helps the hero accomplish their goal. Um, back in the concept stage, we set what the heroes goal Waas. Well, this transformational arc will help them achieve that. It's only by achieving the transformation that they can then reach their goal. So this might sound a bit little bit complicated. So let's start with a story that everybody knows, which is a Christmas carol. So at the beginning of a Christmas Carol, we've got our protagonist, Scrooge, who is just totally the worst person ever. It's near Christmas. He's miserable. He's just after money. Andi, he doesn't care about his employees or anything else. He just cares about himself. Then what happens? He gets visited by the three ghosts who, slowly, over the course of the story, start to change. His character is skeptical. He doubts that he clings onto his past. He doesn't want to change his ways because, remember, change in itself is quite scary for people. So they hold on to their past, even though it might be wrong, even though it's not leading them to a better life. He desperately clings to his old ways. But as the night progresses and he gets the three visits, he slowly transforms. He breaks down, and he realizes he's been living his life. All wrong now is this realization. That's actually really important for your protagonist. But it doesn't matter how many times someone says something to you. It's only when you realize that all mistakes or how you want to change your life, there's when it really matters, and that's when you actually embrace change on you. You change from the inside, so by the end of the story we've got screwed. Who is the opposite of itself? He's generous. He's happy, loves Christmas and everything that he wasn't at the start. So what the rights doing here is through Scrooge? He's showing you how you can live a better life so you shouldn't be miserly and just work for yourself. And we'll just work for money. You should be generous and loving to all those around you, and that's what he's trying to get across in this story. Now A Christmas Carol is obviously very simple, and this kind of transformational arc is five to avert for most movies. But it just shows you in simple terms how you can use it to change a character on to give the message of your story. So how do we know what our to give? Well, the answer. This is based on what your story is about. It's linked to your heroes. Goal. We then give the character and in a conflict or doubt, is this in a conflict that they have to overcome during the movie by changing their character on their traits and their beliefs, they can overcome this in a conflict on that's how they can reach their goal. If they don't overcome it, they won't reach the goal. Let's give a few examples to reinforce what we're just saying here. First up, we've got Kung Fu Panda, which I love. I think it's a fantastic ville. Andi here we've got a pentacle Poe, who transforms from an overweight noodle salesman to at the end of the film. He's the savior of China is the Dragon Warrior. So now that is a massive change, isn't it? You go from overweight noodle salesman who doesn't believe in himself to the greatest Dragon Warrior off the land. Who's going to save China? So how does he accomplish this? Well, it's all about believing in himself at the Star. Po doesn't believe in himself. This is in a conflict, and we've just been saying about everyone needs an inner conflict. This is his. He doesn't believe in himself, and that's what is gonna have to overcome in order to reach his goal. Beginning, he's saying, I can't do this. I'm nobody. I can't do kung fu. I wish I could buy com if he thinks he's terrible, everything and he's never gonna amount to anything. However, as events unfold in the movie progresses, he starts believing in himself more and more. He interacts with Oogway and Shifu on all the other warriors on, he becomes more and more confident in himself. He starts believing in himself on when he believes that he can actually be the Dragon Warrior by the end. That's when he conquers tie long tie long, and you'd think there's no way he can conquer him. But by believing in himself on believing that he's the rightful Dragon Warrior, he wins. We'll go back to finding Nemo. Now. We remember Marlen had such bad, undeserved misfortune. Okay? And this has led to him having an inner conflict off being an overprotective father. I mean, that's very understandable. So this is in a conflict is driving a wedge between himself and Nemo on This is the reason that Nemo goes up in the first place and is caught by the Troller is because he wants to go out on his own and his his father telling him, No, you've got to do this. You've got to stay with me at all times. So Nemo goes against him, as the Children do. Hey wants to do what he wants to do, and that's how he gets caught. But then, as the movie progresses and Marlin goes on his journey to try and find Nemo, he learns to let go of the reins a little bit. He learns to that he has to step back on. By the end, he's transformed his views completely, and he gives Nemo some slack. And let's Nemo be a child and not have to be so protective over him. So is it life is achieved a balance, and it teaches us that maybe we shouldn't be so controlling over our own Children. If you love them, you got to trust them and let them do what they want to do and find their own way and learn from their own mistakes. Then we've got Fletcher from Lyell IA, and Fletchers in a conflict, is not being able to tell the truth. Obviously, this goes hand in hand with his job. However, by the end of the movie he realizes that actually telling the truth, consent you free and we see this through his goals. That telling the truth actually allows him toe win his case, and it also wins back his family. If he hadn't got over this in a conflict, if he hadn't learned to tell the truth and he still was was a liar. Then he would have lost his family and he'd have lost the case. But because he has transformed over the course of the movie, he is now transformed into telling the truth on that has won his two goals that he wanted more than anything. So that's what a good transformational art can do for you. You can also see from these examples that in a conflict a universal, we've all had these kind of problems at some point in our life. So just like Po, maybe sometimes we don't believe in ourselves enough or we let fear control us. And don't let us do what we want to do. We haven't overcome that fear. We can be overprotective, or sometimes we're not completely honest now. What this does is even though we are not Batman, well, maybe you are. I'm not. We can relate to the truth behind what it's saying. We can relate to the inner conflict, and that's what's important. So having a good, transformational arc is your chance as a writer to give your perspective on how you should live a good life on. This is what makes your script unique. I just wanted to take a quick few seconds to actually go through something that again you might have heard off. It's called the Hero's Ghost. Now it's got nothing to do with M. Night Shyamalan. The Ghost is actually something that's happened in the characters past, which has caused the inner conflict that we've just been talking about. So a lot of the time it will be the death of someone close to the hero. But this isn't always the case in Batman. Bruce Wayne's ghost is when he actually fell down in the welcome. Remember that the star he falls down in the well on the nor the bat surround him on this ignites his fear, which is we've just talked about is his inner conflict. Then a little bit later on in the story we've got. Bruce has just gone to the theatre with his parents. But because the dancers remind him of the bat, he gets scared again. It's his fear. He gets scared, so he leaves their theater early on. Because of this, they get robbed on his mother and father, get sharp. So this event compounds the guilt that he feels, and that is all because of the fear. So is in a conflict of fear has been set in stone, and that is what you gonna have to overcome during the movie. But it all stemmed from his ghost. Now, in some movies you don't see the ghost or there is no ghost. But other times you'll see it, usually at the beginning. People say that it's more effective to do it at the beginning, or it can be talked about on, then gradually, later on towards the 3/4 of Mark in the movie. Then they'll say, What? They're ghost waas. They usually have a a conversation with someone else, and they tell them what their ghost waas. But a lot of people say if you're gonna have a ghost, put it in the beginning, Really. However, as I've just said, it's not a necessity. The inner conflict is the most important parts. If you have that, that's what we really care about. Now the big question. Do you have to have a transformational arc? The answer is no. You don't have to have one. There are some movies that the main character didn't have a transformation lark on. They were still successful alien, for example, with Ripley doesn't have a transformational actually doesn't change it all from start to the finish in Aliens she will on. We actually go over that a little bit later on, but she goes from being afraid to a badass warrior. But in Alien, there is no transformational are Connor, and it still obey. Successful movie speed is another one that's got Chiana Reeves. He doesn't really change much from the start to the finish. He's he's a bomb disposal expert. The start and you still is at the end, and he doesn't change much in Apollo 13. We've got Tom Hanks's character again. He doesn't change very much. He's a great astronaut. This start. He's a great astronaut at the end, nothing else. Much has happened. He's overcome the events of the movie, but his actual personality his believes his traits haven't changed. So these are just a few examples off movies where the hero hasn't had a narc on they're still successful. But should you write one? Well, I think that yes, you actually should on the reason is because which one to sell spec scripts here. We're trying to send them to readers or execs and get them to buy the script on it is a lot more likely to be successful if you do have a character arc. It's one of these things that people naturally will look for when they're reading new writer stuff on. If you don't have one, you're a lot less likely to sell it than if you did, so my advice would be You don't need to have one, but I suggest you probably should. Finally, for character Arc, let's talk about how we actually make the character transform. The answer is, quite simply, it's through relationships. It's through the relationships the hero has with other characters in the story. The hero can't change by himself. Otherwise you would have already. Instead, it's the events and the characters around him, which helped him see where he's being going wrong in his life, how he can change and how he has to change in order to reach his goal. Many times you'll actually see one of the characters tell the hero what their problem is, for example, that take Donkey in Shrek. He actually tells Trek his problem and says how we so wrapped up in layers, he's afraid of his own feelings. This tells the audience what the problem is as well is blunt, but it's often effective. However, the hero must realize it himself. It's all well and good people telling you what your problems are, but it isn't until you make the decision to change yourself that the process of transformation can actually begin. The hero will often be resistant. At first, he'll want to go back to his old ways because that's the easiest thing to do. We're comfortable in our old ways, even though they might be wrong. But it's only when they truly commit to the change that they can actually overcome their in a conflict and succeed. Let's have a quick look at how relationships have transformed a few heroes in some well known movies. One of my favorites is Lethal Weapon, which was written by Shame Black On Here. We've got a buddy cop film, but it really revolves around the relationships in the film. If you are somewhat leave, the weapon is actually about often they can't tell you, they'll say, Ah, it's a cop movie, but I'm not really sure because you remember that it's about a drug ring on the two cops have got to break the drug ring on Stop the bad guys. Well, they offer, remember, is it's about Riggs a murder. Now both of these characters have big into conflicts. Riggs is desperately lonely on his suicidal after the death of his wife to see. That's the ghost. That's it. Riggs is going to talk about Ghost, That's rigs. Ghost is the death of his wife, and we see that through the photographs that he's gotten, he said, how he misses her. So we know that's his ghost, and it's because of that that we've got his inner conflict murders in the conflict is that he thinks life is slipping away from him and he's not good enough anymore. He just turned 50 and he thinks he's too old for his job. So you put these two together and the team, and they're obviously going to be odds with each other, and they're completely different. They're opposites. But gradually, as the film progresses, they start to trust each other and become partners, and they do this by helping each other overcome that inner conflicts, Murder and his family helped rigs laugh again. He becomes part of their family, and he sees the can actually be happy once more. He's getting over his in a conflict of being lonely on gets over the death of his wife. Meanwhile, Rig shows murder. He's not past it. He's still a great cop. So as they help each other overcome that inner conflicts, trust and teamwork bills. And this is how they stop the bad guys, which is Mr Joshua in this case. So they've achieved their goals by helping each other overcome that inner conflicts. They couldn't have done it on their own, but through their relationship, they've overcome it. And that's what we want to try and achieve. Well, how about Ripley in Aliens? You know, we talked about Alien earlier on when there wasn't really a transformational arc were now in aliens. We do have a big wall. See at the start, Ripley is scared stiff of the alien creatures shot. She's had frequent nightmares about them birth account for chest, and obviously she'd rather be anywhere else than be any of those things. But by the end of the film, she's not only single handedly taken on the alien queen, she blows the pie apart and does the job A bunch of highly trained Marines couldn't do. So. How does she do? This is through her maternal love for the innocent girl, Newt. It's a relationship with Newt. See, Ripley found out when she got woken from hyper sleep that her own daughter had died. This is her ghost. So new is her redemption, and saving her is how Ripley can overcome fear, overcome all the odds and win the battle. 7. A good baddie.: Hi, everyone, and welcome back What? We're gonna move on now and we're going to start talking about the villain in our script who is also known as Thea Antagonised, the in technicians, the person who's going to stop at nothing to either thwart your heroes, attempt at Reach Nagel or they want to achieve their own golf on the hero is actually getting in their way. So we're gonna pay as much attention to the antagonised as we did to our hero. They're extremely important. I mean, just imagine what the Dark Knight would have bean if it hadn't had the Joker in it or Harry Potter. If it didn't have Voldemort or even die hard if it hadn't had Hans Gruber. They're being completely different films and probably very bad films. A good villain is paramount importance if you want to write a good script, the problem is often especially for new writers, their right to villain who's totally cold or callous, and readers described these people as cookie cutter villains or two D. There's no depth to them, but they're not acting like humans would. They're just evil people that want to destroy everything and for no apparent reason. And that is why a lot of scripts fail is because they're villains are not actually well thought out characters. But we got remember is that even though the antagonist is the villain of our story, there still people with all the nuances of human emotion. So to reinforce this, let's actually just take a step away from movies for a second on Talk About people in real life. So let's think of some of the most evil people in history. That's let's take Hitler, for example. I mean Hitler. The obviously jumps to mind he was one evil person, wasn't nearly. Everyone here would agree that Hitler was total evil him and he killed millions of people in utterly inhumane ways. But just for one second imagine you were in Hitler's shoes. I know that's horrible thought, but just just for may imagine you were in Hitler's shoes. Would you think you were an evil person? You wouldn't, would you? He thought he was the good guy doing the right thing. He thought that having a pure blood Arian race was the way forward. Andi, he was believed when he was a kid. Hey blamed Jewish people on that confirmed to him that the Jewish people are bad, you know, we should kill them. And so that's why he decided to do and create his own race. Now I'm not defending what he did it all that don't get me wrong. You know, he's completely evil guy. But what I'm trying to point out is the things he did, we're for reasons he had the reason they might have been skewed on, you know, for us they would be like, You know, what one earth are you doing? But to him, there were legitimate reasons. He didn't think he was a villain. He thought he was the good guy from our perspective. Obviously, he's evil villain, but from his he was the hero of peace. This could be said for other people. I mean, serial killers, for example. From our point of view. Yes, extraordinary evil people to kill, kill others for no for no reasons that we can see up. But to them, they have reasons. To them, it might be, you know, sexual gratification, or it might be jealousy or revenge. But there are reasons. See, nobody sees themselves as a villain. They see themselves as a hero goods that their story, If it if it's your life, I'm not. I'm unsure the same would apply to to any of us. We would look at ourselves as a villain would weigh, But I'm sure we've probably done something in our lives where someone else's has looked at us as the villain. In a way, we we've maybe done something to annoy someone, or we've taken something that they wish they'd had or something like that. So in a way, even though we see ourselves as the hero, they've from their perspective, have seen us at the bad guy. So do you see how it works? So what we've got to do is when we're talking about creating a villain character and antagonise, we could look at it from their point of view. What are they doing and why are they doing it? There has to be reasons. This is what I'm saying, why you wouldn't be a cookie cutter antagonised if you do this because a lot of amateur writers will just right someone and they they're chopping people's heads off and then they're doing things for no apparent reason other than the fact that They're evil now. That doesn't work in real life, does it? So if you're gonna make a a well written and well struck his story, why would you do it for your antagonist in the story? They have to have a reason behind them. From our point of view again, they still might be. It might be the wrong choice. And it might be what you know. Why you doing that? You know, that's crazy. But as long as they have grounded legitimate reasons while they're doing something, then they will come across as nuanced and riel human emotions. Okay, so, I mean, that's all well and good saying that. But how do we actually do it? Well, where? Actually start by using the same process we did for our hero. So we're gonna ask the same questions. 1st 1 is the antagonist goal. So what is his or her plan? What do they want to do? What they want to achieve and what are they trying to get? Or win or recover or destroy? But most importantly, why they want to do this? The second thing is the stakes. So just like the hero had steak, So just the villain. What happens if he antagonised fails in reaching their goal again? If we make the stakes as high as possible, this will make it more dramatic. And finally, the opposition. So who's trying to stop the antagonised? Well, the obvious answer is, it's the hero. So what we can do now is going to think of our antagonist as almost like the mirror image of our hero. So the antagonist in the hero's goals are intertwined. They both want the same thing, but for the opposite reasons. This is also true with the stakes in opposition. How many times have you seen in the movie where the bad guy says the hero? You know where that with the same, you and me and then the hero will say something like, No, I'm not. I'm not the same as you or whatever is it? The more you know about our hero, the more we're gonna instinctively know about our antagonist. So right in the perfect antagonised for our particular story is actually made that much easier. Let's go through a couple of examples here. First of all, we but die hard. We've got the protagonist is John McClane and the antagonised is Hans Gruber. John's goal? Well, actually, that started around the other way around. It's hands. His goal is to get the money from, you know, in the negotiable bearer bonds from the safe in the Nakatomi building. It's his plan that starts everything off. It's not nothing to do with John really to start off with. It's the antagonised plan that starts off. He wants these negotiable Barry Bonds. Then John gets brought into it. And then his goal is to stop hands and the bad guys getting the money on to free the hostages. So the opposition is obviously each other. Johns is hands and hands. Is John on then for the stakes? If John fails in his goal to stop them, the hostage Andi, his wife will be will be killed, and the bad guys will get away with the money for hands. It's if he fails. If he fails, then him and his group will be captured or killed on deal, not get away with the money. Suzy is mirror opposition here says. Make everything a little bit easier for us. Let's take another example on. We'll go with the Dark knight. So in this we've got our protagonists, Officer Batman and Are Antagonised is the Joker again. It's actually the Joker, which starts everything off. It's his plan that's been in action, which will then bring Batman into it. The Joker's gold is to make Gotham descend into chaos, and he starts this right from the beginning of the movie. Batman is then bought into it, and his goal is to stop the Joker plunging Gotham into chaos. So the exact opposite the opposition again in their opposites is Batman's The Joker and Jokers his Batman on def. Batman fails, then Gotham will tear itself apart and lots and innocent people are going to die. Where is for the Joker? If he fails, Gotham will be united. So that's the stakes again. They're opposites. So it's kind of easy when you look at it this way, isn't it? You take the heroes, goal opposition and steaks and simply flip them. But a lot of times that it's actually the antagonised plan. What he's wanting to do that starts everything off so you can look at it that way. Just bear that in mind. One of them a little note I 22 bringing to everyone's attention is that if your story has a corporation or a large body, as the villain is the antagonist, for example, the Nazis or some large evil technical corporation or some something like that, we actually need a single person to be the focus, a czar villain to be like the face of this larger being. So this is then our antagonists. So say, for example, we want to write a story where there's our hero is up against a large tech company. Having the company as our villain is far too vague. So we need Teoh Way need our story to be a conflict about people. So we therefore gonna make the antagonists, for example, the owner of the company or the lead engineer that's making a specific thing that their hero has to fight against something like that. So this way the hero has someone specific to fight against. It is also fighting the entire corporation entity above it, on trying to bring that down. But it is a conflict between two people. We have to make sure that's always there. Okay, let's just take a quick break there, and in our next lecture we're going to carry on with the villain Andi Contrast 8. Contrast and villains.: in any screenplay, something that is extremely important is contrast, and we need contrast for dramatic conflict. And that doesn't mean just physical conflict, as we've just discussed were contrast. Ing are antagonised goal opposition and steaks with our heroes one. But let's do the same with the villains. Beliefs. Moral code is quite useful sometimes when you're thinking about your villain and coming up with character for him or her to stop thinking of the antagonist as like the darker version of your hero. So what would your hero be like if he hadn't deal with Dealt with is in a conflict or he lost his morals or change his belief structure? What would he be have been like if he had been raised differently? Could have turned to the dark side like good old Anakin did. So, As we've said before, we want to end up with a grounded, well, four out character. So this could be really helpful when you're coming up with your antagonist. Let's have a look at how some other writers have approached this. That's first of all. Take Skyfall, Andi, We've got the Antagonised, which is silver, who's played by Javier Bardem so he and James Bond. We're both agents on our In James Bond's case, agents of M. I six. So they do ridiculously hard job for their country on, but it is very dangerous. The difference is Silver was caught by a foreign agency, and he was tortured horrifically. He now wants revenge on em. Who is he hold personally responsible for leaving him to die. So this is why he's been terrorizing in my six. So, you know, is as we've just been discussing, he has reasons for what he's doing. You're not just an evil person. He's got these reasons behind him. They left him toe, be tortured and die. And that's his reasoning, why he's doing it. But at the start of Phil, James is also presumed debt, and he's left to rot by my six and M. So he only comes back into the film when he sees M I six being bombed. So it was Silva's plan being put into action that spurred James to come back so we can see that actually, these two agents are really pretty similar. Only the only difference is that silver holds a grudge. Rose James doesn't, but what happened If one day this changed and James didn't keep his miles in check, he, too could turn into silver. Couldn't A So is Silver, actually that band. But in context of this film, yes, from other people's perspective, because he's causing people to die. But we can understand the reason behind what he's doing in his mind is justice. So therefore he becomes a more nuance and effective villain. Let's take another. Let's take Avital, which was one of the highest grossing films ever in this. We got James Cameron, who presents us with our hero, who's Jake Sully and then the antagonist whose miles quart. So they're both soldiers. Sally is a relatively new recruit, while qualities they're battle hardened. Colonel. Now this is kind of seeing a lot, isn't it? You know, they got the young guy versus the veteran so again could contrast. Here is big cliche, actually, probably now. But it just shows that contrast does work. So the film itself centers on the struggle for the Na VI's land on bond. This is if you haven't watched it, and I'm sure everyone has, but it's the humans who want to capitalize on it and get the precious material which lies in the ground, isn't it? Now forages Goal is to To do this is to facilitate this and get humans to get this this material, and he's going to stop at nothing to do it that, you know, every antagonised should be focused on what they want to do, and they should let nothing else stop them. That's what it should go from the Nabi's perspective. Obviously, this makes him an evil character because is wrecking their land is killing their people just to get the material in it. So he is evil from their point of view. From his point of view, he's just the good soldier doing what he's supposed to do. This is his mission now. Celiac. He starts off with the same gold he's brought their a disabled person. He's been given an avatar, and his mission is to get the NA VI to move so that the humans could then go in and get the material. So he's got the same mission. But as the story progresses on, he starts to build a relationship with the NA VI. Hay realizes that it's the wrong thing to do. You know they take this sacred tree very seriously, and you know, it's completely the wrong thing to do. So he changes. But the villain and antagonised here So that the villain and the protagonist here, the villain and the hero are they vastly different? Is Sully vastly different from courage? No, not really, are they? They're both soldiers. They've both been given a mission. The only difference is that core, which is learned to suppress any question of morality when he's being charged with the military campaign. From his point of view, people die or na'vi die, you know, it's just it's just what happens to reach your goal. The only reason Sally has changed is because he spent time with the Na'vi and got to know them and got toe to know the other side of the coin. If you hadn't done that, if he hadn't fallen in love with Nate, eerie. But as you say it in a teary, I think so if you have. If you hadn't done that, Hey, Polly would have turned into someone like courage. He was heading that way. So it was only this this experience of being in the avatar on meeting the Na'vi that has changed him, so they're not very different, are they? So that's what makes them such good opponents. You think you've got someone that's steadfastly believing in one point of view and someone that has changed to believe in the other point of view, and they're now facing off. So can you see how we're starting to get meaningful villains and not just the cookie cutter ? I'm evil? I'm going to kill you villains. So for quick recap, whatever your hero is, start by thinking of the opposite for your antagonise. So this includes the goals, the stakes, the values, morals and and the beliefs. Just be sure to give your antagonist grounded. Reasons for what? For doing what they're doing on why they're doing it. We've just been talking a couple of action films. Does this work for other type to film so romantic comedies or love stories? Yeah, it still it still works. Contrast is the important thing here between the hero and the antagonised. Let's take another James Cameron wanted Take a Titanic again. Many Oscars did extremely well at the box office. You know you can't argue with that, so we've got our hero who is Jack, who is played by the United Caprio. And then we've got the antagonised, Billy Zane's characters. Cal Hockley. Now that they know there's a lot of debate here on who is actually the hero off Titanic or at sharing their if we're Gonna be technical about the hero is actually Rose. It's her story, but the hero off her story is Jack. So for now, we wouldn't say Jack obviously is the hero, and Cal is the antagonist in this movie. We've got a huge amount of contrast between our characters. They're I mean, they're worlds apart. Cowls and upper class, snobbish and arrogant air to a Pittsburgh still fortune. Where is good old Jackson lower class illiterate but free cada that just wants to go around the world and enjoy himself. So Carol places social standing and success and other people's opinion of him above all else, whereas Jack just wants the simple life he wants toe. Still, the fun things that life has to offer. You're not gonna get vastly more different characters than these two. They've got different classes, different morals, ethics and beliefs. So when they both fight Feroz, it's actually compelling match to watch. Because of this contrast, Jack uses adventure and free spirit to Wu'er. You know it is that drawing over and tells her about all the things that that the world has to offer. And this is contrast with Cal, who uses calculated blackmail and, you know, even attempts to murder Jack to get what he wants. However, let's just think back a second what we're talking about for our antagonist on the reasons behind thing. Cal has reasons behind why he's doing. He's not just a total tool just for the sake of it. The period this is set in Victorian Andi very stern values. Andi the count is actually Cal feels rejected. He feels like roses stepping away from him. Andi, how dare she go with a commoner such as a xjak? He feels belittled. I mean, he's got his. So is social standing to think off. He's got his name. I mean, just imagine, from his point of view, what would happen if people knew that his wife to be was cavorting with a lower class person. He the laughing stock of his social circle. So that's what's driving him to do this. He's not just being on evil person just for the sake of it. He's doing it because he's being pushed by values and by what Rose is doing. I'm not saying that it's the right thing to do, and we none of us would say that it's the right thing to do. But we can see the reasons behind why he's doing it, and therefore that's what makes him a good character. So that's it, really without violence. We have learned that we need to give our antagonise goals stakes on opposition, just like we do with our hero. We're gonna find out what his beliefs and his morals are. And why is he doing what he's doing? What is his plan on? What are the thought processes behind his plan on? Why is he doing it? So this is what's gonna make him a good character. And then how can we use contrast between our antagonised and our hero to create a dramatic dynamic between the two? To get the story really exciting and and going? And that's it for this lecture. Let's wrap up here andare next one, we're gonna go through something that people usually find a little bit scary. But Actually, it's not. So Don't worry about it. It's theme. And so I will see you in just a minute. 9. Understanding theme.: hi, everyone, and welcome back. We're not gonna continue by going through theme now. Theme is something that creates a lot of panic and a lot of dread in many writers, and it's a shame, because it is actually really not that hard once you get into it and want to understand it . So that's what we're gonna do now going to go through it so hopefully you will understand it on Ben. It'll be easy for you to put in, and it will make your script so much better. So what is? Theme theme can be described as the writers perspective on a specific moral question. So it's this message or moral that makes the story universal because it's talking about a part of the human experience that we all share. So it doesn't matter what age or race or religion you are. It's part of being human. And it's that questions that we we've all asked ourselves over time and all pondered on that's what it's about is kind of what you was a right to want to say about the world, what you feel about a certain argument or a certain ah situation or philosophical question . That's what you want to get across in your movies, and that's what we use is our theme. So as to the entertaining nature off a story, because they add something for the audience to think about now, not necessarily think about during the movie itself. They also continues after the movie's finished, so it's going to stick in their minds. And that's what makes your movie more than just a story. It's asking questions about people that they will think about even after that movie has finished. So imagine you want to say something about how with now too reliant on technology and technology is a bad thing. And you think that people should be mawr faith driven in order to lead better lives so that that's your your stance. That's kind of thing would make a good theme. I mean, George Lucas used in Star Wars. His theme was about Is technology more powerful than the force? I think that theme is actually probably the hardest thing to grasp when you're writing your script as it's the most conceptual, So don't be a be stressed about it at the minute. Some writers they write their first couple of drafts and then they come up with their theme . Where is some prefer to count with their theme? First on, then use as the backbone is the story. So either way, it doesn't matter. There's no right or wrong in writing and how you right, you do it, How you want to do it personally. I tried to come up with a theme before I start, because I think that's the most time saving way to do it. I'm trying to do his little I sound lazy. I try and do is little writing as possible that one do as many rewrites as possible, so I spend quite a lot of time trying to come up with it first. But you don't have to if you don't want to. If you want to just get the draft done on, then think what my theme could be about then that's fine. The thing that helped me the most when I was working through it wants to actually think off theme as a sequester gin rather than a conceptual statement. I think we've all heard the's conceptual statements sometimes, and you just I don't know what to do with that, whereas if it's a question. It makes it easier to to understand the argument. This is a quick few examples off themes as questions. So in touch in Ghost and Titanic, we've got the overriding question. Which is, Can love survive death? We just talked about Star Wars has got the theme. Is technology more powerful than faith? Do you have free will? Or is everything predestined? Which is the theme in The Matrix? Can hope conquer despair? Which is The Shawshank Redemption? And can humans really control new technology that just Terminator and I robot? So, as you can see from these examples, a theme is not restricted to a certain age group or country. Everybody has. It's a universal thing. Anyone in the world has thes questions. That's why a theme is is so powerful it doesn't reach just one segment off your audience. It reaches everybody. The good thing about asking, as a question is, it makes it easier because you can. Then, if you decide yourself whether you agree with the question or no. So, for example, can hope conquer despair. Personally, I'd say, Yeah, I think hope can conquer despair. But that's not to say that everybody thinks that I'm sure they'll be some people that think . No, it doesn't. And that's what the good thing about themes as questions is that you can have people on both sides of the line, and that's what creates a good debate. So the same is, for example, with which we'll talk about later, but that the Matrix is everything free will or is it already predetermined? Is there no free will? Because everything's determined already and you can't change that? That's quite a good questions that you don't know. Is it yes or is it no? Is everything predetermined? Or is it? No, It's a good debate, and that's the idea of a theme to make it a an interesting and good debate that everyone has probably thought about before or pondered at sometime in their life and then weaving that into this plot on the story itself. Which is why it's such a shame that if people don't pay attention to theme or just ignore it because they're missing out on a really great opportunity to make your script stand up above everyone else is the one note of caution is that you've got to remember that your audience such a really intelligent and don't underestimate it. You should never shove your idea of what's right or wrong down people's throats. People don't like being told Walked out, what to do. Never mind about what to think. So you've got to balance it out. You gotta have arguments for and against or on either side of the question, so there's making an example off how not to do it. So say we want our theme to be about the use of technology, Onda how bad social media is. And it's like the worst thing in the world because you was the right to don't like it for some reason, I don't know why, but maybe you hate it and you think it's the root of all evil. So that is your your theme. So you might go about writing a script where the teenage characters get hideously murdered because they've been on Twitter or something. And then you've got a teacher, which tells you how bad social media is and how it's the worst thing in the world, etcetera, etcetera. I mean, can you imagine sitting there watching that, or reading as a scripted be so annoying, wouldn't it you've got people just blatantly telling you what is what you should think. They're kind of slap you in the face with. Social media is bad. You are terrible. If you use it, you don't want to be preached that no one wants to be preached, that they want to be involved in a discussion or debate or something that they can think about. Don't tell people what they should think. You know, when your school and you had, like, an English essay and they they gave you a sentence and then said discussed at the end, it it should be that kind of thing where some characters will will think one way other characters will think the other way. The hero has to make up their mind and therefore you have to make up your mind as well. So how do we find what our theme should be? Well, the first thing is to What are you passionate about? What? What are your interests or what have you heard? Or have you seen any philosophical questions or you know, these dilemmas that you can read? I think those books which took no different dilemmas, what would you do in this situation. Is it better to do this or to do this? That makes you think about what you should be doing? Is there something on the news that you've seen which you don't agree with? Or is there a political question which, you know you divides people? It's got to be something that isn't an obvious right or wrong. Do you know? I mean so it's something that you got it you can discuss and something that people already have questioned or you've already questions in your life. But remember, we've got a then try and relate this to our plot. So there's no point coming up with a theme that is completely irrelevant to your pop to your plot, because that just won't make any sense. Take your time with it on. Just go through a few different thematic questions, if you can. On DSI what will work best for your plot in your script when you've got one, we've then gotta work out how toe we've the theme into our script, and we do this by showing the opposite size of your thematic question, the full and against, and this is then shown through action and dialogue and characters attitudes, which showed both sides of the argument. And therefore we're having to make our minds up as to what we believe in. It might still sound a little bit complicated for you. So what we're gonna do now is we're gonna go over a case study of how someone did this on. We're going to use one of my favorite films off all time, which is The Matrix is my favorite. Before everyone started to wear long coats and pretend they were neo. But it's still if you watched The Matrix and, more importantly, read the script. I can't get over enough how important it is to actually start reading scripts. Read Lows of Thumb That's free websites simply scripts dot com on There's a couple more, which I'll try and put in some in a pdf or or if I can, which you can download the scripts for free and you can read them. And it's imperative not just to watch films, because the difference between a script and the actual what you see on the screen can be quite dramatic on as a right that you want to read other people's stuff. It's it's like being a musician but not listening to other people's music. It's insane, isn't it? Read other people's scripts and see what you can take out of thumb. Learn from the don't get up. I'm not saying to copy them right thing, but learn how they if there's something that you really like, how you could possibly use that structure that they've used or they have done humor in a certain way to see how they've done that, deconstructed and see how they've done it and how you could therefore use that in your own scripts. 10. Theme case study.: So let's now go through the Matrix and see how the Wachowski is use theme. Really, really well, actually. And they've used it as the backbone of their movie, and everything actually revolves around the theme off it. Is everything predetermined, or do you have free? Well, I say we are thematic question. Do you have free will, or is everything predestined? As we've said before, this is the universal theme, isn't it? There's no specific race or age or gender that this would apply to it. Placed everybody. So how did they use it? Well, what you might not have noticed when you actually first watching the film is that every scene with Neo is about him making a choice. This is because choices how we would define free will over predetermined destiny when there's no choice. You see what I'm saying. If everything is predetermined, there is no choice because it doesn't matter is already predetermined. Most free will is about making choices and therefore going your own way because of the choices you make. So that's the foreign the against. So in in Act one, which will go through now, you'll see that every scene is about Neo making a choice In the first scene with Neo, he wakes up on Diz, told by his computer to follow the white rabbit when a person knocked on his door and asked for There's some hacker code or whatever is that disk that he gives that he gives him the girl with him. He's got a white rabbit tattoo on her shoulder, and he's gotta choose whether he should go to the club with them or not. He obviously chooses to go the second scene. He meets Trinity at the club and must choose whether he wants to find out what The Matrix is. The third seen near late for work. It gets told off by his boss but have a listen to what his boss actually says. The time has come to make a choice, Mr Anderson. Either you choose to be at your desk on time on this day for, or you choose to find yourself another job. Do I make myself clear? You see how he's saying about choosing that You might have actually picked this up when you were watching the movie the first time. But it's all about choice again. You have to choose debate your desk on time or you choose to find yourself another job. It's all about choice. In the full scene, Morpheus calls neo and tells in the agents are after him on He's got A Anyway, his only way out is to get through the window. So again nears. Gotta choose. Is he going to go through the window, or is he just gonna be taken into custody? He's He starts, go out the window with his phone drops and forced the floor. He said, I can't do this And he goes back in and chooses to be taken into custody in the fifth. Seen Neos being interrogated by Agent Smith and Smith gives him a choice to either cooperate or to know. Neo gives him the finger and obviously chooses not to cooperate. That leads to the nasty bit with the insect. Going into it is belly button. The probe in the 16 Morpheus rings neo and ask him if he wants to meet Onda Near makes a choice. Yes, he does. That leads us on to the seventh scene, which is where neos picked up in the car by Trinity a park and switch on. Then they put that blaster in his face and say, Tell him to take his shirt off. Neos, he is like, No, I don't want to. Thanks. He goes to get out the car, but Trinity then talks him around on. He s to make the choice. Do I want to go and leave? Or do I want to stay on and try and find out what The Matrix is? He obviously chooses to stay. Then finally into the eight seen off Act one with Neo. Um, it's the scene everyone remembers. He got the choice between the red pill and the blue pill. So, as you can see, every single scene in Act One with Neo is about choice. At the moment, he still believes in free will on that what he is deciding what he is choosing to do is because of his own free will. Now, as we go into act to near will stop question what he believes in the oracle. Take us through the thematic question. It doesn't go, but you're not going to anybody. And don't worry about that. I'm sorry I said, don't worry about it. I'll get one of my kids to fix it. How did you know? Oh, what's really going to take your noodle later on is which is still the broken it. If I had said Morpheus leaks in your video and no one, not you, not even me can convince him. He believes it so blindly that he's going to sacrifice his life to see you. What? You're going to have to make a choice in the one hand and you'll have more for you on the other. You have your own one. He was going to go. Which one will be up to you? I'm sorry, kiddo. I really you have a good soul and I hate getting good people bad. Don't worry about a soon as you step outside that door, you'll start feeling better. You'll remember. You don't believe any of this fate you're in control of. So as you can see, the Oracle speech actually sums up both sides of the thematic argument. And then, just like neo were left, wondering which is actually correct as we talked about earlier, is very important for there to be the four. And against sides of the argument or the yes and no sides to the argument. Other characters can have ah standpoint on either side of the line. It's very common for the antagonised to stead Farsi believe in the opposite. The opposing thematic argument. In this case, Agent Smith definitely believes in destiny. Morpheus also believes in destiny. He believes that everything is predetermined and everything has been leading up to this point. The reason we do this is because it creates a good debate then that everyone believes one thing or not. Everyone believed other thing. Different characters have different viewpoints, and that's what's important. And then they're Protagonist has to make up their mind on that. They're influenced by the other characters, but it helps them to come up to their own decisions. Let's get back to the story on a little later on in the in the movie, it's about 3/4. The way through will go through that later is called the Oldest Lost point. Morpheus is captured by the agents on He's being broken for their codes twos I on and it looks like Tank's gonna have to to kill Morpheus so that they don't get the codes now. This is gonna be overwhelming for Neo because this is what the Oracle has already talked to you about that. You'd have to make the choice between Morpheus is life on his own life. He's now changing his perspective. Whereas before he was determined, everything Waas free will and he was making his own choices. Now he's actually questioning it on. He's starting to believe that actually, maybe everything is pre predestined. So what Morpheus was talking about? What? That is actually true. And this is important for the story. Stop! I don't believe this is happening. No, this has to be done. Doesn't I Don't know. This can't be just coincidence. It can't be You talking about the oracle? She told me this would happen. She told me that I would have to make a choice. What choice? What are you doing? Going in? No, you're not. Neo Morpheus sacrificed himself so that we could get you out. There is no way that you're going back in. Morpheus did what he did because he believed that something What? Another one? Training they work allowed me to know. You have to be. I'm sorry. I'm not just another guy. No, no, that's not true. It can't be true. Why? Neo? This is loco they've got Morpheus in a military controlled building, even if you somehow got inside those air Agent Tony three. One more respect to what you're talking about. I know that's what it looks like, but it's not. I can't explain the whites. Morpheus believes he was ready to give his life for what he believed. I understand that. That's why I have to go. Why? Because I believe in something. What I believe I could bring it back. He started to believe in destiny, which would mean that he is the one, and therefore he's actually starting to believe in himself, and that's his. In a conflict is in a conflict with not believing in himself. Beginning this story, he says. I can't do this, you know, I'm nobody. You would. Who am I? I'm I'm nothing. Where is now? He's starting to believe in himself and that he actually is the one and that what Morpheus was saying was was with the prophecy is actually true. So now he's overcoming in a conflict and now has the power of belief behind him. He can actually get Morpheus and save humanity. Therefore, he's actually succeeded in his goal because he's overcome is in a conflict, and that has become about because of the theme. So you see how theme in the conflict and plot YSL bean into weaved into one entity so that when everything crosses over when everything into sex, it is the turning point for neo. So just to recap, try to think of a universal theme that you're interested in and passion about. How could you phrase it as a thematic question? How does this theme fit as the spine of your story? How can you weave it into the plot? Does your theme relate to the characters and your heroes in a conflict? If no, could you change it to make it all linked together? How will you show both sides of the thematic argument for and against aspects? Will you assign one side to the antagonist? And what about your other characters? Which side of the line do they stand on? And how can you raise the thematic question subtly through dialogue, actions and decisions? Remember, we don't want to shove anything down anyone's throat, and that's what there is to it. So it's not that scary is it takes a bit of thinking about on how you communicated to your specific script, but it's not really that scary. If there's any problems, drop a line into the the questions and answers, and we'll do our best to help people out. Okay, but please don't be scared about theme. It's something that I really do think will make your script a lot better. We just spend a little time before we start writing or after. If you like to go that way, that's fine about how you can integrate theme into your script, and it really will make it a lot better. 11. Supporting characters.: everyone and welcome back. We are now going to go through supporting characters, but now we should be pretty confident about our hero and our villain. But what about the other characters that surround these main to what do we do with them? And what's the purpose off them as they were progresses along his journey. He's gonna meet other people, and these supporting characters aren't just there to tag along with him. They've got a purpose in both the plot as well as the Heroes Ark itself. So what's the role of the supporting characters? Well, they affect the external plot they helped the hero get over his or her in a conflict. They provide different sides to our thematic argument, and they provide drama through different ideas and beliefs. So let's go through plot in the conflict and theme individually to see what are supporting characters do. Our versus plot on this is the most obvious. Are supporting characters here? Help the hero reach that goal, and this could be ah, group of Marines who helped destroy the enemy. Or it could be Hugh Grant's best friends that helped him get the woman of his dreams. These are the team that surround our hero on help them achieve that goal. One of the characters we see a lot in films is called the stakes Character on You level seen this many, many, many, many, many, many times. We already know that when we devised our hero, we came up with his steaks, which is what happens if he fails to achieve his goal and usually involves death in one form or another. Now, the stakes character is the embodiment off this stakes. That's why it's called the stakes character. So the Bosie application would be if the hero doesn't succeed in getting his goal, this stakes character will die that this other said It is being seen in so many movies, and we've got Let's take some examples. We've got John McClane's wife in Die Hard. We've got Kim. Who's Bryan Mills? His daughter in taken. We've got E. T himself. We've got Sandra Bullock and Speed. We've got Newt in aliens, Rachel doors in Batman. Princess Leia, um, em in Skyfall. They're all states characters, because if the hero off all those films doesn't succeed, they're gonna die. So they also helped the hero that they drive the hero to accomplish his or her goal. That's their purpose, even if the movie stakes a bigger on its about the destruction of the Earth. So let's say about Armageddon, Okay, that's if the heroes failed. The whole world is going to die, but they usually have a stakes character to go with it, because the earth itself is quite hard to conceptualize your everyone on Earth. It's not the easiest thing. As an audience member to conceptualize, you have to put it as a person like we did with Remember when we're talking about the villain on, We said you couldn't have a large corporation. You had, like, have a face off the corporation itself. One person, the same country with states characters. So even if we're talking about the death of everybody on the Earth, we have one character that we usually focus on a stakes character. So in the case of Armageddon, it's Grace who is the daughter off Bruce Willis's character. Now, of course, states characters can be the gender most of time. We do see them as being female, but they can be the gender if they are male. Most often they're actually a little boy rather than a man. But you know you don't have to do this. If you want it to be a male as the state's character, then that's no problem at all. You you write what you want to write. The next thing we should probably talk about when we're creating are supporting characters is contrast again. We use contrast a lot in scripts and in supporting characters. It's essential. One of the reasons is because it could get quite confusing. Otherwise, I mean, I watched film recently, which was Michael Bay's 13 Hours, which is It's a fantastic film. It really is. I liked a lot, but I got confused about who was who quite a lot. And you could see on this picture up here. We've got three of the characters from 30 now is now just looking at them quickly. They all look quite similar, especially when it is a nighttime, and they've all got all their gear on. It was it was quite hard to tell who was who. Sometimes, I mean, they've all got bushy beards, their war tor. They've got the same stocky build. It's it was quite difficult sometimes to think it was this and that actually took me away a little bit from the story, which isn't what you want, where is underneath? We've actually got a pictures from the cast of Saving Private Ryan. Now, this lot contrast, they've got different ages. They've got different accessories. They talk differently there. Their physiques are different. The way they act is different, and so it's easier to tell who is who. So that's just one reason why contract is actually quite important and specifically in supporting characters. The same is true for when you actually writing on the page. It's important when you write that someone who's reading your script know who's talking. They got the names to go one, of course. But if someone has to go back through pages and pages to find out who this person is, then it takes them away from the story. And that's not what you want. So contract is something that we can use to to stop that happening. For example, we can do things like we can give each character a memorable first entrance or inaction or description that readers remember that person. We can give characters different vocabulary, different speech patterns, different senses of humor. We should definitely give them all different personality traits. And that works for a number of reasons, but especially good when it helps. Wouldn't scenes with a number of characters together? Just say what I mean by this? Let's go over an example. Let's make one up on will do it to the hangover because that's got a good, good group of characters in it. I'm sure you've all watched the hangover, but in case you haven't, I'll just tell you what it's about. It's about a group of people that go to Las Vegas for their friend Doug Stag party. But when they wake up in the morning, Doug's gone on. They have to find him. They've got no memory of what happened last night, and they have to find him before his wedding and taken back home. So that's their goal. But can you imagine what it would have been? No. Like if these three friends all have the same personality, they all have the same traits. They'll have the same sense of humor. Imagine if it was just three boring accountants that we're doing it. I mean, it would have been such a dull film. But what they what the writers have done here is they've made all three characters completely different, and that's what allows the comedy to come through. So you are three friends. The first is fell on. He's the ridiculously handsome teacher and the leader off the Wolfpack. We then got stew. Stew is a dental doctor on. He's henpecked. He's highly law abiding, and he just worries about everything. And then finally, we've got Allen and Allen is Doug, socially inept, future brother in law. He's got a PhD in the act like a child, but his heart's in the right place. So these are three people, and you could see straight away how contrast in they are. What's so great is that in any given situation, they'll all that completely differently. And that's where the comedy comes from. So to make our example, let's actually make one up ourselves rather than one from the field. Let's say the producer brings us and says, OK, guys, I've got a new scene, ALS. Three of them are locked in one of the casinos. Volts. The alarms going off on day have to get out before the cops arrive. So can you write that scene for us? So from what we've just discussed, what do you reckon would happen? What? What could we come up with? Just because of these different personalities? We know that Phil is the cool and collected one. So I mean, I reckon need take control of the situation. He comes, do down, and he'd be the one tryingto stop the alarm and find the exit so they can get out. Stew, we know is henpecked any and he worries endlessly. So he'd be the one that's panicking. He'd be pacing around saying that they were gonna go to jail. Andi, they're never going to get out on D. What's gonna happen to all his patients that he's gonna miss next week cause he's in jail or this kind of stuff? So that's his kind of character with then got Allen. We know that Alan is he's in his own little world, really is. Knee is in one of the casinos volts. So we probably be sat on a pile of gold and taking photos of himself and wondering why he can't send up to Instagram or something. So that would be his comedy there straight away so you can see even though we're making it up, we can kind of come up with some stuff for this scene and some dialogue, etcetera, that we can come up with the scene just because of these different personalities. Why don't you look at different movies on DSI? How the writers of you characters personalities play against each other, So have a look at it and see how you could rewrite the scenes or make new scenes and use these characters personalities to fill that scene with with dialogue and action. The next facet of art supporting characters is their attitude towards the hero. So, just like they can have different views on how to deal with any given situation, they can also have different views on the character himself. I mean, I'm sure you've all seen movies where one character thinks the heroes brilliant. One doesn't trust steam. One from doesn't really care that kind of things. They've all got different views towards the on attitudes towards the hero. Thinking of characters this way actually helps us, nor those scenes where your heroes got to make a decision on everybody around him has got an opinion, and he's pulled with every which way by them. One character might say the Harris plans stupid. What might say It's amazing. Let's go and do it. One might just be some sake person in the corner having to go with him. So because the groups got different attitudes and believed the dynamics had attention and dramatic possibilities to your scene so you can do a lot more with your scene. Because of this contrast, the one thing I can't stress enough is that a movie is about relationships. So even if it's the biggest blockbusting action movie in the world, it's all got. The plot has got to center about around relationships between the hero and the other characters that surround them. If it doesn't do this, it's just gonna be doomed to failure. How to be honest after took me a long time to figure this out and lots of people to tell me it's such an obvious thing when you think about it. But I didn't get it to straightaway. I I just wanted to know go along my plot on do not really care about the relationships between the hero and the other characters, and that was completely wrong on this, then brings us on to house supporting characters influence our heroes in a conflict. The relationships between the hero and the supporting characters help the hero overcome their in a conflict and therefore progress along their transformational arc. The relationship the hero has with any given character can also highlight this progress. For example, a star of film, the hero could make mistrust a character. But then, as the movie progresses and they work together, the hero grows in the relationship changes. By the end, the heroes changed their attitude completely and now trust the other character that they have mistrusted before. Now this is the exact scenario we actually seeing aliens of the giving of aliens. Ripley distrust Bishop because he's a robot on DCI. It had problems with how in alien Who trying killer. So the star of the movie, she she doesn't trust Bishop, but by the end of the movie, she trusts him with it with her life. He's the one that's there at the end with her and therefore demonstrates this change that she's had. So they completely changed their relationship because of the actions each of them has taken throughout the course of the film now the same could be true the other way around. A character's feelings towards the hero might also change to the complete opposite. So just as the the hero is changed by plot on relationships, so two of the other characters in Fast In the Furies we've got Brian, who starts out as the outsider. Um, he's trying to get in with Dom Toretto and his gang, but he's their outsider. Dom doesn't trust him as they race together. As they go through all the events of the movie together, Brian slowly becomes one of the family, and Don looks upon him as as his brother. So again we can see the complete change from start to finish. The final thing that sporting characters help with is actually the theme. As we've discussed before, the we have the thematic question on people should land on either side of the line when we're discussing the theme, so that provides a good argument. Each of the characters should embody, therefore, against position to a certain degree. So let's have a quick look at at this inaction, and we're gonna take Star Wars. We know that the thematic question is, is technology more powerful than faith? So, yes, it is all No, it's no o. B. One believes that the power of the forces greater than technology. So he's on the no site. So he's technology more powerful than faith open. One would say, No, it's not. Faith is more powerful, the forces more powerful. On the other hand, we've got Governor Tarkin. Who is the antagonists, not Darth Vader. Remember, that's the antagonised. Its governor, Tarkin. He believes that technology is more powerful. He believes that the death star and all their technology can can destroy anything So he would be, yes, Darth Vader believe that the forces more powerful, he says to Governor Tarkin. I find your lack of faith disturbing. So he is on the no side. Han Solo believes that technology is more powerful. He says hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for Good Blaster. So he's yes again, so you can see different characters land on different sides of the line, and therefore it's up to Luke and us to make up our own minds. George Lucas isn't saying it is or it isn't. He's leaving it up to us, and we're seeing it through Luke size. So as he decides, we should decide as well. And that's it for supporting characters. So let's just do a quick recap. How do your supporting characters affect the plot? Is there a state's character you want to use? Do you characters have different personalities and traits to make easily distinguishable as well as leader dramatic possibilities? So they got different clothes, different personalities, different speech, different physiques, all that kind of thing. How does each of your characters feel towards the hero? They like him? Do they hate him? Are they indifferent? And will this changes? The story progresses. Which relationships help? The hero overcome is in a conflict which is going to challenge him on which is going to make him think on. Maybe I realize that what he's been doing is wrong, and there's a better way to do things. And finally, what side of your thematic argument does each character take? Right? Then let's move on and we know I'm gonna move on to structure and plotting, which is everybody's been talking about it for ages. It's probably the most controversial part off off writing, but let's get only that in the in the next section. All right, so look forward to seeing you then 12. Why use Structure?: Hi, everyone. And welcome back. Okay, We're now going to go through the most controversial aspect in screen writing, which is structure. There are so many books on this topic which say, you've got to write it this way. We've gotta write it that way. Have this event occur on this exact page, or you're never gonna sell your script. Is any of this actually true? Well, the answer is a little bit of yes and no. The problem is that all the people you're going to be sending your script to when it's finished, whether this be readers or even producers, they know all these structures. They read all these books and they expect to write it to have use them to a certain degree . Having said that, they are not going to search through your script and reject it because a certain scene doesn't fall on a certain page. That's just total rubbish. As long as the script feels right, it will be absolutely fine. For years now, people have bean peddling all this secret code of movies or read my book, and you're going to get this quick fire way to get your script sold. It's the alexia of screen writing. To be honest, that is a complete load of bollocks. They are just saying this for you to buy their book. The concept of our script and the characters are much more important in the grand scheme of things. But what structure does do? Is it as a familiar framework that people recognize on their comfortable with and actually helps you? So this is what we're gonna go through? The other fallacy that people talk about when they discussing structure for the first time is they all say, Well, I don't want to use structure because it will make a lot the movies the same. It would be a carbon copy of all the other movies that I've ever seen, so I don't want to use it now. This just isn't true, Okay? Structure has been used in one form or another for thousands of years, Ever since stories were first being told and we don't think well, they're the same, Do we? I mean, Shakespeare, you structure. He did pretty well for himself on all the movies that you've seen. The box office. They all use structure in one form or another. There might not be exactly the same structures, but they still use structure. I mean, Avatar, the Matrix aliens, Titanic, Black Swan, Gladiator. These all these movies all use the structure that we're going to be talking about, and they're not the same. You wouldn't say that Gladiator is the same Azad, but I would you Structure is our friend and is there to help us, to guide us and to make things easier for us. But remember, there are no rules in script writing. You can use any structure like whether it be three acts, five acts or the sequence approach. It doesn't matter structures a guide to help, and it's not set in stone. The other reason I really like structure is because I'm not one of those kind of people that can just sit down and write things that come to my mind. To be honest, I don't think that's a very good idea for anyone, really. I mean, I know there are a lot of creative classes and the teachers there say Just let the workflow from your mind and put it down on paper. But actually, in a script, I think that's making your life harder rather than easier. I tried this once. I think was on one of my very first scripts on. I got about 30 pages into it on. I just run out of direction. I didn't know what was coming next. I wasn't sure what to do on. Then I read back what I'd already written, and to be frank, it was terrible. It was just this big, rambling mess of stuff that came to my mind. There was no plan about it, and it was just this horrible mess of thoughts just being shoved onto paper. So I really don't think that's a particularly good idea. The great thing about structure is it's like our roadmap with lots of little way points along the way. If we plan it properly, you'll always know what you're supposed to right next. And everything's broken down into little bite size chunks of a few pages at a time and ultimately makes the script less daunting Prospect. You've only got a couple of pages at a time to concentrate on rather than 110 pages of just blank screen staring at you. So let's start talking about this structure thing, the one that probably everyone's heard over the one that will be concentrating on here is called The three Act Structure. It's been around since stories were first told, and some people refer to it simply a story with a beginning, a middle and an end. Now that's obviously very basic for what we're doing. But it tells us that we have an act one where were introduced to the main characters and the problem. The here and faces in Act two. The hero attempts to solve this problem. And then, finally, in Act three, the problem is solved or not, or is Billy Wilder put it in that one. You get your cat stuck up a tree in that to you throw rocks at it on an AC three. You get him down from the tree, but we'll come back to our three acts in just a second. But I just wanted to take a quick time out to talk to you about script length, because this relates to structure. Now, a standard script for a speck with a speculative script, which is the one that we're gonna be trying to sell, comes in at roughly 110 pages long. Now it could be shorter. It could be longer, but I wouldn't advise making it over 120 pages or under about 90. Now I know some of you might say, Well, you know, I have read a script that was 140 pages long and that would it brilliantly at the box office, which is, you know, you're you're right there are, I mean, Jonathan Nolan writes Long scripts, for example, on Aaron Sorkin invites huge scripts that about 182 100 pages long with different season. Their writers that could do anything they want to be honest. No, they're employed by the huge studios there, well known they can get away with this, but we can't get away with it. We are trying to get someone to read the script. First of all, that's the most important thing is to get them to read the script first. Without them reading it, you'll never sell it. So our number one job is to get people to read it. Now imagine for one second that you are this busy studio, radio or producer producer usually takes the scripts home with him because he hasn't got time during the day to actually read them, so it could be the weekend. It could be at night whenever on. The first thing they're gonna do is they're gonna look at the length of the script. You're gonna pick up the 140 page one or 110 page, average looking script a film can cost millions of pounds to make. So the longer the pages are, the more the page count, the more is gonna cost. So between 90 and 110 pages is about the sweet spot for a producer. It looks about the right amount of pages could make a feature film. I mean, if you give less than 90 if you'll say 70 pages, you know, some people might say, Well, that's gonna take us long to read So surely they'd want to pick that up. We'll know because they'll say it's to show it cannot be made into a feature film. Ready? I mean, how many feature films do you know that did well that you know, just over an hour long? It doesn't happen. An hour and 1/2 which is 90 minutes. Obviously, that's it. That's it. That's fine. There's no problem with that. So 90 to 110 pages try and make your script around that length to really make the probability off someone actually, first picking up your script to read much higher. So why am I telling you this is because the page count actually helps us roughly break down the amount of pages per act in our three act structure. Again, this is not set in stones. Anyone who tells you Act two must start on this specific page or AC three Must are on this specific page is really doing you a disservice. And and don't listen to it as long as it is in roughly the right area on the script is proportionate. That's what they're bothered about. So if you read one of these books and it tells you this has to happen on this page, don't listen. Okay? The breakdown of the parts would roughly go along these lines. Act one is usually between pages one and around 28 25 26 27 28. Roughly around there, Act two goes between pages 29 82 Act three would be between pages. 83 on 110. If we're writing 100 and 10 page script to this diagram, it shows you the Act one and Act three are about the same length there, proportionately about the same lamp. So if you're writing a short descript, obviously, then this proportion would get smaller. Inactive is nearly half of the script as well. So again, if you're writing is shorter script, this would be proportionally smaller. Most scripts Act one ends between page 24 to 30 on most Grip. Start Act three between pages 80 to 85. Obviously, if you're writing a 90 page script, this will be a lot earlier. This three act structure is a great starting point, and it's universally acknowledged by the industry. So if you just wrote your script to this, then you'd be ahead of a lot of writers. However, for me, it's still too broad. It's still daunting. I mean, you see this and it see Act two. There is 50 odd pages long, and if I told you to sit down and write 50 pages, you probably a bit daunted. I would be I wouldn't be able to do that and this is why a lot of people in Act two could get lost. It, people say, is the hardest bit to write off the screenplay back to, and it's because it's quite a long section, isn't it? Is half of the screenplay on? If you've got no other bits to break it up, you can very easily get lost in it. The first thing to help us is that in every movie that a specific beat cold the midpoint on this is where the hero is at the point of no return. In this story, they can't turn back from their challenge, and they got to see it through to the end. We'll discuss the midpoint in more detail later, but we know that it takes place well in the middle. That's the whole point. Midpoint is going to take place in the middle, so this actually neatly breaks up our Act two into two parts. So in essence, we really got a four X structure Now, although I actually like to call the to Act two parts at two Part one and at two part two, which sounds very confusing. I mean, you could called back to part A and exposing that to Part B. It's just the way I call it. Anyway. Our diagram would now look like this. It's Act one would still take up pages 12 28. Act to part one would take up 29 to 54. Back to Part two would take 55 to 83 on AC three would take pages 83 to the end, 210 so our midpoint would be here on page 54. So now what we've done is by adding this midpoint in and breaking up Iraq to we've already broken the script down into roughly 30 page chunks, which a lot better than the huge middle act we had before, But it's still a bit too big for me. I still wouldn't want to tackle 30 pages without anymore direction. So what we're gonna do is we're gonna continue to chip away at this. I'm gonna have more sign posts that we know should be in every movie. So we're going to start this in the next lecture with Act One 13. Act 1 - The First 10 Pages: Our first step in Act one is the 1st 10 pages. Now a lot of people say that this is the most important part of your script if you're a new writer. General feeling is that if, after 10 pages the reader or the producer is not engaged with your material, he or she'll probably stop reading there and move onto the next one. They haven't got time to waste to see if it gets any better. So the 1st 10 is where you've got to really engage them in in the story. So what needs to go into this 1st 10? Well, we need to introduce the hero, the stakes character and the villain, or something that represents the villain as well as given overall sense of the genre. Feel of the movie on any information we need about the story worlds that the reader understands it now. This sounds a lot, but let's go through it step by step. The 1st 1 is the hero on our hero is certainly the most important, as we talked about in a few lectures ago. We need to connect with our hero and create empathy with them on this needs to be done in the 1st 10 pages so we can use all the techniques we learn in the protagonist section. If you can't remember them just going recap that and then we could implement these in the 1st 10 to create someone unique but someone that the audience will stick with throughout the story in the first time. We should also see the hero in their ordinary world, which is a name that Joseph Campbell called it. This means we see them, how they're truly living at that specific moment in time. So we see that in a conflict or possibly their ghost, we see their values received, their faults and their moral compass. So this is the before picture prior to the journey that the movie is going to take us on. So before any transformational arc or anything, it's the beginning point off them. The next important on our list is the antagonised. You don't necessarily have to see the villain themselves in the 1st 10 pages, but we should see a representation off the antagonistic force. So maybe we see someone stealing nuclear codes or maybe a heist or someone being cut to shreds by an unknown being or something like that. Whatever is the audience should know up front that the opposition the hero is going to face is daunting. It's gonna be a challenging mission for them. Toe reach their goal. If it's a namby pamby, weak villain, then here has got no competition. So it's gonna be a boring movie very often. Wigan! And set up the stakes characters well in the 1st 10 As you can probably remember, the state's character is the human embodiment of the stakes in relation to the hero. So if the hero fails, the stakes character dies. A lot of times the state's character is actually one of the heroes, family or acquaintances so we can combine meeting the state's character with information about the hero themselves. Ah, quick example is Bryan Mills, His the state's character. In In Taken is his daughter, Kim Onda. We learn about Brian's past is in a conflict and his character all through the first couple of scenes with Kim that deals with that his relationship with Kim So we know that he's Xia a on his marriage, is broken down because of his work being all over the world and almost neglected his daughter. We now know he's quickly quit his job and moved to be near his daughter. But he doesn't know her that well. They're kind of in that almost awkward stage. He still thinks of her as a little girl and not the the young lady that she is. And we also know that he's overprotective and could be overbearing. So this is a good snapshot. This is the the ordinary world that we see Brian in at the moment, a technique many movies uses, something called an Overture seat on. This is the very first thing that we've seen, and it's especially apparent in action and horror films. So here we see the hero, villain or the representation of the villain in a really engaging and entertaining way that gives a really good kick into the movie is a 1,000,000 capital Asian of what the story will be about without having to go into too much detail. So, for example, in an action movie, you could start off with a high octane sequence for with explosions, and or you could see the villains plan in action where someone's stealing nuclear codes or doing, you know, heist such as in Batman, The Dark Knight, while in the horror we might see a deadly curse or a nexus is, um, gone wrong or a gruesome tale of some kind. It can also incorporate the heroes ghost, which, if you remember rightly, is the past event, which has led to their inner conflict. Here's a few examples of overture scenes so that you get the idea. The 1st 1 in our horror section is the hills have eyes on here we see a group of scientists who are killed by the hillbillies. So I mean, this has got no further part significance at all. I mean, the scientists have not seen again it, but what it does do is it introduces straight away to these to the bad guys, to the villains, the hillbillies and their murderous nature. So it gives us a feel of the movie straight away. The same can be said for wrong turn in the opening minute. Also, we see a couple of climbers who are pulled up over the lip of the rock face and killed by these unseen people, which we will later Noah, the cannibals that that lived that live in them in the mountainside. So again, this serves as an introduction, and we instantly know what kind of film is the 3rd 1 example we've got is the sexism off Molly Hartley. And here we've got Devon. So who plays a priest who tries exercise a demon from a pregnant lady? But it all goes wrong. Andi. He doesn't do it properly and he releases her. And then because of this and other play, another priest is killed on the lady herself, forced to her death so we know what the movie's about. We know it's going to be about the demons and excess ISMs, but it also gives us a good site into our hero on. At the same time, it's showing us his ghost on his in a conflict which was caused by this event. So we get in a huge triple whammy of things here in the space of a very, very short time has actually given us a lot of information, but in an entertaining way. Next, we've got examples of overtures scenes in action films. The first is some Andreas on. This starts with the rock who's showing off his all round action hero skills. He pilots this helicopter into ravine to rescue a girl whose cars going off over the edge on its hanging precariously. And he's got no further plot significance, Atal. I mean, the rest of the movie is about a huge earthquake, so he's got absolutely no plot relevance. But it just shows us the genre were in, and it shows our hero on his all around action Super skills Now contrast what we've just said about some Andreas with cliffhanger. I remember watching cliffhanger years and years and years and years ago when it first came out on it. Still, the overture seen still sticks with me even today. What I think it does that is a lot better than some Andreas is. It links our hero without with his ghost and his inner conflict. At the start of this movie, we've got Sylvester Stallone's friend how who's taken his girlfriend up to this really, really high bit of mountain. The fiancee's halfway across the zip wire when one of the buckles goes on on her safety harness and she's clinging on the zip line for dear life anyway. Gay you poo! Sylvester Stallone's character goes on the wire to rescuer. He reaches her hand and she grabbed his hand. But the glove comes off and she slips and she falls to her death. Now it's a very, very tense scene, like some Andreas, but I think better than San Andreas personally. But what's so good about it is we don't expect it. We expect him to savor and is therefore one of the most memorable openings I've ever seen because she actually plummets to her death. So we instantly empathized with Gabe because of this, you know, reconnecting with him, cause we empathize with them. You know how he must feel that he went out against his friend. House wishes on the line to save this woman, and he didn't manage to savor. But it also provides the ghost which with which he'll struggle with throughout the rest of the movie. It shows his in a conflict of guilt because of this should have been on the line. Should you have stayed on the side of the mountain and just try to get her another way? Was it was it his weight that actually made her fall? This is his guilt, and this is what he'll have to get over the next one we've got is the money now that here the overture scene is slightly different. It's it's very entertaining, but it's actually the backstory off imitated Who is Thea, antagonist of the movie He's the Mummy is a great way to quickly bring the audience up to speed with the period and setting and giving us a bit of history. But it's also really, really engaging on brings us right into the heart of the story itself. So it's another use off the overture seem, but it's done very well. And finally, no list can be complete without a bit of Indy. This is Raiders of the Lost Ark on this over. Just seen is Everybody knows it. It's an amazing scene on. It gives us a huge insight into character and the genre, which is what we're really trying to do. Here we see indie. He's traveled into the depths of the jungle and to capture that golden idol. Andi, all the while, is covered in the huge spiders. They're scary spiders. He's nearly squashed by that massive, bolder There's booby traps. A money eventually gets out. He's got these natives with poison darts aimed at him and we see our villain as, well, Belec. So it's really entertaining. It gives us a fantastic idea of our hero on the villain on It hits it'll the fun and excitement we're gonna have over the next 90 minutes. So if in Doubt always looked indie, it's great following on. From what we've just said, there's an important point I really want to reinforce. This sounds ready City, I know. But make sure that by the time the readers got a few pages into your script, they already know what kind of movie they're in for. As we've seen the overtures really very good at doing this in succinct way. But it doesn't always have to be used. So think about how you can show the reader what genre you're writing it. So is your script a comedy or horror or a SciFi or an action movie? It sounds really simple, but you'd be surprised how many people don't actually do this. Have a look at your DVD collection. For example, if you're watching comedy, I bet there's quite a few jokes in the first couple of minutes or something funny happens. If you're watching a horror, there's gonna be a few jumps or very tense scenes. And if you're watching an action, there's gonna be some action. So all these movies put it in, and you really should as well. You've gotta let your read and know what genre they're in and what they expect from the script. The other thing we have toe be aware off is that depending on when and where your script actually set of your story set, you might need to give the audience some information about this story world, its rules and structures that it makes sense, obviously, to you. It will make sense because you're the one that's created it. But think from someone else's point of you think from the reader's point of view, they don't know anything about your script. They don't know anything about the story world that you're creating here. So if there's something that's important that they need to know to understand what's going on, you need to put that in. Now This is called exposition, and we'll we'll discuss a bit later on how to write this successfully. But for now, just think what you would need to include. So, for example, do you need to give a brief history, such as in underworld, where we see the long reigning battle between the wear wolves and the vampires. If we haven't seen that history, if that we haven't been told what's going on, it wouldn't really make sense to us what it would be confused going in. So you don't want your audience to be confused. You want them to understand what's what's happening. Or maybe you need to explain how we're a certain technology works, such as how you convey I've into people's dreams, that they're doing inception. It doesn't have to be in one big block again. We'll talk about a bit later, but it could be in little chunks that people can understand. So you don't want someone just blabbing. It'll to you in in one big go saying this is exactly what happened. This is how this works. This is how this works. It's got to be in in in an entertaining way, but it's gonna happen so that the audience understands what's going on. Okay, now that we know what should be included in our 1st 10 which is what we've just discussed, what comes after that? That's what we're gonna discuss next 14. Act 1 - The Inciting Incident: The next thing after we've done our 1st 10 pages is the inciting incident. Now this is the event that sets the whole story into motion, as usually found around about page 12 of your script. Without the inciting incident, the hero would stay in their everyday well, nothing would change. Everything would go on as normal on. Basically, you'd have no story is really easy to understand what it is. With a few examples. Here's a list of examples off inciting incidents in love movies. So things like Matt Damon waking up to find himself alone on Mars, which is in the Martian Woody finding buzz in his spot on Andy's bed in Toy Story and Elliott finding ET in the carriage. And all these are the ones which I'll give you time to read. You can read in the pdf anyway, just to say that this is actually true. Let's take, for example, the Toy story. Woody finds Buzz in his spot on Andy's bed. Now, if he hadn't found Buzz in his spot, would the story have actually happened? Know there'd be no buzz, so there'd be no story or Elliott haven't found ET and his Garr Ege. Would there be a story? No, because e t wouldn't be there. He'd be somewhere else. That would be a different story. So for our particular story, it's what gets the story going. What is the thing that happens that gets the story going on? That's what the inciting incident is. It's also worth noting that the hero doesn't necessarily have to be involved in the inciting instant, which sounds strange. But it's true, however, because of the inciting incident that makes them get involved. So in die hard, John McClane is involved. First full is the inciting incident. Is hands taking over the building? I mean, John's in the bathroom feeling sorry for himself, but it's It's after the inciting instant that John has to be inevitably pulled into the action because of what's happened. There's another beat, actually, which happens in Act one just after this, which you might not have noticed before and you don't actually need. But in some films, it's It's good toe have on, and that is the refusal of the challenge. So this is where the hero is being offered a chance to do something either at or just before the inciting incident, and he or she initially refuses after we know that any type of change is hard and you like being in the world that you know and the routine that you know, and so they're still clinging on to their normal life. However, someone or something will then convince them to change their mind and take up this challenge. Here's a couple of examples so that you understand in aliens, Thean, citing incident, is where Ripley is told they've lost contact with the colony on LV 4 26 on Bert comes in and asks if she'll accompany the Marines to the planet in order to check it out quickly. Flatly refuses, she says. There's no chance I'm going back there. Then a couple of hours later, she's being asleep, and she's had another nightmare on. She rings Burke and State. She'll go. Would as long as they're there to wipe the aliens back and not to study, not to bring back. And Burke agrees on Ripley's Now set up for the challenge, so she's refused the challenge on. Then she changes her mind in Gladiator. The inciting incident is where the emperor asked Maximus to become his successor instead of his own son, Commodus. Maximus refuges. But the emperor doesn't give up. He presses him further, and Maximus eventually agrees. Now it's because of this that Commodus will be set on his murderous path. Andi kill Maximus, his wife and son and sentenced him to death. So again, Maximus is refusing. But then he had eventually agrees. Finally, we got Star Trek here. We've got Jim is at a bar, has got into a fight with some of the staff lead recruits. It gets very drunk, and his ordinary life is getting into trouble and getting drunken on just being a general pain in the ass. And after the fights broken up, Captain Pike has a chat with Jim on. He asked him to join style Flee. Jim refuses. He doesn't want nothing to do with it. But Pike doesn't give up on him. He challenges Jim to realize his potential and be as good as his father. Waas. In the overture off of that film, remember, we see Jim's father taking control off a starship on he gets killed, but he saved a lot of people in the process. So this is what Pike challenges in with Andi. In the next scene, we see Jim joining up. He has refused. He's then persuaded Andi. He accepts the challenge and the rest of the story can then go ahead. So at this point, we've had our inciting incident that starts the story off, but we're not quite there yet. The hero hasn't quite got on his challenge yet, so we're gonna need one more thing toe. Just push them over the hill to make sure that they're They're definitely going for examples. We've got up, which is Carl is told he's gonna lose his house. He therefore comes up with a plan to stop that happening in lived. I repeat, we've got Tom Cruise, who's forced to get onto the military ship which will take him to the battle zone for the first time in dodgeball. We've got Gordon. He says that they can play Dodge Ball tournament in order to get the money they need to save average Joe's gym in Gladiator. Commodus sentences Maximus to death in the Matrix we've got. Neo decided to go with Trinity to meet Morpheus, where he's given that famous choice between the blue and the red pill and in Batman begins , Bruce fights against razzle ghoul. Instead of killing a prisoner, he burns down the monastery and he escapes. So this brings us to the climax of Act one, where the hero has got to step over the threshold on Make the Leap into the New World is Joseph Campbell called it on the start of that, too. In some stories, this is actually quite literal. The hero moves into a new location where the rest of the movie will play out. Such is up with Carl floating away or Neo falls into the real world. Writ Believe flies down to L. V. 4 26 Maximus is transported away to be a gladiator on Bruce Wayne returns to Gotham. Now. This isn't always the case by any stretch of imagination, so don't feel you have to put this into your story. If it doesn't fit, don't force it. But what is important is that, by their part, this point in the script, the audience should know who the hero and the villain are. What the heroes golden in the conflict is on what is at stake. If the hero fails, let's double check this with a couple of well known movies that we can make sure they hitting all these marks on. Therefore, we know we should as well. Our first is gravity. So what do we find out in Act One? We know the hero. Is Dr Ryan Stone on? We empathize with her situation. We know that the villain is space itself. I'm Lee showing how destructive and powerful it could be. Massive anniversary, that's all. Powerful, really. Her goal is to get back to Earth. We know that her ghost is actually when her young daughter was killed in in a playground accident on that affects her and causes her in a conflict, which is that she can't get over her daughter's death. We see that she's very alone, and she almost wants to give up on life itself. We've got an implied transformational arc, which is that she's gone. We know that she's alone and she's almost giving up on life. So by the end, she should realize that her life is actually worth living by overcoming all the odds and getting back to Earth. Then she's going to realize that her life is worth something on the stakes is that if she doesn't reach a goal. She's gonna die alone in space. We've gone. It'll this information from the 1st 24 minutes of the film. And yet we've also Bean really entertained. We haven't known that we've Bean told all this information. It's an exciting opening on one that's done really, really well that at the end of Act one, Ryan is truly alone because George Clooney floats off into space on She's the last surviving member of the mission. So it's now up to her and that starts her into act to our final example. Let's go with the Batman Begins, which is written by the brilliant David S. Goyer here. We know that the hero is Bruce was a K Batman. The villain is Roz algo Andi Bruited goal is to save Gotham from being destroyed by Ross Root is in a conflict is that fear holds him back? Just it has all his life since he fell into the well, that was his ghost. Remember? Hey fell into the well and had all the bats surround him. Andi. Then, because of his fear, his parents were actually shot as well. That's compounded this in a conflict this leads us into the implied No, this transformational arc is that Bruce will turn his fear against the criminals himself on . Then he'll realize that revenge is not justice. And then, finally, the stakes is that Batman must save Rachel Doors as well as stop Gotham tearing itself apart through fear again, something we've learned through everything that's happened in Act one. So for quick Act One recap, how will you introduce your hero, your villain and your stakes characters? Have you created empathy with your hero? And do we see their inner conflict or Ghost will use an overture scene? How would you make sure that reader knows what genre he or she is reading it? What is the inciting incident that gets the story rolling? Does the hero of refused to take up the challenge? And if so, what changes their mind or who change their mind? How is the hero get forward movement to propel them to the end of Act one? Have you made sure we know who the hero, villain and stakes characters are? Is it crystal clear what the heroes gold is? And what happens if he fails? And have you shown the heroes in a conflict and therefore implied what they're transformational art might be. Once you've done all this, it's time to move on, to act to on. That's what we were going to go into in our next lecture, so I'll see you in a minute. 15. Act 2 - Part 1: Hi, everyone. We're now going to start talking about Act two. We've just left our hero at the end of Act one on. He's taken a leap into the darkness on into the New World, as Joseph Campbell called it. So what do they need to start to do in the beginning? Back to Well, they need to ground themselves. Sometimes they need to learn the rules of the new World on they'll meet new characters and take on new skills. Soon, though, the hero is going to realize that this road of for their goal the plan that they've already set out for themselves isn't gonna be as easy as they first thought. Things start going to start to go wrong. New plans are gonna have to be formed on. We're gonna show all of this through the use of obstacles. Remember when we were talking about the concept stage? We used a quote from Michael Hague on It was this. It said that a story must enable a sympathetic character to overcome a series of increasingly difficult, seemingly insurmountable obstacles and achieve a compelling desire with beginning of Act two is where these obstacles stuck to come into play on throughout the rest of the story. These obstacles are gonna become bigger and harder for our hero to overcome. Why do we do this? Well, it's because these obstacles create tension and tension generates a great experience for the audience. Imagine if you're sat watching a movie, we want to be unsure whether the hero is gonna win or no, I mean, if we know that the hero is definitely gonna fail. Definitely gonna win. It becomes a bit boring, doesn't it? You know, it's not gonna be that excited because you're not on the edge of your seat wondering Is he gonna make it? Is he going to die? What's gonna happen now? We're gonna know in the back of our minds that he or she probably will win. I mean that, you know, that's the whole point of this story. But when we shone a seemingly insurmountable obstacle, we're gonna wonder how on earth they're going to get out of that one. And that creates doubt on its this feeling of Willie won't heat exceed that makes viewing pleasurable. We're going to sit on the edge of our seats. I'm gonna or that there really is going to keep on turning the pages, thinking, I've got to see what happens next. I've got to see how they're going to get out of this, and that's our goal. We want the reader to keep on turning those pages on. We can create it through the use of obstacles. Now, what can these obstacles be? Well, they could be anything, and that's their to prevent the hero from reaching their goal, there could be big physical obstacles that just having to cross a larger distance. In Lord of the Rings, it's going from the shire to mount do. That's a large distance as a big obstacle, isn't it? Or having to fight the environment. So anything from snow storms wind sun atmosphere on different planets in the sea, for example, in in perfect Storm, that's, you know, huge obstacle to overcome that it could go down to small up schools such as the car running out of gas or battery in the cell phone. Failing. You know, if your hero, if example is trying to bring the cops of it is there's no signal the cell phone dies. You know that's an obstacle he has to overcome as long as the obstacle is relevant and provide some tension, anything could become an obstacle that so the hero is then got overcome, each one in turn to progress on his or her journey. So every time there is a single obstacle, they've gotta find a way to get over that and carry on towards their goal. All it's doing is obstacles are standing in the way off the hero reaching their goal. So how are we gonna devise all these obstacles? Well, to give ourselves a helping hand, we can divide Act to Part one, which is from the beginning of Act two up to the midpoint. If you remember into seven pairs of yes, no beats on this is going to provide the Yes, he's gonna win. He's going to get to his goal on then. No, he's not gonna get to his gold. He's doomed Now. There's actually a bit of software that I like to use for this. I don't really prom. Try and promote lots of different software because software is one of these things that a it could be. It could be quite expensive if you keep on buying new bits of software on and they work for some people. Other was work for other people, so it's really a personal choice. I mean, I personally use final draft when I'm writing, when im actually writing the script because it saves me a lot of time, is not that expensive, and it saves me a lot of time, especially when we're doing it does all the formatting for you. So if you're doing in would I mean you can write a script in anything you want, you can write in note pad. If you want to do it, that makes a difference. But final draft is one of those things that it formats everything for you because when you're writing a script, remember, I know we're going off the subject here. But when we were writing him a script, you've got to make sure that it looks professional, especially when you're sending out to readers or produce it. It's gotta look professional. It's the first thing they see is if it looks right. So final draft you compress tab on your return on it quickly puts the slugs and and the the actual etcetera into the right proportion in the right part of the page. And so I really like final draft for that. The other one I use, which is actually for Act two and Act three is called Contour. And that's kind of one coming on to now because I like Contour because it provides you these seven year snow beats Act two and act to Part two, which didn't go onto so I. I do use this one now. There are lots of lots and lots and lots and lots off software. There's Blockbuster. There's dramatic. There's plot control. You've probably seen hundreds of them. What I'd suggest is, just find something. If you want to use software, you don't have to at all. If you want to use it, just find something that works for you and what you like. Don't buy them all because what you'll also end up doing is not just spending the money, but also actually spending a lot of your time messing around with all this software and not actually getting down to writing anything. I done it before. I've got all these trials for things, and I've spent forever messing around with them, thinking there's gonna make my script brilliant, but actually it's just used my time up and I'm not got anywhere with it. So it's one of these things. I mean, check them out. Whatever you like. We don't like them. I wouldn't use them. I use console for Act two because he lets you fill out the beats in the program and has seven. Yes, no beats until the mid point. So from the beginning of AC two to the mid 20.7 year snow bees on, this is a great way for me to track on. Make sure my heroes having the ups and downs that they should be to give you the example. And so you understand Maura, about these seven years, notes, Let let's take an example on for this. I'm going to use one of my favorite comedy scripts ever, Which is that dodgeball everyone of start supports. Brilliant. Now a quick recap of where we are at the end of Act one in Dodgeball. We've got our hero, who is called Peter Lefler on his gym is called Average Joe's on. It's gonna be closed down because they're behind on their bank repayments. The villain is white Goodman, played by Ben Stiller on he owns a rival gym across the street called Globo Gym. Unless PD can come up with the $50,000 in the next month, average Joe's is going to be closed on day. Why is gonna demolish it or use it for a car park? So at the end of that one, Peter and his band directly that the GM have come up with a plan and they are going to end a dodgeball tournament which has the prize fund off, obviously $50,000. So one of the obstacles that they're going to stand in Peter in the team's way. These are gonna be the ups and downs over the act, too. So let's find out what the obstacles are for Act two. Part one on these were going to use our Yes, no pairs here. So, yes, number one. The team rented into the regional Dodgeball finals the following day to get a place in the coveted last fakers open. If they win just one game, they're gonna go through. So that's a yes. They're going to reach their goal out. It's gonna play this one game and they're gonna get towards their goal. So yeah, it's a yes. You're going towards your goal. The first know is white. Goodman is watching their plan that were hit in camera. So this is like a bump in their plan, isn't it? This is the No. It's like we're going to do this, but actually, no, it looks like why it's going to get in involved here. And we're going away from our goal. Yes, to is when average Joe's go to qualify, that only one team to beat. So it looks like things are looking up way we're gonna win. We're gonna get towards the final No. Number two is Thea Opposing team, comprising of Girl Scouts. Beat them! Hands down. So average Joe's are not going to Las Vegas open once again, We're going away from our goal. They're not going to succeed. Yes, three is the Girl Scouts get disqualified because one of their players is caught taking anabolic steroids and a beaver tranquilliser No. Three. While average Joes were out celebrating white and his purple cobras arrive White Johnson telling him them his team will be going to the Vegas Open and they're gonna kick their ass . Yes, for is patches. Hoolahan, the legendary dodgeball coach, comes up to Peter outside the bar and tells him he will be average Joe's new coach. Things are looking up again. No. Four. Despite patches training, the team are terrible still, Yes. Five. Kate represented from the bank, throws a ball and smash his white hidden camera. She's a fantastic throw, and Peter in the team asked her to join them. No. Five is. Kate refuses on the grounds that it is unethical, so it's back to square one for the team. Meanwhile, White finds out about Kate and he decides to Wu'er. Yes, six is white tries very unsuccessfully to okay on. Instead, she smacks his head into a wall and tell him to leave. No. Six is White is furious. He warns Peter that as soon as the Purple Cobras win in Vegas, he'll tell down he'll tear down average Joe's gym and use the land for parking Lot. Yes, seven is K agrees to play with average Joe's On No. Seven is even though they go into the last Vega's Open. They know there's a mountain to climb, and that's then the midpoint because it's the point of no return and there you have it. That's the whole of Act two, part one broken down into beats of no more than a couple of pages each. We've got 14 beats there in a two part one That's a couple of pages per beat, which and anyone can do. But by using this Yes, No structure. We've done it. That is up and down, up and down. They're gonna win there. No, they are. They're not. So it's more of a roller coaster for the audience, and it gets the pages. Keep on turning because people want to know what's gonna happen. Do you have to use seven pairs? No, of course you don't. You couldn't use as many or as little as you like. It doesn't. It doesn't make any difference. Whatever works for your story, you have to use any at all if you don't want to. I mean, no writing. There are no rules in writing, and I hate it. When a lot of these books tell you you should do this. You've got to do this, You got it. You don't You do whatever is right for your script. But what we have here is a pacing that we see in many, many films on So therefore, it's something that when I've been writing, I find very useful to help because act to every said is where it drags quite a lot of time , and people get lost in that, too. So by having these ups and downs these, yes and nos. It actually helps the writer. It helps the pacing on it doesn't get boring or drag. So I think it's a good jumping off point and why I like to use it next up. We've got the midpoint. We know we we split it in half didn't way when we were deciding about about the axe because it would split at Act two into inter half on the midpoint we see in every fill it is that the moment when there is, there's no going back for the hero is the point of no return. I've got a quote here from Wikipedia, which says the point beyond which one must continue on one's current course of action because turning back is physically impossible, kind of the same thing. So from here on in, the hero's gotta face whatever's coming his way and finish his mission, he can't go back to this star is beyond that now you can't go back to start. You've got to carry on on. Even if it's getting harder and harder and harder, he's got to carry on to finish it. Now. In horror films, this is most commonly the moment when actually the monster attacks for the first time on after this. Obviously, there's no going back that the monsters being unleashed So you you've gotta continue to face it and mutual goal. Otherwise, you know, you gonna you gonna perish. In romantic comedies, the midpoint is usually the moment when someone or something threatens the couple's newfound happiness. However, the heroes past the point of no return, they've already fallen in love, so it could have continued to fight for the future happiness. Here's some examples of mid points alien, and we've got the genome off burst out of cane's chest. So as we just discussed, it's usually the first moment that the monster appears, so that happens here is well in Gladiator. It's Maximus returns to Rome's taken Commodus. He can't turn back now. He's gotta carry on. He could have beforehand gone back and just lived in ordinary life and vanished. But he can't know the Dark knight we've got. Rachel is killed on This is the no turning back 0.4 Bruce. He's gonna carry on to stop the Joker in the money we've got Imitate Rising from the dead. And it's almost like that horror film beat where the monster has been unleashed. Drastic Park The T. Rex attacks the group similar again to the horror beat there. Notting Hill. We've got Anna Scott asked well up to a room but finds her boyfriend there will have to pretend to be the waiter. And remember, he enjoys the pain of seeing the two of them kiss. So that again is the romantic comedy midpoint on Raiders of the Lost Art. We've got indie finding the Ark so again there's no turning back. Now he's found the ark. He's got to keep on going. Sometimes I actually find it quite helpful to write the mid point first because, you know, then from the end of that one to the mid point, you know where you're headed. It's like the midpoint is the end destination on did you've gotta then just find the ups and downs that lead from act end of Act 1 to 2 that midpoint. So it makes those yes knows a little bit easier because you know where you're headed to. You're not going in some rambling fashion, too. Eventually find your way. You know that Still end point is it's a two part one. Your end point is the mid point. So you know you're headed, you know the beginning. Just find that middle ups and downs to there. And then after with the mid point, making a carry on to act to part two. 16. Act 2 - Part 2: at two. Part two is where the hero is now fully committed to finishing their quests. We've just done the midpoint. There's no turning back. They've got to carry on. Andi is usually the moment we see a shifted them from being reactive to becoming active there. They've got their plan of action. They've got to carry out now, whereas in that to part one, the hero was kind of pushing through relatively soft obstacles and learning their way in. The rules of engagement when we rented an active part to the obstacles have become much more intense. Remember that quote is gonna get increasingly difficult as we go along. So the heroes could have toe take charge and bully them their way through these obstacles and fight back against the enemy. At the same time, the heroes arc is changing. Remember, it's a progressive transformation on so that the people around them and the situations are forcing him toe reassesses believes and by this point, the characters very different. The one we actually started with to help us to write back to part two again. I'm going to use contour. You don't have to is just what I do and I like it. We're gonna use the seven. Yes, No structure again. Only this time we're gonna amp up the strength of the obstacles and the antagonistic forces . This because we need their difficulty to increase as the hero progresses. So instead of having two security guards in Act two part Wallman are gonna have 20 off them . And instead of having a gun that he might have had in Act two Part one Now he's only got a match in a deodorant can do, you know? I mean, it just makes everything harder for the a hero. Now the final no are active. Part two is a very, very important beat, and you will have seen it 100 times. It's called had various names. People called it various things, but I like to call it all is lost. So is that moment that you you will instinctively know when you watch a movie about 3/4 of the way through, everything goes bad, they're heroes, his lowest ebb. And it looks like he's never, ever going to reach his goal. So this is what I call the old is lost. The easiest way to find what you're all is lost. Be it would be for your script is actually just think what is the worst thing that could happen to my hero right now? And that lasts what the answer is Whatever is the worst possible thing that could happen to your hero to stop them reaching their goal happens and that is the oldest lost. So, for example, in Star Wars, Obi one is killed in aliens. New is taken by the alien queen. Yeah, that's ripped. Please, God, which you want to save New But the ailing queens taken It looks like new probably gonna be dead. She's She's lost in die hard hands realizes Holly John McClane's wife in Toy Story. Woody and Buzz is going to be blown up by said they find themselves in sits bedroom and home alone. The wet Bandits know Kevin is home alone on going to break into his house that night in collateral, Max finds out that Vincent is going to kill the woman he's fallen for in Notting Hill. Anna Scott is going to return to America on GWilliams. Gonna have lost her forever. And in the Matrix, Morpheus is captured and is going to be killed again. Sometimes it's easier to write this beat first, like we did with the fight in the mid point. First for Active Part one. Sometimes get writing. The all is lost. Point is easier for writing at two part, too, because now you know the beginning is the midpoint. The endpoint is the all is lost. So one of the bits that make up between the two, what's the ups and downs that gets from the mid point to the oldest last point? And that's all at two. Part two is by using these yes, nose and ups and downs on getting our midpoint and always lost point we've actually written , or we've planned out all of our act to really, quite simply haven't way. So there's no need to worry about to everyone goes, Oh, are it is a bit of a struggle at to, you know, get lost cetera. There's no need to is very, very simple. You've just written 28 beats the seven Yes knows Active Part 17 Yes, no, Zack to Part two. And that's how it is done. Each of those beaches at a couple of pages long, so everyone come out a couple of pages at a time. So these are bite sized chunks we've just done on our whole long act Two is all now broken down nicely then all that's left is to move on. We're gonna move into Act three. This is gonna be where the heroes has been as lower step allies lost point on. They're gonna pick themselves up. They're going to get a new plan on going to see it through to the end, so we'll discuss at three next. 17. Act 3: we're now entering AC three. So far, our hero is battled towards their goal. They've had setbacks and victories, and they've transformed into a better person through their transformational arc. But they found themselves now at rock bottom. We've just got Are all these lost point on their at rock bottom? They don't think they can do it anymore. It it seems impossible that they will reach their goal. Our job now is to pick them up, get them back on track and make one final push for full that goal. Luckily for us, the beach Act three are pretty simple. I use Contour again here. You don't have to remember. I just find that it fits nearly every single movie I've watched. So that's why I like to use it. There are only four beats now that we've got that we've got to cover. The first is yes. Then there's no big no on the final. Yes, those yes, No things again, isn't it? This time, however, there are a lot broader, so don't worry about it, too. Let's start with the 1st 1 The first yes, at the end of Act two, we've left our hero at their lower step there. It looks impossible for them to reach that goal. This B is about are supporting characters come to their rescue? They lift the hero up, and they remind him of all the change that he's gone through over the movie on their behind him 100%. So it's getting that motivation back into the hero that no, pick yourself up. Let's come up with a new plan. They devise a plan, and they're gonna being interaction on. They're gonna go and succeed. For example, it's the point that the hero benches out for the final battle. So whether it's the fight final fight ful his loved one or facing Sarah on a Mount Doom is that final push? Initially, the here is gonna meet with success. So in in The Matrix, for example, neo storms the building in that really awesome action sequence on me Freeze Morpheus in aliens. Ripley finds new cheese encrusted in that gunk stuff that the aliens put out and she ripped apart and get sir in back to the future. We've got Marty McFly. I You gets his parents to kiss at the enchantment under the sea ball. So it looks like despite everything, the hero is going to succeed. That is, until are no beat, which is where something goes wrong. Neos exit is shot and he's left on his own. Running from Agent Smith, Ripley stumbled into the alien nest out of all the places she has to go, she goes in failure ness it. It's like a big no Marty can get the DeLorean to start. So just when we thought everything was gonna be over were actually being tested once more heroes tested again. And it becomes even worse when we go into our big no beat, which is like, you know, why am everything is now in super trouble? We got neo shot dead. I mean, you can't get much worse than that. You know, Ripley faces the alien queen on her own that she got no backup. It's just her. In fact, the future we've got that that tree falling down, which pulls the socket from Doc Brown's electricity rig on. Then Marty himself start the alarm going off in the glory, and they can't get it to start. So at this point, the likelihood of our hero succeeding is now pretty much zero. It looks like everything's over it, you know, there's no chance. But then we've got our final yes, beat on. Then this beat is like some kind of miracle happens. You know, the hero somehow manages to turn the situation round. We've got Neo that comes back to life and manages to destroy Agent Smith because he realizes he's the one we've got. Ripley, who fights the queen using that loader thing and blows out the airlock on We've Got Marty That starts the car, it wax it and it brought into life on He hits 88 miles an hour Justice, the Lightning strikes and Justice Doc Brown manages to get the rig back together is our final push in. The hero somehow manages to win, manages succeed. And that's our final Yes, After that, we've got one more beat, actually, which is I call it the new warder. It doesn't really make a difference. Is that after snapshot? You remember we had that before snapshot. When we were talking about the M 1st 10 pages, we had to see the hero in their ordinary life before the events of the movie etcetera take place. That was our before snapshot we're now doing our after snapshot, which is showing the equilibrium that the heroes found within himself and the and the world around him. You know, sometimes if if you watch movie and you see the hero succeed, but then it rolls into credit your like you about what happened. Did they all live happily ever after? Did the world go back to normal? You know that that kind of thing you want to just see that little moment doesn't have to be long. But you want to see that little moment off. What happens after all the events of concluded and that's it. The plotting of your script is done. There is no more to it than that. Really so Well done. If if you carried it along with that and you've been plotting along as we've been going, then brilliant well done, it's not that hard, is it? You know, people make out that you got to do all this stuff, and it's really, really difficult. It's not really These things will change as you're going along and you're you're writing your script. Things will change. They inevitably do on. There's nothing wrong with that at all. What you've written here is your roadmap, your guide to make things less daunting for you. And it's also helped create a structure that people are used to. Andi is gonna When someone read your script, they're going to say this person knows what they're doing It, it's It's structured well, but you don't have remember. Please remember, you don't have to put things on exact pages. I know there a lot of people that say you do that, but you don't have to do that at all. It's your story that matters your character that matters, your concept that matters much, much more. 18. The two deadly sins of Screenwriting.: hi everyone, and we are now moving on to the exciting part off actually writing the script. At long last, you say so what I wanna do first is I want to give you a couple of technical hints about writing when we give our script to the reader or the producer, we want to keep them in our story world. I'm sure all of you have read books where you've been so engrossed in the book that everything around you kind of fades away, that you lose track of time and you just concentrate on that book and you're with the character at that moment, we want to do that with our scripts. So there's a couple of things that a lot of people make the mistake of doing, which jolts people out of this. And these are the kind of deadly traps that I want you guys to not fall into. The 1st 1 is writing too much description on the 2nd 1 is directing. Rather than telling the story, both of these things will jolt the reader or the producer out off our story world, which is not what we want so onto our 1st 1 which is writing too much description. Do you know what a reader or produce often does before they actually read any of the script that actually flip through the script all these days? They'll scroll through if you'll send it to them on. PDF on This is to actually see how the script looks, which sounds very strange, but it will make sense. Is he? The reader is actually seeing how much white space there is in the script, because when there's a good mix of description and dialogue, it allows for a lot of the page to become white. The white of the page actually shows through, but when there's far too much description on the writer is packed it to full of description , no white shows through because it's all just big chunks of description. This actually signals three problems to the reader or the producer straight away. The first is that sluggish description. Andi, writing in my new Shii, which they do in novels but you don't want to do in scripts, will actually pull the reader out of this story world. We've just talked about their minds gonna wander because they got a weight through all the boring details and endless descriptions. On a worst case scenario, they actually just skip them, because if it looks too bigger, Chunk, they can't be bothered. They haven't got the time to read this, that they will just skip it and in short, will have lost them. The second problem is that with all these huge chunks of description, the reader's gonna instantly know that the writer is an experienced on. This is obviously not a good thing. This is not what you want toe to show them. Even if you haven't sold any scripts yet, you want them to think you know what you're doing, Okay? And that starts with the look of the script. So we need our scripts to be lean and mean. There's a good rule of thumb, which actually says that the descriptive paragraphs shouldn't be more than four lines long . Okay, so when you're writing any paragraph a description, make it four lines or less. If it's gonna be longer than that, then split it into two paragraphs. This instantly lets us get more white space through on. People will like that a lot more. The other problem with writing too much description, which we've kind of touched on is that readers and producers don't have a lot of time on their hands, Okay? Their extraordinary busy. They've got lots of things to be doing and reading and discussing so they don't have the time for you to wade through your script. Remember, a page of script should equal around about one minute off screen time. That's why we do them between 90 to 120 pages. One page of script should eat one page of screen time. If it's taking someone 45 minutes to get through a page of script, they're just not gonna want to read it anymore. And they're gonna say it's too long and the worst case scenario that is going to give up and chuck yours in the pilot and go on to the next person's. We've got to give our script the best chance it can possibly have off being read without it being read is not gonna get sold. So let's nail this now. Things I know why a lot of people do it. I mean, when I started, I used to do it okay, because you want to describe everything in great detail you want to get your story willed across? You know, you've read novels before they do it all the time, but words are a premium when we were writing a script. So we've got a practice writing more succinctly. So use less words to get the same amount of information across. Let me just show you two examples off this so you can see what I what? I mean, let's have a look at the first page of script. As you can see here, there are huge chunks of description on You know, I wouldn't try and read this if I were You just have a look at it. If you were forced to look at 100 and 20 pages of that, would you want to read it? Let's say you're the reader. We all the producer, you get given ah, script with 120 pages that looked like that. You're not gonna want to read that. You're gonna go arm. I got this. You're gonna take me forever to get through. Who wants to read that? Now let's look at the next one. See how much more white shows through their instantly. That looks easier to read, doesn't it? The paragraphs is sure. I think there remember. Look, the longest one is 33 The longest paragraph. There is three sentences. It looks like it's quick fire. It is gonna be easy to read as the reader. You're going to see that you're gonna seal the white shining through and say, Yep, That looks good. Okay, This is the difference between an amateur writer and professional writer. A professional writer knows how the reader and the producer feel when they look at things on this, they want to look at something like this. Okay, you guys are gonna be professional writers. If you're not already, you're gonna be professional writers. So please start making your scripts look like this on. Not like the 1st 1 Packing in description into four lines or less can seem a little off putting when you first try it, because naturally you tend to write longer. And so it's quite hard to put it into these little paragraphs. What I like to do and what I started to do to help me with this because everybody naturally writes longer usually is try thinking of it as if you were editing the movie itself. Okay, so each new shot, if you can imagine it cutting to a new shot, Put that on a different paragraph. Okay, that helps an awful lot on. Then, when you've done that, think read over your little paragraph and see if you could say the same thing. In short amount of words. Think poems here. Another strange thing to say. Let's think of poetry. But poetry actually gives the reader a lot of visual information, but it gives it in a very few amount of words. Okay, so if you could make the reader see the image clearly in his head and visualize what's gonna be on the screen, you're doing a good job. So from now on, no more big chunks of description. This brings us on to our second of the deadly sins, which is directing instead of writing. I know many of you probably will want to direct as well is right. A lot of people do, but at the minute we're writing a story when not directing a movie. Okay, it is our story that we've got to concentrate on, and there is nothing that jolts or read out of the story. World more effectively than screen directions. If you've ever read a script with screen directions, they're highly irritating. And as well as this is one of them being annoying. If your scriptures actually bought, you might not be the director. Okay, I hate to tell you that, but if you're writing a high budget script, you're probably not likely to be the director. So doing all this would be a waste of time anyway. What's worse is that directors hate it, so directors would do the opposite just to to annoy you because they don't want to be told what to do. They don't. They will say this is my job to decide how it's directed, not the right job. So on all accounts, it's not good thing to do. Just do it. I mean, you'll never read a story where it says close up on a book or we cut to a medium close up off Bob sitting at the desk, so don't do it here. Here's two examples, which I'll give you time to read or download it in pdf anyway, so have a look there, which show you the difference between writing screen directions are not writing screen directions. And so you can see if yourself what you think and how annoying it would be to have to read a script with all these directions in it. The other thing is, actually, although you don't want to direct the camera, you also don't want to direct the actors. So a lot of time, people will write the character name and then they're right. What they say the dialogue. But then they'll right how the person should be saying it. Actors don't want to be told what to do. That's their job. They want to act. So don't tell them how to do it. Okay, you don't need to do that. The only time you would do that all you would actually direct the camera is if it wouldn't have made sense. If you hadn't say something is ambiguous and you want to say in a certain way, then you can put parentheses on. Say the thing that you want to save. It was sarcastically or something like that. That's fine. If you need to put something in to make the story understandable, you can do it otherwise don't. So now that we've established what we're not going to do. We're not gonna write too much description on. We're certainly not going to direct. What can we do to help our description shining to make it really good? Well, that's what we'll be discussing in our next lecture, so I'll see you in a minute. 19. The key to great description.: Welcome back, everyone. And let's carry on talking about how we can make our description shine. As I've already said, the first thing to do is to treat each paragraph as if it was a shot in the editing suite. This helps you to visualize the script on. Then the person that's reading it can actually visualize the script Mawr because they could see in a shot by shot kind of basis to demonstrate this. I've included A except from Blade, which is written by David S. Korea is an amazing writer, Andi. I put a bad version off it, which is this big, long block off description which some invited would right. I then put how he wrote it, which is in this kind of shot by shot basis on. By reading this, you're going to see how much easier is to read. How much better is to visualize in your head on. It just reads like a movie, and this is the kind of thing we want to do. It might be hard to start writing at this straight away, but my advice is, read lots of other people's scripts. They're free sites. Such a simply scripts dot com, where you can download scripts and you can read the scripts. It's really, really, really important to start doing this because this shows you scripts that have been produced on they've gone through studios and revisions on it really, really helps you a lot. One of my favorite writers, actually Jonathan and Christopher Nolan, I think they're writing is fantastic on I've Got the Batman Trilogy Scripts on. I must have read them 10 20 times, all of them. I note down what bits I like and how they've done things that a certain bit of description or a certain bit of dialogue, how they've got the emotion out of it or the way they've written this bit of action on this is the kind of thing you should be doing. OK, it's not just about watching films. It's about reading script. If you want to be a writer, the next thing we can do to get our description really popping is using metaphors and similes. These are a great way to get as much Visual information across is possible in just a few words. The workouts keys. A brilliant at this. If you've ever read any of the Matrix scripts there. Fantastic, I will really would advise you reading them. Here's a few short descriptions that really captured the imagination on show you how you can get rich visuals with a small amount of words. Have a read of these on. Then you can see for yourself how they've done it. The other good thing about metaphors and similes are there very useful when you're trying to convey something that's quite difficult or complex or lengthy to describe, so by comparing your subject to a location or an object we can relate to? This helps the reader visualize what you mean without you having to go into too much detail and write too much. For instance, if you described a location like an apple saw its like the Apple store instantly, we can imagine what it'd be like. You could have, you know, clean and chrome and modern environment, because we know what the Apple stories like. So if you describe something like then Apple Store, then people will know what that's like, and they couldn't visualize it in their mind. Or maybe you could describe a ship drifting like a ghost across the sea or something like that which helps us imagine a calm nighttime scene with a creaking vessel alone. You know, Pirates of the Caribbean ish kind of thing. Specificity. That's quite hard to say. Specificity. That's specificity, but it anyway, However, specificity is another way to help our reader visualize the writing. So imagine we're writing a scene where our hero turns up at work. All right, consider these different sentences. Tom's car rumbles across the tarmac. It's okay. I mean, you know, it's not long. We haven't got those hideous camera directions, and we know what's happening. But it doesn't say much about our character, Tom. What have we changed it to? Tom's 1984 Chevrolet station wagon rumbles across the tarmac. It is a bit longer, but it gives us a better insight into Tom's character Now. It makes us think what kind of man would be driving this this car? How about we changed it to Tom's Ferrari? Enzo rumbles across the Tomic again. We've changed Tom's character having way, so we got an instant feeling of what type of person would own this car. This can also be quite useful if you want to reverse expectations. Imagine if we saw this Ferrari rumbling across the tarmac, and we're instantly thinking, Oh, we've got some rich, successful person. But then some large middle aged accountant wearing McDonald uniform comes out of it. This is the kind of things that would be lost if we didn't have specificity. Anything that gives us information about character is very useful. Tohave obviously comply to any object on you don't need to always use it. But if it can help reveal something about your character, do try to use it. Strong action verbs. Now, as the name suggests, action verbs described physical or mental action. We read them every day, but when people start to write, sometimes they use basic verbs instead. So, for example, let's take this sentence. She walks through the room. Oh, that's so boring. Isn't that's just horrible sentence to read. He walks through the room. I mean, the verb toe walk. It's got no real descriptive power. Is that at no, as it is kind of like your child's version of of writing something. So there are so many words that you could use, which is so much better than walk you could use. She stride. She limped. She strolls. She paces. She steps, she tiptoes. She marches anything that gives more description than she walks. So whatever your action, or whatever your motion, try and think of a better verb to use. That describes more the character on the situation. And if you're struggling, then just Google the thesaurus, I said. That's hard to say. What birth of uber with the source on, Put in your boring verb on and it will give a big list off better verbs. OK, so try and pay attention to that. Is this kind of little things that actually really heightened your writing? Sounds are very important. They give a great impact as well as great descriptive qualities That sight and sounds are the two senses we primarily usual. I'm watching a movie, so use them in your writing. Instead of writing something like the arrow smashes into the orcs chest, you could use a sound at the star flak. The arrows smashes into the orcs chest, it adds. I know I whenever I say it's a bit stupid, but when you're reading it, the sound has a bit more impact. We've got air hisses through the ventilation duct, the tires, screamers accelerates the wounded soldier howls in pain sounds. Add a lot when you're readings there. Do try and use them. When you're writing character descriptions, we want our reader to vividly imagine our characters, but but we're not in school anymore. We don't want to write things like our character is thin about 30 with red hair and nice white teeth of other bulbous nose freckle on the left side of his face. Physical descriptions are pretty redundant in a script, as it's going to be up to casting agents, directors, Andi actors to choose the physical requirements for for the characters. So there's no point in mind to them here off. The only exception to this is if you need a very specific physical trait for your character toe work. So, for example, if you need an emaciated person like Christopher Bale's character in The Machinist or Harry Potter's got a scar on his forehead, OK, other than that, don't like physical descriptions. What we do want to describe is not the physical appearance so much, but it's their overall persona. Here's some descriptions off Cem really well known characters on see what you think of them , so I've listed them here. Obviously, you can look at the pdf if you haven't had time. Sorry, Surrounded. Wanted to just wait in silence forever. But do you get a sense of who these characters are? Straight away, then? No. Giving a lot off physical description, but they're giving an idea off the person through the description. So when you're thinking about description for your own characters, ask yourself what makes them sound out What makes them interesting? Remember, if it's the hero you're describing, there were the beginning of their transformational arc. So you get bonus points if you can describe their inner conflicts or their failings in a couple of words. In that description show don't tell is a phrase that's thrown around a lot in screenwriting circles, and it means that even though we're writing a script, which we will read, we're still dealing with the movie, which is a visual medium. Therefore, we want to visualize action instead of telling us how a character fields which novelists might do show with how they feel through action. I remember as a movie you're not gonna know how they feel unless they show it to you. So extremely basic example, would be if the characters happy don't right. Gracie is ecstatically happy. Show her being happy by grinning or clapping her hands or whooping or whatever you want. Okay, if the characters angry, they could be silent. They could shout. They could smash things up. They could walk away, away, that kind of thing. You don't have to make it a caricature, but just shows the emotion on. Let the actor take care of the rest rather than telling us. The same is actually true when we're describing locations are objects very often will write things like James enters the kitchen. The floors and countertops are littered with a month's worth of filthy take out boxes. This is fun. This is OK, is that is fine. But to be better if we could show rather than tell, we could change it to something. Like James entered the kitchen. He treads carefully through the pile of filthy, take out boxes. Littering the floor swipes containers from the overflowing countertops. This is much more visual way of writing it because you get in the characters to interact, and therefore, rather than describing something, you're showing it instead. This is also very true off action scenes. People always kind of confused with action scenes. How much to write You want to get one hand, someone just putting, they fight or you get the complete opposite of someone writing every single kick and punch in and move get both are not really that great. When were writing action scenes that we want to describe enough to get the main beats of the action across, but not too much that the reader's gonna become bored and skip that paragraph. I've got another example in your PdF, which is taken from Christopher Nolan and Jonathan Nolan, which from The Dark Knight, And this shows a perfect example of how to write an action scene. So have a look through that in this short scene, we've got the Nolan's of use pretty much everything we've just discussed. There's a lot of lovely white space, and each shot is in its own very short program. This keeps the pace high. It stops confusion on it makes an easy read, doesn't it? The sentences aren't overly long. That kind of short staccato. There's no camera direction, which is always good. They use a simile to describe Batman charging like a demon there. Lots of strong action verbs. They've written things like stairs, tackles, burst, explode, jerks, raws snags yanked, sore on their specificity, such as Hi test nylon, Massive See 1 30 they've used sounds like Rumble brought screams. And finally, they've shown rather than tell Lau Stairs finger restless on the trigger, which is showing that he's nervous and twitchy. Haven't said Allow is nervous and twitchy. They've shown on action, which describes that cops scour off. He's showing that they're scared. The detective looks up Batman and Lower gone on this, obviously showing his disbelief at what what's just happened. Rather than say, he looks up in disbelief, which wouldn't actually being that bad. But still, it's better to show rather than tell. I mean, all in all I know it's a fantastic bit of writing on. It really helps you visualize what's going on, but it's quite sure there's not too much detail and that's it. So that's quick rundown on how to write good description. Okay, Everything we talked about will take a bit of practice, so don't worry or get discouraged if it you don't get it quite right the first time. Okay, That's the great thing about screenwriting. It's not an exam, it's not a test. We can rewrite things again and again on there's no consequence other than making it better . Okay, you can read back what you've written. How could you write it shorter? How can you write it more descriptive? How can you use better words or verbs? How could use similes or metaphors? Could you use any sounds in there, all this kind of thing? Once again, though, I definitely recommend reading a lot of scripts to see how other people write what works and what doesn't work for you. Okay, it's by doing this. You really will make your writing a lot better, so please do it. 20. What goes into making a great scene?: Hi, everyone. We're now gonna move on to writing our scenes. So what are scenes? Well, justice, Strands of DNA at the building blocks of life. Scenes are the building blocks of our screenplay, and they're not just isolated pieces of drama. A good writer will make the scenes flow together in one seamless system. Each scene is going to be essential to the script structure on. They'll build on each other until we've got intricately we've plot by the end. If a scene isn't essential, then cut it out. Remember, we are dealing with a set amount of pages here. We don't want to run over, so every scene has to have a purpose, and it has to be essential. Now, if we look a seen under a microscope, we find out that it, too, has its own structure on. That's what we gonna now be discussing is he seems like many stories, and they've got a beginning, a middle and an end, and they usually about a character wanting something in particular and having trouble getting it. Which kind of sounds familiar, doesn't it? It's basically a small version of our script. Our script is about a character wanted finds or wanting something and having trouble getting it just like a scene is. It's a miniature version off our script, so we can therefore use what we already know to create dramatic and meaningful scenes. First of all, who's seen is it when we're designing our seed, you gotta establish who's seen it is. There's gonna be one character that drives the scene most frequently will be the hero, but it doesn't have to be. Could be. The antagonising could be the stakes character warrior in a secondary character. When we figured out who the scene is centered around, we can then establish what it's about. What is the goal off the scene now? The main goal is as we know, it's like fine, Find the lost our core, rescue someone or beat the bad guy. But the scene goal will be a smaller facet of getting to this bigger outcome. Example. If we've got a story where their hero's main story goal is to defeat a gang boss in order to save his family, for example, the goal for the scene we're currently writing could be to get the address of the gang's hideout from one of the bosses goons. It's an incremental step that would lead the hero either to or away from the main story goal, depending if the hero succeeds in obtaining the information or no. If the scene goal is to get information from this goon, he either gets it, which is one of our yeses, or he doesn't get it, which is a no. It's a setback on this is all. Leading towards our main goal is to find the big bus and find his family. Every time we write a new scene, we've got to establish what the goal of the scene is for the lead character, whether that's the hero of the state's character or antagonised or whoever scene it is. The rest of the scene is then about whether the character can achieve the goal or not on what methods they used to do it just like our script. We can't make it easy, otherwise it's gonna be a flat and boring scene. So how are we going to do that? Well, first of all, we're going to create conflict. Conflict in the scene, like conflicts integrate in. The greater script is of utmost importance. If there's no conflict and said the scene is just flat and boring. It doesn't mean that conflict has to be an argument when you say conflict. Some people, they say, are always. I don't really want an argument in this bet. It doesn't have to be about an argument. Conflict can come in different varieties. It could be something psychological. Such is making a hard decision or trying to pick up the courage to say something or fighting with your conscience. It could be an outer conflict like a car chase the storm or, yes, a fight. You can define seeing conflict into three categories. The first is the character against themselves. The second is a character against another character, and the third is character against the environment. As we've just said, we've got to make sure that the character, the lead character of the scene, can't obtain the scene Gold easily or dramatic tension is gonna be lost to. In order to do this, we can use the various type of conflicts to create obstacles on this. All starts with finding are seen opponent in every scene that's gonna be an opponent, and according to the categories, we've just gone over this might be the character themselves. It could be another character, or it could be the environment. Now, what do all these opponents have in common? They've got single of their own. It's in direct opposition to the lead characters. So whatever the lead characters Gold is for that scene to get information, for example, the opponent is the opposite. Doesn't want to give the information it be, then about the lead character trying to overcome this on trying to get the information and overcome the obstacles that were thrown in their way to get this information. Let's take them one at a time. So if our opponent is the character against themselves, this sounds a bit strange. Because, you'd say, Well, how can the character be his or her own seen opponent? Well, it's not the character. It's the mind, which is the opponent. For example, have you ever really wanted to do or say something? But there's that part of your brain kicks in with the Dow, it tells you, Don't do it. You'll embarrass yourself. You make yourself look an idiot or you can't do it just keeps storm Andi, let everyone else do it. That's your opponent. is your inner voices gold to protect yourself Image. Protect yourself worth. It doesn't want you to look stupid. It, John, is your conscious mind saying Don't look a fool. If you're gonna do this, you're going to be stupid to just just don't do it. Just quit. Walk away whatever you're fighting with yourself. And if you don't overcome this voice, you couldn't meet your goal of telling that person that you love them or whatever the situation is. The next opponent is character against another character. Now this is the most obvious type of conflict we see in the vast amount of scenes. However, if you want yours to really work on to be better than a lot off scenes that I've written, take a step back and see it from the opponents Point of view. Remember when we were discussing antagonised? We said, Look at it from their point of view, their reasons behind doing it. It's same in in a see, when we're designing a scene, the opponent has once a swell. So they're gonna have their own goal for the scene, which is the opposing to the hero. There's Imagine we're writing one where the hero wants to speak to the VP of a company. Andi. He's got to get past the receptionist first. So we walked into this huge office and they want to go and talk to this VP. You know, he needs to get information from him or tell him something, but they got the receptionist in the way. We are clear set above the heroes goal. We put our opponent, which is the receptionist on the potential obstacles. The obstacles that the receptionist will throw up to stop are here and get into his goal, which is to go and talk to the VP. But instead of making the receptionist a kind of caricature character, one of the matron, the people that looks down at him, you know, go away. We should give them a gold, too. You don't have to make it known to the audience. It can be a goal that just, you know, but it's this goal for the opponent that will really make the seam pop. Let's say that in this example, the receptionist has got to get out of work as quickly as possible because they've got Teoh pick up their kids from the baby sitting or something there. But if they let the hero in to see the VP, they're gonna have to stay until the meeting's finished and then they can go home. So the receptionist goal is to make the hero go wake. They want to go and pick up their kids. That's their goal, which is the direct opposite to our heroes. Gold. So that's going to change our obstacles, wouldn't it? So while the hero will be trying every tactic in his arse on to get pastor, the receptionist will be trying. Everything she can to stop him are obstacles. Come build and build and build as he's attempting to overcome everyone that all the excuses that she gives him on she's trying to give more and more excuses why he can't go and see the VP. At the end of the scene. The hero will of either achieved his goal and got to see the VP by overcoming the opponent . Or he won't have achieved his goal and he'll have to walk away on. The opponent would have worked, so we'll either have our yes, is he got towards further towards his goal or no, he's got to step back our final type of opponent is Thedc character against the environment . I'm sure we can all agree that the environment could be an opponent. But can the environment have a goal? Can I have a scene goal? Well, not consciously, obviously. But it seemed gold is to why the kill the character or slow them down or make them unable to reach the destination. So it is going to do whatever it needs to do to stop the character and in turn, creates are obstacles. Let's imagine we're writing a scene where we've got an astronaut and they've got to get back to their rover. What environment? All obstacles could we have? We could have a storm could drive against him. Or you could get stuck in a rock, you know, kind of pull himself free. Or maybe his spacesuit is malfunctioning and and he has to get back. Teoh, they're over before it completely malfunctions, maybe is blinded by sand and not know where years or become. Think of lows of them. Communications could break down all sorts of stuff. So all of these environmental obstacles are stopping him from achieving his goal. It's not him. His mind that stopping him. It's not another character that's stopping him. It's things that happening to him, thes obstacles. They're caught that are made up by the environment around him. So that's all are different types of opponents that we can have on to help make our scenes interesting and dramatic. We can also use our yes knows again. Yes, no pairings. Remember, we use them in that, too, but you can actually use them in scenes as well. And that helps gives us the ups and downs off the scene. For example, we can make an action scene. Where are here? I was going to confront an enemy on a high rise rooftop, and his goal is to capture this case that this enemies got, which has got my no secret codes in it, and he and he needs it. So that's his seen goal is toe. Get this case off the enemy. So how can we use our Yes, no structures are yes, no pairings. To help provide dramatic tension to the scene, we could have a hero hit the enemy, which is yes, he's getting towards his goal of getting that suitcase, But the enemy's got knifes. That's a no, you know, take a step back. The hero could kick the knife away, which is yes, but the enemy punches the hero in the head. And the nearly top was off the building, which is a big no. The hero could regain his balance, which is yes. But now the enemy pulls out a gun again. We're back to No, they clashed in. The hero somehow makes enemy shoot himself. The enemy plummets off the rooftop on the hero Gramps. The case, which is Yes, he's reached his seen goal. He's got it. Yes. So in a simple action scene like this, we've used escalating obstacles. Things have slowly got harder and harder. They started off with fists. Then we went with knife. Then we went with a gun. And then we've created tension by throwing in Yes, beats. The hero is going to win and no beats. The hero is not gonna win. This might sound like it's a bit, uh, text book issue, you know, And some people make examples up and you think, Well, that's just to, you know, prove what you want to say. But this techniques actually use quite a lot. You might not know it has been, But it has been, for example, Raiders of the Lost Ark. Can you remember that scene in Raiders of the Lost Ark where Indies fighting that huge German dude by the plane and the voters of going round? And they got the guy in the cockpit with the gun that uses this. Have a look at that scene and see how many? Yes, knows there are. How many times Indy gets on top on. Then something else happens that stops in. He's gonna get to the cockpit, then it locks. And then he's going to get off the plane. And the German dudes there is Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. All through that scene. Have a look at it. You'll be surprised again. You don't have to use this. You know, if you don't want to use yes knows, don't use them. Is up to you completely. Just one of those tools we can bring to our script on it can create tension through that scene. They can also be used in any genre. You can have fun save a horror fill you got there that say, their serial killer coming to get the hero which is no. The hero gets into a car. Yes, You can't find his car. Keys are no. He sees them on the floor. Yes, the monster smashes the window. Which snow on the hero starts the car and drives off? Yes, You see what I mean? So it's I mean, that's a bit obvious. News you? Sometimes that's a bit cliche. You know, when it's trying the door, it won't open, and then you go and find something else. It could be a bit cliche, but you see how it is used quite a lot. Ah, maybe a court drama where prosecutors got to examine a witness. Maybe she gets the answer that she wants, which is her single, which is, you know, going towards yes. But then she setback because new evidence comes in, which would be a no. They don't have to be. Lots of them could be the lead character's getting on top. But then something happens, which, which brings it back down on, brings about a step, and then Jeff toe get over that obstacle so this could have come back and forth until ultimately, the barrister either achieves her point for the jury or it's rejected what we should. Also, dough is just like our main script. Each scene should have a stakes of some kind. So if the hero that the lead character of that scene doesn't succeed in attaining their seen goal, what will happen? Will they be killed or hurt? Or will they be set back dramatically on their their mission? Or maybe lose a vital chance to find out something away, that kind of thing. If the answer is nothing happens if the answer is this lead character wants to get this goal. But if he doesn't, then nothing know nothing big happens then there's not really any point in having that scene. Every scene we write must move the story forwards, so it's either going to put the hero or the lead character one step closer to their goal or one step away from that goal. It doesn't do either of these. Just cut it out. It doesn't you don't need it. We can also add a ticking clock. Two are seen on. This allows us to build well, probably the most important emotion in any movie, which is tension, and that's what we're gonna be discussing in our next lecture. So I'll see you in a minute 21. Keeping your readers enthralled.: tensions often confused with suspense. Andi, to be honest, they're pretty similar. Actually, you probably don't know what suspense is by God. Quote here, just in case you're you're not sure. It says suspense is a state or feeling of excited or anxious uncertainty about what may happen. How do we create suspense? First, we've actually got to be really involved with the character. We want to really care about them. Otherwise, if we're not bothered, what happens to them? But then who case? It's not gonna be suspenseful because we're not bothered. If the killer gets the more not we don't care, no suspense. Secondly, the threat to this character has to be a parent. It's gonna be very rial. So this is the stakes. It doesn't mean that the current always has time being a life threatening situation. It could be something such as if the character doesn't get this specific piece of information, all is going to be lost. But the the threat off this has to be a parent, as we just discussed thirdly, and one of the most important is that the outcome of this situation has to be uncertain Now . This is really important And it's while we've been using our yes knows in our scenes. Oh, are other obstacles if you're watching Ah, horror, Phil. And we know for certain that specific character isn't going to be eaten by, like, the alien is not gonna be eating. Then there's no suspense, is there? You know he's not gonna be eaten. So what's the point? There's no suspense. However, If we saw that same character in the dark somewhere on, there's a great possibility that they will be munched, but which is not sure are they gonna be? They're not gonna be used him. Then the suspense keep us on the edge of our seats. Now this brings us nicely onto tension. Tension is this suspenseful feeling, but it's stretched out by time. So when we're on the edge of our seats, we want to see if nobody is going to get munched by these alien. We stretch out for as long as possible, but without it becoming boring. If he was caught straightaway, for example, if he was caught straightaway and the alien ETIM straight away, we might feel a bit of shock. We might know, have a quick jump, but that's it the feelings then go. Instead. We want to make him wander around some more in the dark and look around nervously at the other sounds. Denver's got that tin camera we seems to fall over. I don't know why you know jumping, but there's nothing there. Suspense plus time equals tension and tension is what people love to sit and watch. This even happens in television programmes. They use this a lot, especially these days. You never got all those talent shows and the showdowns. We've got two contestants and one is going to be sent home and ones? No. Why do these work? It's because of tension. The presenter holds up that cue card thing and says something like, You know, the person going home tonight will be on then the pause. Why? Because we just let suspense plus time pause equals tension. So we've already got suspense. You know, there are two contestants, which I presume if you're watching it, you care about You've got high stakes in the fact that the person that doesn't win is gonna go home. They're gonna leave with nothing. Where is the person that does win? They're going to go on and you know, hopefully achieve their dreams, whatever they want to do. And there's also uncertainty because we don't know which way it's going is. It's a public vote. We don't know who is going to go, who's going to stay. So it's uncertain. So now the present. It takes that suspense and creates tension by giving that long pause but for announcing who's going home now? I don't actually like these programs. I actually still work on one, but I don't like them particularly. But at these moments you can't help getting a bit. You know, your heart goes a bit faster and you get a bit nervous, and it's because it's creating tension by having this polls. If the present ever just said and the person going home is so intact, you there would be nothing, but you wouldn't feel anything, so that's why they do it. A ticking clock helps us build tension because there's a fixed amount of time to do something before the worst happens, and we're uncertain whether the hero's gonna make it or no, let's take the Martian, which is no great film. In one scene, we've got marks in the Remember is in the habit on the main airlock fails, and it kind of gets blowing across the surface. He wakes up. He finds that there's a crack in his base helmet's visor and adds, hissing out and the voices telling us that his oxygen level was rapidly going down. So if he doesn't fix it soon, he's gonna die. Which is obviously very high stakes for that scene. So these are the things that Marks then got no his seen goalies to stop this and then get back to safety. So he rips off some duct tape and he tries to seal the breach. But you know, the tape gets snagged and it doesn't work. Which of the obstacles is coming? It getting over these obstacles all the while. There's a warning voice, and it's counting down. It's like them saying Oxygen level at 10%. Oxygen level, 5% oxygen level, critical at the audience. This is a great ticking clock because weaken here. What's going on on? It's getting more and more tense because the longer time is stretching, the more likely is he's going to die. Then at the last second, you know you fixes it and we've got a breather into the next scene. So even though you know that the here, I was probably going to survive, it's the obstacles and the uncertainty and the tension that actually make you feel something. And that's what that's what writing is about. It's making the reader or the audience feel something and get their heart beat faster. That's what we want. I recently watched Ah, point break, you know, is that remake of Off the Old Cannery Phil, Andi, The first scene there was actually very tense. We have these two off road sports biker adrenaline junkie people on. They were traversing this ridiculously high mountain top on. Then they have to jump off the end of it and then land on this big pillar of rock. I mean, it's really stupid to be honest with you while they want to do this, but you know that that was the scene, and the first guy does it. Annie lands perfectly on this, this outcrop of rock, but the second guy does it and it doesn't here. You would jumps it a bit on the bikes kids, and it kind of goes off the edge, and he's having to rev it as much as possible to get it back up. Otherwise, you know he's gonna full hundreds or thousands of foot to is to his death. So this is actually quite tense, even though it's a bit ridiculous, it was still quite tense. First of all, we have the state. We had suspense that was built because there was a high stakes. I mean, if this biker can't get his bike back on, the rock is going to die. The likelihood of threat was very high. I mean, it was if he if he falls off is extraordinary, likely he's gonna die. Andi. He keeps slipping back, so the likelihood of it happening gets more and more and more. The uncertainty was also really high. I mean, his friend rushes over to help pull on the handle bars, but the bike still slipping, the guys revving his engine and the wheels are spinning. But he's not getting anywhere. So is he going to die? We don't know. Yes or no, we don't know. We're not sure to. The writer then cleverly built tension by adding time. So as the bike slips, it claws back a little bit, and then its lips again. Then it goes back a little bit. We're extending time and thereby where we're building. The tension is the scene goes as time goes on, the uncertainty over whether he's gonna make it or not actually grows on. Then the friend finally can't take it anymore, and he loses his grip on Do the bike plummets and the guy falls to his death. Just kind of like just hanging out. Remember when Cliff Hanger does the same thing, doesn't it with tension because it's about you. See, the ladies buckle slowly, starting to snap, and it unravels a bit more than on. Then gave goes on the line on me trying to pull over and and the glove is slowly, slowly slipping off again. They're adding time to it, and this is what's creating the tension. If the buckle of just snapped and she just fallen, Yeah, it would have bean shock because I got a company. She's fallen, but they wouldn't have been the tension. Our heartbeats wouldn't have gone faster and faster because we wouldn't have had that time being dragged out there. Kind of is he going to make it is you're not gonna make he's gonna get his No. So that's what we're doing with tension. If you ever watch any of the final destination movies, they I mean, they take tension to the extreme. You know, you know those death scenes where you're looking at all the bits that could possibly go wrong, and then they do something on. It's just dragging time out completely until the person gets killed because you're not sure if the person's gonna die or know what's going to kill them. That's dragging out the tension. So as you can see, writing suspense intention into your scenes is very powerful. On we should be doing is as often as we can. It's also it's possible to create tension in any genre, just in case you're you're wondering. So don't be put off thinking it's just faction or horror films. Save me writing a romance. You could build tension where your hero is plucking up the courage to tell a girl he loves her, so as the CNN far, would he simply? No, we can't get the words out for various reasons on, you know, as a reader or the audience. You're dying for him to say it. You know you're shouting at the TV saying Come on, come on, you moron. Just say it, just tell her. But he calm Andi as the seconds ticking by is risking losing her forever. So tension is built on, then he'll either Tel Aviv that loves it at the end. Or he won't and she'll just walk away. Finally, four scenes. Let's talk about entering and exiting them. People often neglect this, but it really helps because it helps ah seen flow into the next when it helps bridge into the next scene and to make the script flow a lot easier, and it helps to stop the reader being jolted into the next scene. It's a smooth transition. Think of it like a dissolve in video editing there, that kind of smooth transition, There's a few ways that we can help do. This doesn't have to be in every scene, Doug. In the wrong, there's a few ways we can. We can help to do it. Smooth this out. The first is a character can talk about upcoming event Weaken, then cut to that event in the next scene, says a character wants to, you know, I was talking about going to the bank, and then in the next scene it's in the bank. You know that, that kind of thing. I'm a very simple but that kind of thing. A character could mention another person, and then we cut to a scene involving that person. So you got something like, You know, I wonder what Joni's feeding right now. And then we cut to Joan on. We can see what Joni's is actually feeling or doing. We can also use dialogue, which is carrying on in voice over into the next Related. Seen. So you could have a cop, for example, talking about a robbery on, then cutting into the next scene. It's still him talking about the robbery and voiceover as we see the character, other characters doing the robbery, something like that. I've actually got some examples that I've put in a pdf for you to download. So you got to see this. I can't really go through them here. Read them all out would be a bit weird. So I've put those in the PDFs that you could just see a few examples off what I mean and that's it, really with scenes, that's that's it with writing are seen. We just want to know who the scene is about, what their goal is. What happens if they failed to achieve their seeing goal. Want to know who or what the opponent is for the scene. Who's trying to stop the character getting there, seeing goal on. Then what are the obstacles that the character has to overcome to get their goal on one of the methods that they used to try and overcome these obstacles to get to get the goal? Then we can use suspense intention to drag it out, to give the audience, make them feel something. Finally, we can exit the scene in a smooth transition. You don't need to all the time, but it's nice to exit. Exit it with a smooth transition into the next scene. Okay, and that's it. So we're gonna move on now and I will see you in the next lecture. 22. Dialogue techniques.: hi, everyone and could see back. This lecture is about dialogue. Now, I was going to record this lecture on day try and go through everything, but because there's such a lot of examples in this, I've actually decided it might be better to do it as a pdf that you could just read through it because having me read through stuff is not gonna actually get across that Well, you know, if I'm trying to be different voices or whatever, it just be a bit ridiculous. So I think it will be better to do it as a PdF. And you just have to read this bit to get the most out of it. If you would like me to go through it, then just let me know in the Q and A on. I will redo a lecture for this, but just see how you get on, okay, just let me know 23. The end?: and that's it. That is all the information you need to write your script. So go back over these videos, have a look at them. Take your time on. If you've got any questions, go into the Q and A and ask people and let's try and create a kind of community here where we help each other out. Okay, What I'm gonna do is I'm now going to do Cem a new section which might not be up at this time when you're watching this, but I'm doing as quick as I can about what to do after you've done your first draft. So how to get feedback on what you gonna do with that feedback and then what we can do from a business point of view to try and sell your script. So this will be coming out in the next couple of weeks on. I'll hope to see you back here for that. In the meantime, thank you so much for going through the course with me. I've really enjoyed doing it on. I hope I'll see you again. Well done. For getting this far going. Get that script written on. Do let me know how it goes. See you soon.