Craft

Craft-based articles.

Martin Scorsese Masterclass

Martin Scorsese Masterclass Review: Is It Worth It?

COURSE REVIEW: SCORES Lessons: 8.3 Workbooks: 8.1 Community & Interactivity: 6.5 Value: 8.1 OVERALL VERDICT: Thumbs Up! Pros and Cons Pros: Scorsese’s expertise and eloquence make him a natural interview subject and teacher Video lessons cover every aspect of directing and of developing your own vision The course is flexible and easy to dip in …

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Paddington 2

Writing and Filmmaking Lessons from PADDINGTON 2 (2017)

PADDINGTON 2 video essay PADDINGTON was that rare, quintessentially British film that found success around the globe. So there was little surprise when the studio confirmed PADDINGTON 2. Paul King returned to direct. David Heyman (of HARRY POTTER fame) returned to produce, through Heyday Films and StudioCanal UK. Paul King and Simon Farnaby wrote the …

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The Social Network

VIDEO ESSAY: Dislikable Characters – THE SOCIAL NETWORK

THE SOCIAL NETWORK They’re making a film about Facebook? Commentators greeted news of the project with scepticism. But with a tight script from Aaron Sorkin (THE WEST WING) and clinical direction from David Fincher (GONE GIRL), THE SOCIAL NETWORK has proved to be one of the modern era’s best – and most prescient – thrillers. …

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Learn From Crazy Rich Asians

Writing and Filmmaking Lessons from CRAZY RICH ASIANS (2018)

CRAZY RICH ASIANS Video Essay CRAZY RICH ASIANS is the smash hit that proves that, contrary to recent reports, the rom-com isn’t dead. Rachel (Constance Wu) is an economics professor in New York. When her boyfriend Nick (Henry Golding) asks her to join him in Singapore for his friend’s wedding, she doesn’t know that his …

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Haunting of Hill House - Dual Perspectives

VIDEO ESSAY: Dual Perspectives – THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE

THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE is a Netflix miniseries loosely adapted from the book by Shirley Jackson. It was created by horror maestro Mike Flanagan (OCULUS, GERALD’S GAME), who also directed every episode. It revolves around the Crain family who, as children, lived in a haunted house where their mother died. …

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screenplay font industry standard

What is THE industry-standard screenplay font?

Follow my blog with Bloglovin Screenplay Font – Does It Matter? This article will explain what the industry-standard screenplay font is. As well as explaining what it is, we’ll look at the reasons why this is font holds the title of the industry-standard font for screenwriters and filmmakers alike. Additionally, we’ll explore the possibility of whether there …

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Alfred Hitchcock quotes

15 Great Alfred Hitchcock Quotes

15 Great Alfred Hitchcock Quotes The Master of Suspense, Alfred Hitchcock was a genius who needs no introduction. He cut his teeth in the UK with early thriller masterpieces like THE 39 STEPS, but the move to Hollywood brought bigger budgets and more prestige. REAR WINDOW, VERTIGO, NORTH BY NORTHWEST and PSYCHO are regularly cited …

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Catastrophe - dramedy

VIDEO ESSAY: The Dramedy Balance – CATASTROPHE

CATASTROPHE CATASTROPHE is a Channel 4 and Amazon Prime show. It’s created by, written by, and stars American comedian Rob Delaney and Irish writer-actress Sharon Horgan. It was nominated for a Peabody Award and Delaney and Horgan won a BAFTA for Best Writer: Comedy. The first episode of CATASTROPHE opens with an American businessman (Delaney) …

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Breaking Bad Gus Fring

VIDEO ESSAY: Creating the Fascinating Antagonist – Gus Fring

Gus Fring BREAKING BAD, created by Vince Gilligan, introduced us to many great characters. Antihero Walter White (Brian Cranston), the cancer-diagnosed high school teacher who turns to making meth. Jesse Pinkman (Aaron Paul), his young sidekick, who was originally intended to die early on but proved a favourite. Hank Schrader (Dean Norris), Walt’s brother-in-law and …

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LA Confidential video

Writing & Filmmaking Lessons From LA Confidential (1997)

LA CONFIDENTIAL LA CONFIDENTIAL put a modern spin on the hard-boiled noir, reinvigorating the genre and leading to an Oscar win for Brian Helgeland and Curtis Hanson for Best Adapted Screenplay. The world they create on screen is partly familiar – Hollywood of the 1950s. But the story mostly takes place in its seedy underbelly, …

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24 real time screenplay

OPINION: The Thrill of the Real Time Screenplay

Before editing was created and perfected as its own art form, every film was in real time. (Although this isn’t entirely true: before sound, films were shown at whatever speed the projectionist decided.) However now, even though editing opens up so many possibilites, the real time screenplay is still popular. There are several levels of …

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screenwriting electricity in The Silence of the Lambs

What is “electricity”, in screenwriting terms?

On the Special Edition DVD/Blu-Ray for THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, Jodie Foster is interviewed as part of a retrospective. In the interview, Foster explains that a structurally insignificant scene (the one where “Multiple” Miggs can’t contain his excitement, after Clarice’s first meeting with Hannibal Lecter) is in fact very important: The scene achieves one key …

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Alan Grant (Sam Neil) in Jurassic Park

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Dr. Alan Grant (JURASSIC PARK)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neil), the palaeontologist hero of Steven Spielberg‘s dinosaur horror-adventure blockbuster JURASSIC PARK.   Alan Grant and JURASSIC …

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Danny Ocean (George Clooney), Ocean's Eleven

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Danny Ocean (OCEAN’S ELEVEN)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Danny Ocean (George Clooney), the mastermind of a complex casino heist in Steven Soderbergh‘s OCEAN’S ELEVEN.   Danny Ocean and OCEAN’S ELEVEN …

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Obsessing over one script reader

Stop Obsessing About One Script Reader’s Notes

Obsessing About One Script Reader Here at Industrial Scripts, we get it all the time. You can almost hear the echoing footsteps of the query, before it arrives: “Can I have the same script reader as before?” It’s actually serendipitous this should be asked so frequently of late, because we’ve recently shifted to a new …

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Se7en Seven and atmosphere in screenplays

Why Screenwriters Should Understand Screenplay Atmosphere

Understanding Screenplay Atmosphere Screenplay atmosphere is difficult. At the bottom of the poster for THEY CAME TOGETHER, a spoof of rom-coms, there’s a disclaimer: Please note: New York City plays such a central role in this story, it is almost like another character in the movie. Although intended as a compliment, this has become a familiar …

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escalating stakes in Ready Player One

OPINION: Why Your Second Act Must Have Escalating Stakes

The second act is all about escalating stakes. There’s a gap in the classic three act structure as extolled by many screenwriting books and teachers. The problem is the second act, which is usually the bulk of the story. Depending on your terminology of choice, you’ll likely find a plot point or turning point at …

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Elisa in The Shape of Water

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Elisa (THE SHAPE OF WATER)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Elisa (Sally Hawkins), the non-speaking cleaner who falls in love with a human-amphibian creature in Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy romance, THE …

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closure in La La Land

OPINION: Finding The Perfect Closure

Finding the perfect ending is difficult, even for professional writers and big-budget films. The resolution after the climax provides closure for the audience and characters. Sometimes termed the “denouement,” this scene is just as important as the climax itself. It’s the part of the story that resolves any remaining subplots. The script shows how the characters’ lives …

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Greta Gerwig quotes

15 Greta Gerwig Quotes for Writers and Filmmakers

Already one of the key, iconic actresses of the American indie scene, appearing in the likes of FRANCES HA, MISTRESS AMERICA and 20TH CENTURY WOMEN, Greta Gerwig made her solo directing debut with LADY BIRD, a warm and moving story of a mother-daughter relationship in 2002 Sacramento. It was nominated for several Oscars, including two …

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Jordan Peele quotes

10 Jordan Peele Quotes Writers and Directors Can Learn From

Jordan Peele, one half of the sketch comedy duo KEY & PEELE, burst onto the cinema scene with the highly acclaimed and successful “social thriller” GET OUT, which he wrote and directed. At the 90th Academy Awards, it was nominated for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay and Best Actor (for Daniel Kaluuya), a …

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Bill Tench Mindhunter

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Bill Tench (MINDHUNTER)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on FBI special agent Bill Tench (Holt McCallany) from MINDHUNTER.   Bill Tench and MINDHUNTER MINDHUNTER is a crime drama based on the …

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Shakespeare lessons for screenwriters

OPINION: Lessons from Shakespeare For Screenwriters

An odd trend in cinema surfaced in the 1990s and continued into the 2000s. A spate of teen films relocated the plots of William Shakespeare plays to high schools. O updated Othello to make the main character a basketball player rather than a military general. 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU found a natural fit for The Taming …

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Genre hybrid

OPINION: The Key to a Great Genre Hybrid

A genre hybrid, a cross between two or more genres, can be a boon. It’s giving the audience something familiar, tapping into genre conventions, but also fresh. However, it can also confuse audiences (and marketers!). Genres tend to have their own audiences and trying to appeal across them can alienate both.   The sci-fi Western …

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Luke Skywalker

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Luke Skywalker (STAR WARS)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill), the hero of the original STAR WARS trilogy. Luke Skywalker and STAR WARS STAR WARS was …

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Rebecca Bunch (Rachel Bloom) in Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

Genius Character Reveal: Rebecca Bunch (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Rebecca Bunch (Rachel Bloom), the title character from The CW musical dramedy show CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND. Rebecca Bunch and CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND …

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Dee Rees quotes

15 Inspiring Dee Rees Quotes for Writers & Filmmakers

Screenwriter and director Dee Rees’ debut feature film PARIAH was met with positive critical acclaim and since then, her Emmy Award-winning HBO series BESSIE and her feature film MUDBOUND have impressed both audiences and critics alike.  Here are 15 of the best Dee Rees quotes to inspire all screenwriters and filmmakers…. 15 Dee Rees Quotes for …

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Theo Faron in Children of Men

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Theo Faron (CHILDREN OF MEN)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Theo Faron (Clive Owen), the weary and reluctant hero of Alfonso Cuarón’s prescient dystopian thriller CHILDREN OF MEN. Theo Faron and …

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great dialogue subtext

OPINION: Great Dialogue is All in the Subtext

Writing great dialogue is difficult, but one way to get a step closer is through the use of subtext. Subtext, literally what is below the text, is the deeper implication behind the surface meaning. Dialogue is not the same as real speech. Dialogue is inevitably heightened, even if it’s simply a matter of removing spaces and …

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american beauty narrative momentum

How To Generate Narrative Momentum in Screenplays

There’s a great quote from F. Hauser and R. Reich that states: “In all the best material, the outcome is inevitable and inherent in the opening moment and every moment inbetween”. Think how fated Daniel Plainview’s rise to power and fall into corruption feels throughout THERE WILL BE BLOOD or how unavoidable Travis Bickle’s descent …

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everyday heroes Sully

Why Screenwriters Should Tell Stories about Everyday Heroes

With the dominance of superhero and tentpole films, sometimes it seems like there’s no place in cinema for everyday heroes. Most audiences don’t want their reality simply reflected back to them. However, there are still degrees between these extremes. It’s still possible to engage an audience by showing everyday heroes on screen. As well a sense of escapism, …

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Lou Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal) in Nightcrawler

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Lou Bloom (NIGHTCRAWLER)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Lou Bloom (Jake Gyllenhaal), the thief-turned-cameraman in NIGHTCRAWLER. Lou Bloom and NIGHTCRAWLER NIGHTCRAWLER is a neo-noir thriller written and directed …

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classic movies usual

10 Inspired Ways Writers Came Up With Classic Movies

‘Where do you get your ideas from?’ It’s the question that gets a ripple of groans at any Q&A session, and an answer comprising a shrug and escorting the asker into a waiting van. ‘Where did you get that idea from?’ That’s a different story. Often the initial ideas that writers crafted into classic movies …

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Hans Landa (Inglourious Basterds)

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Hans Landa (INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Hans Landa (Christoph Waltz), the SS Colonel villain of Quentin Tarantino’s INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS. Hans Landa and INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS While it …

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dead man's shoes

10 Screenwriting Lessons From DEAD MAN’S SHOES (2004)

DEAD MAN’S SHOES (2004) DEAD MAN’S SHOES follows Richard (Paddy Considine), a soldier who returns to his home town to get revenge on the men who abused his mentally-challenged brother Anthony (Toby Kebbell). The script was written by director Shane Meadows and Considine, with additional material by Paul Fraser. After the bigger budgeted ONCE UPON A …

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matt orton screenwriter

The Insider Interviews: Matt Orton

THE INSIDER INTERVIEWS: MATT ORTON The Insider Interviews series started in 2010 as a set of recorded interviews, featuring the likes of Tom Hiddleston, Gareth Unwin, who produced THE KING’S SPEECH, Ben Wheatley and Hossein Amini, the Oscar-nominated writer of DRIVE and THE TWO FACES OF JANUARY. You can watch these here. The Insider Interviews now exist …

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Baby Driver

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Baby (BABY DRIVER)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Baby (Ansel Elgort), the eponymous protagonist of BABY DRIVER. Baby and BABY DRIVER Writer-director Edgar Wright based BABY DRIVER on …

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room arguing laughing

10 Cinematic Scenes of People, Arguing and/or Laughing

Cinematic Scenes of People, Arguing and/or Laughing It sounds like a dull writing exercise. Put your characters in a room and see what happens, arguing or laughing. But here are 10 great, cinematic scenes that prove being stuck in one room doesn’t have to mean being stuck in a boring scene.   1. GOODFELLAS Who’s …

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Kurt Vonnegut

31 Writing Lessons From Iconic Author Kurt Vonnegut

31 Writing Lessons From Iconic Author Kurt Vonnegut With his deceptively simple prose style, novelist, playwright and essayist Kurt Vonnegut, jr. (1922 – 2007) bridged sci-fi and literary fiction. Novels like Slaughterhouse-Five, Cat’s Cradle and Breakfast of Champions didn’t exactly open readers to new worlds as new ways of thinking. Perhaps this is why Vonnegut has rarely been adapted …

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screenwriter species

Which Species of Screenwriter are you?

The ‘building-block’ nature of screenwriting is such that any screenwriter needs a selection box of varying skills . As you’d expect, different screenwriters tend to find themselves drawn to, and more skilled at, certain aspects of the process. Whether its creative story ideas, unique characters, or a structure so tight, there are perks and pitfalls …

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Adam Driver, Paterson, low stakes

OPINION: The Perks & Pitfalls of Low Stakes Screenplays

Is it possible to have a film that tells a story without conflict? Conventional wisdom would say no. However, this doesn’t mean that every film needs a world-ending threat. It is possible, but difficult, to tell a great story with low stakes. The physical scale of the stakes and how the stakes feel to an audience don’t always …

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Cosmo Lawlor in Sing Street

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Cosmo Lawlor (SING STREET)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Conor, a.k.a. Cosmo Lawlor (newcomer Ferdia Walsh-Peelo), from SING STREET. Cosmo Lawlor and SING STREET From writer-director John Carney (ONCE), SING STREET is a sweet and touching …

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character sacrifice in Wrath of Khan

OPINION: Writing a character sacrifice that works

A character sacrifice is a difficult moment to get right. Audiences today are incredibly cine-literate. They’ve seen it all before, and can tell when a film or TV show has used storytelling shortcuts. When It Works Still, like any common trope handled well, a character choosing to die can still be very effective and moving. What was I …

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Dale Cooper thumbs up, Twin Peaks

GENIUS CHARACTER REVEALS: Dale Cooper (TWIN PEAKS)

In our Genius Character Reveals series we examine scenes and moments where a film or TV show reveals a tremendous amount of character information in a compressed amount of screen time. This month’s instalment focuses on FBI agent Dale Cooper (Kyle Maclachlan), the lead character from TWIN PEAKS. Dale Cooper and TWIN PEAKS TWIN PEAKS is the rare TV show that was a …

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Screenwriter - Unsettle Audience

OPINION: When Screenwriters Should Unsettle Audiences

There’s an old Hollywood saying to writers that if you want to send a message, use Western Union. The idea is that audiences want films to entertain them, not to make them think. Studio heads and producers didn’t want to unsettle the audience. This is depicted in the Coen brothers’ typically excellent black comedy BARTON …

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Minnie Goetze (Bel Powley) - The Diary of a Teenage Girl

Character Reveal: Minnie Goetze The Diary of a Teenage Girl

In this series we look at scenes and moments where a film or TV show has revealed a great deal of character information in a short amount of screen time. This instalment focuses on Minnie Goetze (Bel Powley) from the period coming of age film THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL. THE DIARY OF A …

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