Sub-question #1 – Dramedy screenplays for short films

Sub-question #1: What are the characteristics of a good dramedy screenplay for a short film? Three act structure The three act structure is a story-structure which is used by most mainstream films. It seems that over the last twenty to thirty years, up to 99% of all American mainstream films have followed the thee-act structure…

Rewritten script

After receiving Gerben’s initial feedback, I started rewriting the script. Most of his feedback was on the dialogue, so that was my start-out point. He also noted that the dialogue still explained too much at this point, which he said is common in first drafts. Dialogue At first I took the script and read it…

Character spines

To further develop the characters and their spines, like Gerben recommended, I filled in the ‘power questions to develop a character’ from the book ‘Screenplays: how to write and sell them’ by Craig Batty (2012). The character-spines show the characters’ dramatic and thematic tension, and they show you what’s at stake for them during the…

Analysis ‘A New Man’

Special thanks to Hughes William Thompson for sending me the screenplay for my research. A New Man is a short dramedy film which has been posted on shortoftheweek.com. I’m analysing this short film to see what kind of character stars in it, which are the main storytelling components are and what the subject of the…

Analysis ‘Normal Doors’

Special thanks to James Sweeney for sending me the screenplay for my research. Normal Doors is a short dramedy film which has been posted on shortoftheweek.com. In it are two characters who are in their early twenties, the age of my target group. I’m analysing this short film to see what kind of characters star…

First Draft

After developing the characters and the concept for the film, it was time to write a first draft. Before I started writing, I drew out a storyline to have something to guide me through the writing process. The clean storyline looks like this (Kines, 2013): For an explanation of the storyline at its plot points…

First feedback Gerben

After sending Gerben my second story setup, we met up for feedback. We took a long walk and discussed the film, ideas and the characters. He gave me a couple of tips and pointers: The characters are perfect opposites; this will work very well in your story. Girl vs boy, rich vs poor, no education…

Second story set-up

After I had rewritten the characters, the first story setup no longer matched the characters and their relationship. So I wrote a second story setup, written with the rewritten characters. On the edge A girl (early twenties, neat clothing) is standing on the edge of a tall building, preparing herself for the jump. Suddenly she…

Rewriting the characters

After having written the first draft of my characters, I found that the reasons as to why they wanted to jump were either weak, unclear or clichéd, and that needed work. I also found that the characters weren’t as much opposites as I’d like. The characters didn’t really match or add to each other, so…

First story set-up

On The Edge A girl (early twenties, neat clothing) is standing on the edge of a tall building, preparing herself for the jump. Suddenly she hears the door behind her open, a guy (early twenties, casual clothes) steps onto the roof and spots her: “Oh. Hey.” Girl: “You can’t stop me!” Boy: “I wasn’t.” Girl:…

First character drafts

After deciding on the subject for the short film, I decided I wanted to go for an extreme setting to instantly grab the audience’s attention. The most extreme case of someone with a quarter life crisis is someone who becomes suicidal because of the quarter life crisis. So I decided to put that person on…

Oscar-nominated Shorts

On Monday 22 February, Concordia was showing the five short films which were nominated for an Oscar this year. I decided to go and see how the professionals made a great short film. While watching I took notes to see if there were general characteristics which all Oscar-nominated films shared which I could possibly implement…