Screenwriting 101: The Voice Over

Screenwriter

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) Whenever there is narration on screen, but the character is not in the scene, this is commonly referred to as a voice over (V.O). It’s a widely used device in many screenplays, but sadly it’s often not used correctly.There are other  more mundane reasons that are … [Read more...]

Typecasting For Screenwriters

Typecasting for screenwriters isn't always a bad thing.

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) Actors have long worried that certain characters or film genres would limit their ability to get different parts. Typecasting can be a boon for some actors and a nightmare for others, but it can also be the same with screenwriters. I admit that when it comes to my … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101 – Clean Up Your Act: The Key To A Good Middle

screenwriting

By Brock Cooper (DoddleNews) When was the last time you watched a movie which had a great beginning and amazing ending, but lagged in the middle? That middle is Act 2 and for many writers is the hardest area to master. A screenplay is all about pacing and going too fast or too slow can ruin … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: The Adaptation

In the movie, "Adaptation," Nick Cage plays a screenwriter that is having problems adapting a popular book into a screenplay. This is often a problem screenwriters have, but there are ways to make the process a little easier.

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) When writers find out they have to write a screenplay adaptation to an existing novel, it can be a frightening. It doesn't matter if the original work is your own or someone else's, because the thought of boiling down a full-length novel into a 120 page script is … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: The Art of Comedy

comedy

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) Almost every film has some comedy in it. The fact is, life has funny moments, and to ignore or deny those moments in your story is to do it and your audience a disservice. Comedy is an art form. Comic timing and the ability to weave jokes and other comic elements … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: Creating A Treatment

script

By Brock Cooper (doddleNews) So, you’ve talked to the producer and he loves your pitch. You’re floating on clouds, and he turns to you and asks for your script treatment. Umm…what? A treatment is a short summary of your script that the producer, or whoever you are talking to, can use to get … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: The Craigslist Screenwriter

You never know who you're dealing with on Craigslist

By Brock Cooper (doddleNews) It's not easy breaking into professional screenwriting. If you're located in Los Angeles, then you've got a step up on everyone else, but even there the only people who outnumber screenwriters are people who think they are screenwriters.  As a freelance writer, I … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: Avoiding the Cliché

Photo courtesy of blog.jobsgopublic.com

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) How many times have you heard, or even said, "Originality is dead in Hollywood?" Movies have borrowed from many of the same central themes since the silent days, but the problem isn't so much that as the proliferation of dialogue and story clichés. You can have a … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: Protecting Your Screenplay

theft

By Brock Cooper (DoddleNews) There is nothing more exhilarating than finishing that polished screenplay and getting it out there for people to read, and hopefully make into a movie. While there are plenty of honest people in Hollywood, there are just as many people ready to steal your screenplay … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: Writer’s Block – When You Just Can’t Think

writers block

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) Writing is a very flow oriented process. When you get going, you can go for hours and hours without stopping. Your fingers dance frenzied across the keyboard, putting your soul onto paper for the world to eventually see on the big screen. Those are the good days. … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: Writers Guild of America

Writers Guild of America West logo

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS)It’s not easy to get into the screenwriting business and it’s even harder to stay in. You can’t walk through Hollywood without bumping into someone that has a script to sell or wants to rip off your script and sell it for their own.There are people that tell you one … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: The 4 M’s Of A Screenplay’s Moral Premise

3098344728_6393a0b2b0_b

By Danny F. Santos (doddleNEWS) Every film's screenplay has a plot structure to it, which can usually be summed up in three acts. Sometimes four or five acts or eight to twelve sequences but anyone who has studied and written screenplays has come across this stuff. As a director, it's important … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: Where Do Ideas Come From?

the-thinker

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) I have talked about how the way a screenplay is written is rather formulaic. It’s the nature of the industry, and it’s difficult to get something made that breaks that formula, especially for a new writer.  However, your plot can come from anywhere.  The idea … [Read more...]

Why You Should Write A Short Film

short-films

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) Every writer wants to write a feature movie that makes its way to the silver screen and wins an Oscar. Once you actually start the process and you realize it's not that easy, you end up being satisfied with a call back and a lifting of the restraining order by that … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: Top 10 No-Budget Screenwriting Techniques

following-poster-christopher-nolan

By Julian Grant (doddleNEWS) Here are my Top 10 Tips for your DIY Cinema Screenwriting success. 1. REVERSE ENGINEER EVERYTHING. START WITH WHAT YOU HAVE AT HAND BEFORE YOU START WRITING. Start by working backwards. Make a list of all the things in your life you have than can be used to make an … [Read more...]

Screenwriting 101: The Plot Points

jaws quint brody hooper

By Brock Cooper (doddleNEWS) Depending on who you ask, a screenplay can have anywhere from two to five plot points. You’d think such an easy concept would allow for a definitive number, but some consider the climax a plot point, others the midpoint, and even a few 'crazies' think the inciting … [Read more...]