Thursday, July 14, 2011

Thoughts On Script Writing For Animation #3

Picking up where I left off, let's continue with Scene 2 of my sample script pages, explaining why I chose to write what I did.


The war is raging on both fronts in Europe and the Pacific. The joint is packed with 800 SOLDIERS, SAILORS, MARINES, and CIVILIANS all jumping to the live music of CAB CALLOWAY and his orchestra. Patriotic signs and banners decorate the walls. The Caravan Room looks elegant. The tables are set with white linen tablecloths, sparkling crystal, and the best silverware.
(Establishes high energy opening for the story. Creates an expectation that this story is taking place in an unusual setting that is also historical.)
                                                                                                                     CUT TO:

PEARL MAE JULES (late 30s, blonde, dressed to kill) glides through the room, greeting
customers (BIG SHOTS and COMMON FOLK alike) with a handshake or a touch to the arm, always a brilliant smile. Her unmistakable laugh -- controlled, never giddy -- can be heard over the crowd. Wife of Carl Jules and co-owner of The Oasis, the lady is steel encased in silk and velvet.
(Focuses on Pearl as co-owner of the club. She is a classy but tough lady.)

She marches into the kitchen, her sights fixed on the CHEF. She confronts him, ready to bite his head off.
(Shows through action that she is not to be messed with.)

(controlled anger)
                                                 "This ain't a greasy spoon. You don't slop
                                                  the food on the plates like you're feeding
                                                  hogs. The next time I see a customer served
                                                  a plate with gravy dribbling off the sides,
                                                  I'm coming in here and kicking your butt
                                                  into the Licking River. Ya hear?"
(Dialogue is necessary to explain why she is angry.)

Chef quickly nods his understanding,
(Indicates he knows he's been slacking off on the job and that he better not do that again.)

as Pearl spins on her heels and marches out -- smile on her face.
(She knows she has power and enjoys it.)
                                                                                                                     CUT TO:

This first script page has quickly introduced:
                                                    1) The Setting (with a twist);
                                                    2) High Energy;
                                                    3) a Major Character (Pearl Mae Jules)
Next time, we'll see how the second script page introduces Pearl's husband Carl Jules and develops tension between the two.

The key thing to remember is to use ALL the story elements to keep the audience interested in what's happening on the screen.


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  2. Thanks for you compliment, John. I use Movie Magic Screenwriter program to format my scripts.