Tell Your Story To People

And it doesn’t have to be writers, either.

I am about to direct a short, which means I am rewriting it trying to get free food for the actors trying to get rehearsal time trying to find locations trying trying trying. In a few cases, succeeding.

The script, co-written with one of my students, is in good shape. Way better than in past years. For instance, the year when I did it in the Mike Leigh improv style. Never again. We didn’t even HAVE a script a week before the shoot. Never again. Anyway.

I was in a coffee shop with my friend Michael and he asked what I was up to… I quickly told him the story of my 13 page script. Three locations. Three actors.

And as I was telling it, I realized I’d left a scene out.

Not that was in the script that I’d forgotten to tell him, but a moment that, as I was telling him, I realized the story HAD to have, but that wasn’t in the script. As I was telling him the story, this “story need” moment was so clear and obvious… but I hadn’t ever seen it before. In all the drafts, the reading, the conversations… (and we’re up to draft G at this point)… it had never crossed my mind that this moment HAD to be there or the story would not work.

Giant light bulb over Akers’s head.

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6 Comments

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6 responses to “Tell Your Story To People

  1. Elijah

    Hey, I’m working on a short too. 10-13 pager with 4 actors. Wish me luck and I’ll do the same. 😦

    • yourscreenplaysucks

      Good luck! I’ll post a handout about filmmaking that might come in handy.

      • yourscreenplaysucks

        Hey, go to my archive, last year… 14 January 2010 or search this site for 7 Deadly Sins of Filmmaking. A helpful little handout!

  2. Elijah

    Thanks a lot, man.

    Quick question, do you think it’s archaic to shoot with 16mm rather than digital?

    • yourscreenplaysucks

      NO! Not archaic at all. I love the way film looks. Plus, there’s a very very important intangible feeling that a film camera brings to a shoot. Everybody perks up. Shooting on film changes the way you do coverage, as it’s expensive, so you are more careful. You tend to get through your day quicker. Film is more expensive on the front end, but the digital workflow is more of a pain, so it kinda evens out. Depends on the look you want. My vote is, if you can shoot film, do so.

  3. Elijah

    Thanks. I’m going with film!

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