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New Q & A - Actors who should be more famous and more...


"For the life of me I will never understand why Audra McDonald isn't bigger outside of Broadway." - Brian

"I will add to that list Irfhan Khan; he gets roles steadily, but in my mind he should be a household name." -Rebecca

"I'll also echo that Rosemarie DeWitt is one of the most talented working actresses, full stop. There is no other Best Supporting Actress of 2008." - Hayden


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Entries in Screenplays (222)

Thursday
May032018

Blueprints: "Thoroughbreds"

This week, Jorge goes into the stables to talk a murderous teenage girl rampage.

Films come from many sources - novels, comic books, video games. The stage has been one of the largest pools of not only source material for the screen, but also of playwrights that eventually make the jump to Hollywood. 

Thoroughbreds was conceived and thought of as a play. It tells the story of two teenage girls (one without empathy; the other one with too much) plotting the murder of one of their abusive stepfathers. As the project evolved, writer-director Cory Finley realized it would be better told as a film. However, its stage roots are still very much present in the text.

Let’s take a look at a particularly theatrical moment, a monologue in which one of the girls recalls her actions, and in doing so puts forward her entire character...

 

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Thursday
Apr262018

Blueprints: "What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?"

This week on Blueprints, Jorge writes a letter to daddy.

Any screenwriting book, seminar, or four-year degree will tell you that screenwriting is all about showing, not telling. It should feel more like describing a house in a Craiglist ad than writing a novel. The script is being written so it can be shot, not read. However, just like any other “rule” in cinema, it’s made to be broken. In fact, those who break rules can sometimes transcend them.

What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?, the 1962 grand guignol classic, is best remembered for the bombastic performances of the two leads, and the drama that took place between them behind the scenes. But reading the script, it’s apparent that the story is charged with remarkable meaning, intention, and impulse. Often hidden in the lines that the audience is never going to read...

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Friday
Apr202018

Blueprints: "A Quiet Place"

This week, Jorge dives deep into the unconventional formal elements inside the screenplay of the number one film in the country right now. 

A Quiet Place is an immersive experience. The film centers around a dystopian future, in which creatures that are attracted to sound have taken over. In order to stay alive, a family has to stay totally silent through their everyday lives. 

The film utilizes sound (the lack of, its intensity, its threat) as a formal device to guide us through the narrative. There is barely any spoken dialogue. Everything is conveyed visually, using alternative devices than those we are used to seeing in film. It is an experiment in form.  Its screenplay is much the same. Using devices that are rarely found in a regular script, the writers create an immersive, completely different experience that lets the reader know right away that this is not your regular horror flick...

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Monday
Apr162018

The April Foolish Oscar Predictions Begin...

Ah... April. It's that time of year when we inevitably make fools of ourselves looooong in advance by predicting the Oscar nominations nearly a full year ahead of time. The 91st Oscars won't be held for another 314 days (February 24th, 2019 if you must know) but it's time we started building the Oscar charts.

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Thursday
Apr122018

Blueprints: "Love, Simon"

This week, Jorge takes a look at an early version of two of the most emotional moments of the groundbreaking teen movie.

“You get to exhale now.” This has become the phrase that has encompassed Love, Simon the best. The loving, healing words of a mother that allows her son to finally be himself. This, alongside the other heart-to-heart Simon has with a parent, is the most moving moment of the movie. 

However, as discussed before in this column, the road from page to screen is a long and arduous one. A screenplay goes through many different forms and iterations, gaining and losing things along the way. Let’s take a look at these two sequences, Simon’s conversations with his parents, and see how differently they began and how emotionally similar they remained in their finished form...

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Thursday
Apr052018

Blueprints: "Psycho"

The April Showers series is back at The Film Experience, here's Jorge on how the most famous shower scene in cinema histor was written on the page.

One thing about iconic cinema sequences is that back when the script is written, before the movie is shot, released and gains critical acclaim (sometimes before it is even developed), they are not conceived to be iconic. They are simply a piece in a puzzle; one more segment in a longer story. 

But sometimes sequences transcend. Sometimes they become essential pieces of the cinema mosaic. And few scenes have stood the test of time better than the shower scene in Psycho. It has been recreated countless times, spun hundreds of homages and parodies, and changed the way horror scenes are shot, and what audiences should expect of the genre. Let’s take a look at how it looked in the page, before it acquired icon status, when it was merely three pages of a script…

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