All posts filed under: filmmaking

Scriptwriting In A Nutshell: External Antagonist and/or Obstacle

As a writer, you need to care for your external antagonist as much as you care for your main character. The external antagonist or the external obstacle that the main character is trying to overcome is going to drive your story; and strong, consistent obstacle or antagonist can only benefit your story. Things, bad things need to happen to your hero before they reach the end of their journey. Those events are triggered by the antagonist or obstacles, which often are out of the hero’s control. As a writer, you have to make the antagonist or the obstacles compelling enough for the audience to care for them. Often in films and stories, if the antagonist is not as strong and compelling as the protagonist, the story isn’t exciting and fails to attract an audience or readers. So, while working on your external antagonist or the external obstacles that at the end of the day will make your character take action, you need to make sure that those are characters and circumstances you, as a writer, …

Scriptwriting In A Nutshell: Obstacles We Care About

As screenwriters, our job is to make our main character’s journey throughout the whole film as exciting and challenging as possible. If we don’t put any obstacles on the protagonist’s way, our film will be very short and most likely uneventfully boring. Film is kind of imitation of life, and real life is filled with obstacles at every turn. According to Alex Epstein, there are three basic kinds of obstacles: a.    External antagonist b.    Intimate opponent c.    A tragic or comic flaw In your script, you need at least one kind of obstacle, taking centre stage in your story. However, a lot of screenwriters throw all three obstacles (a, b, and c) at the protagonist to make their life as miserable as possible. In real life, when we encounter problems, we try to solve them, which in reality means that bit-by-bit our problem/s (think obstacles in the film) will get resolved.  When you write a screenplay, you want to make your character’s problems as big as possible, possibly even coming all at …

Scriptwriting In A Nutshell: Make Your Characters Different

  To Learn more about Scriptwriting check out my Indie Filmmaking School    When creating characters, a common mistake many new writers make is to create characters that are too similar to one another. I made that mistake countless times myself. If the characters we have created are too similar to one another, they will act in the same way, will wear identical clothes, or will order the same place in the same place. Your reader will quickly get confused, often too confused to carry on reading your screenplay. In your, the writer’s, mind you might be seeing your characters very differently than you describe them on paper. However, your reader will not see what is in your mind. For the reader to know what you see, you need to include the differences between your characters in your script. It can be anything from the way they wear their hair to the type of tea they drink in the morning. If your characters are too similar, you will lose your reader pretty quickly, and your screenplay …

Scriptwriting in a Nutshell: Character’s Goals and Stakes

  To Learn more about Scriptwriting check out my Indie Filmmaking School    Most stories begin with the main character/s wanting something, something the character cares for genuinely, has a lot invested in but for some reason can’t get. The character’s goal/s or want/s should be something the audience will also care about deeply and will be able to identify with. If you give your character/s what they want on the next page of your screenplay, your film will not only be concise but also will lack dramatic tension. That’s why, as a writer, you need to get comfortable introducing obstacles in your story. As writers, we throw obstacles at our protagonists to make our story more interesting and more dramatic by adding layers. We aim to keep our character/s as far away from reaching or achieving their goals as we can, at least until we decide to finish the story. The obstacles (I will cover them in more depth in another post) we create for our characters can be: –   external –   internal –   …

Ask Yourself If You Need a Sales Agent

You worked incredibly hard to complete your film; you spent years editing and begging people for favours, especially when your project had no budget for anything; the years of hard work have finally paid off and now your film is finished. You believe in your project and your talent, and deep down in your heart, you know that your film is going to be the toast of countless film festivals, which will make finding a sales agent to represent your film much easier. Well, in the old days of gatekeepers and pre-Internet days that was surely the way to “make it” in our industry and to be noticed as a talented filmmaker. But since the Internet revolution, a lot has changed for everyone in the industry. And having an agent to represent your film is not a must any longer. However, some filmmakers still would like to find a sales agent to represent their perfect work. Before you embark on your research, read my short text below: Patience. It takes a long time to find …