Infographic shows the most common problems in screenplays

Infographic shows the most common problems in screenplaysClick to Expand

Last year, a scriptreader read 300 scripts for 5 studios, all the while taking notes on the problems and trends he saw. The number 1 problem? The story started too late in the script.

The scriptreader listed 37 frequently occurring problems, here are the top 20:

  1. The story begins too late in the script
  2. The scenes are void of meaningful conflict
  3. The script has a by-the-numbers execution
  4. The story is too thin
  5. The villains are cartoonish, evil-for-the-sake-of-evil
  6. The character logic is muddy
  7. The female part is underwritten
  8. The narrative falls into a repetitive pattern
  9. The conflict is inconsequential, flash-in-the-pan
  10. The protagonist is a standard issue hero
  11. The script favors style over substance
  12. The ending is completely anti-climactic
  13. The characters are all stereotypes
  14. The script suffers from arbitrary complexity
  15. The script goes off the rails in the third act
  16. The script’s questions are left unanswered
  17. The story is a string of unrelated vignettes
  18. The plot unravels through convenience/contrivance
  19. The script is tonally confused
  20. The protagonist is not as strong as [he or she needs to] be

In a way, while the information about script problems is helpful, there’s a ton more information included here. Like the fact that 270 of the scripts were written by male writer(s). Or that only 2 scripts took place in outer space. Or that the most common location for these films-in-waiting was “some anonymous small town,” which just narrowly edged out its exact opposite, a place called “New York City.”

So here’s to more space, less anonymous small towns.

Io9 via Co.CREATE

Click here to read the full article

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About Winter Film Awards

Winter Film Awards (WFA) is a volunteer-run and operated celebration of the diversity of local and international film-making. Our Mission is to recognize excellence in cinema and to promote learning and artistic expression for people at all stages of their artistic careers with a focus on nurturing emerging filmmakers and helping them gain recognition and contacts to break into this difficult industry. We pride ourselves on our diverse collection of Festival selections, allowing our audience to enjoy films they normally wouldn’t think to seek out. WFA is a minority- and women-owned registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

Posted on February 3, 2014, in Filmmaking Tips & Advice and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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