Daily Dialogue — November 4, 2017

“You were going to ask me for a divorce so you could be with some fucking fuckhead Brian Speer? You kidding me? Who are you? The only thing I know for sure is you’re a God damn liar.”

The Descendants (2011), screenplay by Alexander Payne and Nat Faxon & Jim Rash, novel by Kaui Hart Hemmings

The Daily Dialogue theme for the week: Hospital.

Trivia: The screenplay for this film was featured in the 2008 Blacklist; a list of the “most liked” unmade scripts of the year.

Dialogue On Dialogue: This is a great setup scene for a later payoff when Matt (George Clooney) says good-bye to his comatose wife.


Daily Dialogue — November 4, 2017 was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Go Into The Story – Medium

2017 Austin Film Festival: Scott Frank (Part 3)

Reflections on observations by Out of Sight and Minority Report screenwriter.

One of the panels I attended at the recent Austin Film Festival featured Scott Frank. Moderated by Craig Mazin, Frank — whose screenwriting credits include Dead Again, Little Man Tate, Malice, Out of Sight, Minority Report, Marley & Me, and Logan — delved deep into his creative and writing process. I thumbed my way through copious notes on my iPhone notes app. Over the past few days, I’ve done a series of reflections based on comments made by Frank during the talk.

Scott Frank

Today:

You can’t be a writer if you’re not a reader.
You’re using words in your script and reading books feeds that.
I read everything. Always learning how writers write.

It’s simple: Writers read.

Why?

It’s about words.

As Scott says, we use words in our writing. Reading exposes us to new ways to use words. As Rumer Godden wrote:

“A writer who has never explored words, who has never searched, seeded, sieved, sifted through his knowledge and memory… dictionaries, thesaurus, poems, favorite paragraphs, to find the right word, is like someone owning a gold mine who has never mined it.”

It’s about writing.

When we read, we take in how a writer writes. Whether conscious or unconscious, that can influence how we write.

It’s about the soul.

Creative expression is an outer exhibition of energy. Stories feed the soul and refuel our creativity.

Watch movies. Watch TV. But don’t forget: Read.

Words of wisdom from Scott Frank.

On November, his new series ‘Godless’ debuts on Netflix.

Jeff Daniels in ‘Godless’.

‘Godless’ website here.

Twitter: @scottfrank.


2017 Austin Film Festival: Scott Frank (Part 3) was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Go Into The Story – Medium

‘Thor: Ragnarok’ Targets $100M+ Domestic Debut, Kicking Off the Holiday 2017 Season

Given the November opening weekend record is currently $ 158 million set by The Hunger Games: Catching Fire back in 2013 don’t expect Disney and Marvel’s Thor: Ragnarok to top that. However, a top five opening, placing it among blockbuster debuts from the Harry Potter and Twilight franchises, isn’t out of the realm of possibility. The latest entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is earning great reviews and looks to dwarf all other contenders this weekend, including STX’s A Bad Moms Christ…
Box Office Mojo – Top Stories

2017 Austin Film Festival: Scott Frank (Part 2)

Reflections on observations by Out of Sight and Minority Report screenwriter.

One of the panels I attended at the Austin Film Festival featured Scott Frank. Moderated by Craig Mazin, Frank — whose screenwriting credits include Dead Again, Little Man Tate, Malice, Out of Sight, Minority Report, Marley & Me, and Logan — delved deep into his creative and writing process. I thumbed my way through copious notes on my iPhone notes app. Over the next several days, I’ll do a series of reflections based on comments made by Frank during the talk.

Scott Frank

Today:

It has to come from character. I’m always going back to the people.

Why character?
It’s about what makes a person a person.
What do they want?
What do they fear?

It’s the low grade fever of what your characters are about.

What is it that speaks to me?
Is this a character I like?

These are my hastily typed takes on what Scott was saying, so perhaps more paraphrased than actual quotes. However, during his talk, it was abundantly clear how critically important Scott believes working with characters is to crafting a story. Indeed, the references above are scattered throughout his comments as he kept returning to the subject again and again.

Those of you who have followed my blog for any time know that I promote character based screenwriting. My mantra:

“Start with character. End with character. Find the story in-between.”

Based on what I heard in Scott’s comments, I feel safe in saying I think he aligns with this perspective.

So what’s the big deal of working with characters?

Characters are Plot.

Their wants, needs, fears, personal histories, backstories, and destinies — especially the Protagonist — emerge as the backbone of the story’s structure.

Characters are Theme.

Whatever thematic point of a story is, it’s invariably tied to the emotional and psychological journey of the Protagonist and other key characters.

Characters are Dialogue.

Scott hit on this point a few times in his talk. For example, he said, “If I can write dialogue, I can hear the characters, and I know I can continue process.” His comment reminded me of the response the great playwright August Wilson gave when asked how he wrote such great dialogue: “I don’t. They do.” The ‘they’ in question were his characters.

In sum, characters are STORY. Everything you need to know is right there inhabited within and by your characters.

It has to come from character. I’m always going back to the people.

Great advice. Always lean into your characters. Always go back to the people who exist within your story universe.

More tomorrow from the 2017 Austin Film Festival panel featuring Scott Frank.

Here is a teaser for Scott’s Netflix series ‘Godless’ which he wrote and directed. The series debuts this on November 22.

‘Godless’ website here.

Twitter: @scottfrank.


2017 Austin Film Festival: Scott Frank (Part 2) was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Go Into The Story – Medium

Daily Dialogue — November 2, 2017

Michael: You and I are going to move my father to another room, now can you disconnect those tubes so we can move the bed out of here?
Night Nurse: That is out of the question.
Michael: You know my father? Men are coming here to kill him, now help me, please.

The Godfather (1972), screenplay by Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola, novel by Puzo

The Daily Dialogue theme for the week: Hospital.

Trivia: According to Al Pacino, the tears in Marlon Brando’s eyes were real, in the hospital scene when Michael pledges himself to his father.

Dialogue On Dialogue: This is a pivotal sequence in the movie in which Michael’s cool, calm reaction not only saves his father’s life, but also moves Michael (Al Pacino) closer to taking over as leader of the family after his father dies.


Daily Dialogue — November 2, 2017 was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Go Into The Story – Medium

2017 Austin Film Festival: Scott Frank (Part 1)

Reflections on observations by Out of Sight and Minority Report screenwriter.

One of the panels I attended at the Austin Film Festival featured Scott Frank. Moderated by Craig Mazin, Frank — whose screenwriting credits include Dead Again, Little Man Tate, Malice, Out of Sight, Minority Report, Marley & Me, and Logan — delved deep into his creative and writing process. I thumbed my way through copious notes on my iPhone notes app. Over the next several days, I’ll do a series of reflections based on comments made by Frank during the talk.

Scott Frank

Today:

The first paragraph of a screenplay can tell you if they can write.
The first five pages can tell you if they have a voice.

Both of these are critical. And as Scott notes, both need to be apparent at the earliest stages of a script’s pages.

How can you tell if a writer can write from the first paragraph of a script?

They have a solid grasp of and love for the English language.
They know how to immediately set the tone and atmosphere of the piece.
They are smart enough to write something which is entertaining.
They are clever enough to exploit a narrative element which hooks the reader.
They embrace visual writing.
They engage the reader’s emotional life.

Bottom line, as per Scott Frank, they establish right up front that they are in control. They know the craft, they know this story universe, and they know how they want to tell the story.

All that in a first paragraph.

How can you tell if a writer has a voice from the first five script pages?

They create a consistent tone throughout the script’s opening.
They convey personality through both dialogue and scene description.
They match style to genre as an active reflection of the story’s feel.
They exhibit something distinctive in the interplay of moments and scenes.
They make a reader feel there is a real character telling the story.

From their words on the page, the writer exhibits a unique narrative voice, specific to this story, this writer, these pages.

All that in a script’s first five pages.

It’s a lot to ask. It also speaks to how important it is to accomplish both goals straightaway in a script. It not only can grab a reader’s attention and propel them into the story, it also creates a kind of mental lens through which one interprets and experiences the entire rest of the story.

When you know the writer can write… has a firm control of the story… has a distinctive voice… and that’s all established from the first paragraph through the first five pages…

That sets us up to look forward to the rest of the script with anticipation and hope that these pages we’re going through…

It’s a good read.

More tomorrow from the 2017 Austin Film Festival panel featuring Scott Frank.

Here is the trailer for Scott’s Netflix series ‘Godless’ which he wrote and directed. The series debuts this month.

Those of us in attendance at Scott’s Austin Film Festival panel got a sneak preview of a second ‘Godless’ trailer. The series looks great, really looking forward to watching it!

‘Godless’ website here.


2017 Austin Film Festival: Scott Frank (Part 1) was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Go Into The Story – Medium

Raindance 2017 films nominated for British Independent Film Awards

Congratulations to feature films In Another Life, Isolani, and short film Work for receiving British Independent Film Awards nominations! All three films were screened at the 25th Raindance Film Festival, and we are excited to see them continue their journey and garner recognition.

 

In Another Life

Nominated for the Discovery Award at the British Independent Film Awards.

In Another Life, from debut director Jason Wingard, follows the harrowing journey of a Syrian refugee struggling to reunite with his wife.

After being forced to flee war-torn Syria, Adnan and his wife Bana are separated on route through France. Adnan faces the crippling challenge of living in ‘The Jungle’. His only option is to risk his life in a series of desperate attempts to cross the channel, hoping he will be reunited with his wife. Set against the backdrop of the refugee camp known as ‘The Jungle’ in Calais the film combines documentary footage and real-life interviews with a dramatic narrative to give a voice to refugees that are seldom heard.

In Another Life had its World Premiere at Raindance Film Festival 2017, where it won the Best UK Feature award.

Isolani

Nominated for the Discovery Award at the British Independent Film Awards.

From writer/director R. Paul Wilson, Scottish thriller Isolani is the story of a mother fighting to protect her son after witnessing a murder.

After she witnesses a brutal murder, a young single mother becomes a pawn in a deadly game of deception. To protect her son and start a new life, she must outwit an ambitious prosecutor, a corrupt detective and a desperate killer. Fantastic acting, clever lighting and cinematography help maintain a creeping tension from beginning to end in this edge-of-seat film.

Isolani had its World Premiere at Raindance Film Festival 2017, where it was nominated for Best UK Feature.

 

Work

Nominated for the Best British Short Film award at the British Independent Film Awards.

A teenager’s perspective of the world around her begins to shift as she is confronted with its capacity for injustice.

Work was nominated for Best UK Short at Raindance Film Festival 2017.

Work

The winners will be announced at the British Independent Film Awards ceremony on Sunday 10 December.

Click here to see the full list of BIFA 2017 nominees

The post Raindance 2017 films nominated for British Independent Film Awards appeared first on Raindance.

Raindance

The 2017 British Independent Film Awards New Talents Longlist

On 24 October 2017, the BIFA announced the longlists for four new talent categories: Debut Director, Best Debut Screenwriter, Breakthrough Producer, and Most Promising Newcomer. The longlisted films are competing for nomination slots, which will be officially announced by Maisie Williams and Hayley Squires on 1 November. The winners of the 20th anniversary of the awards will be announced on 10 December at Old Billingsgate.

Of the 31 total longlisted films, five are in the writing, directing, and producing categories; these films include Bad Day for the Cut, God’s Own Country, I Am Not a Witch, Lady Macbeth, and Pin Cushion.

Lady Macbeth is the only film boasting two performers longlisted in the Most Promising Newcomer category – Cosmo Jarvis and Naomi Ackie. In the period drama set in rural nineteenth-century England, Jarvis, a mixed-race American-born English-raised actor, plays an estate worker; Ackie, a black English actor, plays an observant maid named Anna. Lady Macbeth premiered at TIFF in September 2016 and subsequently screened at BFI and Sundance.

Chris Baugh’s debut feature, Bad Day for the Cut, is a witty and violent Belfast-set revenge thriller which premiered at Sundance in January. Nigel O’Neill is up for the Most Promising Newcomer Award for his portrayal of Donal, a middle-aged Irish farmer who seeks revenge on her mother’s murderer.

Francis Lee’s directorial debut, God’s Own Country, portrays a young Yorkshire sheep farmer’s romance with a Romanian migrant worker. This is one of the more decorated films of the longlist – at Sundance, Lee won the World Cinematic Dramatic Directing Award and the drama won Best Film at both Berlin and Edinburgh.

Welsh-Zambian director Rugano Nyoni premiered her debut feature I Am Not a Witch at Cannes in May. Nyoni interweaves feminism with satire while channelling experiences from her upbringing into the telling of a young Zambian girl’s accusation of witchcraft and resultant removal from her village.

Writer-director Deborah Haywood’s first feature, Pin Cushion, opened Venice’s Critic’s Week in late August. The coming-of-age film revolves around the fragile and unsettling relationship between a single mother, Lyn, and her teenage daughter, Iona. Iona is played by Lily Newmark, a British-American actor longlisted for Most Promising Newcomer.

You can view BIFA’s press release which details the complete list of longlisted films here.

Fancy attending the British Independent Film Awards on 10 December 2017? Become a Raindance Benefactor to get a seat at this invite-only event.

The post The 2017 British Independent Film Awards New Talents Longlist appeared first on Raindance.

Raindance

Daily Dialogue — October 30, 2017

Nurse: Would you like to meet your son?
Vanessa: I have a son.

Juno (2007), written by Diablo Cody

The Daily Dialogue theme for the week: Hospital.

Trivia: Jennifer Garner dropped her A-list salary to a percentage point agreement for Juno when it was expected to be a small, low-grossing indie film, but the decision paid off when Juno became a breakout smash at the box office — giving Garner her best payday yet.

Dialogue On Dialogue: Such a great payoff to the Vanessa story-line. With the ensuing scenes rounding out that subplot, it pulls off a tricky thing: We feel happy the baby ends up with Vanessa while closing this chapter in Juno’s life.


Daily Dialogue — October 30, 2017 was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Go Into The Story – Medium

Recommended Cinema for October 29-November 04, 2017

This calendar is a new addition to NotComing.com, and is updated each Sunday with suggested screenings for the upcoming week. Currently, the calendar contains listings for , , , , , , , and . Others will be added in the future, and if you’re interested in curating a calendar in your part of the world, !
NotComing.com | Recent Updates

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