Reader Question: How to convey a character’s emotional state in scene description?

How much latitude does a screenwriter have to ‘editorialize’ in scene description?

A question from Lalithra Fernando:

So, as a director, I know not to tell actors to be a little angry here, or more happy there. This leads to generic responses in the acting, rather than specific, layered emotional responses.

When you are writing, do you also want to avoid such language?

ie. He stared at the door, angrily.
vs.
He glared at the door.
(pretty wack example, but w/e)

I suppose its about adverbs.

Anyways, when I write it out, it always seems pretty foolish, but the question comes back every time I think I’ve answered it for myself. In need of some clarification.

Lalithra, you raise a good question. On the one hand, there’s the adage about not writing anything in scene description that an actor can’t act and that the moviegoer can’t see — that basically the only thing we, as screenwriters, can include in scene description and parentheticals, is specific directions re a character’s actions. Unfortunately in working with actors, it’s preferable to describe the character’s emotional / psychological state, tied to what plot elements are impacting them at the moment, then allow the actor to translate that into action, as opposed to telling them specifically how to act.

Which is a big reason why the old adage — “only describe what a moviegoer can see” — isn’t a hard and fast rule. In a selling script, it’s almost as important, sometimes even more so to convey the mood and feeling of the moment rather than specific character actions.

Let’s look at some examples from the wonderful script by Michael Arndt for Little Miss Sunshine. First, here is the introduction of Grandpa (P.4):

INT. BATHROOM - DAY
Two hands spill a brown powder onto a small mirror.
A razor blade cuts the powder into lines.
A rolled-up dollar bill lowers. The lies are snorted.
The snorter lifts his head up. He is a short, chunky
balding old man -- a Roz Chast kind of grandfather.
This is GRANDPA, 80 years old.
He sits down on the toilet seat, rubs his nose, takes a
breath and relaxes as the drugs flood his system.

Very straight ahead description. Now let’s look at how Frank is introduced in the hospital after a failed suicide attempt (P. 3):

INT. HOSPITAL ROOM - DAY
In a wheelchair, parked against a wall, is Sheryl's brother,
FRANK, also middle-aged. His wrists are wrapped in bandages.
With empty eyes, he listens to the muted VOICE of the Doctor
coming from the hallway.

With his “empty eyes,” the last line is a bit more about conveying Frank’s mood. This next example is even more ‘inside’ the character, Frank’s first moment in his new home — Dwayne’s room (P. 10):

Very unhappily, Frank enters the room and just stands there.
SHERYL (cont'd)
Thank you. I gotta start dinner.
Come out when you're settled? And
leave the door open. That's
important.
(beat)
I'm glad you're here.
She gives him a kiss on the cheek, then departs.
Frank sits on the cot in his nephew's bedroom. On it is a
Muppet sleeping bag with the Cookie Monster eating a cookie.
Frank glances at the sleeping bag, then averts his eyes.
This is pretty much the worst moment of his life.

“This is pretty much the worst moment of his life.” Not something a moviegoer could see. Not a description of a specific thing an actor can act. Rather going inside the character to convey to the reader (and the actor) what they’re feeling, the mood of the moment.

Arndt takes the same approach late in the script where Richard is seeing the other contestants at the pageant (P. 96):

The audience -- charmed -- starts clapping along. As she
finishes, the audience rises as one in a standing ovation.
Richard is the only one to remain seated. His face sinks as
reality finally hits him -- there's no way Olive will win.

“There’s ‘s no way Olive will win.” Again going inside the character to convey feeling and mood.

The reality is this: It is acceptable for a screenwriter to go beyond mere action description and write about the emotional status quo, even to go inside characters to reveal to the reader what they’re feeling. That said, a screenplay is not a novel, so we have to pick our spots. Best advice: Only go inside a character when you really want to drive home an important feeling, a key mood of the moment.

Does anyone have any other good examples of scene description that go inside a character?

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For more articles in the Go Into The Story Reader Question series, go here.


Reader Question: How to convey a character’s emotional state in scene description? 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

New Infinity War Art and Which Characters the Russo Bros. are Excited About

New Infinity War Art and Which Characters the Russo Bros. are Excited About

New Infinity War Art and which characters the Russo Bros. are excited about

Avengers: Infinity War directors Anthony and Joe Russo participated in a live Q&A and were asked which characters they are personally excited about revealing the character development for in the film. You can check out their responses to that question, as well as two more questions, in the player below.

New Avengers: Infinity War art has also been revealed in a Russian calendar, which also includes Ant-Man and The Wasp and Black Panther art. Check out the pics in the tweet!

An unprecedented cinematic journey ten years in the making and spanning the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War brings to the screen the ultimate, deadliest showdown of all time. The Avengers and their Super Hero allies must be willing to sacrifice all in an attempt to defeat the powerful Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.

Confirmed cast members for Avengers: Infinity War so far include Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Anthony Mackie, Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olson, Jeremy Renner, Chadwick Boseman, Sebastian Stan, Don Cheadle, Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Zoe Saldana, Pom Klementieff, Benedict Cumberbatch, Benedict Wong, Sean Gunn, Tom Holland, Paul Rudd, and Josh Brolin.

Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War is slated for a release in theaters on May 4, 2018. Then, the Avengers assemble again for the still-untitled fourth film, set for May 3, 2019.

The post New Infinity War Art and Which Characters the Russo Bros. are Excited About appeared first on ComingSoon.net.

ComingSoon.net

Writing and the Creative Life: Your characters want you to tell their story

Lean into your characters. After all, it’s their story.

“Your characters want you to tell their story.”

I found myself blurting this out in a recent teleconference with some writers in one of my screenwriting classes. I assume someone has said or written this before. I don’t know the source. But I do believe it.

When we write a story, we deal with characters. We may think of them as existing in our imaginations. But as we dig into and develop them, details begin to emerge and ‘attach’ themselves to each character, aspects of their personality, events in their past, different parts of their psychological makeup. In this process, I think it’s fair to say these characters begin to feel more and more real to us. Indeed the entire story universe in which these characters exist emerges into view as a tangible place.

We can look at this experience — characters and universe becoming more and more real — as a natural result of our hard work, brainstorming and creativity. But what if we choose to look at the dynamic in a slightly different light? What if by doing due diligence and really spending time with our characters in the places where they live, these same characters honor us by revealing themselves and their universe to us? What if they have been waiting for us to come along and find them?

What if our characters want us to tell their story?

What if we actually believed that? What if you believed that? Imagine what a difference that could make in your writing experience.

Instead of an aimless foray into narrative mush, might not the fact these characters know a specific story they want told give us hope we can find that story?

Instead of painful plodding through a creative miasma, perhaps if we reach out to these characters, they will show us the way to FADE IN?

Instead of a solitary sojourn through the process, our characters can act as allies to encourage and lead us?

You may choose to think this is illogical. The characters exist in our minds. Period.

But what if we choose this other way: The characters actually exist in their own story universe. In this respect, it is the ultimate act of creation: The word become flesh. Incarnation.

What if we elect to believe these characters want us to tell their story?

Isn’t that possibility at least worth considering?

Go into your characters. Seek them out. They have a story to tell. Will you tell it?

Writing and the Creative Life is a weekly series in which we explore creativity from the practical to the psychological, the latest in brain science to a spiritual take on the subject. Hopefully the more we understand about our creative self, the better we will become as writers. If you have any good reading material in this vein, please post in comments. If you have a particular observation you think readers will benefit from and you would like to explore in a guest post, email me.

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For more articles in the Writing and the Creative Life series, go here.


Writing and the Creative Life: Your characters want you to tell their story was originally published in Go Into The Story on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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Reader Question: What is the best way to make sure readers love my characters?

Characters are the major conduits for a reader into the story’s emotional life.

Reader question via @Sylent_steel from my recent #scriptchat session:

I love my characters! What is the best way to make sure readers will too?

Seems like you’re off to a good start in that you already love your characters. Presumably your affection for them will show up on the page.

That’s the thing about characters: They are the major conduits for a reader into the story’s emotional life. The more we dig into them, the more we understand the psychological dynamics at work in who they are and where their narrative destiny is taking them, the more likely we will be able to tap into their emotional nature.

First tip: Look for big ticket items such as want and need, and in particular zero in on aspects of their lives which are universal in nature. Trust. Fear. Hope. Despair. Belief. Regret. Each of us as individuals in our lifetime acquires a kaleidoscope of experiences, all of them coming with some form of emotional attachment and meaning. So, too, with characters. Those big issues can not only create a point of identification with a reader, but also help shape where the plot goes.

Also look for small specific dynamics at work in the lives of your characters. There’s a quote I love from author Anne Beattie: “People forget years and remember moments.” I don’t know about you, but that’s my experience with movies. You say a movie title, I immediately conjure up moments from that movie. And sometimes, the most powerful moments are the seemingly small ones.

Here’s an example from The Shawshank Redemption, a movie filled with memorable moments. There is a beautiful four-moment subplot centering around a harmonica:

  • After Andy gets out of solitary confinement for the first time, he heads to the mess hall for a meal with the others. Asked how he survived, here is Andy’s reply and the ensuing conversation:
                              ANDY 
I had Mr. Mozart to keep me company.
Hardly felt the time at all.
                              RED 
Oh, they let you tote that record
player down there, huh? I could'a
swore they confiscated that stuff.
                              ANDY 
(taps his heart, his head)
The music was here...and here.
That's the one thing they can't
confiscate, not ever. That's the
beauty of it. Haven't you ever felt
that way about music, Red?
                              RED 
Played a mean harmonica as a younger
man. Lost my taste for it. Didn't
make much sense on the inside.
                              ANDY 
Here's where it makes most sense.
We need it so we don't forget.
                              RED 
Forget?
                              ANDY 
That there are things in this world
not carved out of gray stone. That
there's a small place inside of us
they can never lock away, and that
place is called hope.
                              RED 
Hope is a dangerous thing. Drive a
man insane. It's got no place here.
Better get used to the idea.

So this little moment establishes two things: Hope, which is a HUGE theme in the story, and the harmonica.

  • Later Andy surprises Red by giving him a gift: A harmonica.

It’s a nice reversal in that Red is the guy who gets things including Andy’s rock hammer. Here Andy repays the gesture. Again a nice little moment cementing their evolving friendship.

  • In a scene soon after, Red is alone in his cell. He pulls out the harmonica. Studies it. Puts it to his lips and gives it the tiniest of toots. Puts it back in the box. And that is that.

This quiet tiny moment speaks volumes. Andy made a specific connection between hope and music. Indeed, he reinforced it by playing the Mozart opera over the prison loudspeaker system, a moment which transfixed the entire prison population. Here is how Red responded to that moment:

                             RED (V.O.) 
I have no idea to this day what
them two Italian ladies were
singin' about. Truth is, I don't
want to know. Some things are best
left unsaid. I like to think they
were singin' about something so
beautiful it can't be expressed in
words, and makes your heart ache
because of it.
CAMERA brings us to Red.
                             RED (V.O.) 
I tell you, those voices soared.
Higher and farther than anybody in
a gray place dares to dream. It was
like some beautiful bird flapped
into our drab little cage and made
these walls dissolve away...and for
the briefest of moments -- every
last man at Shawshank felt free.

So harmonica = music = hope. The fact Red in that private moment in his cell where he gives the harmonica nothing more than a little toot suggests he’s not bought into the message of hope. Which leads us to one of the most emotionally riveting moments in the script.

  • The day before Andy escapes, he makes Red promise if he ever gets out of prison to go to a field in Buxton:
                             ANDY 
One in particular. Got a long rock
wall with a big oak at the north
end. Like something out of a Robert
Frost poem. It's where I asked my
wife to marry me. We'd gone for a
picnic. We made love under that
tree. I asked and she said yes.
(beat)
Promise me, Red. If you ever get
out, find that spot. In the base of
that wall you'll find a rock that
has no earthly business in a Maine
hayfield. A piece of black volcanic
glass. You'll find something buried
under it I want you to have.
                             RED 
What? What's buried there?
                             ANDY 
You'll just have to pry up that
rock and see.

Which leads to this scene:

Now listen to the soundtrack… carefully. In the cut called “Compass and Guns,” at the 2:44 mark, precisely when Red first sees the tree in the field, we hear a harmonica. Then again at 3:15. I’ve cued it up so you can listen to it here.

A tiny moment, but what a wondrous grace note to round out the harmonica = music = hope theme. Of course, capped off by the final side of dialogue in the movie:

                           RED (V.O.) 
I hope I can make it across the
border. I hope to see my friend
and shake his hand. I hope the
Pacific is as blue as it has been
in my dreams.
(beat)
I hope.

Sigh. Such a great movie.

Circling back to where we started, some advice to make readers love your characters as much as you do:

  • Love your characters: That passion makes it more likely you will write vibrant, alive characters. If you care about them, hopefully others will care about them, too.
  • Look for the big ticket items: Universal dynamics and themes your characters may have at work in their lives as those help to sweep up a reader into larger drama of those characters’ lives.
  • Look for small, meaningful moments: Where pure, honest, genuine emotion can speak directly to the reader.

There is a host of other things you can do. Make the characters funny. Charming. Entertaining. Courageous. And don’t forget, there are some characters who you want us to hate. But let’s start the conversation here.

GITS readers, what are your thoughts? How do you write characters you love so that others will love them as well?

Comment Archive


Reader Question: What is the best way to make sure readers love my characters? 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

No, The Characters in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Aren’t Speaking English

Guardians of the Galaxy characters don't speak English

If you’re one of those left-brained people who refuses to suspend their disbelief while watching the Guardians of the Galaxy films, wondering just how and why all these aliens from distant universes speak English, director James Gunn would like a few words with you. The characters in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 aren’t speaking English at all; a voice translator is doing all the work. In a series of tweets, Gunn yet again confirmed the Guardians of the Galaxy characters don’t speak English. See the details below.

We’ve been here before. Back in 2015, someone on Twitter asked James Gunn, “[W]hy does everyone in GotG inexplicably speak English?” Gunn had a quick, simple reply to the question:

The director is referring to the scene from the first film where the Guardians, before they’ve actually become the Guardians, are in a police lineup. When Star Lord, aka Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) appears in the lineup, information about the character appears on a digital read-out. Among the data is “Translator implant in neck.”

4oqJs

Well, because no one knows how to use Twitter’s search function, people have continued to ask Gunn this same question numerous times. And Gunn, good sport that he is, has taken the time (occasionally) to set the record straight. Which he just did again earlier in the week:

In other words, the translator implanted in Qull’s neck helps him translate the variety of languages he encounters as he travels through the galaxy. And just because we as an audience hear everything as English, it doesn’t mean Quill does too. So says Gunn (again, via Twitter):

This is all well and good for the Guardians films, but what about future Marvel movies? After all, Quill and the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy will be appearing in Avengers: Infinity War. How will the various Avengers understand what the heck Quill and company are saying if none of them technically speak English? The real answer is: it’s a movie, try not to obsess too much over this. But of course, obsess is exactly what film fans do best, so the question remains. That’s fine, just don’t expect Infinity War to address it. Besides, Gunn again has a simple answer for all of this (via The Inverse):

“None of this is a problem. The translator implants — which all of the Guardians except Groot have — work both ways. That is, if they’re talking with someone who speaks French, they can both understand AND speak French (if French is programmed into the translators). This is a pretty simple technology by Guardians standards — just a more advanced version of Google translate — and certainly something we’re technologically closer to than, say, traveling light years.”

Gunn is certainly right on that last point. Just the other day, Google announced their “Pixel Buds” earbuds, which will apparently have the technology to translate 40 languages. “It’s an incredible application of Google Translate powered by machine learning — it’s like having a personal translator by your side,” said Google product manager Juston Payne. No word yet on if the Pixel Buds translate alien languages, though. I’m guessing no.

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is now on Blu-ray. Avengers: Infinity War opens May 4, 2018.

The post No, The Characters in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Aren’t Speaking English appeared first on /Film.


/Film

Watch: A Novel Way to Make Your Characters More Human

Stanley Kubrick and Ridley Scott are among the filmmakers who use this tactic.

One of the most basic questions faced by any filmmaker must be this: what is the universal human angle here? How do I bring out the human element in these characters and this story, making the film matter to its viewers? There are many paths to that answer, the most obvious being making the story as engaging as possible, using human interest as story elements where possible, or adding as many dimensions to characters as they can hold. However, some directors, ranging from Stanley Kubrick to Ridley Scott to Spike Jonze, have amplified the humanity of their characters by contrast, specifically by including nonhuman, non-animal characters in their films to remind us of what makes a human a human and what makes a robot a robot.

In the most outlandish films, we may notice the least outlandish details first.

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No Film School

Black List writers on the craft: Characters (Part 4)

Over the years, I have interviewed over 40 Black List screenwriters. This month, I will run a series featuring one topic per week related to the craft of writing.

This week: How do you develop your characters?

Reading through all of the responses was a fascinating exercise. Once again, this group of writers demonstrates there is no one way to approach the craft. Their respective approaches to developing their story’s characters vary from highly intuitive, even instinctual to the conscious use of specific techniques and writing exercises. In all cases, the goal is the same: To make the characters come alive in the writer’s imagination and onto the printed page.

On Monday, we featured writers who start their character development process by focusing on real people. Tuesday writers zeroed in on brainstorming and the importance of asking questions about and to characters. Yesterday we checked in with writers who use biographies as a tool for character development. Today we see how some Black List writers use scene-writing to find a character’s voice:

Ashleigh Powell: “For me, how my characters speak informs a lot about who they are and how they see the world. Really nailing down that voice helps me shape their character traits from there.”

Spenser Cohen: “One thing that I do when I first start writing is to put the outline aside and just start trying to find the character’s voice. I’ll give myself space to explore, and I just let the characters go. No one’s going to see it. No one’s going to read it. There’s no pressure. It’s their story, and I let whatever happens, happen. I’ll often make up a scene that’s not in the outline and might not even make sense for the story… It’s almost like a rehearsal before you jump in and start doing the real work. Just exploring. Often in these rough passes the characters start to take shape.”

Julia Hart: “Just through writing the scenes of their dialogue. I write a ton and then I’ll cut a bunch of it out. I’ll write like seven lines where there needs to be one and just cut around that one right line and keep going. I find their voices by having them say too much, by writing down every thought that would be in their head and then cutting off the fat.”

No matter the writing, the goal is to get inside the character’s head:

Eric Heisserer: “If I need to develop the character further, typically that’s the harder work of trying to figure out what part of the story I’m not writing about. If I have to…and I hate it, but I’ve had to do this before…I will write act zero — what happens to a character before the story in my script begins — so I have a deeper understanding of where this character came from.”

James DiLapo: “Whenever I struggled with lines in “Devils At Play” I would stop and would run the whole story in my head from the character’s perspective, trying to feel what they are feeling and thinking how they would. It’s not always easy. I think that’s probably the hardest element of screenwriting. You have to find a way to stretch beyond your own understanding and become, for a moment, someone who is so foreign to the way you live your life. In my experience, however, the more you do it, the better you get at it.”

Takeaway:

  • Feel free to write free. Free-standing scenes. Free-standing monologues. Give yourself “space to explore”. Write down “every thought” the character has and see what sticks.
  • For some writers, a character’s personality may shape their voice, however the inverse can work, too. Nailing down their voice can “shape” their character traits.
  • Do what you need to do to get inside their head. Feel what “they are feeling.” Think how “they would.” Write “act zero,” exploring what happened to the character before FADE IN. To riff off the name of this blog… go into the characters.

How about you? Do you write free-standing scenes to explore your characters? How do you go about finding a character’s voice? What do you do to get inside their head?

For Part 1 of this week’s series on character development, go here.

Part 2, here.

Part 3, here.

Tomorrow we take up another angle on prep-writing as reflected on by Black List writers.

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Black List writers on the craft: Characters (Part 4) 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

Writing Characters: Go Beyond Stereotypes

Go beyond stereotypes

Do any of these sound familiar TV shows or films you’ve seen?

  • The cop whose marriage broke up because he could never switch off his work
  • The hooker who is only doing that kind of work because she’s a single mother
  • The young bully who turns out to be bullied or abused by his father

Probably they do, because they’ve become stereotypes. Stereotypes are based on facts–a lot of police officers’ marriage do break up, a lot of prostitutes do have a child to support, a lot of bullies were themselves bullied. But when we see only these aspects of these characters they feel predictable and not that interesting.

First let’s see how NOT to go beyond the stereotypes, and that’s to go for the exact opposite of what people expect. When you do that you just create new stereotypes: the grandmother who rides a Harley, the boxer who loves poetry, or possibly the earliest version of this, the sad clown.

A more effective method is to make sure you give the characters enough attributes to reveal them as individuals. These don’t have to be exposed through exposition, sometimes you can use the setting, or the character’s appearance, or who he or she hangs out with, to give clues.

For instance, maybe our cop’s marriage did break up because he brought his work home too much. Instead of being a broken man who now drinks too much (more stereotyping) maybe he’s looking for somebody new among the ranks of the female police officers. Or maybe he has a new girlfriend who loves being with a cop (maybe she is just that bit too interested…)

If you have problems doing this, take a minute to consider to consider the complexity of the people around you and use that for inspiration. 

Ask your characters for help

If you get stuck, who are you going to call? One good option is to ask your characters for help.

What I suggest is interviewing your characters. Each of them wants something (even if sometimes it’s just to be left alone). They want something in general, and they want something in the scene you are writing.

Let’s take an example: You’re writing a scene for a romantic comedy in which Brad and Jane meet on a blind date. You’ve written some good dialogue for their first awkward moments and you know that you don’t want them to get along too well at this first meeting, but you’re not sure exactly what to have happen in the body of the scene.

In this case some good questions to ask both of your characters would be:

  • what’s the best thing that could happen on this date?
  • what’s the worst thing that could happen?
  • what do you think the other person wants?
  • What do you find attractive and unattractive about them?

Those questions alone might well be enough to get you going. If he says the worst thing would be if she turns out to be clingy, but you don’t want her to actually be clingy (after all, we want them to get together at the end), what could happen in the scene that would give him that (wrong) impression? Maybe she’s afraid of spiders and there’s one crawling along the wall; she’s embarrassed by this phobia but whenever the bug crawls near to her she can’t help grabbing Brad’s arm and moving closer to him–to be farther away from the spider, which he can’t see.

Or maybe she says the worst thing would be to have him be one of those driven types who check their phones for new messages every thirty seconds. If we want Brad to do this even though that’s not his usual habit, we need to plant a reason for him to check his phone on this occassion, and make it something too embarrassing or personal for him to be willing to reveal to her since they just met.

This interview method works for bigger plot points, too. Ask your characters what they want, what they fear, what their secrets are and you’ll soon have enough raw material to get you back on track.

PS: If you don’t know their desires, fears, and secrets, spend some time fleshing out the characters, then return to the problem.

 

Week 2 of Jurgen Wolff’s Script Coach workshop at Raindance is all about creating memorable characters that make your script stand out. You can sign up here.

The post Writing Characters: Go Beyond Stereotypes appeared first on Raindance.

Raindance

Watch: 4 Things Pixar Always Does to Create Memorable Characters

There’s a reason why Pixar characters stay with you long after the end credits roll.

We all have a favorite Pixar character. You’re probably thinking of them right now, hearing their best lines and replaying the scene in your head that made you an instant fan. And how could you not be? Pixar’s characters, from Woody to Sadness Mike Wazowski have a unique way of sticking with you, whether it’s due to their hilarious banter or heartbreaking humanity. But what is it that Pixar does to make them so memorable? Well, StudioBinder offers up an explanation in this interesting video.

We could all make reasonable arguments as to how Pixar manages to develop such memorable, multi-dimensional characters, but here are the ones StudioBinder comes up, some of which are based on what Pixar alums have said about the process.

They all have spines

According to Pixar screenwriter Andrew Stanto, all well-drawn characters “have a spine,” and that their “inner motor,” whether it’s Marlin’s desire to prevent harm or Wall-E’s desire to find beauty, is the goal that subconsciously drives them throughout their entire journey.

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No Film School

Get in Gear with Our Cars Characters Gallery

Meet the new Cars characters in our Cars characters gallery guide!

Get in gear for this Friday’s Cars 3 with our Cars characters guide!

DisneyPixar‘s Cars 3 is zooming into theaters this Friday, June 16. Before the franchise returns, we’re heading back to the film’s automotive world to take a look at some of the key Cars characters. In the gallery viewer below, you can take a look at some returning favorites like Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson), young race trainer Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo), #95’s rival Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer) and race analyst Natalie Certain (Kerry Washington). The film is directed by Brian Fee, who was a storyboard artist for Cars and Cars 2.

RELATED: Lightning McQueen Has a Midlife CARisis in Final Cars 3 Trailer

Disney•Pixar‘s Cars 3 begins when, blindsided by a new generation of blazing-fast racers, the legendary Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) is suddenly pushed out of the sport he loves. To get back in the game, he will need the help of an eager young race technician, Cruz Ramirez, with her own plan to win, plus inspiration from the late Fabulous Hudson Hornet and a few unexpected turns. Proving that #95 isn’t through yet will test the heart of a champion on Piston Cup Racing’s biggest stage!

Cars 3 also features the return of Larry the Cable Guy as Mater, Bonnie Hunt as Sally Carrera, and Cheech Marin as Ramone alongside lots of brand-new Cars characters. NASCAR’s Jeff Gordon, Richard Petty, Chase Elliott, Ryan Blaney, Daniel Suárez and Bubba Wallace will lend their voices to the film as well.

Cars 3 actually marks the fifth feature film set in the Cars universe. DisneyToon studios also released two spinoff films, Planes and Planes: Fire and Rescue, set in the same automative universe.

Which of these Cars characters are your favorites? Who are you most excited to see back on the big screen? Let us know your thoughts below in the comments or tweet us @ComingSoonnet.

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