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Culture and Communication

In: Business and Management

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Applied Communication – SCREENPLAY WRITTING - THE BASICS

A Screenplay is a document that outlines every visual, behavioral, and lingual (dialogues) element required to tell a story. A film is a highly collaborative medium and the director, cast, editor, and production crew will, based on your Screenplay, interpret your story their way when it is filmed. Because so many people are involved in the making of a film, a screenplay must conform to standards that all involved parties understand and thus has a specific format. This document is intended to overview the typical elements used screenplay writing. It is crucial to remember that film is a VISUAL medium. You don't TELL your audience your story, you SHOW them. You must learn to write a screenplay VISUALLY. Write what they will SEE and what they will HEAR. Just write the pictures, sounds, and speeches you would like them to see and hear.

For the purpose of this assignment your script will involve just four elements: 1. 2. 3. 4. Scene headings Action Character Names Dialogue

Scene Headings: These appear at the beginning of a new scene and tell us the scene's setting. They look like this: INTERIOR. BANK VAULT - NIGHT Or this: EXTERIOR. FOOTBALL STADIUM - LATE AFTERNOON Scene Headings are made up of these three elements: 1) INTERIOR. or EXTERIOR. This tells the production crew whether or not they'll be shooting Indoors or Outdoors . 2) Location: Where the scene takes place. These should be short: LIBRARY CIRCULATION DESK or BEDROOM or CARPARK 3) Time. Usually just DAY or NIGHT but can be as specific as 4:59 A.M. (if, say plane is going to take off at 5:00.) or EARLY MORNING, LATE AFTERNOON, etc. Scene headings are always in CAPITAL LETTERS

Action: This describes what is happening on the screen, and which characters (if any) are involved. It looks like this:

EXTERIOR. SHAIKH SALMAN HIGHWAY. EARLY MORNING There is heavy traffic on the highway going towards Manama. or A silver Lexus is travelling towards Isa Town at a high speed

Character Name: This always appears above Dialogue and tells us which character is speaking. It looks like this: AHMED or BANK MANAGER or THE DIRVER OF THE CAR Character names are always in CAPITAL

Dialogue: Are the words the character speaks. It looks like this: AHMED I don’t like this shwarma, it is too salty.

Here is an example of how all four elements come together on the page: EXTERIOR. ADALIYA. EVENING Ahmed parks in front of the shawarma café. A waiter comes running to his car. Ahmed lowers his car window, takes the shwarma from the waiter and looks hungrily at the shwarma he had ordered earlier and takes a bite. AHMED I don’t like this shwarma, it is too salty.

Variations in Scene headings / Location – where the place needs to specific INTERIOR. AHMED’S HOUSE. KITCHEN. NIGHT or POLYTECHNIC. ROOM 11.14. DAY.

Action Sequence – an example EXTERIOR. A VERY NARROW LANE. NIGHT.

Ahmed is being pursued by a robber. Ahmed runs for his life clutching his laptop bag that has all his Applied Com assignments. Ahmed Shouting: help, help We hear a screeching sound and a police car skids around the corner and stops. Ahmed runs towards the police car panting with exhaustion. Ahmed Save me, save me.…...

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